Now that there is some—albeit incredibly vague—info on how we can reenter the world when coronavirus finally GTFO, I am feeling eager to get my skin back on track. I don’t know about you, but when I go out to dinner with my friends for the first time after being locked in my apartment for what will be at least two months, I want to glow. Luckily for me, Sephora’s annual spring sale is upon us! As always, Sephora is offering different deals and savings for each of their three member tiers. From April 17th through May 1st, Rouge members can save 20%; from April 21st through April 29th, VIB members can save 15%; and from April 23rd through April 27th, Insider members can save 10%. I am a proud Rouge member, so let’s f*cking do this.
If you’ve read any of my articles, you know that there are more skin care products in my medicine cabinet than there are food items in my pantry. I have no shame in my game. It took years of trial-and-error to discover which products are the best, so you can trust I know what I’m talking about when it comes to my recommendations.
Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II, $72
The only YouTube channel I subscribe to is Klossy, which belongs to, you guessed it, Karlie Kloss. I don’t care who she’s married to, I love her and will continue to do so for the rest of my days. Anyway, Karlie has the best skin I’ve ever seen, so when she recommended this night serum, you better believe I went out and bought it, and I am happy to report that it works. My skin isn’t really problematic, but I want that dewy, plump look, and that’s what this serum delivers.
Like any skin care product, though, you have to use it consistently and for a while before you start to see the effects take hold. I started to notice how good my complexion looked after about three weeks. It’s incredibly moisturizing, smells delicious, and it’s the perfect consistency. What else you got, Karlie??
Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Charcoal Mask, $28.50
I buy this twice a year for one specific purpose: visiting my parents in Florida. My skin may be able to withstand the pollution and whatever the f*ck is coming out of manholes in New York, but it cannot deal with the Florida humidity. My skin gets really oily and then I start to break out, so I visit my parents pretty infrequently. The one thing that absolutely saved my skin is this specific charcoal mask. I have tried about 10 types of charcoal masks in my lifetime, and this Clinique one is that actually works.
It feels like you’re spreading a thick, goopy paste on your face, but after about 30 minutes, it dries and hardens and, something magical happens in that phase of the mask. When I rinse it off, my skin is soft and supple with zero traces of excess oil. I’m obsessed.
Bobbi Brown Hydrating Fresh Cream Moisturizer, $60
This product was my first foray into skin care. I bought it when I was a sophomore in college after talking to a Bloomingdale’s salesperson for way too long. As the name suggests, this is a very lightweight moisturizer that falls between a gel and a cream. Because it’s so lightweight, it’s perfect for summer. Also, all Bobbi Brown moisturizers are made with a built-in primer, so you can save a few seconds in the morning when you’re getting ready.
Caudalie Beauty Elixer, $18
This toner is another Karlie recommendation for when you’re traveling, because planes really dry your skin out. Before I went on my study abroad trip, I asked my mom to get it for me and she said, and I quote, “Who do you think you are? You’re not a jet-setter!” Rude. To spite her, I bought it for myself and I have no regrets. I use it as a toner and spritz it on my face right before I put on my moisturizer.
My dermatologist suggested that I massage my moisturizer into my skin while it’s still damp from the toner because it will absorb better, which makes sense because, if you think of your skin like a sponge, it won’t absorb a thick cream when it’s bone-dry. This doesn’t really do much, but it smells amazing, isn’t that expensive, and it’s something else I have in common with Karlie Kloss.
Murad Vitamin C Dark Circle Correcting Eye Serum, $62
I recently learned that vitamin C is an essential ingredient in skin products for anyone who wants nice skin. I incorporated it via an eye cream because I wanted to test it on a small area before I introduced it to my whole face. Safe to say, it works! This eye cream is really moisturizing, which is important because the skin around your eyes is much thinner than the rest of your face and is usually the first to show signs of aging. Yikes! Using a product that protects against free radicals (something vitamin C does) and moisturizes is a really good way to slow down aging around the eyes. It also smells fantastic.
Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Sheet Mask, $12
Until I tried this mask, I always thought sheet masks were kind of stupid. Like, you pay all of this money for something you use once for a few minutes then throw away. Then I tried this mask and I’m questioning everything I once believed to be true! Tatcha is a brand you’ll likely find in any high-end natural beauty store, and the products are 100% worth it. This mask is made with vitamin E, fatty acids, nutrient-rich rice, ginseng (which has a calming effect), and a bunch of other sh*t that gives you an instant glow.
And for anyone who’s wondering, sheet masks are packed with nutrient-rich serums that absorb best into your skin when you’re wearing the sheet and looking like Hannibal Lecter, but the serum is still very much on your skin when you take the sheet off, so they aren’t exactly a waste.
Dior Lip Glow, $34
I am weirdly specific when it comes to a tinted lip product: it can’t be sticky, it has to be the perfect shade, and it has to last through my morning coffee. This Dior lip product is literally perfect. First of all, it’s incredibly moisturizing. Secondly, it goes on clear and within a few seconds, changes color due to a bunch of science I don’t really understand. For me, it transforms into rosy pink with a coral undertone, but for my friend, it becomes more of a purple color. I’m truly baffled by this magic, but I won’t question it.
