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Cody Simpson Released The Love Song He Wrote For Miley Cyrus, And It’s Romantic AF

If you’re confused at all about Miley Cyrus and Cody Simpson‘s relationship, you’re not alone. Over the past few weeks, fans of both singers have been desperately trying to figure out the status of their romance. That is, until Simpson confirmed the rumors himself in an interview with People. But if you’re still not totally convinced the two are dating, Simpson’s new song, “Golden Thing,” might convince you otherwise.

The track, which Simpson released yesterday (October 17), is a slow burning, romantic ballad that could only be written by someone with true feelings. After describing Cyrus as a “crystal dream” and “Cali queen” in the first verse, Simpson harkens back to the song’s title. “I’m shot, it’s a golden thing she’s got,” he croons over a soft acoustic guitar, proving that what they share is more than just a fleeting romance.

The song’s remaining lyrics continue to reveal just how smitten Simpson is. He opens up about singing softly to Cyrus, hearing birds chirping when they’re together, and feeling heard. He closes out the song by switching up the “golden thing” lyric to reflect not just Cyrus as a person, but their whole relationship. “It’s a golden thing we’ve got,” he sings. And while some might argue that the lyrics could be about anyone, the single artwork is literally a photo of Cyrus, so the track is definitely about her.

We can’t say we’re surprised by this release, though. The new couple teased that it would probably come out this week after Simpson performed it for Cyrus at the hospital when she was receiving treatment for tonsillitis on October 8. “this sweeeeeetest guy came to visit at the hospital and sang the sweeeeeetest song he wrote just for me,” the “Slide Away” singer wrote on her Instagram Stories alongside a clip of Simpson singing the tune. Cyrus then added that she was “pressuring” him to drop it “next week.” And well, here we are.

Check out Simpson’s swoon-worthy ode to Cyrus up above.

No, Joker Won’t Get An Extended Cut Or Deleted Scenes

Joker is a solid hit at the box office and with many fans. There’s talk of it competing for major awards as we get closer to the end of the year. It seems to be the sort of movie that a lot of people are watching in the theaters more than once. Those same fans likely will be interested in picking up the eventual Blu-ray release, but if you were hoping for an extended cut of Joker or a lot of deleted scenes, you can stop hoping now.

While creating “extended cuts” of films, or at least including deleted scenes as extras on the home release of a film, is pretty standard practice, it seems unlikely that anything of the sort will be happening with Joker. Director Todd Philips appears to have a particular animosity for the concept. He recently told Collider

Todd Philips certainly isn’t the first director to decry the concept of the “director’s cut.” Many directors have taken issue with the idea that scenes which they choose to delete for good reason should be included back into a film they made. Having said that, many of those same directors have no problem including deleted scenes as extras.

While a scene may not have ultimately worked in the final edit of a film, that doesn’t mean the scene is entirely without value. Getting a glimpse at it gives viewers a look at the filmmaking process and can help fans to understand why certain directorial decisions were made.

Todd Philips seems to have a slightly more militant view of the concept. He claims here that he will never so much as show off any scenes from Joker that were edited out of the final cut.

If Todd Philips has final say over what makes it onto the Joker Blu-ray then we shouldn’t be looking forward to seeing any more of the movie then what’s included on the big screen right now. Of course we have no idea if that’s the case.

Some of Todd Philips’ previous films, like Old School and the first Hangover, have released Unrated versions on DVD that included additional footage not part of the theatrical release. The fact that the discs were called Unrated and not “Director’s Cut” would at least imply that Philips may not have been the one putting the footage back in. Whether he completely disavows those versions of the movies is unclear, but if he does, and they were released anyway, it would be evidence a director doesn’t always have the final say on what ends up on Blu-ray.

And it’s always possible Todd Philips will soften his feelings on deleted scenes. I don’t think Joker needs an extended version by any means, but seeing the additional work that Joaquin Phoenix and Todd Philips did on the movie wouldn’t be a bad thing.

Joker is in theaters now. We’ll have to wait and see just what the eventual Blu-ray release brings us in a few months.

