I mentioned earlier this week that I felt the time was coming when a little bit of fake tan would make the difference between looking alive and looking dead. Well, yesterday was sunny, and I didn't really want to have to wear tights with my skirt. One look at my legs, however, convinced me this wouldn't really be a great idea, and so to the bathroom I went, my bottle of Nivea Body Sunkissed Skin clutched firmly in my hands.

I have to admit, my hopes weren't high. It's been almost a year since I last entered the land of the fake tan, and the last experiment wasn't exactly a successful one. Still, nothing ventured, and so I jumped in the shower and exfoliated like mad before carefully applying the tan.

This is one of the family ofgradual self tan moisturizers, which is the kind I prefer: any mistakes look less obvious, and building up your tan gradually just looks that little bit more natural. If you're very pale, like me, you can also use these just often enough to take the "edge" of the whiteness, without making a huge difference to the colour of your skin. Or that's the theory, anyway.

Despite all of this, as I said, my hopes weren't exactly high, so when I was getting ready for bed last night and noticed that my body was curiously free of streaks and orange patches, I assumed it was a trick of the light, and went to bed.

This morning, though, it was exactly the same: the tan is still fairly subtle (it looks brown to me, but I doubt anyone else would notice a big change) but there isn't a streaky bit in sight, and the luminous glow has completely gone from my legs. In fact, I was so pleased with it, I applied another layer after my shower today.

The only drawback? The smell. Oh, my Lord, the smell! If you've ever used fake tan before, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about here. As I said above, it had been a while since I'd used self-tanner, so maybe I'm a little more sensitive to it than I used to be, but that scent has been hard to get used to this time around: I seemed to be able to smell it all day yesterday, and given that it's definitely not the most pleasant smell in the world, I'm glad I won't be having to use it every day to get the results I'm after!

Despite that, though, I've been pleasantly surprised with the first fake tan of the season: may they all be equally streak free!

Buy: Nivea Body Sunkissed Skin

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