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Elle’s World



ELLE Australia's resident tan addict, takes her readers through The Wash.

As the ELLE office's resident tan addict, I've tried my fair share of faux glow products.

Every formula you can imagine, from mousses to mists to oils, has been buffed into my skin to incredibly varying results. But despite many disappointments, my obsession with the even, streak-free after glow persists, and since a sun-soaked Euro getaway is still a way off (and we all know that the safest tan is a fake one), I continue my quest to find the bottled equivalent.

But while testing new tanning formulas is a (mostly) enjoyable endeavour, each week I find myself at war with my own skin in the shower, desperately trying to remove the patchy hangover.

So when Elle Ferguson's latest Elle Effect release landed on my desk a few weeks ago, I was hopeful that it might just save my skin from its weekly torture sessions.

Aptly titled The Wash, the product positions itself as a body cleanser and exfoliator in one.

As evidenced by her perennially bronzed limbs, Ferguson knows her way around a mousse and mitt, and the Elle Effect tan is also one of my favourites.

Ferguson says The Wash was in development for more than a year to perfect the formula, so I had high hopes for The Wash.

The formula purports to simultaneously cleanse and gently exfoliate the body, with a blend of macadamia, olive and coconut oils to break down old tan and whisk away dead skin cells.

But the difference between The Wash and other tan removers is that it's designed to leave the skin feeling hydrated and smooth rather than stripped.

Best results are said to occur when The Wash is used in conjunction with the Elle Effect Tan Exfoliating Mitt, so I take both to the shower for a test run.

I run the cleanser all over my body, focusing on the areas that have been left particularly tragic and patchy, courtesy of another tanning brand that I won't name. It's fragrance-free, so there obviously isn't much of a scent to it, and the consistency is similar to that of a dense body oil.

Using the mitt, I give my body a once-over, expecting it to take a few goes to get it all off.

But it doesn't. All it takes is one quick scrub, and my skin is restored to its natural shade of porcelain.

I'm genuinely shocked by how little effort it required to remove–was it just that particular tan that made it easy?

I'm not sure, so I resolve to try it a few more times in the coming weeks, but it bests every tan I pit it against in mere minutes.

Now that it's actually launched, I can finally tell everyone about it!

It has truly made my weekly tanning ritual so much easier, and I even love to use it during those rare weeks I go sans tan.

Regular dates with The Wash stop my skin from looking dull, so much so that I'm starting to like my natural tone a little more.

It looks brighter, more even and feels smoother, so I try to give it a break from the DHA on occasion. On occasion.

Tanning devotees, start stocking up.

Words by Kate Lancaster, ELLE.