The Wait Is Over: Liam Payne’s First Solo Album Drops In December

Two years ago, Liam Payne dropped his first solo single, the Quavo collab “Strip That Down.” Fans have been ready for his debut album ever since, and all that materialized was an EP a year later. But now, the wait is over. Payne’s studio debut, LP1, is now set to drop on December 6. It’s the perfect Christmas gift to wrap up this decade.

Payne announced the exciting news to the world through Twitter, with a sexy high-definition GIF of his face in crystal-clear HD. “So I can finally reveal that my new album LP1 will be out on 6th December!” he wrote. “Thanks for all your support as always, you’re the best fans I could ask for. I can’t wait to share the album with you with you all.”

Payne preceded the reveal with a hilarious 10-second video compiling the countless tweets from fans asking for the album. Each tweet came with the chirping notification that Twitter is famous for, so with its rapid buzzing, it simulates the fact that his account is constantly bombarded with inquiries from fans.

Now that the news is out, listeners can check out Payne’s latest song, “Stack It Up,” with A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, to get the freshest taste of what to expect. His last release before that was “Savage” that came in 2018.

Check out Payne’s exciting announcements up above.

An Ode to Mom Jeans, the Best Jeans There Ever Were

For a few years in my early twenties, I was a Jean Expert™. I worked at American Eagle in my hometown mall and was an enthusiastic participant in the store’s mandatory denim training. Around the fall of 2008, the chain embraced the resurrection of skinny jeans, and as a wee baby hipster determined to differentiate herself from anyone still savoring super low-rise bootcut, I saw them as liberation from “the mainstream.” Never mind that they were available everywhere. To me, skinny jeans equated freedom. Which was ironic, because they felt anything but. Until I met Mom Jeans.

The first time I saw super-high-rise jeans—specifically, my best friend’s pair of Cheap Mondays—I was as shocked as I was intrigued. I immediately bought a pair. Unlike their low-rise counterparts, they highlighted the parts of myself I’d come to believe should be strategically covered in billowy tank tops or several polos worn simultaneously, lest my body look imperfect. I’d wear them with plain crew neck t-shirts and scarves or big, baggy sweaters. I wanted to show off how interesting and different I was, both in my penchant for vintage but also in my rejection of the trends of the moment. These jeans let me do that.

Sure, millions of other people were wearing their denim high (and had never actually stopped). But these jeans made me feel special. I was a Denim Expert who rejected regular-old skinnies in favor of Mom Jeans, and that made me unique.

I know now, of course that I absolutely wasn’t. And about a decade after their introduction to the mainstream, Mom Jeans have nestled their way into our hearts and closets, evolving from a derogatory nickname reserved to a bona fide trend. (My old employer even has a whole section dedicated to them.) They now have straighter, roomier legs—thank heavens—that seem concerned with comfort over everything else Which suits me just fine: As a now 34-year-old woman who wants nothing more than to pour herself into a denim sack every morning out of sheer laziness, the embrace of Mom Jeans has helped cultivate the illusion of having style, despite really just wanting to dress like Sabrina Spellman circa 1996.

The thing is, as much as I loved the idea of a high-rise skinny, I was never (and still am not) totally comfortable wearing it. To wiggle into jeans that are super-tight, that require maneuvering, that midday can make you want to abandon them completely for jogging pants or paper bag isn’t exactly a dream. Yes, it felt cool not to worry about showing your underwear off if you so much bent down to tie your shoe, as would happen with a super low-rise, but it’s even cooler to feel like you’re cheating—like your high rise and billowy legs symbolize a dedication to fashion over your allegiance to absolute comfort. And to be honest, I’ve never felt better.

New Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker Image Gives A Closer Look At Keri Russell’s Mysterious Character

The Star Wars universe is on an exciting precipice, as J.J. Abrams’ The Rise of Skywalker will essentially end the franchise was we know it. Episode IX will wrap up the current trilogy, as well as the overarching Skywalker Saga that began with A New Hope. Abrams has a ton of characters to service for the upcoming blockbuster, but there are also some exciting newcomers making their debut in the space opera. Chief among them is Keri Russell’s mysterious Zorii Bliss, who has been described as an old friend of Poe Dameron. And a new image was recently revealed, showing a better look at her epic costume.

