Clearly Bronzed

Where was this when I was ballroom dancing! In ballroom, bronze is not only “beautiful” but begrudgingly a “must-do.”  If you want to be taken seriously – and I’m not exaggerating – you better believe you need to grace that floor looking like a golden goddess.  Pale skin is NOT in, much to my own dismay.  Protesting the fact won’t get you anywhere. . . 

Trust me on that.

Enter – years too late (*insert expletive here*) – this phenomenally, brilliantly clear Hydra-Mousse from Tan-Luxe. It apparently delivers exactly what it claims to, minus all the horrendous “side effects” of a traditionally brown-dyed solution.  

Now I can’t be too hard on the brown-tinted selections out there – they DO make it easier to see and smooth out mistakes.  BUT…the prospect of using a self-tanner and NOT having overly-orange skin where you’re drier, OR clothing, sheets, and expensive costumes that have decided to tan along with you. . .well, that’s pretty damn fabulous.

I mean, dancers everywhere can rejoice finally.  No more brown streaks, overly glowing elbow, or horrific scent (thanks a lot, DHA!) It isn’t inexpensive necessarily but then if you’re saving on cleaning bills (and not freaking out about warming up and starting to smell funny!) this might be for you!

Vita Liberata Tan

I have to be honest, I am SO not sad that my wedding is during the Autumn!  And if it were during Spring or Summer, I’d steer (incredibly) clear of anything “tan” at all – self, or sun. I know a little bit of “color” can wake up the complexion, but over the years, the quest for a self-tanner that doesn’t turn you into a giant tangerine (along WITH your clothing!) has been littered with ones that DO.  The wedding gown can be spared!

That aside, the orange’d hue is often accompanied by the telltale, and frankly repugnant redolence of DHA (dihydroxyacetone.) Not a good look, and definitely no fun when your body heat turns up – dancing under hot lights caused a cocoon of the scent (cloying to me AND anyone in my remote proximity!)  Not to mention those rivulets of sweat making for fun, streaky skin…since the formula just couldn’t hang on.  


Well…Vita Liberata’s pHenomenal 2-3 Week Tan Mousse is one of those products that endeavors to eliminate those mishaps, to keep you golden and glowing…and fragrance-free! BudgetBeautyBlog posted a review a little while back – I liked it because she sports a pallor also, and beginning with fair skin can often lead to curious results.

Sephora photo

Sephora photo

Addressing the issue of lasting power – something many brands fail to conquer – the pHenomenal 2-3 Week Tan Mousse sticks around for two to three weeks.  BRILLIANT!  I could have saved a good amount of money NOT having to double self-tan for Ballroom competitions with this streak-free, hydrating, and non-scented mousse!  Per the description on Sephora: 

Research results after just 2 applications: 
– 80% agree pHenomenal tan lasts 15 days or longer 
– 100% agree that skin was silky soft after using pHenomenal
– 100% agree that they were comfortable enough to go straight out after applying pHenomenal
– 100% agree pHenomenal tan is quick and easy to apply
– 90% agree pHenomenal tan faded like a natural tan

Budgetbeautyblog photo

Budgetbeautyblog photo

I haven’t tried this myself as yet, but I feel like if I do have an event to attend – at which my ghostly white gams might be “too much” for the crowd – it might be worth a try.  Bronzed without consequence of skin damage?  Nice to have the option!

L’Oreal Cushion De Soleil

Not here in the USA but happy to see this L’Oreal Glam Cushion De Soleil all the same (thanks to msqueenbee617 for posting.)

 This would have been a benefit when ballroom dancing for sure – bronze was the way to be, and maintaining the self tan on my face (while also being a skincare nazi!) meant that I had to have products to replenish the “glow” I often (by default) vigorously washed off!

Cushions have been trending like nobody’s business so I do expect we will see this in the USA at some point in future.

Rimmel In-Shower Tan

When Spring arrives, so do all the new tanning products generally – I’ve definitely seen them taking a front seat in stores lately, but I haven’t seen this in-store quite yet.  You can, however, get it at Boots online (link with the photo.)

Rimmel’s In-Shower Tan is taking a nod from a few other high-end tanner brands, who offer something akin to the in-shower moisturizers of the last year or two.  The idea is that you can apply while taking a shower, only to be left with a several-day bronze glow…and a few more minutes in the day (since you could do this during your usual routine.)

 The Rimmel product is a “1 minute express” lotion designed to deliver a sunkissed glow within just a few hours. It’s streak-free, faux-tan-scent-free (that’s always nice!) and buildable.

The reviews didn’t look stellar, but I came across ReallyRee’s thoughts on the rinse-off and she seemed to enjoy it.  And anyway, it IS safer than baking too long in the sun!

