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Belfast named fake tan capital of the UK and Ireland

Dancing With the Stars contestant Hughie Maughan displayed a striking fake tan
Marie Louise McConville

BELFAST is basking in the glow of topping a poll for faking it - after being named false tan capital of the UK and Ireland.

While Ireland's temperamental weather may be to blame, it seems men and women in both Belfast and Dublin are increasingly choosing to fake it rather than bake it, as they have little or no chance of catching rays at home.

Whether it's an attempt to hold on to that all-important holiday colour or just an effort to add a shimmer to their day, high street chain Superdrug said sales figures confirm that customers in Belfast purchase the most fake tan.

Glasgow came in second in the survey while Dublin was third.

The popularity of Irish dancing in Belfast could partly explain the incredible popularity of bottled tans, as parents feel the pressure to help their daughters look their best at competition.

While a layer of bronze can add the appearance of a natural glow under lights, reality star Hughie Maughan fell foul of the beauty product last year while taking part in RTE programme Dancing With The Stars.

The Dubliner suffered an epic tanning fail on the show, much to the amusement of TV viewers.

Other cities making the top 10 fake tan list were Liverpool, Newcastle, Greenock, Manchester, Cumbria, Leeds and Middlesbrough.

Former Miss Ireland Michelle McTernan, who is now the owner of Michelle McTernan Management, welcomed the fact that young people in Belfast seem take so much time over their appearance.

"Young people care about their appearance and fair play to them for not using sun beds," she said.

"There is so much night life in Belfast and so much for young ones to do nowadays.

"With the weather the way it is, it is far better that using sun beds and there are so many good brands of fake tan now.

"It's better faking it, as long as you don't end up looking like an Oompa Loompa."

The former Belfast Rose added: "It can be a bit contagious. Young people are copying what a lot of celebrities are doing, it's a celebrity-hungry nation. Women are trying to keep up with the Kardashians."

Megan Potter, head of beauty at Superdrug, said: "The Northern Irish have always been fans of fake tanning and this proves that they reach for the bottle more than anywhere else.

"When you look at the weather so far this year you really do see a north-south divide when it comes to fake tan.

"Those in the sunny south have been enjoying the sunshine, while those in the north are definitely playing catch up using bronzers and tanners."

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