Keri Russell has a long history of working with J.J. Abrams, so it wasn’t a huge surprise when she eventually made her way to the galaxy far, far away. But exactly how Zorii Bliss factors into the story remains a mystery. We also haven’t see Russell’s face yet, with only a few brief glimpses of the character, all of which her helmet has been on. Now we can see a closer look Zorii, thanks to a new Rise of Skywalker still. Check it out:

Is it December yet? This still us the closest look at Zorii Bliss’ helmet. Although what he character is doing and her true allegiance in the galactic war remains to be seen.

This new image comes to us from EW, and is sure to excite the generations of Star Wars fans out there. Keri Russell’s character is wearing her signature armor and helmet, likely because she’s a criminal who is trying to hide her identity. But it’s what’s in her hands that will likely entice moviegoers. It looks like she’s got a coin or a data chip, and I have to wonder how important that prop will be in the upcoming blockbuster.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will reportedly feature a time jump, allowing the conflict against the First Order to take a new form. From what we’ve heard so far, The Resistance has fallen on hard times, and can no longer afford to continue the ongoing war against Kylo Ren’s forces. This might be where Zorii Bliss comes in, as she operates in the underground of the galaxy. It’s going to take all of The Resistance’s efforts to even the playing field, with Poe Dameron likely seeking out his old friend.

The Star Wars franchise is known for its secrecy, so the overall story and evens of The Rise of Skywalker should remain a mystery until it arrives in theaters on a few months. The footage release thus far as been limited, with Keri Russell’s Zorii Bliss not getting any screen time so far. John Boyega’s agent previously indicated that a new trailer for Episode IX was going to arrive this past Monday, but that didn’t come to fruition.

Given Zorii Bliss’ connection to Poe Dameron, one has to assume that Keri Russell will be sharing her scenes with Oscar Isaac. This is the third acclaimed actress that Isaac has had the privilege to collaborate with, following Carrie Fisher and Laura Dern. I’m eager to see how Poe has continued developing as a Resistance Leader, as he’s been set up as Leia’s protegee in the last two films.

The generations of Star Wars fans will have to patiently wait for The Rise of Skywalker‘s upcoming release, and hope that more stills and footage arrive to raise anticipation. But if you’re eager for more Star Wars content, there are plenty of comics to choose from. Plus, The Mandalorian will hit Disney+ shortly.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will hit theaters December 20th, and you can check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

60 Best Celebrity Couples Halloween Costumes Ever

Dressing up with your significant other for Halloween is a tricky beast (pun intended). When it comes to the best couples Halloween costumes, it’s a very fine line between the cheesy, the cute, the cool, and the ones you have to spend the whole night explaining.

Helping you toe that line successfully are these celebrity couples, both past and present, who straight up slayed (also pun intended) the holiday. From Kimye’s nautical look and Heidi Klum and Seal’s futuristic robots to Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber’s perennial hits and Chrissy Teigen and John Legen’s always-fun vibes, here are the very best in celebrity couples Halloween costumes.

PS: Need more inspiration? These are the top Halloween costume ideas according to Google, Pinterest, and our all-around favorite celebrity looks of all time that aren’t necessarily part of a duo. Oh, and you can’t finish your look without some amazing makeup, so get some Insta inspiration here.

Elton John Reveals Why He Hasn’t Seen Bohemian Rhapsody

Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody are two recent films that have received a great deal of comparison. Both are biopics about music stars from the same era, and both follow very similar trajectories in their stories. There are plenty of reasons to compare them, but one person who can’t do that is Elton John, the subject of Rocketman, because he’s never seen Bohemian Rhapsody.

