What A Difference a (fake) Tan Makes…

Excuse the rather stiff pose here; it’s difficult trying to breathe in as well as hold every muscle in your body as tautly as possible. This is the kind of position I have to adopt every time I go into the agency for lingerie polaroids and, if I’m actually doing a lingerie job, I have to spend the entire eight or nine hours holding everything in! Quite a workout in itself!

Anyway, the point of this post is twofold: one, this is my body three days (ish) after I began my Emergency Body Overhaul (see HERE). I went to the gym, I tried to stop eating bad food (failed on two counts, 1) homemade burger Saturday eve, 2) Sunday Roast on..er…Sunday) I applied Sisley’s anti-cellulite cream from bust to knees twice daily, I body brushed, I fretted, I prayed. I drank (and this is no joke) fifteen cups of Dr Stuart’s Slim Plus tea. But do you know what I think made the most difference? Probably the thing that made any difference, in reality? A spray tan!

I went for a Sienna X spray tan in Harrods’ Urban Retreat and it was the quickest, easiest and most convenient ‘body altering’ treatment I have ever had! I haven’t had a spray tan since 2003 so I was quite interested to see whether or not techniques had improved – they seem to have, vastly. I stood in a little white room and took off my clothes, stood in a tent and got sprayed with a spray gun for a few minutes, and that was it! No effort required. My tan developed overnight and in the morning I instantly looked leaner and more toned. The tan was even and streak-free and I am more than impressed!

A few weird things – or maybe they’re not weird, I have no idea being a non-fake-tanner! 1) Why do I need barrier cream on my feet? I want tanned feet! They tan just the same as the rest of me! It looks very slightly odd that they are much paler than the rest of me. 2) Is it normal to wear paper pants? Because for me, it kind of defies the point of having a fake tan – I want to be tanned all over, not have a white triangle on my arse! 3) How do you know how far to pull the shower cap down? I wanted to cover my hairline, but now I have a bloody tan line next to my hairline! Ha!

But weird things aside, my tan looks very natural don’t you think? I felt a lot more confident doing my polaroids than I would have been had I not have had a bit of a sexy colour going on. It’s almost identical to the colour that I actually tan in reality except I’ve achieved it in three minutes without having to apply SPF and get sand stuck all over my body! Result.

The Sienna X tan costs £50 from Urban Retreat – they also do home tanning products and I’m going to be trying out my new gradual tanner to see how that looks. I’m going to be a tan-oholic at this rate! What an easy (and painless) way to look that bit more svelte!

© 2018 A Model Recommends®: all opinions are my own and any sponsored or paid posts will always be clearly marked as an AD in the title. I accept press samples and receive product and services to review as part of my job. *Outbound links are affiliate links, which means that I receive a very small percentage of any sale made. This does not affect my content in any way and does not cost you anything, but you are most welcome to Google the products on a new page if you prefer. Please see here for full "about" section and disclaimer. A Model Recommends and Ruth Crilly are registered trademarks.



  1. Tora
    May 10, 2011 / 10:13 am

    Delicious! A wonderful toffee colour! Nom nom!
    Not that orange-y stuff I think of when someone say spray tan! Impressive!
    You look great! :)

  2. Andrea
    May 10, 2011 / 10:15 am

    Never mind the body, your face looks lovely in that photo! very natural and young looking x

  3. Eli
    May 10, 2011 / 10:28 am

    You look gorgeous! The tan is really natural and it’s like you’ve been to the beach, not to a sun-tanning cabin :)

  4. Katherine
    May 10, 2011 / 10:38 am

    Such a beautiful colour. Let us know how long it lasts, Ruth xxx

  5. May 10, 2011 / 10:57 am

    I think the barrier cream is more for the soles of your feet (and the bottom sides), as they soak up the color a lot faster, just like your knees and elbows tend to.
    As long as someone isn’t personally spray tanning you, I wouldn’t wear the paper pants.

    • May 10, 2011 / 11:03 am

      @Lindsay there was someone spray-tanning me! Probably why I had pants on then!

  6. May 10, 2011 / 11:16 am

    Looks great with a little tan. Too bad you didn’t bronze the abs on hehe ;)
    I can imagine the shoots… ‘suck it all in, nice & tight ok, now smile, relax & look natural’ while you wonder how to breathe.

  7. Rachel
    May 10, 2011 / 11:44 am

    hey Ruth, when I spray tan now I just bring an old g-string with me that’s has really small sides and back so the lines are really thin and I just said in the beginning to the therapist “I hope it’s okay to wear my own, they’re old so I don’t mind getting tan on them” and it’s been fine ever since. I haven’t had to wear the ugly paper pants in years now as they leave terrible tan lines. Usually they make you wear the paper ones so they don’t get tan on your own underwear. You look fab btw!

