Monday, September 17, 2012

Adventures in fake tanning

So let's talk about a pressing, uber important issue:  Fake tanning

Before you ask really, a whole post about tanning? Well yes because it comes with a story. First off I want to say I'm not a fan of the fake tan.  I don't idolize John Boehner or own a copy of C. Thomas Howell's classic Soul Man.

What I am is vain, and totally admit it.  My relationship with the fake bake shame actually goes back to freshman year sorority rush. My 1993 babydoll dress wearing self opted for some fake tanner just in time to head over to the ADPi house.  Somewhere between more catchy rush songs and hearing how ADPi would change my life I noticed that my ankle was bright orange.  Likely they did too because they cut me that night. 

Their loss. 

Fast forward to recent years where I will admit that while I slather the kids every morning, I'm not always good to put sunscreen on myself.  Yes I know that I am risking skin cancer and in my pushing 40 self and not wanting to look like a piece of luggage have starting trying to use more sunsceen more frequently. Really I am.  

At the start of the summer I bought the blue maxi dress with the intention of wearing it specifically for summer family pictures.  As I was pulling clothes for the boys as well as seeing what Bill had in the way of shirts with buttons, it dawned on me that we had too much pattern and I needed to wear a solid color. I opted for a grey tired skirt, neural Toms wedges, white shirt, and pewter necklace. 

I tried everything on early in the week and realized that any color I still had from summer was gone.  I texted my friend that I know routinely fake tans and asked her opinion and when I would need go before Saturday pictures. 

Let's get to the visit which was indeed an experience in the uncomfortable.  The counter clerk, who was a sweet 16 year old walks me back to go over what to do to avoid being streaky.  She walks me through the positions and she reminds me to keep my eyes closed, mouth shut, and don't forget to wear the shower cap thingy.

I even practice the positions once she leaves feeling stupid as most of these moves seem copied from a TSA manual on the finer selling points of the full body scanner.

For your enjoyment or information for future use:

So I tan, pick up the kids and pass them off to Bill and head back to open house at school.  The tan is suppose to be gradual with full effect within 4-6 hours.  Let's just say that at the start of open house I looked normal, by the end I looked like an extra from West Side Story.

All the way home I'm thinking I need to try and shower off as much as possible but remember that the clerk said over the next 48 hours it would fade a bit and to avoid showering for at least 24 hours or loose most of the tan.  Did I miss something, does this lady not know I love some showering?   So I wait in hopes of some fading.

With in the first 10 mins of the first class, one of my students ask if I had gone fake tanning?  I said yes and asked if it looked even and how fake? The resulting conversation was way more than I ever needed to know about the merits of fake tanning.  She even demonstrated her favorite position for underarms.  Sadly I now have an awkward relationship with her involving fake tanning. 

I'll also add that I forgot to take the surgical tape off my arms from surgery so I have a big long streak of white skin.  When I finally do shower a large section on my leg also seems to wipe away leaving an obvious section on the very legs I was concerned. 

With only a couple of hours until we are meeting for photos I head out and buy the darkest makeup I can find and once home realize while a bit better my leg looks streaky and uneven. 

So what did I learn from all this? 

1.  Why didn't I listen to my inner 18 year old self remembering the orange ankle at the ADPi house?
2.  Fake tanning looks really good on some people (my friend, for example)
3.  The fact that two of the girls in the salon where wearing leather leggings and a size 00 were an indication I am too old to have graced their door. 
4.  I should have stuck with the maxi dress and bought Bill a solid shirt.
5.  I need to get over my vanity. Not likely, but I should work on this character flaw.

I won't even mention that once home I also realized I never put on deodorant. 


Kara said...

I never knew there was so much behind fake tanning. Positions? Wow, I'm feeling very educated. I love a good glow too. :)

Gillian said...

hilarious. the positions are really odd!!! And the deodorant comment was just too funny.