Spring / Summer 2016 – Benefit

So Benefit has a lot of fun stuff coming out in Marc, 2016.  Two of the goodies – boasting those fun and cheeky names we expect from the brand – are Zero Tanlines, and Dew The Hoola.  There isn’t a ton of info out just yet, but BritishBeautyBlogger shared some lovely photos and swatches.  I enjoy being pale myself but a no one ever looks worse with a slight sun-kissed glow!

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Zero Tanlines is a “skin tint “ – I’ve seen the new ones from L’oreal in Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid already.  It washes off, so it isn’t a faux, self tan – it’s more like body makeup, if you will.  The cap of the product is apparently a hula skirt (which honestly I didn’t realize!)  Underneath it – how sassy, Benefit! – is a buffing application sponge for streak-free results.  Personally I’d look for “transfer resistant,” “water resistant” etc with a product like this.  I’m not totally sure if it is any of those things, but most like items in the marketplace are these days.

As for Dew The Hoola, it’s a lightweight, easily applied bronze tint – nothing too heavy, by the looks of it, and no glitter (hallelujah!  LOVE glitter, but not when “natural” is what we are aiming for.)

While they aren’t out until the dawn of Spring, they are fun to announce anyway – a little extra sun during the cold, wintery months to bask beneath!

Sugar Pill Pumpkin Spice

I couldn’t help but share…in the spirit of yes-it’s-still-Autumn! (I personally feel like Halloween deserves to be taken down before it is outmanned in the aisles by Christmas!  And what about THANKSGIVING!?  Doesn’t that come first!?  *hands on hips*)

So maybe that’s why I feel the urge to pass along this coppery-bronze, pumpkiny yumminess! 

Per Sugar Pill, you can “forget about the flavored lattes, waffles and donuts. Pumpkin Spice metallic eyeshadow is all the fall spirit you’ll need to get the party started, without the stomachache!”

The color is “A very limited edition shade of rustic copper foil with warm golden flecks in a super saturated, rich and creamy formula that applies like butter (vegan butter, of course.)”

This shade would look amazing on a range of eye colors – While traditionally coppery hues make green and hazel pop, it would be warm and gorgeous with brown eyes, and pair super well with blue…

Ellie Goulding for MAC

Ellie Goulding has not only landed a spot as the new face of M.A.C., but she is also releasing a holiday line in collaboration with the cosmetic giant.  That’s pretty fabulous, I’d say!  I’m wondering if it had anything to do with her 50 Shades of Grey hit single?  

The blurring, windswept feel to the promo shot adds to the effect of December dreaminess (honestly, this doesn’t totally look like a December debut selection (or image) – to me – but good a time as any to offer more wearable nudes, I guess!)  

The Collection will feature flirty, feathering lashes…a blush and bronzer compact duo…a neutral shadow quad…and what looks to be a few gentle pink lip products, and a shimmering golden gloss.  Overall, the colors appear to favor peachy pinks, soft sables, and bronzed, golden warmth…so maybe it’s more for the “It’s-winter-but-I-look-like-I’ve-spent-snow-days-in-the-tropics” crowd…?

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Janine Falcon Instagram screen shot

Eager to see more images of it, but it sounds like it will be some time before the products hit shelves.  I am SURE, however, that sneak peeks will pop up.  I, for one, love when they do! 🙂


Innovative Bronzing

Self tanning has EXPLODED over the years – forget beds and stand-in spray booths, the types of products, and applications are astounding.  

Fortunately, I caught the beginnings of the trend when I was a Ballroom competitor – if you aren’t familiar with the sport, being bronzed was a MUST.  No exceptions.  As someone who can appear nigh translucent (oh, how well I’d blend in during Elizabethan times!) I often had to get spray tanned TWICE before competitions.  

Then there was the actually face bronzerpowders that were touted for being spectacular in every major magazine, but ones that hot lights would…most definitely...MELT.  Yes, even my beloved NARS would streak from time to time – 20 latin dances in a row and there was no possibility of not sweating some of it off.

Enter the new, innovative formulations of 2015…

Make Up Forever Pro Bronze Fusion maintains that it is a “waterproof bronzer that blends on like a second skin.”  I can tell you right now, if I was still competing, I’d be buying my shade in this. My I’ve-been-sprayed-down-twice shade, that is.  I will definitely snoop around for reviews myself, and suggest that you stop into a Sephora store to play around with it!  Sadly, I’m not sure they can shave a sample of this particular item (I LOVE that Sephora samples!), but you can still get your paws on it!