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser, $21
Until recently, I was a firm believer in all cleansers being the same, so paying more than a drugstore price was unnecessary. This cleanser is the definition of a super basic (in a good way) product that does exactly what it says it’s going to do. Wet your face and massage this into your skin for a few seconds and rinse off with warm water. Boom! You’re cleansed! It leaves your face feeling soft and clean, but without stripping your skin. I’ve said this before, but if your face feels tight and dry, your cleanser is too harsh!
Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm, $30
Double cleansing is an important part of any skin care-lover’s daily routine. The first step involves taking off your makeup and the second one is cleansing. This Clinique balm is unparalleled at removing makeup, so I highly recommend getting yourself a tub ASAP. It has the consistency of soft wax, but it works. Scoop a little out with your fingertips and move it around in your hand to break it down a little. Then, once it’s slightly softened, move it around your face and it literally melts your makeup right off. Don’t believe me? Use this then dab a clean white towel on your face and you won’t see any residual makeup!
Tan-Luxe The Body Illuminating Self-Tan Drops, $59
This purchase was a catch-22 because, on the one hand, authentic tans are horrible for your skin, but on the other, my natural skin tone is concerningly white. This self-tanner is unreal and legit impossible to f*ck up. I always strayed from self-tanner because I feel like it always looks fake and streaky—especially on people’s wrists, ankles, elbows and knees. This, though, is different! You mix a few drops with your go-to lotion and then spread it all over your body and it always turns out even and natural-looking. I’ve used this on my legs many, many times and I’m always impressed with how good it looks.
Images: Mercy / Unsplash; Sephora (10)
Betches may receive a portion of revenue if you click a link and purchase a product or service. The links are independently placed and do not influence editorial content.
Planning sucks, and bachelorette parties are a ton of work. So we’re taking all the guesswork out of planning a bachelorette party by breaking down top bachelorette destinations. Our guides will tell you where to stay, eat, party, how to get around, and give you a sample itinerary that you can follow. You’re welcome.
For any bride who loves tanning by the beach while drinking rosé, dancing on tables at rooftop parties, and flirting with super-hot Israeli guys before
you’re stuck with one d*ck forever you marry the love of your life, there’s no better destination for a dream bachelorette party than Tel Aviv. This gem of a city is one of the few places we know of that combines all the benefits a city has to offer—shopping, bars, restaurants—and everything we love about beach vacations (doing nothing all day besides sitting in the sun and talking sh*t). So, get your notebooks out and pay attention like Elle Woods trying to get into Harvard Law, because you’re about to get the official Betches Bachelorette Guide to Tel Aviv.
How to Get There
Considering Tel Aviv is almost 6,000 miles away from New York City, getting there is no easy feat—unless your sugar daddy (or actual dad) has a private jet, or you fly business. For the rest of us, though, the first step to a bachelorette party in Tel Aviv means spending about 10 and a half hours (if you’re on the East coast) in an economy seat crammed between screaming children and college kids on Birthright. BUT it’s honestly not that bad if you just watch movies the whole time and have a few drinks. Trust me, the vigorous journey to Tel Aviv is totally worth it. From New York, you can take a direct flight from Newark Liberty International Airport or JFK for about $1,000. If that’s too much, you can take a flight with a connection in Ukraine, France, or Italy. Connecting always kind of sucks, but saves hundreds on the plane ticket. Since you’re probably dropping a rent check on flights alone, you’re going to want to stay for at least a week to get your money’s worth.
If all goes as planned, you and your
minions bridesmaids will land safely at Ben Gurion Airport ready to take over the city that actually never sleeps. Once you grab your luggage and pass customs, you’ll need to take a 25-minute cab drive to Tel Aviv. DON’T take a ride with the drivers sneaking around the airports, mumbling “taxi,” under their breath, even if they’re wearing fancy suits. If you accidentally do, don’t freak out, they won’t do anything to you except rip you off (no, this isn’t Taken). Instead, follow your fellow passengers and wait in line OUTSIDE of the airport for a taxi to Tel Aviv, which should cost no more than 180 shekels (~$50). Ever. If the cab driver tries to negotiate a higher price in his Israeli accent, which he probably will, pull up this article and use the same accent to say no, or in Hebrew, “lo!”
How To Get Around
Honestly, the overall best, most fun, most Insta-worthy, and most cost-effective way to get around Tel Aviv is—bear with me—the electric scooter. Besides the fact that this mode of transportation is environmentally friendly and reduces pollution, electric scooters are an easy way to get around the city’s super heavy traffic. All the locals use them, so DW about looking like a tourist. All you have to do is download an electric scooter app like Lime or Bird, put in your credit card information, and ride. The companies have a 5 shekel (~$1.40) starting fee, and then charge 0.70 shekels (~$0.20) for each minute you’re on the scooter. Still, if you’re not into the whole scooter thing, you can step outside and hail a regular taxi or download Gett, which is the like Israeli version of Uber. If you stay within the boundaries of the city, it’ll cost around 80 shekels or so per cab ride ($23), depending on the driver’s mood.
You can also save your sheks and take the bus using the transportation app Moovit, which tells you exactly what station to go to and how long it’ll take. Tel Aviv is only 20 miles squared, which, since numbers mean nothing to us, is about half the size of Miami. Getting around should be quick, easy, and considerably cheap (a bus ticket is only 6.70 shekels (~$1.90) if you do it right.
