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Get great sun-kissed skin

Whether you're faking it or going for the real thing, here are the best products to help you get that healthy summer glow.

A woman applying sun care lotion at the beach (© Getty Images)

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Whether you'll be enjoying summer sunshine on an exotic beach, or praying for a sunny weekend here at home, beautiful sun-kissed skin is at the top of most of our summer wish lists. Here are our picks of the best products to help you get that healthy summer glow - from makeup and self-tan to help you fake it to our favourite sun protection.

Institut Esthederm (© Institut Esthederm)

The ultimate sun protection

You know the drill: if you're sunbathing at the beach or in the park, be sure not to skimp on the sun cream - protecting yourself in the sun is one of the most important things you can do to prevent signs of aging and protect your health. But with so many sun products on the market it's hard to know which to choose.

For a sun care lotion with a difference, why not try Institut Esthederm, a luxury skincare brand from France. Unlike traditional sun care products, Institut Esthederm don't label their bottles with SPFs. Instead, you select your perfect lotion from three variables: your sun objective (tan safely, allow exposure, block the sun), your skin type (normal, sensitive, intolerant), and strength of sun (gentle, normal to strong and extreme) - meaning that your lotion is specifically tailored to you and your needs.

What's more, their patented Adaptasun and UV inCellium technologies actually adapt your skin to the sun by reinforcing the skin's natural pigmentation process, also fighting wrinkles. Sunbathing will never be the same again.

Institut Esthederm sun care, from £42.50, www.spacenk.com

James Read Wash-off Tan (© James Read)

The fuss-free fake tan

In the last few years, self-tanning has become as integral to many of our beauty routines as eyebrow plucking and bikini waxing. And if there's one man who knows more about fake tan than most, it's James Read. With 10 years' experience in the industry, James is the go-to man for A-listers and magazine editors alike, and has bronzed some of the biggest names in show business.

Appointments with the man himself in his sleek spa in The Sanderson Hotel start from £35, but if you don't have the time or budget for that then fear not - you can get an A-list glow from the comfort of your own home with James's new line of self-tanning products. The 11-product range includes everything from a Gradual Body Tan to the super-handy BB Tan face pen. Our favourite is the Wash-off Body Tan, which gives an instant, controllable colour -great for a quick fix, and for self-tanning novices.

Self-tanning may be a safe way to get a summer glow, but it isn't without its pitfalls, and in the wrong hands it's easy to end up looking more TOWIE orange than Hollywood bronzed. To avoid this simply follow James's top tip: "Before you use any self tan product do a patch test first to make sure it suits your skin tone". It's as simple as that.

James Read self-tan range, from £18.50, www.jamesreadtan.com

MAC Lustre Drops (© MAC)

The best bronzing make-up

No matter what the weather, it's easy to give your skin a healthy glow if you have the right make-up...and know how to use it! From bronzing balls to cream blushers and light-reflecting primers to shimmering lip tints, there are thousands of products on the market all promising to turn you into a shimmering goddess.

We asked make-up artist Jay Pinxie Turnbull for her favourite - her pick of the bronzing bunch is MAC Lustre Drops, which, unlike blusher or bronzing balls, creates a more subtle and glistening glow that Jay prefers. "I prefer not to bronze a face too much but use a product that warms and highlights the skin in specific areas," she says.

Lustre Drops is a water-based liquid bronzer, and comes in two shades - pink rebel and sun rush, one for paler and one for darker skins. Jay uses them in a number of ways: "They give a beautiful luminous finish with a touch of shimmer when used neat, or can be blended with a little liquid foundation to give the skin a summer glow." For the perfect final touch, don't forget your lips. "I love to finish a look by patting Lustre Drops over a pale lip colour and topping it with a gloss or lip balm, it's so pretty," Jay says.

MAC Lustre drops, £17.50, www.maccosmetics.co.uk

While sun care and beauty products can help you glow on the outside, a healthy diet and active lifestyle can give you that much sought after inner glow. With expert tips and advice on creating a new healthy lifestyle, a free My Special K personal plan could help you achieve just that. Sign up today and find out what you could gain.

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