Bohemian Rhapsody was a box office hit and an awards season darling, so a lot of people ended up seeing it, and one might expect that, especially since Elton John would have a unique perspective on the movie, he would be one of those who checked it out. However, it turns out that’s exactly the reason he’s avoided the movie. John says he can’t watch it because he was too close to Freddie Mercury.

I’ve never seen somebody I knew personally portrayed by an actor in a film, but just trying to imagine such a thing is strange. I can totally see why Elton John might have trouble watching Bohemian Rhapsody. There’s the possibility of getting frustrated with the film for the ways in which it changes the story. There’s the potential difficulty that comes with reliving events that might be emotionally difficult to go through a second time. Regardless of how good or bad the movie turns out to be, there’s the possibility of dealing with some serious issues.

Elton John says he’s seen pieces of the film, enough to compliment Rami Malek‘s portrayal as Freddie Mercury, but that’s all. If anything, the fact that Malek did such a good job may have reinforced to Elton John the idea that he shouldn’t watch the rest of the movie. It might have hit too close to home.

While the similarities between Bohemian Rhapsody and Rocketman are obvious there is one significant difference. The Freddie Mercury movie was rated PG-13, while the Elton John biopic was rated-R. John told GQ that the success of Rhapsody did not lead to any additional pressure to sanitize his story. What it did lead to was more people being introduced to the music of Queen.

Elton John is likely experiencing a similar resurgence. While Rocketman hasn’t been quite the hit Bohemian Rhapsody was, the movie still grossed close to $200 million dollars globally, and it still has a chance at some awards season recognition of its own.

With New Album Pang, Caroline Polachek Is Finally Free

Caroline Polachek has spent a lot of time limiting herself. To be fair, the fruits of those limitations have been wildly successful: She popped into the zeitgeist in 2005 as a member of critical darlings Chairlift, the alternative indie-pop project that built a cult following for more than a decade before Polachek and bandmate Patrick Wimberly called it quits in 2016. On the side, she filtered her solo work through the lens of monikers Ramona Lisa and CEP, all the while co-writing and producing with heavy hitters like Beyoncé, Travis Scott, and Charli XCX. All opportunities to stretch her creative wings — but always within the rules.

And as she explains it, these conceptual boxes she’s willingly placed herself in — Brooklyn-flavored indie pop princess, experimental synth queen — allowed her to hone her own creative strengths. “I think in the past, those limitations have been extremely useful for me to remember what I’m doing and how to do it best,” she tells MTV News.

But now? Allow Caroline Polachek to reintroduce herself. “I think I finally felt ready to take off all of those limitations and just say what I have to say,” she reveals. Pang, her long-awaited album and the first under her own name, is available today (October 17). It features one of the year’s best pop songs in “So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings,” an ironically quirky declaration of being painfully, hopelessly in lust with a flame just out of reach. The feeling it owns is so deeply relatable, yet oddly specific, it’s easy to believe that this is Polachek at her most honest. “I knew I wanted this music to be more direct than anything I’d ever done before,” she explains, “and forcing myself to finally use my own name felt like a way of stating that very clearly.”

MTV News: I have to talk about “So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings,” as I just think the world of it. Tell me everything about how it came together.

Caroline Polachek: So, “You’re so hot, it’s hurting my feelings” is something I’d actually told someone a week prior, and the phrase just kept playing on my mind. I had a session set up towards the very end of writing this record with a couple friends of mine, and the first melody that came was the melody that’s now the beginning of the song. There’s something kind of classical about it, but it also reminded me of “Video Killed the Radio Star”-era ’80s pop. Just something about the quality of the jumpiness of it. And then I thought, wait a minute, this is kind of the perfect vessel for that lyric. So [I] just started writing around that idea.

MTV News: Just that line itself, it has these elements of lust, desire, pain, jealousy. This person, who was so hot it hurt your feelings… which emotional directions did that come from?

