Thursday, May 03, 2007

Fake bake in a bottle

No less than the venerable NY Times is writing about self-tanners, worrying that these supposedly harmless bronzers are reinforcing the unsafe tan as a beauty ideal. I'm a fair-haired, pale-skinned gal myself, and I'm pretty vigilant about using SPF. Hell, I use a face moisturizer with SPF 15 even in the darkest days of the Chicago winter. But I'll admit I own a tube or two of Jergens Natural Glow. I like the way it give my face a hint of "healthy" color and makes my legs look a teensy bit thinner. But I hate the smell and the potential for tan palms, so I'll only use it in the summertime, when my ghostlike complexion becomes an issue.

So I'm asking you, of the dozens of moisturizers with gradual self-tanner mixed in, has one of them managed to mask that unmistakable self-tanner smell?

And more philosophically, do you think that self-tanners are perpetuating our preoccupation with suntans? Will we ever embrace ivory skin?