Some people prefer renting a car on-demand with AutoTel for 1.7 shekels a minute (~$0.48), which is an app that lets you hop into a random green car, drive to wherever you need to be, and park the car in designated spots for free. But good luck finding parking.
If none of these are doing it for you, most hotels are right on the beach, so walking is also a great option to burn off the tequila from last night if you’re one of those “I don’t go to the gym on vacation” betches like me.
Where To Stay
You’ll probably find the best deals for bachelorette parties on Airbnb, considering you can get an entire apartment to yourself with a balcony you can take Instas on, but having to do the dishes and (god forbid) clean up after yourself doesn’t exactly count as a vacation. So, if you’d rather order room service, soak in a bath, and longingly stare at the totally off-limits overpriced minibar, check out these hotel options.
The Norman: Unlike Drake, I’m starting from the top. This is one of the most expensive hotels in the city (RIP savings), but since you only get married
probs twice once, go big or go home, right? This hotel is everything. The rooms are equipped with an espresso machine, 300-thread count cotton sateen sheets, complimentary homemade treats, and, you guys, fresh flowers. There’s also a world-renowned sushi restaurant that I’ve only been to once considering dinner there is, like, half of my monthly paycheck, but omfg, everything on the menu is mouthwatering.
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Bite me! ❤️ . Signature Tartare Chips @dinings_tlv on our 3rd floor roof terrace. . *NOW OPEN FOR WEEKEND LUNCH TOO * 🎉 03 543 5444. [email protected] . #sushi #telaviv #restaurant #luxuryhotel #japanesefood #awardwinning #culinary #foodporn #goodstuff #freshfish #instafood #datenight #weekend #lunch #dinner #tartare #instalove
The Setai Tel Aviv: This place is an urban resort with only 120 rooms and it will give you and the Mediterranean feel that you can’t get anywhere else. It used to be a jailhouse, but has since turned into a five-star hotel and spa that you’d probably be fine with being held captive in, tbh. The rooms have original stone walls, rainfall showers, and an enormous bed that you might actually mistake for a cloud. Oh, and don’t get me started on the Spa at the Setai. This spa is known for its Traditional Eastern experiences, which basically means they lather you up with heavenly oils until you unwind and relax like the deserving bride-to-be you are. By the time you’re done, you’ll be feeling healthy and glowy, and no one will have any idea you downed copious amounts of rosé
that morning last night.
Hilton Tel Aviv: What can I say about the Hilton? For a more affordable, but still Insta-worthy, hotel, this place is my go-to. It’s located smack dab in the middle of the city, right on the most hopping beach you could ask for. With beach parties, electronic house music, and bottle service, you might think you’re at the Scorpios in Mykonos for a second. Honestly, this hotel is the perfect place for you and your girls to GTL: get drunk, talk sh*t, and lay out.
Where to Eat
Café Popular: Can’t decide between having dinner at a restaurant or getting drinks and appetizers at a bar? This place is both. You get amazing food and the dimly lit lounge atmosphere that makes everyone look good. Order the Dardar cocktail, eggplant falafel, and Foie Gras Baklava. Make a reservation for as early as you can, and ask for seats at the lounge and not at the restaurant, because that’s where all of the hot guys are. Oh, and during the day, this place has the best brunch.
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TYO: As we all know, no bachelorette is complete without a sushi and sake night. Most of the food at this place is raw or grilled, and the salads are delish. Plus, the music is lively and the waiters are cute. Plus it’s right in the center of the city, so it’s close to tons of other great bars and clubs in the area.
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Port Said: This is a Middle-Eastern outdoor restaurant by the most famous chef in the country, Eyal Shani. Order the baked sweet potato and the minute steak, and the French toast for dessert. There’s a catch, though, because sometimes things are too good to be true. The wait time to get a table there is at least an hour if you go for dinner, and they don’t accept reservations. It’s worth it, though, I promise.
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Romano: I’m literally tearing up thinking about this place, that’s how amazing it is. Romano is the perfect spot for you and girls to grab dinner and drinks, and then just stay there to dance. How fun is it to not have to take a cab to another place and wait in line to get in? If you have dinner at the Romano, you’re already in, and most nights they have DJs. The food is to die for, and the atmosphere is hipster meets “we still shower, though.” Perfect combo.
Teder: This place is the downstairs area of Romano, but it’s so good it has its own name. If you don’t feel like spending a fortune on dinner and want something quick and delicious, this place literally has the BEST pizza in the city. There aren’t that many pizza options to choose from, just cheese and vegan (!) and, honestly, that’s all you really need. Sometimes you’ll see Eyal Shani (the famous chef) hanging outside the kitchen, but you probably wouldn’t recognize him considering he isn’t Gordon Ramsay. You’ll be rubbing elbows with other celebrities there too, especially Israeli models… not that you would recognize them either, but still.
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Tonight: staying warm under our winter roof with hot pizza + fiery radio shows ~ Upstairs at the Ballantine’s TMS: Club Media #6: the Rise of the Machines – Analyst & digital mastermind @eyalbason discusses the impact of artificial intelligence & algorithms on the music industry ~ 9pm | free entry At Heder: lo-fi beatmaker @ninjaman420 launches his new remix compilation out on @watashiwa_records ~
Shila: At this high-end seafood restaurant, every entrée is more Instagrammable than the last. Caution: there are four $$$$ on Google Reviews for this place so don’t hate me when you wake up hungover with a v empty wallet.
