APPLYING a fake tanner yourself requires time and dedication.

It’s easy to over-apply or look streaky. However, follow Rachael’s tips and you can achieve the sun-kissed look for summer.

Exfoliate thoroughly, paying particular attention to knees, elbows and heels.

If you’ve having a spray tan, paint your nails with clear varnish to protect them from the tanning process.

Make sure that your chosen product has been carefully smoothed on – streaks will not be evident until hours later – and use a sponge mitt to avoid stained hands.

Don’t wear deodorant or have any products on your skin other than oil-free moisturiser.

Once tanned, avoid chlorinated swimming pools as the chlorine will strip away your carefully and expensively acquired tan. Salt water is fine.

When towelling dry after swimming or showering, don’t rub, just pat.

Don’t have long baths as this will exfoliate your tan.

While tan is developing don’t have any hair or beauty treatments.

Don’t use skin products with alpha hydroxy acids as these will strip a tan.

Once tan has developed keep skin well moisturised and after five days start to gently exfoliate your skin so that tan fades evenly.

Nervous first-timers can either opt for one of the gradual tanners – Johnson’s Holiday Skin is an example, or book themselves into a salon for a professional treatment.

Last, but not least, remember that a fake tan offers no protection from the sun. In fact, during the 24 hours following a spray tan skin can be more susceptible to sun damage so it’s best to stay covered up.