    • admin
      May 10, 2011 / 3:41 pm

      @Rachel – great idea! I shall do that in future! x

  8. Jessica
    May 10, 2011 / 3:21 pm

    WOW, that is one awesome spray tan. It definitely looks natural. Not a single sign that it’s a fake, such as the usual giveaway of pale hands. I’d say you got a good one! How long is it supposed to last?

    • admin
      May 10, 2011 / 3:40 pm

      @jessica 7-10 days!!

  9. Nicole
    May 10, 2011 / 3:23 pm

    hi there – I manage a spa that spray tans, and we always offer a little black paper g-string for spray tan clients, but we do also let them know they are welcome not to wear anything if they chose…and yes, all dry skin areas (heels, knees, ankles, soles of feet) soak up tan far more than other areas and can go orange and streaky if not ‘barriered’ or sprayed very lightly. We have ‘sticky feet’ soles that protect the soles of your feet and spray other areas very very very lightly….

  10. felicity
    May 10, 2011 / 5:19 pm

    on the rare occasions I’ve fake tanned I was always told to bring a (cheap and dispensible) thong with me. Avoiding the paper pants!

  11. Swan
    May 10, 2011 / 5:21 pm

    I am shocked no one has mentioned this before, but OMG your body rocks! You are so sexy ;) Your body looks a little bit like mine, I have boobs and kinda broad shoulders, thin hips and have to work on keeping an ass (it can disappear), I always gain weight on my stomach area. Anyways, you are beautiful.
    Can’t wait to get your measurements, you are my body ideal :)

    • admin
      May 10, 2011 / 5:33 pm

      @swan, thanks!! It didn’t look like this last week, and I am breathing in a LOT! Hence why my shoulders look weird! I actually have quite small shoulders and the opposite in ass-problems – I doubt mine would ever disappear, unfortunately! xx

  12. Erica
    May 10, 2011 / 5:29 pm

    The tan looks great and you never fail to amuse! you should share a photo of your hairline tan line! LOL!

  13. Rachel
    May 10, 2011 / 6:39 pm

    See you’re testing out the Lookfantastic awards nail colors :)

    ps. I don’t think that bra is doing you justice.

    • admin
      May 10, 2011 / 6:42 pm

      @Rachel OMG don’t say that! It’s my favourite ever bra! I am standing in a weird position…

  14. Rachel
    May 10, 2011 / 6:53 pm

    OMG so sorry! It MUST be the pose then. xx

    • admin
      May 10, 2011 / 7:52 pm

      @Rachel – here’s hoping – I just bought another set! Hahaha… xx

  15. hessedjoy
    May 11, 2011 / 3:27 am

    Sweety, you still look gorgeous! :)

  16. Zahra
    May 11, 2011 / 10:11 am

    You look friggin gorgeous….as always! Sincerely hope and pray you get the job you were after! Where is your lingerie set from? It is really sexy! You have become my fav youtuber…..absolutely love your videos. Take Care! x

  17. Anonymous
    May 12, 2011 / 3:24 am

    Can I ask where your bra is from please?its super sexy!

    • May 12, 2011 / 10:54 am

      Myla! I have a post coming up about it – it’s my favourite lingerie set! x

  18. Julia
    May 13, 2011 / 8:11 pm

    Will you still do a post about your weight loss and things like that? Btw, you look awesome!

  19. JemmaR
    May 16, 2011 / 10:40 am

    Belated post here (sorry!) I keep reading that Epsom bath salts are amazing for detoxes and trying to get in shape fast. Has anyone tried them?

    • May 16, 2011 / 12:09 pm

      Read my cheap beauty tricks post from last month – I talk about dead sea salts!! x

  20. JemmaR
    May 17, 2011 / 11:44 am

    How did I miss that post?! Thanks!

  21. amigurumigirl
    May 24, 2011 / 3:46 am

    I died laughing reading the three weirdness points of spray tanning. lol The results are incredible though.

  22. Hannah
    May 26, 2011 / 10:20 pm

    PLEASE do a post on the Sienna X gradual tan stuff! I’m in dire need of a tan but really don’t want to look like I’ve been tangoed

  23. Elisa
    February 16, 2014 / 7:20 am

    Hi, Ruth! I was wondering if you could give me some tips with fake tanning. The thing is..I love it! However, I am crazy about skincare! I dry brush, I use loofah…all this is exfoliating which means the tan doesn’t last in all its splendor more than a couple of days. Another thing is…the face. If you use on your body, you would be putting some on your face, right? So…how do we go about the daily cleansing which makes all that go away? Do we replace our moisturizers with some tanning one? Hope you can shed some light…Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *