you see, lacey is a sunless tanning expert because she owns a portable sunless spray tanning business which she runs to make extra money while she is going through her master’s program. BUT that means she and i have gotten so used to stripping down and being sprayed by her amazing product that we have not tested at home self tanners for a while.
we immediately hit the obvious spots for sunless tanning options. after smearing several lotions and foams on our skin we were not satisfied. we were looking for good color, ease in application and evenness and long lasting wear. we continued on our search. in the end we found these six sunless tanning lotion or foam options that you may not have tried and now here is our very honest review of each.
You have heard it a million times, start by exfoliating but I can’t stress this enough. It can make all the difference in the world. I did a little experiment, not shaving and exfoliating one leg and shaving and exfoliating the other, before applying self tanner and guess what? The leg that I did not exfoliate was streaky as streaky can be. yikes! there is a little method to the exfoliating madness.
Lacey recommends this body brush available at Target by Sonia Kashuk or her favorite (and mine since she got me completely addicted to it) baking soda! Both are so economical it is a great way to exfoliate an entire body and they work really well at getting dry rough skin sloughed off and ready for tanner application.
Rodan + Fields Foaming Sunless Tan: goes on real smooth, dries evenly and your dark pretty tan will last 4-5 days.
Nature’s Gate Sunless Tanner: This tanner is all organic, goes on smoothly, dries evenly and lasts 4-5 days. I found it very comparable to the Rodana + Fields but with an easier price tag to swallow. $11.55 for 16oz! Yes please!!
Lastly, I really love the brown, not orangey color of both of these self tanners! Love Love.
SUN Sunless Tanning Lotion: this formula went on evenly had a good brown color. It blended really seamlessly and i like that.
Con: didn’t last very long, would have to be applied each day to build up a tan.
Fake Bake in Original: This lotion comes with gloves which at first I thought was no big deal, but I ended up using them with each product and loved not worrying about dark palms. This tanner has a great color for olive and darker skin tones.
Cons: The tinted formula ensures an even tan but I did not like how the formula spread on the skin very much. It wasn’t as smooth as I would have wished.
St. Tropez: This has been around forever and everyone has tried it. I like the tinted formula and the scent but after trying Nature’s Gate and Rodan Fields I realized how soon the color of St. Tropez faded.
Tan Towel: I have used these for over a year. I love how easy they are to apply with the pre-saturated wipe and are great for traveling.
Con: the color is so light it is best for it to dry and reapply each day.