Hallelujah, it’s SHOW-SOME-LEG season! Whether you prefer to put your stems on display with dresses, skirts, shorts, skorts, jorts, or all of the above, it’s necessary they look as smooth, slim, and long as possible, a la Cher Horowitz circa 1995. Here’s how to glam your gams (and hair removal goes without saying, sisters).


1. Exfoliate. Silky smoothness and exfoliation go hand in hand limb in limb. You need to slough off the deadness (no one has ever said, “Damn, her flaky skin really turned me on”), and if you’re using any sort of tanning product (we’ll get to that), it primes your bod for primo bronzing. I swear by the peach sugar scrub exclusive to Sweet Peach Wax & Sugaring Studio, but if you’re not in Atlanta, try Fresh’s Brown Sugar Body Polish ($38) with a to-die-for scent, or any grainy sugar scrub at your local drugstore. OR get all modern-day Martha Stewart and make your own with this easy recipe!

2. Tanning. I can take my legs from wintertime pale to beachy bronze in 10 minutes flat without using a potentially disastrous self-tanner (swear). I evenly apply one coat of L’oreal’s Sublime Glow moisturizer ($10), let it dry (if I’m in a rush, I’ll take a blowdryer to the area), apply a second coat, and voila!  You can try this with any of those gradual bronzing moisturizers; I just prefer L’oreal. It does have a scent that’s not my favorite, so I don’t rub this all over my body, but my legs are far enough away from my (and other people’s) nostrils that it’s fine. Also, after you shower once, the scent is gone, but you still have the color. Wham, tan, thank you, gams. Note: If you want to use real-deal self-tanner, click here for the best products and tips.

3. Moisture/shine. If you’re skipping the above step because you already have a perfect tan (bitch), you still want your legs to have a glowing sheen, but not look like a stripper or fitness competition contestant. I recommend mixing coconut oil (or even baby oil) with your regular body lotion (more on that here); use about one part oil for two parts lotion, but you can do half and half if you have drier skin like me. If you’ve done step 2 with the gradual tanner, your legs are already moisturized, so just do a very light layer of oil on your legs from the mid-thigh down (keep it away from your butt/upper thigh or you may run into a swampy situation).

4. Nude heels. I remember reading my friend Lauren’s blog post years ago about how nude heels elongate your legs and running out to buy a pair immediately even though my legs are already kinda’ freakishly long (read: I looked extra awkward in middle school). Now when it comes to footwear, I want to be nude all the time. I die for my Cole Haan Chelsea pumps (pictured; $298) and am probably about to pull the trigger on the other pair pictured, the Cole Haan Paley High Sandal, ($228) even though they will make me 6’3″ and take away from my happy hour fund.

Follow these steps (now you have an excuse to shoe shop!) and you’ll be hearing “nice stems” on the reg.


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