As a photographer and freelance model, I have a few rituals which help me to look and feel my best for a shoot. I wanted to start a Beauty Secret Series for those who are interested in what I personally do prior to a photo session or big event.
To start with, I do believe that all beauty emanates from the inside. If we are drinking enough non-fluoridated water, sleeping 8 hours per night, exercising 5-7 days per week, and (this is key) eating a whole foods plant based (vegan) diet — our internal health will be displayed on the outside. These are my cornerstones to looking and feeling my best.
With that being said, to take my look up a notch I will apply St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse. While I’ve tried many, this one is my favorite. The mousse has a slightly green tint, this eliminates the orange-y hue which is present in many other self-bronzing products. Also, this company does not test on animals.
This post is less about the actual bronzing product and more about the steps I take to ensure the product goes on evenly, resulting in a natural looking glow.
It all begins two nights prior to the event or photo shoot. At the end of the day I will take a dry brush to my skin, right before showering. Dry brushing not only physically exfoliates the skin, but also internally stimulates the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is comprised of spider-web like lymphatic vessels carrying a clear liquid called ‘lymph.’ Unlike the circulatory system which has the heart, the lymphatic system does not have a self-pumping mechanism. For optimal health, we must make an effort to stimulate the lymphatic system on a daily basis. In addition to exercising, dry brushing is one of the ways we can accomplish this.
Once I have thoroughly dry brushed my body (article here for proper technique), it’s time to shave and exfoliate in the shower. I always use a brand new razor for this.
After the shower, now is the time to generously apply A LOT of moisturizer. Multiple layers should be applied to the rougher areas including elbows, knees, and ankles.
The next evening (this should be the night before your event) it’s time to shower again. But now, your objective is only to rinse off. Use warm water and *do not* use body wash. You’ll want to avoid body wash due to the fact that most contain a moisturizer of some kind.
You will want to wait about 30 minutes between showering and applying the bronzing mousse. Waiting for 30 minutes will do things:
1. Allow time for your skin to completely dry.
2. Allow time for your pores to ‘shrink’ back to normal so that the tanning mousse doesn’t settle in and create dots or streaks.
As the finale, it’s time to actually apply the product! I highly suggest using a Tan Applicator Mitt for this. The product should glide on like a dream after all of this prep. As a final tip, I also suggest waiting to get dressed for at least 10 minutes.
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