Polachek: Well, when someone’s hot, and is just not actually attainable… we kind of have this idea that maybe if you hold them or get some kind of promises from them or have sex with them, there’s some kind of satisfaction that can be attained. But, the fact is there isn’t. When you’re that attracted to someone, there is this kind of thing about them that you can never truly have or possess, and it’s that kind of frustration of wanting it and never being able to have it. It’s also, more generally, a song about long-distance attraction. I don’t know if it just needs to be a relationship; I think in 2019, so many people are experiencing relationships through their phones, even if they’re not living that far away from each other.

MTV News: I’ve also been listening to “Door,” and there’s a really lovely line in the song towards the beginning: “10 laps around the planet to prove what I wasn’t.”

Polachek: Yes, exactly. For me, that lyric was very specifically about my twenties. I think, and I feel this is pretty normal, that a lot of my twenties [there] was this kind of desire to prove both what you are and what you’re not, and kind of entering into another later chapter in my life now, that kind of need disappeared. You get more confident. You know yourself more.

MTV News: When you hear “So Hot” and “Door,” as well as songs like “Ocean of Tears,” these songs on Pang aren’t songs of total bliss, nor do they feel like songs of complete misery. They dive into these moments of murkier emotional tension, whether it’s with a lover or within yourself.

Polachek: Yeah, that’s a good part of what Pang means to me, both as a sensation and as the title of the album. Panging is the kind of sharp pain you feel inside when you’re reminded of some kind of unattended need or something that you’ve neglected. Whether it’s nostalgia or hunger or envy or regret, all these ideas come from addressing a lack that’s been ignored. And a pang is ultimately private. It’s not a thing that gets broadcast to the world; it’s a kind of internal alarm that sounds when something has to change and it has to change fast.

MTV News: This being your first album with your name on it, is there anything you feel like you’re saying now that you may not have been able to say before?

Polachek: It’s all just more unfiltered now. I’m definitely getting into aspects with my personal life that I probably wouldn’t have dared to get into before, but I think that’s just coming from kind of a new desire for things to feel very clear.

MTV News: I have to ask about “No Angel,” the Beyoncé song you co-wrote and produced. To me, it’s another song that’s not bliss, but not misery. It’s this in-between of two people wrestling with the reality of who the other is.

Polachek: Yeah, exactly. The song is kind of about reconciling in a salty way with your partners and professions and asking for compromise and also asking that your own imperfections be taken as well. That song was written about a year and a half before Beyoncé even reached out. It was a song I wrote right at the very beginning of experimenting by myself as a producer for Ramona Lisa. That song is about kind of the end of a bickering match with someone you’re in love with, and no one walks away a winner, but ideally both walk away still in love.

MTV News: Back then, as a songwriter, was there a way that you decided what songs were for you and what songs were for other people? And has that changed now in any way?

Polachek: “No Angel” was definitely written for me, but the thing is, I usually write my best when I’m writing for myself, [and] anything’s up for grabs. I kind of think that’s the best way to operate; even when I’m in sessions writing with other artists, I’m always pulling from the kind of emotions that are the most raw in my own life and offering them up in the studio. I’m not that precious with music when I write it.

MTV News: I think about Julia Michaels, an amazing singer-songwriter, who has spoken about her first single “Issues” and feeling like it was the first song too personal to her to give to someone else. And that song wound up being a Grammy nominee for Song of the Year.

Polachek: Oh, Julia Michaels is such a legend… OK, if we’re being honest, there are a lot of songs on Pang I would absolutely not let go, no matter who wanted them.

MTV News: Which ones would you say those are?

Polachek: “Parachute,” for one, I would never give that song away. It’s so close to my heart. I would enjoy seeing anyone else sing “Caroline Shut Up.” That would be interesting. I would give that one away, actually, which is funny, even though it’s very personal. “Door,” I would never give away. This one called “Hey Big Eyes,” that’s right at the top of the b-side of the album, that one’s also just so extremely personal to me, I could never let it go.

MTV News: So what can we expect from Pang?

Polachek: Well, Pang has a narrative thread that kind of runs loosely through it. The first side of the album is kind of an unraveling, narratively. It’s a kind of descent into self-questioning, doubt, structures falling apart, fear, confusion. And then the second half of the album is kind of making sense of it and rediscovering humor and rediscovering trust kind of in my own life.

