Organic fake tans


Want that golden bronze look for summer but don’t want the UV rays or the toxic chemicals found in regular tan products? Holistic beautician Katrina Valente trials organic fake tanning. 

Summer is coming and it’s great to have a bit of colour to look fresh and healthy. Crazy at it seems, here in the UAE we live in the sun all year round but most of us are never tanned. Hence always being able to spot the ‘holiday maker’… the tanned tourists we see walking around the shopping malls.

If you want that bronzed look without spending hours soaking up the harmful UV rays of the sun or sunbeds, fake tans are a great option. Fast and easy, as long as you go organic, it’s all good!

Happily, more organic options are now available if you want your fake tan without nasties like parabens and other potentially harmful chemicals. Remember, anything you put on your skin gets into your blood stream within minutes and sent swirling through your organs and brain.

First up, Xen-Tan. Completely organic, Xen-Tan smells delicious and goes on so easily. You can apply it yourself at home
or pay a professional to come and do it for you. I recently had a home visit from this fake tan favourite of the Hollywood set that includes celebs like Lady Gaga, Kate and Pippa Middleton, and Cameron Diaz in its fanbase.

The technician sprayed me twice over in just a few minutes. The spray dried almost instantly and left me looking brown. I went to bed, got up the next day, showered and voila! Instant gorgeous colour! It stayed on for around 10 days and faded naturally. No streaks, no patchy areas. I was very impressed.

The other organic DIY ‘tan and go’ worth trying is Irish brand Vita Liberata.

Celeb fans include Olly Murs, The Saturday’s, One Direction, and Sinitta. Suitable for skin from the fairest to the darkest, Vita Liberata is organic and free of parabens, perfume, alcohol and toxins.

Both Xen-Tan and Vita Liberata have an extensive range of retail products for home use that come in sprays, gels, mousses and creams for face and body. Prices range from AED 100 to AED 300, depending on the product.


You can get a professionally applied Vita Liberata spray tan here in the UAE from the following outlets: Pastels, Nadia Beauty Centre, Sugar and Spice (Abu Dhabi), The Cure Beauty & Wellness Lounge, Roots, The Beauty Spot (Abu Dhabi), Kalm Spa, Hair Lounge and Dial a Nail.

For more information, go to


The home spray service will be resumed after Ramadan. Meanwhile, you can get a professional Xen-Tan spray at Bodysmart and Pastels salon. To DIY at home, the retail product can be bought from Sephora, Dubai Duty Free, Emirates Aircrew and Atrium shop. For more information go to or www.


Avoid the classic mistakes that get fake tan beginners spotted a mile away.

Fake tan rule number one? Prepare your skin! A good exfoliation is what’s needed. Do it the day before or just before application with either a body brush or a paste of sea salt and olive oil
or almond oil – that’s the cheap way. Alternatively, use your favourite organic body scrub. For more friction – although this will hurt more – do it on dry skin. Rub until your skin is slightly red with special focus on elbows and heels where the fake tan tends to streak. This is great for getting the blood flow going and sloughing off dead skin, leaving you silky smooth and ready for tanning. Take note! It’s not a good idea to use any kind of oil directly before application of the fake tan as this can easily cause streaking and running of product. Moisturise the skin, yes, but make sure you give it 10 minutes to penetrate your skin before applying your home product.

To keep your faux tan lasting longer, keep your skin moisturised and remember that things like body scrubbing, swimming in the salt or chlorinated water, sweating and friction from clothes such as jeans will fade your tan faster.


Yes, it’s summer in the UAE but chances are you’ll be off on your holidays overseas and that’s where you’re going to need sun protection. Here are our top picks…

Moisturising Sunscreen SPF30, Neal’s Yard Remedies, AED 180

How much do we love this brand? If we were any more in love with NYR we’d be buying it flowers and chocolates. NYR walks the talk on organic products and offers a number of skin products with high UVA/UVB protection including this Moisturising Sunscreen SPF30 that nourishes and protects with a 100 per cent mineral sunscreen. Plus it’s 59 per cent organic. Buy it: At one of the UAE Neal’s Yard Remedies outlets, choose from Wafi Mall, Meadows Town Centre, Marina Mall or Dubai Mall in Dubai. Sahara Mall in Sharjah. Fotouh Al Khair Centre in Abu Dhabi.

Tel. +971 (0)4 324 5141

SPF 40 Antioxidant Infused Sunscreen Day Cream, Supergoop! AED 76.50

Supergoop is a great word and a great product. The 13 Supergoop! sun care products are free of parabens, fragrances and petrochemicals. They’ve got a great gradual fake tan mousse as well.
Buy it: In Dubai at the Marriott Saray spa, Make Up Etc boutique, Park Hyatt, Kempinski Palm Jumeirah. In Oman at the Ayana spa and Six Senses Spa at Zighy Bay.

Sun Screen SPF 40, Herbline Essentials, AED 99

Paraben and paraffin free plus not tested on animals, Herbline Essentials products are based on Ayurveda principles and formulated with holistic and organic ingredients. Additional benefits include healing minor rashes and burns with Aloe Vera ingredients.
Buy it: Online at or in 120 pharmacies in the UAE, including Boots, Bin Sina, Health First and United Pharmacies and Dubai Duty Free pharmacies at Dubai International Airport.

KATRINA VALENTE is a holistic beautician specialising in anti-aging. Call her on 050 565 7679 or email her at and mention Awakenings magazine for a 20 per cent discount on any treatment – offer limited to new customers. 


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