Thai House: When you’re wasted after a day of drinking, what’s better than stuffing your face and digging into enormous piles of pad Thai, delicious platters of beef pad see ew, and crunchy pineapple chicken? Since you’ll probably be craving Thai food at least once during this trip, make a reservation sooner than later because this place gets packed.
Where to Party
Abraxas Bar: Grungy but still classy, this darkly lit lounge and nightclub is right in the center of the city. Get escorted to your table, order as many tequila shots as you want, and get ready for a night to (not) remember.
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JIMMYWHO Bar & Lounge: This OG Tel Aviv club has been around for a while and is still going strong. Tuesdays and Saturdays are hip-hop night, and if for some reason you’re looking for tourists and 7-foot-tall basketball players, this is where you’ll find them.
Veranda: When it’s hot as hell in Tel Aviv, you probably don’t want to spend your evening outside, right? Wrong. Veranda’s outdoor bar has a magical breeze and the cocktails are amazing. Go here before clubbing to watch the sunset and snap some Instagram stories that your followers will just swipe through anyway.
SpeakEasy: As per my last suggestion, you really can’t go wrong with a rooftop bar. Located on the roof of the same building as the Jimmy Who, Speakeasy is a gem and is considered one of the most exclusive addresses in town. Locals might find it tricky to get in, but they’d never say no to a cute group of American girls on a bachelorette, so don’t even worry about it.
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Emesh: When I think “dancing like a wild child on the bar, accidentally falling off, and then getting back on”, I think of the Emesh. This description may or may not have been just my personal experience, but either way, I totally recommend going to this club for one of the craziest nights of your bachelorette. This place blasts our fave artists, from Beyoncé to Israeli superstar Omer Adam, and I can promise you zero dull moments. Be sure to make reservations on the bar for drinks and food, and let the night escalate from there because whether you like it or not, it will.
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Haiku Skybar at the Lighthouse Hotel: This place is one of the most stunning rooftop cocktail bars in Tel Aviv and also serves delicious sushi. Drinks, a gorgeous view, beautiful people, and sushi? Have I died and gone to bachelorette heaven? What could be better?
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Thursday, Day 1
Pro Tip: The weekend in Tel Aviv is on Friday and Saturday instead of Saturday and Sunday (aka their Sunday is our Monday) so Thursday is fun AF to go out in the city.
- Check in to your hotel, change into your favorite swimsuit, and head to the pool, where you can order drinks and bar snacks, since you’ll probs be super hungry after the flight.
- After bathing in the sun and catching that deep mocha tan only Tel Aviv can offer, head up to your luxurious hotel room and take a nap. You deserve it.
- Wake up and get ready for dinner at Romano, which is the perfect option for Night 1 because it’s also a bar/lounge (see above) so you don’t have to go anywhere afterwards (yay!).
- Thursday night is the night everyone goes out, so if you’re not too jet lagged, get ready for a fun but still considerably chill night.
Friday, Day 2
Pro Tip: everything except bars and restaurants closes early on Friday, so if you’re in dire need of Band-Aids or Advil, make sure you get your errands done before 2pm.
- Wake up, dial room service, and order coffee up to your room while you get ready. Bring a bathing suit in your bag or wear it under your clothes.
- Brunch at Café Popular where you can stuff your face and order mimosas.
- When you’re done, you can walk to Tamara, a smoothie place everyone loves.
- Take your smoothie with you and walk along the Tel Aviv Promenade.
- Spend a few hours at the promenade taking pictures and tanning.
- Go back to the hotel and CHILL.
- Do dinner at TYO.
- Friday night is THE night to go out in Tel Aviv, so while you might be tired, get over it, you can rest tomorrow.
- Take a shot of espresso at the end of your meal, because next stop is Emesh to dance on the table.
Saturday, Day 3
Pro Tip: Saturday is the best day for the beach because nobody has work and everyone just wants to chill and tan and drink under the sun. Bottoms up!
- Wake up and chug four full cups of water.
- Spend the entire day at Hilton Bay beach reading and relaxing. Don’t forget a beach towel.
- You know what’s next—go back to the hotel and NAP!
- Wake up, find something cute to wear, and settle in for some of the best food you’ll probably ever eat at Shila.
- If you’re looking for something a little less intense than the night before, go to the SpeakEasy for cocktails and a rooftop view.
Sunday, Day 4
Pro Tip: Sunday mornings in Tel Aviv are like Monday mornings in the USA, which basically means that everyone’s busy, horns are honking, and traffic is heavy. So why not take it easy today, since everyone has work and you don’t?!
- Sleep in late and enjoy the luxuriousness of the hotel bed like you’re Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman.
- When you’re finally up, dial room service and order breakfast.
- Throw on your bathing suit and drink, tan, and sleep by the pool.
- Have dinner at Thai House (YUM).
- Since you relaxed all day, you will have enough energy to get drinks at the Haiku sky bar and see where the night goes from there.
Monday, Day 5
Pro Tip: Shopping in Tel Aviv means that nobody else will be wearing what you’re wearing for the inevitable return home.
