Is self tanner better than the real thing?

"DIY Summer Goddess"

We can all add a boost of shimmer, sun or shine to our summer beauty outlook. An upside in this economy is that major brands are focused on creating DIY methods with their leading products and services. Audrey Mansfield met with beauty expert Mickey Williams who give us the lowdown on which products rival their salon counterparts.

Bring on the Glow! Tanning salons can get really pricey, are their any ways to extend our tan so we don't have to go as often, or keep up a healthy glow without looking "fake" or streaked?

Tanning solutions and potions have come a long way since the first orange, streaky-smelly creams. Now you have sprays, tonics, lotions- you name it. The important things to remember are you want to find the right formula for each body part and application is key.

When applying a tanner to face you want to look for the following key factors:

You want a lightweight spray that is easily absorbed and doesn't leave a harsh smell due to the proximity of your nose and eyes. It also should not have heavy dyes or tints that make it impossible to spread evenly or lead to break outs. Check out the ingredients. Three years ago I started using Aqua Tan on my clients and myself. It's 100% organic with no dyes or tints. It's not sticky, and I can apply makeup over it or leave as is. It's one of Hollywood's favorite man tanners as well.

Here are some tips during application:

You want to make sure you get a healthy coat of mist on skin. Either spray directly to face or spray onto a sponge. Either way, I recommend always using a sponge afterwards for an even distribution. Make sure you work the tanner into the hair line and also on neck, lightly over ears.

After all areas are covered I take a Q-tip and wet it with water or makeup cleaner and I go back and forth lightly through eyebrows or in the direction of a mustache or stubble to take away tanner residue. Once that's done, I take a misted cotton ball and move it across the hair line especially if the hair is light. This keeps the tanner from staining and also diffuses any lines of build up.

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What about our bodies? Is there a way to get an overall all glow without going to a tanning salon?

Yes, now if you're looking to get your back and hard to reach places tanned, you will have to bring in a buddy, but there are so many amazing tanners out there that can allow you tan instantly or get a glow on in a more gradual way.

If you're looking for an instant tint and one that works on almost every skin tone, I recommend Too Faced Tanning Bed in a Tube. I really like this product for the legs. It tans evenly, has the most gorgeous tint and you will see the results of a smoother slightly shimmery glow that will turn heads. Two things to keep in mind: this glow can rub off onto clothes, but at a minimum- so don't wear white. Like all of these tanners- after application you have to make sure you wash your hands well, but also make sure you get this lotion out from under your nails.

Too Faced Tanning Bed in a tube and in stores
Retails at $22.50

Now, if you're looking for a tint and you don't have time to sit around and wait for something to dry go for a spray tan. Body Drench Quick Tan Tanning Mist does not rub off, isn't sticky at all and it smells clean. Quick Tan has the fastest drying time and gives you a deep dark tan after just one use.

Do any of the bargain tanners work?

Yes, you do see some work better than others but I find that it takes so many frogs before you find the prince- if you know what I mean. I've been testing a new launch by Jergens recently and they've come up with every conceivable formula you can think of. This one is Natural Glow Foaming Daily Moisturizer. As you can see its light weight and dries fast. It just proves that tanning is really about what formula you can work with personally. I have more tips on application on my website at

Okay, now enough with tanning- what about giving yourself a quick makeover? Is there anyway to amp up your goddess without a huge expense or a trip to the salon?

Oh yes, it's actually as easy as putting a few clips in your hair. Look at the GLAM you can get without the commitment of gluing in hair or spending hundreds or even thousands on weaves. My favorite summer fact about using hair pieces in the summertime is you don't have to worry about swimming or ruining your permanent extensions in the sun. Just remove it before you take a dip, and these particular ones from HairDo actually create a back hairline so you can wear them as a ponytail. Love IT!

HairDo Vibralite Clip-in Extensions

Any ideas for makeup this summer? What can we wear that doesn't look too heavy now the sun is at its brightest!

Wear lightweight coverage when it comes to your base. If you find you have a blemish or mark you want to conceal, spot correct it with concealer rather than masking you face with a heavy foundation. Also, use tubing mascaras, not oil-based or water based formulas. They allow for more wear and do not flake or run since they dry solid wrapped around your lash. You need warm water to take them off (warmer than your body temperature) and they fall off in the shape of tubes. Genius if you ask me! Here are some formulas I recommend:

KissMe Mascara

Trish McEvoy Water-Proof High Volume Mascara

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