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Now then…Vita Liberata Trystal Self Tanning Bronzing Minerals (long name, but true) is even another step further.  Frankly, it sounds pretty miraculous.  Once again, I’d have run out to play around…and likely purchase…this powder!  As per the claim…

“This revolutionary self-tanner offers pure mineral coverage, instant bronzing, and a lasting tan. The natural bronzed effect suits all skintones and can be used to contour or provide allover glow. The tan deepens over a four-to-eight hour period and lasts up to five days.”

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Um.  Seriously?!   So you get the at-that-moment bronzing effect, and it deepens during the day (or half day)…and it lasts for up to FIVE days?!  Oh…AND it suits a variety of skin tones?!  That’s pretty amazing! :-O

Though then again…maybe it’s better I’m NOT competing?  I’m saving myself money on the spray tans…AND the awesome newness on the market (which I kind of want anyway!) 😉

Sun Shade Worshiper

I get teased often, particularly in warmer months, about my apparently-un-American pallor.  As recently as yesterday, as it turns out…!

Kent Tayler cartoon

Kent Tayler cartoon

Fortunately, I’m okay with that – I always loved being fair-skinned (despite the lifetime barrage of commentary!), and I love everyone else’s natural complexions as well.  The difference allows us to stand apart, and make the world more interesting. ❤

I might have gotten “color” as a child after playing outside, from beet to browned, depending on the day – I was lathered in sunscreen but I come from the cell-less generation who spent HOURS upon HOURS making forts, hurling snowballs, hiding in the woods, playing outdoor sports…  So some color was almost inevitable…but I was never unprepared.  

Deliberately baking in the sun was, however, never, EVER something I could tolerate personally – it was, and always will be, the fast lane to a profoundly irascible, petulant, and otherwise ugly me.   

I have a lot of triathlete friends, so I am used to seeing bronzed beauties all the time – but they are also wisely slathered in sunscreen, and doing an activity (one that doesn’t involve skewering themselves and rotating like a chicken on a spit.  Lovely visual, isn’t it?!)

Most people I know LOVE the heat, and love the beach – and there is nothing wrong with that!  Mother Nature is gorgeous in all forms, and it makes me happy to see people enjoying themselves.  That said, sun damage isn’t a joke…we know far too much nowadays to be negligent, especially if we have children (in which case, a day at the beach is generally premeditated!)  

Carelessness is easily avoided these days – the product formulations are endless.  Sephora makes life pretty easy in this case, offering and incredibly user-friendly experience for newbies and seasoned sunscreeners alike.

You can pretty much snoop based on need, which will save a lot of folks a LOT of time. photo photo

I love that companies are making the effort to continually expand their sun care offerings, and that they are as into the technologies and of-the-moment ingredients with these products, as much as with mainstays.  In places like the Far East, pale skin is in…so you will find no shortage of sun protection, but also a surfeit of whitening products (whereas here we focus on bronzing.)  My thesis on cosmetic brands expanding into Asia – moons and moons ago – was specifically because this intrigued a spectral-skinned moi.

So if you are struggling with which one TO buy…definitely take a gander at the site (and enter SPFMINI for a sample!) you will find a whole variety of formulations to choose from to protect your and your loved ones’ beautiful skin – whatever color it is naturally, it is perfect just as it is.

I’ll be the one under the black parasol. 😉 photo photo


Benefit Do The Hoola

This set is ADORABLE.  And honestly, I’d have been super excited had it come out when I was still competing in ballroom (my assortment of bronzers is alarming!) I could have used this, Benefit!!!

There have been a bunch of posts about this kit (you can see more images if you breeze through here), but the photos and link I am sharing are from a lovely UK Blogger, Temporary : Secretary.  I love her review, and the photos are gorgeous.

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Temporary Secretary blog photo

I remember when I came across Benetint many moons ago (it was actually created in the 1970s for an exotic dancer – the idea of it seemed so sassy, I had to have it!) 😀 It’s definitely “cult” status, and it really does work well (also stays on in humidity and rain.  NICE!)

I think the BeneBalm is the lip product they have out already (it’s a mini), but here it looks like a cheek stick…and knowing me, I’d use it that way!  Bronzer is great but when you get some sun, you will also get a touch of flush…so I LOVE that they paired these together.

The kit includes one each of the following:

  • Hoola mini (the Benefit brazing powder)
  • BeneBalm mini
  • Ultra Plush Lipgloss mini in Hoola (shimmering, golden nude)
  • They’re Real Mascara mini (black)
  • Dew the Hoola – liquid Hoola bronzer
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Temporary Secretary blog photo



It looks like a lot of fun for later Spring to Summer, and I’m trilled to have seen some great posts about it!