- Hop in a cab, grab a croissant or mini sandwich at Brasserie Bakery, and walk down Dizengoff Street for some hardcore shopping, because what kind of girl party is this if you’re not spending money on unnecessary sh*t?
- Keep going, stopping in stores along the way, until you get all the way to Dizengoff Center, an indoor mall, and spend an hour walking around one of the oldest shopping malls in the city.
- Walk back and grab an authentic Israeli lunch at Port Said.
- Go back to the hotel, shower, get somewhat presentable, and have sunset drinks at the Veranda.
Tuesday, Day 6
Pro Tip: If I haven’t said this yet, make sure you have a water bottle and two Advils by your bed at all times so you don’t faint at the beach.
- Spend the day at the beach eating watermelon and drinking Chablis or whatever.
- Go to the hotel and put on your shortest skirt
- Take a cab to the JimmyWho—it’s hip-hop night, so get ready to dance.
Wednesday, Day 7
Pro Tip: If you want to survive the flight home, pack a bachelorette essentials bag for the flight made up primarily of Advil.
- Scrape yourself out of bed, pack up your sh*t, take a cab to the airport, and hop on a night flight back to reality.
Images: Shai Pal / Unsplash
If there’s one thing in this world I can confidently say I’m an expert on, it’s self-tanner. In fact, I would go as far to say that I’m a pioneer of self-tanner. Back in high school, my parents wouldn’t allow me to tan. And I was the only one in my friend group who didn’t have “cool parents” who would allow me to do so. (Obviously, now I’m grateful to them—hindsight is 20-20, right?) But, that being said, my group of besties were all SO tan and I was extremely jealous. I had to find a way to keep up. I mean, bronzer can only do so much. And trust me, I caked that sh*t on, as all naive high school girls do. But, at some point, the bronzer wasn’t enough. And so, I began my journey down the aisles of drugstores, trying every and any product that promised a bronzed tan.
Since my amateur high school days, I’ve graduated from drugstore aisles to expensive sh*t at Sephora, in my never-ending pursuit of the just-got-back-from-vaca glow. So, that being said, here are the self-tanners that actually work, from least to most expensive.
1. Jergens Natural Glow Instant Sun, Sunless Tanning Mousse, $10
First, we’ll start with the drugstore option. I was actually introduced to this one by a colleague of mine a few months ago. When she came into work looking like a bronzed goddess, I had to know which high-end self-tanner from Sephora she was using. To my surprise, she informed me it was the Jergen’s mousse, and I was beyond impressed. As a self-tanner connoisseur, I had to get my hands on it. And I can attest, this stuff works. It dries almost instantly, which is a huge perk, and gives a stunning non-orange tan for a very affordable price. Although, disclaimer, it still has that dreaded self-tanner smell. You know the one.
2. Isle of Paradise Self-Tanning Mousse, $29
This self-tanner brand is newer to Sephora, and has been making waves fast. It’s streak-free, easy to apply, and gives an amazing tan at a totally reasonable price. Isle of Paradise utilizes color corrective technology that reacts with your individual skin tone. It contains hydrating ingredients that allow the tan to go on and fade seamlessly. Isle of Paradise has options for different levels of tan, utilizing different color bases to ensure a non-orange, natural-looking tan. I personally LOVE their darkest shade, which has a violet tone base that gives me a rich, deep brown tan.
3. Loving Tan Deluxe Bronzing Mousse, $40
I first discovered this self-tanner on Instagram (where all the best things in life are discovered, obviously). This tanner gives my skin a stunning bronze shade that looks super natural and rich—so much so, that people ask me whether I just got back from vacation. I mean, maybe they’re just asking passive-aggressively so that I’ll spill my self-tanning secrets, but hey, I’ll take the compliment. This one also consistently looks great on different people with different based skin tones, as I have seen first hand on several of my friends. This is the current self-tanner I’m using as I wait for Sephora to restock the Tan-Luxe mousse, and I highly recommend.
4. St. Tropez Self Tan Classic Bronzing Mousse, $42
This is a great self-tanning product for those new to self-tanning. It’s easy to apply and doesn’t go on super dark. It’s one of the innovative self-tanning products that uses a green base to create a more natural and less orange tan. It won’t look too dark, but it will still be enough to be noticeable. Of course, if you’re like me and want to be as dark as possible, you can just use a few layers of this one to deepen the tan.
5. Tan Luxe Hydra Mousse, $57
This stuff is the end-all, be-all of self-tanners. Why? Because, not only does it give a flawless shade of bronze, but it also goes on clear and thus comes off clear. It is the only self-tanner that I have ever used that doesn’t come off on my clothes or sheets. There’s nothing worse than waking up with a guy and his sheets look he just slept with an Oompa Loompa. It’s my favorite self-tanner, and constant go-to. And, even though it’s the priciest one on this list, the bottle lasts a while and it’s 100% worth it.
As you’ve probably noticed, mousse is my formula of choice. In all my experience with self-tanners, mousse is the most reliable, consistent, and easy to use. I also think that it fades the best out of all the formulas I’ve tried. We’ve all seen the girl (or been the girl) with splotchy leftover tanner, and we also all know that it’s never a good look. Apparently the newest formula on the market is self-tanner water, which is one I have yet to try. But according to the sales woman at Sephora, it’s the latest self-tanner must-have. So take that as you will.