MTV News: Was that narrative thread something that you set out to do initially, or was it the way the music came together?

Polachek: It wasn’t the order that they were necessarily written in, but they’re all kind of taking place at different parts of the same thought process. So structuring the record was very, very easy in terms of the internal logic of it. But it did happen afterwards as a second process.

MTV News: Was there a point, or a song in particular that you finished where after it was done you felt like, “Oh, I have an album here.”

Polachek: Oh, that’s such a great question. Yes. Actually, that song was “The Gate.” “The Gate” ironically opens the album, and the first track that was written for the album closes it, which is “Parachute.” But “The Gate” was written at 4 a.m. in my apartment and recorded in that moment as well. That’s the take. It just felt like a finished thing when that song got added, and I knew immediately it was going to be the intro to the album. That song kind of serves in a lot of ways like the kind of overture or the forward in the book, kind of, if you will.

MTV News: Got you.

Polachek: And the song ends with this line, “I come here every day just to hear you say, finally there’s a way to be both free and safe.” And, I think the whole album proceeds from there, this impossible combination of freedom and safety, trying to find it in my own way.

MTV News: Which one do you think you’re leaning more towards now, as a person?

Polachek: Well, I’m always out of balance. I think right now, a part of my conception of safety is taking care of the things I’ve made, but I’m probably leaning a little bit more towards safety this week, because I haven’t really been taking great care of myself this week. I’ve been working so much on getting this record ready, but I think that’s fine. These are the sacrifices we make for things that we love and keeping them safe, right?

MTV News: You could say that when you were an artist under another name, you gave yourself parameters with which to feel safe, and it feels like coming out on your own name and your own terms, there’s a freedom to it.

Polachek: Yeah, exactly. I hadn’t thought about that, but it’s true.

MTV News: So which do you think you’ll feel when this comes out?

Polachek: Well, there’s a freedom in being understood, isn’t there? So I think I will feel more free. Hopefully. Let’s find out.

This Video of Meghan Markle Opening Up About Media Scrutiny Is Heartbreaking

To say Meghan Markle has had a rough go in the British press since her relationship with Prince Harry went public would be a bit of an understatement. But it’s been especially rough in the past year during her pregnancy and the birth of baby Archie. If she was still a regular celebrity and actor, we probably would have seen a sit-down interview with her, a la a classic Barbara Walters special, where she revealed the toll it’s taken on her.

But such is not the way with the British royal family—usually. But as we’ve all seen, Markle and Prince Harry are doing things their own way—from the way they introduced Archie to the world to their social media style. Now, a new documentary filmed during their recent royal tour in southern Africa is apparently about to shed a lot of light on some of their most private struggles.

In a teaser clip released by ITV, Markle opens up about her feelings when director Tom Bradtby asks her about her own physical and mental health amidst all the press coverage and pressure. “I would say…look, any woman, especially when they’re pregnant, you’re really vulnerable,” she says. “So that was made really challenging. And then when you have a newborn, you know?”

“And especially as a woman, it’s really, it’s a lot. So, if you add this on top of just trying to be a new mom or trying to be a newlywed, it’s um…Yeah, well, I guess, and also thank you for asking because not many people have asked if I’m okay. But it’s a very real thing to be going through behind the scenes.”

Watch the clip for yourself. Frankly, it’s heartbreaking.

Of course, there are many glamorous things that we all imagine come along with being a royal—but there’s also so much baggage that I don’t know that I’d ever want, and this clip illustrates some of that. Harry also opens up about how every camera click reminds him of the worst parts of his mother, Princess Diana’s life.

I can’t wait to see what else is revealed in the special, along with the happy and joyful moments of the tour—and hopefully more clips of Archie.

