When self-tan tops the to-do list - Janet Christie's Mum's the Word

When self-tan tops the to-do list

Topping up the fake tan with the real thing (with housemates)
Topping up the fake tan with the real thing (with housemates)

For those of us who love a touch of self-tan (Youngest Child), the current regime of hand-washing is taking its toll.

“Look at that,” she says, passing my work station (the table) and extending an arm.

“Ooh, nice effect,” I say, without thinking. Well, I’m WFH at a screen and tanning isn’t top of my to-think-about list.

“No it’s not. Because I’m washing my hands so often, it comes off and I have white hands, my face too – and it’s the same anywhere you sweat. It’s SUCH a hassle if you have a party to go to,” she says.

“Party! Who has parties?”

“Me. Zoom. And you don’t want to be sitting about with patchy tan,” she says.

“Er, no. I don’t. I mean YOU don’t,” I say.

She’s got me thinking. I’ve trashed my hair, eaten my body weight in soda bread, started running and Zoom zumba, moved house, enrolled on a home kitchen taxidermy course, and we’re still in lockdown so what now?

“Could I fake tan?” I say.

“Sure. But you know what mum, it’s not something that suits older people.”

This is payback for all my oompa-loompa comments.

“Because older people need to look professional, and your hands would give you away big time if they’re patchy.”


“Usually I just say I have a skin condition when I’m patchy.”


She’s lost me somewhere on the way to St Tropez.

“I’m just going to have to take it all off...” she says, resigned...


“...and start again,” excited.

Silence falls. Now I can focus on what I’m doing. Except on my screen I can see a reflection of what she’s Googling on her mobile.

“What happens if you leave micro ring extensions in too long?”

“Ohhhhhhhh. M.G”

Here we go.


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