Images: @savwalts / Unsplash; Amazon; Sephora (3); Ulta
Betches ay receive a portion of revenue if you click a link and purchase a product or service. The links are independently placed and do not influence editorial content.
I learned two important lessons from my time analyzing men’s underwear. 1) I’m basically the female version of Tan, and 2) there are way more bad options than good when it comes to covering men’s junk. The situation is no different when we’re looking at bathing suits—*remembers Speedos exist*—actually, it’s worse. Ultimately, scoping out guys at your local beach/pool/YMCA (I don’t judge) isn’t about finding your sartorial soulmate. It’s really about avoiding these common red flags. Read on for what his swimsuit says about him, and the swimsuits that should make you run far, far away.
Let’s start with the worst. “Swim briefs” are Speedos, plain and simple. Calling them swim briefs is the equivalent of referring to Q-tips as “cotton swabs.” So even using this term is sufficient reason to excuse yourself to the bathroom and never return. For those lucky souls who have never encountered a Speedo, I’ll paint you a picture. They do bare minimum in the front, and either barely cover his ass or go full thong. In other words, if you hook up with a guy wearing a Speedo, you could plausibly mistake it for your own underwear while trying to get dressed. These are strangely popular among Europeans, so consider yourself warned before meeting your Italian Hinge match at Le Bain.
Square Leg/Square-Cut Shorts
Looks like we’re going least to most coverage here! Square-cut shorts are the bathing suit equivalent of boxer briefs. This cut can be sexy when revealed under pants, but IMO it’s a little aggressive as the sole thing covering your lower half. (*Thinks back to the cheeky Brazilian bikini I just ordered.* Nope, I stand by it.) I feel like Jordan from The Bachelorette definitely wears this kind of bathing suit, to give you a sense of the overall dateability conveyed by this style. It’s the ultimate for guys who want to show off every inch of their bodies without committing fashion suicide. AKA every guy who cracked 1,000 followers on IG and now thinks they’re too good to answer your texts. Not that I’m bitter, we were obvs growing apart anyway. But yeah, guys who wear this swimsuit are likely way more into themselves than they are you. Sorry!
Ayyy, we’ve arrived at the only socially acceptable swim suit for men. Feels good. You’ll recognize swim trunks from every time you’ve seen a male go in water without baring their full ass. They’re your basic loose short, completely indistinguishable from actual male shorts to the naked eye. With swim trunks, the main thing you want to look out for is the print they choose. My personal preference is a solid that’s flattering to their skin tone, or a simple print that’s on-theme without being obnoxious. (E.g. *subtle* floral/Hawaiian, nautical, etc. Don’t @ me, I like the tiny sailboat thing.)
If they’re covered in giant flamingos, pineapples, or American flags, they’re frat bros who didn’t have to do anything other than breathe to get laid in college and don’t intend to start now. Give them a few years of getting rejected by women like you and come back to them. Like wine, except instead of wine it’s a 27-year-old man-baby. Anyone who wears plaid swim trunks is a psychopath or in middle school, and you can’t convince me otherwise.
Board shorts are…ok. They’re really just the sloppier, oversized version of swim trunks, often worn by little kids or guys who really don’t care about the fit of their clothes. Acceptable on surfers, for whom these serve a legit practical purpose. In all other scenarios, it’s the sartorial equivalent of what you put on to pick up Gatorade while hungover.
First time hearing of jammers? Don’t worry, me too. While I’d hoped this was a term for dressed-up jammies, it’s actually a swimsuit specifically designed for athletic performance. AKA this bitch better be training for the Olympics. Otherwise, he’s just weirdly proud of his thigh girth or trying to hide some kind of rash. Not a risk I’m interested in taking.
There you have it. If you’re looking for a guy to actually date (so old-fashioned, I know), swim trunks only please. If you’re already dating and looking to fine-tune his wardrobe, throw out all his obnoxious prints and board shorts. Everyone else, please feel free to hook up with the Speedo/short short/jammer wearing guys out there and report back. Don’t say I didn’t warn you when all they talk about is their dating app matches, muscle tone, and favorite protein powder. Wow, I’m just describing Jordan. He’ll be missed.
Images: Giphy (5)
In LA, it’s basically already summer. For the rest of you sad people who live in places with “weather,” summer is coming soon and the most important part of having sunshine back is protecting your skin. Do you want to look wrinkled and haggard and like you’re 60 at age 32? I grew up on the beach, people, and let me tell you: the sun DOES NOT age you well. Also, I’m pretty sure I’m going to die of skin cancer from the many years I tanned my naturally ghost-pale skin without sunscreen. Sigh. Lucky for you, you don’t have to end up like me. I researched and ranked the best sunscreen for every skin type so you can all die pretty.
For Oily Skin: Clinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector
Is there anything worse than when your skin is already oily af by itself than adding greasy sunscreen to it? Fuck no. Thankfully we live in the age of ~science~ and you can now buy grease-free and oil-free sunscreen, like this awesome one from Clinique. It also works well under makeup and is SPF 40, so you don’t need to worry about your look melting halfway through the day.
