If you’re wondering who is in the above photo, it’s me, peeking out at you beneath layers of brown chemicals engineered to trick you into thinking I’m an outdoorsy type.
When my sister Kelly suggested we get spray tans for her Bachelorette weekend in Palm Springs I was intrigued. Not only do I love being tan, but I’ve spent nearly all of my adult life indoors with the curtains drawn, polishing my fangs and plotting my next meal.*
Spray tans are associated with materialistic, shallow people – perhaps rightly so – but I was willing to identify with this stereotype in exchange for giving others one very brief impression I spend all of my time swimming in the ocean, drinking wine in the sun, and having heartfelt conversations under beachy sunsets. One of the less difficult sacrifices I’ve ever had to make.I’d never gotten one before so I asked Kelly to recommend a place. I deemed her qualified since she lives 3,000 miles away and has an internet connection. She told me which places near me had the best reviews and I was on my way.
The actual process of getting the tan required much more contortion than I suspected, but the middle-aged lady who sprayed me explained she was a veteran and I really didn’t want to disappoint her. Luckily, the movements resembled a slow-motion robot, a dance move I happen to personally excel at and use frequently to embarrass Austin in public places.
When I woke up the next morning I nearly lost it. To say I resembled tan mom would only be a slight exaggeration. I immediately texted my cousin and sister, who’d also gotten sprayed the night before and they conceded they, too, looked ridiculously tan. They assured me it would fade and it did.But even before then the desensitization phenomenon was in full-force. Within 30 minutes I was thinking, “Hey, I don’t look that tan!” And this pattern continued as the 14 other women arrived to our rental house.
First time anyone saw me: Oh my god. YOU ARE SO TAN. *real lols*
30 minutes later without fail: Wait you actually look completely fine and normal.
Tan Sis strikes again!One of the unexpected perks of sporting a skin color several shades darker than my given one was this feeling that I was never actually exposed and was thus never called to cover myself up for emotional reassurance. I had no idea spray tans were the chemical equivalent of the comforting denim under-short of Tobias Funke. Please take note of this!
The feeling of wearing a full-coverage skin costume came in particular handy while spending two straight days drinking mimosas and eating chips in a swimsuit. I’d honestly never felt more tropical in my life, and I was in the desert during a severe drought.
The best part of the weekend, however, had nothing to do with sacrificing my morals and everything to do with crying several times about my sister and Matt getting married. One of her best friends put together a slide show of them to a guitar-strumming love song and we almost all had to stay in for the evening just to weep. Or was that just me? I’m simultaneously elated for them to get married and dreading crying for 6 hours straight. I’m so cliche.
Let’s finish this up on shallow ground: one-pieces. A lot of us were sporting them over the weekend and were aligned on their power and influence over us. If you’re currently in the market, I’d recommend Asos where you can find a one-piece in nearly every shape, color, and pattern. If you can’t find what you’re looking for on there, your taste is far more unique and special than mine and I admire you.
This leafy one was probably my favorite, but I love all my children equally. Also, if you’re justifying spending the money, keep in mind Man Repeller’s conjecture that swimsuits under shorts are the new shirts. I’m totally on board.
Here are some others I love, a few of which are already in my clutches.