Harry & Meghan: An African Journey premieres Sunday night in the U.K. and will air on ABC on October 23 at 10 PM

Best Spray Tan Tips From Ariana Grande’s Spray Tan Artist

Some people just have the genetic disposition to look incredible with porcelain skin. (Caitriona Balfe and Cate Blanchett come to mind.) Instead, I’m naturally pale in a way that screams “have you ever seen the sun?” So the moment spray tanning became a thing, I was sold. Maybe it’s because I live in L.A., but having safe-from-the-sun, golden skin makes me feel less exposed, like I’m wearing cover-up that instantly makes me more comfortable showing more skin.

The only problem with most self-tanners is that they’re difficult to put on—either I look mysteriously splotchy, or all things go according to plan but a day or so later, my legs will itch like none other. I don’t know what it is about some at-home formulas that my skin personally reacts to, but it literally feels like a dozen mosquitos bit me. Not great.

But then I met Kristyn Pradas, the woman behind Ariana Grande, Ashley Graham, and almost every Victoria’s Secret model’s gorgeous glow. Not only did she give me the most natural-looking tan, but after two sessions a month apart, I haven’t itched once. That’s because Pradas faced a similar frustration with other tanning products that weren’t suitable for her sensitive skin. “I’ve always broken out or gotten rashes, so I wanted to create a line that was good for you and good for your skin. It was really important that my line be as natural as possible with organic ingredients like chamomile, peptides, ceramides, and marshmallow root extract.” In addition, Pradas spent years making sure the ingredients in her products weren’t only good for your body, but also for your face. They shouldn’t be interchangeable, she says.

I recently had an emergency where I got a last-minute call to go on TV and hit Pradas up in a panic. But because she can’t always be at my beck and call (if only), I asked her to share her best spray tan tips. Here, she reveals her tried-and-true lessons for a perfect (and safe) spray tan that goes further than any advice you’ll get at your local tanning studio.

The Best Spray Tan Tips You Need to Know

My before and after photos. Keep in mind that the after photo isn’t the final version of the tan. It will continue to develop over the next 12 hours.

Jessica Radloff

Exfoliate 2 to 3 days prior to your spray tan

Pradas says the most important thing you can do to ensure an evenly applied spray tan is to exfoliate really well two to three days prior—not the day of. This helps remove the dead skin cells on your body so they don’t pick up extra color which might make you look patchy. “By exfoliating a few days prior, the tan will go on flawless and actually last longer,” Pradas says. She recommends the liquid peel by Antheia Beauty, while I’ve personally always been a fan of Natura Brasil’s creamy exfoliating bar soap), especially right before shaving. Which brings me to…

Be careful what you use to shave your legs

“You can use shaving cream,” Pradas says, “but check your razor, because most razors have a moisturizing strip which will leave a film of moisture on your legs.” The problem with the moisture strip is that it works against the color and it won’t absorb as well. “If you do use a razor with a moisture strip, make sure you really rinse off your legs after shaving so there’s no residue/moisturizer left over. Oftentimes I hear from people that from the knee down, their spray tan is lighter than the rest of their body, and that’s because they didn’t properly rinse off after shaving.”

Avoid over-moisturizing

Pradas advises that you cleanse with a PH-balanced body wash after shaving, and recommends Summer’s Eve “because it doesn’t leave a residue.” She also says to stay away from your normal moisturizing cleanser or body wash before a spray tan, because that will leave a film. Otherwise, proceed as normal. But here’s the other important aspect of post-shower shaving: “When you’re out of the shower, don’t moisturize, because that will create a color barrier that defeats the purpose of the spray tan.” She says there’s one exception though, and that’s on your face, especially if you have larger pores. “A good secret is to use my Skin Essential Hydration Serum on your face, neck, and chest, which will help fill in your pores.”

Don’t forget to give your ears, brows, and nails special treatment

“A telltale sign of a spray tan gone ‘wrong’ is forgetting to put self-tanner on your ears,” Pradas says. “I’ve seen people with a tan face but pale ears, which probably isn’t the look you’re going for. That’s why when I’m doing a spray tan, I always want to make sure your ears are out of the shower cap. If you’re self-tanning at home, you can always use a synthetic makeup brush or applicator to apply a little self-tanner there.”