For Acne-Prone Skin: Shiseido Wetforce Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion
Ah, acne. I remember seeing my dermatologist at 19 and being all, “when will I grow out of this shit?” And he laughed and said I was old, it was too late, and I will have adult acne forever. Good times. Fortunately, Shiseido makes an entire line of skincare products for the acne-challenged, including sunscreen that isn’t greasy and won’t make you break out. This one is SPF 50 and water/sweat resistant, so you can workout in it and not worry about it wrecking your fragile skin.
For Dry Skin: First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Pure Mineral Sunscreen Moisturizer
If your skin is really dry, you’ll want something both protective and moisturizing. You’re already at greater risk of wrinkles with dry skin, so SPF is super important. This one by First Aid Beauty is a thick moisturizer that will hydrate your dehydrated skin as a two-in-one. Since it’s non-comedogenic, you don’t have to worry about clogged pores and ending up with our acne-ridden friends above.
For Sensitive Skin: Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen
Sensitive skin requires extra care, so you need something with mild ingredients that won’t cause a breakout or rash. Supergoop’s products are highly rated for sensitivity, and this particular sunscreen is really light, but still effective. It also is oil-free and won’t dry out your skin.
Image: Marvin Meyer / Unsplash
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As we head into depression fall, our summer tans we worked so hard on will fade faster than you can say, “PSL.” The idea of a tanning salon sounds great and all, but IDK about you. Absorbing a massive amount of UV radiation into my skin doesn’t sound fabulous after all. And like, did I mention the cost? You have to at least be willing to give up a weekend of ringing up a bar tab in order to afford decent tanning so you don’t look like a cast member of Jersey Shore. Well, it’s a good thing we live in a society where looking racially ambiguous at all times is encouraged (unless you actually are racially ambiguous, in which case you’re SOL). Otherwise, we wouldn’t have a cheaper tanning alternative, bronzer, to rely on for a golden glow. So honestly there’s no reason why you can’t be tan 24/7 in temperatures below 70 degrees. With summer being another nine months away (kill me plz), here are the best bronzers to cover up pasty pale skin since all you’ll do this season is Netflix & thot chill.
1. BECCA Sunlit Bronzer
With five different shades designed for every skin tone, this bronzer will give you the perfect sun-kissed tan without looking like Trump. The powder-based bronzer has a super creamy texture with a shimmery finish so you can apply and blend in easily. That way, your contour won’t look as though you just smeared brown lines across your face and you can stay looking ~lit~ all night long.
2. Marc Jacobs Beauty O!mega Perfect Tan Bronzer
This is like, magic of a bronzer if I’ve seen it. The silky powder immediately sinks into your brush’s bristles for the most seamless application you can imagine. Like, honestly, this is the only bronzer I’d drop more than $35 on, and that’s saying a lot. The matte finish won’t make you look like a walking disco ball and even allows you to apply it for all-over body bronzing. Fucking bless.
3. Guerlain Terracotta Original Bronzing Powder
Have you ever wished you could be tan without using a source of heat? Um, same and so does probs every other normal person, which is why Guerlain created the closest thing to it. This bronzer apparently leaves varying shades of “sun” to make your sunless tan look as realistic as possible. The moisturizing ingredients won’t dry your skin out and they enhance your skin’s natural shine without making it look greasy. Also, this makes you smell like your annual Aruba vacation, so what’s not to like?
4. Laura Mercier Matte Radiance Baked Powder
This godsend of a baked bronzer is for those of you who want something that’s weightless and sheer enough to make you forget it’s even on your face. There’s a wide range of shades created exactly for your skin tone so you truly (and finally) can pull off the “I just rolled out of bed and literally put this on to say I tried” look. Haven’t heard of it? It’s like, slang from England I’m going to make happen. It has bomb buildable coverage so you can reapply as you desire.
5. Bare Minerals A Little Sun Face Color
If you could wear a single makeup product everyday for the rest of your life, it would def be this—no questions about it. It’s a non-comedogenic bronzer, so it won’t clog your pores and cause breakouts if you “accidentally” fall asleep with it on. And that’s not even the best part. It also has rosy pink hues to provide a natural-looking flush and brighten the palest of skin tones so you no longer look like a vampire.
August is upon us, which means we’re about to enter that traumatizing stage of summer where it’s too hot to even hit the “continue watching” button on Netflix let alone actually leave your house to go outside and live your life tan. Nope, not gonna happen. That said, I can’t let my laziness this weather deter me from looking like the bronzed goddess I was never genetically supposed to be. My only options now are self-tanner, which puts far too much pressure on me not to fuck up the process, or spray tans, aka the reason I looked like a blond Snooki at my senior year semi-formal. It’s a real Sophie’s choice. But at the end of the day using self-tanner requires the bare minimum amount of work so you know I’m out. Spray tans it is then. And nothing is worse than having to scour through Yelp to see which salon is the least hated by Internet trolls. So lucky for you I’ve braved my friend’s reviews the trolls and picked the best places in NYC to get spray tans without looking like Snooki.
1. Beach Bum Tanning
Average Price: $25
We’re into this place mostly because the price is ridiculous. Like, the last time I found any sort of service for less than $25 in New York City it looked sketchier than a Lifetime movie about online dating. So ya know, I’m glad there’s places like Beach Bum Tanning out there to restore trust issues. Plus the spray tanners at this venue mist on a hydrating toner to help prolong the life of your tan before airbrushing you. Blessings.The staff are also huge fans of contouring while they airbrush. So basically they can spray you ten pounds lighter even though you’ve spent the last 2-3 months being a hedonistic asshole. And they say money can’t buy happiness.
