Saturday, December 13, 2014


It's official, after weeks of minimal sun and a lack of tanning salons in the city I have taken on the skin tone of a vampire – pale and lifeless. Who am I kidding though, I probably wouldn't go to the tanning salon even if it was beneath my building. But with the holidays well on their way and parties popping up left, right and center I've found it difficult to dismiss my lust for skin the colour of D'ussé, Jay-Z's line of Cognac – the reddish bronzed hue is totally lust-worthy. Luckily, I've been introduced to two new tanning products sure to turn this pale beauty into a bronzed goddess – the Karora Express Bronzing Mousse[*] and the St. Tropez Self Tan Luxe Dry Oil[*]. 

When it comes to self tanning I'm a bit of a rookie, but there are two things I know to be true: always exfoliate your skin before hand and invest in a tanning glove. For exfoliation I've become slightly addicted to the Merben Dry Brushes, which I discovered at Fuzz Wax Bar's Queen St. West location – my favourite place to get waxed in the city. The brushes are meant to be used before getting into the shower, buffing away dry skin with ease [and a touch of pain] and leaving your skin feeling silky smooth – ready to be tanned. For application I've turned to the St. Tropez Applicator Mitt – it helps to provide streak-free colour and is so easy to clean.

The Karora Express Bronzing Mousse ($40), hailing from Ireland, is one of the latest tanning brands to make it's way to Canada – arriving at Murale in-store and online come January. The Express Bronzing Mousse is unique because in just one hour you achieve a bronzed glow that is self-adjusting – meaning you and three friends could try it and attain different, customized results. And if you're craving a deeper bronze then simply leave it on the skin for an extra hour or two before rinsing it off in the shower. The mousse applies with ease and features a subtle hint of colour, making it easy to keep track of where you've applied it. But be prepared to bear it all for a prolonged period of time as the mousse remains sticky on the skin for about 30 minutes before drying. Don't let this scare you away though – the results are natural, long-lasting and fade evenly. Re-purchase worthy.

Already making waves [and selling out fast] in the self-tanning world is an absolutely exquisite tanning oil, the St. Tropez Self Tan Luxe Dry Oil ($60). Part self-tanner and part body oil, the Luxe Dry Oil delivers a truly unique tanning experience, leaving the skin unbelievably moisturized with a golden sun-kissed glow. The packaging truly embodies luxury and decadence – I'm left mesmerized watching the metallic bronzed oil swirl back and forth in the glass bottle. And the gold accents, oh my. Upon application, the oil imparts a subtle shimmer and fills the room with a fresh lemongrass scent. I was nervous that the application would be difficult and messy considering the consistency, but the use of the Applicator Mitt made it simple and the oil dried quickly. The colour develops in 4-6 hours, although I achieved the best results when I left it on overnight [8 hours]. The result? A streak-free natural tan that fades evenly over the next week. Plus the fact that it is a body oil means skin is left supple, nourished and conditioned for up to a week. Available at Murale in store and on-line April '15 – or beat the spring frenzy and pick yours up from Sephora. Ps. Act fast because it won't be long until St. Tropez is no longer part of the Sephora family :(.

Left leg shows the results of the St. Tropez Self Tan Luxe Dry Oil after 8 hours of development, while the right leg shows the results of the Karora Express Bronzing Mousse after 3 hours.
Left: Bare Skin // Right: Self Tanned - left = St. Tropez, right = Karora

How do you achieve 'skin like d'ussé'?

AM¥     XO

*Some of items in this post have been sent to THE PRETT¥ VAIN for purpose of review. All views expressed reflect my own opinion on the product. For additional information please see the Disclaimer. 


  1. Hold on…. let me get this right.. St tropez wont be sold in Sephora anymore!? WHY?? I just discovered self tanner and this is my favourite by far.. I haven't heard of Karora but I may just have to pick it up when I run out of St tropez, the bottle is cute!

    Michelle, A Lovely Allure

    1. RIGHT! I nearly died when the sales associate told me. I went in the other day to take a peak around and only saw Vita Liberata on the shelves. I guess they are selling through the St. Tropez products online and then ending their partnership because St. Tropez wasn't playing very nicely. The good news is that she predicted we may begin the see St. Tropez products in Winners at a discounted price....

      And again.. there is always Murale :) But still such a shame. :(

    2. Aw. :( I don't even know where the closest Murale is. I tried the Vita Liberata Rapid Tan and found it hard to apply (it dried super fast). The colour was very nice but St. Tropez is just longer lasting. Good thing I just bought like $100 worth of St Tropez during their sale :p