I’m pretty much the palest person I know!! In fact, when I was little, the kids at school called me Casper! 🙁 It’s ok though, I’ve since recovered and moved on!
By now, I pretty much have a PHD in sunless tanning. In the winter, I don’t mess with it since I’m mostly covered up. We are starting to have some warmer days now, so it’s time to start up my sunless tanning routine again! Here are some tips to achieve the best sunless tan possible!
1)Exfoliate and shave your legs prior to applying sunless tanner
2) make sure your skin is totally clean of makeup, lotions,etc
3) I do NOT apply sunless tanner to my face, but if you do, use one specifically for the face and moisturize any dry patches of skin
4) I apply lotion to my knees, elbows, and feet to keep the sunless tanner from clinging to the bony areas.
5) Wash your hands after application, then reapply a very small amount to the tops of your hands and blend around the wrist area. Then wipe off your palms with a wet washcloth. I learned this trick after NOT applying it to my hands and they were WAY whiter than my arms. It was NOT attractive.
6) To help your sunless tan last longer, moisturize daily.
Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer– For the price, this is a great product! It is gradual, so you need to allow several days to get a nice color. I originally tried the fair, but it was so subtle I changed to the medium. Since it is gradual, you don’t have to be quite as precise in your application which is nice. I found the smell of this to be a little unpleasant, but it is a good moisturizer!
St Tropez Bronzing Mousse-This product is around $35 which is on the pricier end for self tanners. It goes on bronze so you get color immediately which is nice, but it intensifies over the next few hours. And since it’s colored you can make sure you aren’t missing any areas and that the color is going on evenly. It dries SUPER fast so make sure you don’t mess around once you apply it! Also, you MUST wear gloves with application it WILL stain your palms. My poor husband had brown palms after applying this to my back once! Again, this has somewhat of an unpleasant smell. I usually apply my self tanners at night, then shower the next morning to get rid of the smell. The color of this one is a bit more intense than some of the others I’ve tried. So, this would be a good choice for someone with a darker skin tone.
Kiehl’s Sunless Tanning Lotion-This is extremely moisturizing and around $22. It has apricot oil, cocoa butter, and Vitamin E which I really like. It feels amazing going on the skin. The color starts developing in about an hour and then intensifies over the next 3-4 hours. I got a really nice color from this, but I did end up with a streak or two on my legs. I think I just needed to rub it in better. Lotions require more “rubbing” and dry time than the foams. Overall, I like this one and the smell seems to be a little more pleasant than most sunless tanners.
Rodan and Fields Sunless Tanning Foam-This is my current holy grail for several reasons! It goes on evenly and the color is a very natural bronze. This one works great for fair skinned people like myself because the color is subtle. If you are darker skinned, you can build it over several days. I also love that it dries super quickly. I mean, who wants to stand around naked while your sunless tanner dries? Also, a little goes a long way. A $26 bottle will last you! This is my current fave!
Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs– This is what I use when I get in a pinch. I have NOT planned ahead and need some color STAT! This is basically just a makeup, not an actual sunless tanner. So, I just spray my neck, chest area, arms, legs, or whatever is showing and needs color. I use the fair/medium one. This stays put pretty well. I actually have to scrub to get it off in the tub. There are a couple of cons to this one though, It is MESSY. It gets all over the bathroom. So I usually stand in the shower or go outside to spray. I may or may NOT have been in my backyard numerous times in my underwear spraying myself lol. And it can rub off on light colored clothing, but luckily it doesn’t stain!
Loreal Sublime Bronzing Gel– This is around $10 which is a great price. It goes on pretty smooth and gives a nice color overall. The smell bothered me quite a bit though. The gel is bronze so you get some immediate color that will intensify over the next few hours!
I hope my 20 plus years of sunless tanning experience will help you get that perfect and SAFE glow. I am glad there are so many options now and we can avoid the damaging UV rays and still get a healthy bronze Glow! And don’t forget to apply your sunscreen daily!