2. Gotham Glow
Average Price: $75
The best part about Gotham Glow is that they offer both in-studio services and also house calls. So if you’re lazy AF but, like, still want to look tan (hi) then you have the option of booking the appointment at your home and having the technician come directly to your home to spray tan you. What a world we live in. The in-studio spray tan costs around $75 while the house call service is more like $160 and up, but Gotham Glow is usually worth it. Especially because they can spray you in broader strokes, getting the job done in half the time thus letting you do other important shit with your day like Google whether Cole Sprouse is actually dating his costar on Riverdale because important.
3. Urban Tanz
Average Price: $60
Urban Tanz claims to be the “best tanning in Brooklyn” but, like, it’s Brooklyn and the average person in that area has the complexion of an extra on the set of Twilight so is that really saying much? That said, this place has hella good deals and discounts for large group packages just in case you and your friends want to GTL on a Saturday before hitting the bars. Definitely hit up Urban Tanz before any bridal/bachelorette events to ensure that no one looks like Casper in the group photo.
4. Faux Glow
Location: Midtown East
Average Price: $90
This place is a little more high-end, but if you can afford to waste your money treat yourself then Faux Glow is definitely worth it. The spray tanners are literal artists and spray you with surgical precision. They’re known for their long-lasting glow, most of which last longer than my online dating relationships (think 10 days) and the glow looks authentic AF.
5. The Spa @ Equinox
Location: Upper East Side
Average Price: $70
If you’re already a member of Equinox then congratuFUCKINGlations you get to be skinny, rich, and tan. Boo, you whore. But if you’re a peasant more like me then you’ll get some sort of sick satisfaction out of going to Equinox knowing that over your dead body would you spend $70 on a gym class but you wouldn’t hesitate to give them all your money for the perfect beach glow. Equinox is brand new to the airbrushing business and, like, they’re v eager to please. They even offer coffee and scones before the session because nothing makes me feel more comfortable shedding all my clothes in front of a stranger than carb loading right before. The session takes about 15 minutes and it’s 100 percent the best 15 minutes you’ll ever spend at the gym because instead of leaving sweaty and feeling like you want to die inside (just me?) you’ll leave looking glowy AF.
READ: 8 Tanning Myths You Should Have Stopped Believing Like, Yesterday
I’m a girl with no name if I’m not at least two shades darker than my original skin tone. Stepping off a Caribbean island is not only what I need pronto, but what I need to look like at all times. If my friends don’t greet me with, “ohmygod, you got sooo tan,” then honestly, what’s my purpose in life? Everyone knows being tan makes you an all around happier person. I’d say nicer, too, but then I’d be lying. I prefer to lay out on the beach instead of frying under cancer-causing rays in a machine that was used as a prop in a Final Destination movie. Um, yeah, no thanks. The sun works just fine.
However, laying out can be hella annoying when you want to get some color without tan lines. This isn’t Europe, there aren’t any nude beaches (not that I’d go, tbh), and I’m not about to flash the creepy guy next door. Thanks to retro bathing suit trends, I now have random geometric shapes printed all over my body and it’s not okay. Like, how awk is it if you have a D appointment and your hard-earned tan body just looks diseased?! Since we won’t boycott our fave swimsuit brands and nothing good ever comes easy, here’s how to cover up your tan lines because they are not sexy.
This is not, and I repeat, not the same as the self-tanner you probs use at home. If you ignore this or try to argue, you’ll look like an idiot so just know I’m usually always right. Using the Sephora Perfection Mist Airbrush Foundation is absolutely a lifesaver for evening out awk tan lines. For less than $30, which is saying a lot for something that saves your sex life, you’ll have to find a shade closest to your new tan skin. While holding the can a decent distance away, spray directly onto the targeted areas. With a brush, beauty blender, or even your finger IDGAF, blend the shade into your tan lines for an oil-free seamless tan.
You’ll need to get your card ready and buy a new liquid, waterproof concealer like Clinique Beyond Perfecting Super Concealer that works best based on your fresh tan shade. You didn’t really need an excuse to buy from Sephora anyway, though. This concealer keeps your look down pat for a full 24 hours and stays sweat- and humidity-proof. Fucking gamechanger, I know. By using your fingers, fill in any uneven areas and blend onto your tanned skin to make sure the stripes on your waist are long gone. Trust me, it can’t even pass as a temporary henna tat. Use your everyday foundation to blend with for a flawless finish.
Customized Matte Bronzer
I mean, since it’s already July, chances are you were going to probably buy a new bronzer based on your new glow already. For covering up missed areas, whether that be on your chest or stomach, the Stila Stay All Day Bronzer For Face and Body does wonders. The fade-proof bronzing powder should be applied on areas your strappy bathing suit kept hidden from sunlight. By using a matte instead of shimmer bronzer, you’re going for a natural, smooth look so it doesn’t look like you showered half of your body in glitter. With the appropriate brush, blend all over the area for complete coverage. If your skin tone has pink or lighter tones, be sure to sample and find the right bronzer with rose gold or pearlescent hues. Just do what Kylie did and make swatches on someone else’s arm for you.