It seems like yesterday we were just sipping a Tanqueray and tonic with a hint of lime on a boat, but all good things must come to an end.
Although we’re spending the greater amount of our days in a classroom, we certainly don’t have to look as drab as some classes make us feel. No one wants to lose the carefree summer mentality, or the tan. Fortunately, there are a couple easy ways to keep your summer cool even in school.
First, summer is mostly a mindset. We hit the gym everyday between spring break and finals to prep that perfect beach body, and maintain that killer body throughout summer, but what about after summer? Studies show exercise releases endorphins, stimulates the immune system and increases body temperature. Basically it’ll keep you calm, healthy and warm through the fall and winter. Frequent exercise also helps maintain a routine sleep cycle, so you can ditch the NyQuil for a natural night sleep.
Now that you have released some endorphins, you have to get your daily dose of Vitamin D. It has been shown to help people suffering from seasonal affective disorder, and it’s easily attainable from orange juice, sockeye salmon and sunlight. If tanning beds aren’t your thing, you can subject your face, arms, legs or back to five minutes to 30 minutes of sunlight twice a week and maintain your levels of Vitamin D.
Once you feel the summer glow on the inside, it’s even easier to make it beam on the outside. The best part about summer break is we leave school as frazzled ghosts, and return as bronzed gods and goddesses. However, your ethereal tan doesn’t have to go anywhere just because you have go to class.
There are several ways to keep your sun kissed skin year round. Philadelphia is home to numerous tanning salons, and their staff will work with your skin type to keep your beautiful bronze. Tanning beds simulate sun exposure, so they will help you get that Vitamin D your body craves.
If you find yourself roasting in the tanning bed like a chicken, try a UV-free tan. Spray tans and sunless tanning lotion use dihydroxyacetone, to turn the top layer of dead skin tan. The key to can tans is to find a product that works for you. Some promise a tan that even Snooki would envy, but deliver the exact skin tone of an Oompa Loompa. Avoid this fashion faux pas by taking the time to research the latest products on the market, and make an informed decision about how you want to look.
Rather than matching the cherry Temple ‘T’ from using a tanning bed, or a carrot from applying sunless tanner, try using some simple powder bronzer. Most makeup stores will match your skin tone with a bronzer that will keep you glowing without shining. Unlike sunless tanner that takes time to develop, bronzer is instant, it can be easily washed off. Mix a little bronzer in the morning and you’ll be good to go.
After you’re feeling firm, fit and fully tanned, top off your summer mentality with your wardrobe. While you probably won’t want to rock shorts through the winter, you can keep a summer flare even through the winter chill. Stores tend to switch summer pastels out for winter neutrals, but you can add a hint of summer by incorporating the summer trends into your fall and winter wardrobe. Throw on a pair of Sperry Top-Siders instead of Uggs to keep the nautical theme alive, or a pastel orange belt instead of a neutral one to pay tribute to this summer’s hottest color.
If you’re feeling really brave, go ahead and rock some white during winter. Although it used to be a bigger fashion faux pas than wearing plaid and stripes, white after Labor Day is quickly becoming a bold fashion statement. Coco Chanel incorporated white pieces into her wardrobe throughout the year, and even First Lady “of fashion” Michelle Obama wore a crème dress to the inaugural ball. Just don’t let your skin match your winter white pea coat, and you can’t go wrong.
Keeping the summer mentality isn’t hard as long as you follow these few key steps. Just remember your outward appearance is just as important as your inward, and you can keep the winter blues away without flying to the Caribbean.
Mark Longacre can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.