This post caters for all of you which are curious as to which self tanner may suit you. I've included creams, sprays, lotions and mousses to suit everyone's preferences. I have also included a mini review and the best application methods for each tanner - enjoy!
I have always been a self confessed tan addict. I have tried and tested probably almost every single self tanner brand out there and every formula possible. In today's post I have some of my favourite ever tried and tested self tanners, from low-high prices, mousse, spray and lotion formulas I've got it covered and would love to share my favourites!
Whether you're a beginner, an amateur or false tanning novice, I have the perfect tanner lined up for you somewhere in this post. In this post I will let you know what tanner is suited to each individual person and the best methods of application.
Make sure you always PREP your skin before application by exfoliating your whole body and lightly moisturising dry areas (Knees, elbows, feet ect.) and moisturise your palms to avoid staining. Wherever possible, always use gloves or a tanning mitt if you are prone to stained palms.
Palmers Natural Bronzer Body Lotion
If you've ever tried any of Palmers body products before, then you will definitely recognise their signature cocoa scent, if you're not familiar to the brand Palmers products contain their special cocoa butter formula combined with vitamin E to keep your skin soft, healthy and moisturised with a distinctive cocoa chocolate scent.
This is one of the cheapest tanners featured and comes in at £2.67 from Boots for a 250ml pump dispensing bottle. The product is a white lotion and has no colour guide, yet this is easily applied by dispensing a few pumps into your palms and rubbing the lotion in circular motions into your body. This is best applied with the hands as this is a white lotion and you can completely control where this lotion is applied without the risk of staining your palms (Wash them afterwards, though!).
You will definitely notice the cocoa scent, which is slightly like the trademark biscuit smell but the smell of chocolate over powers it, that lingers on the skin after application but is by no means offensive (Unless you dislike scents at all), once applied you'll have to wait around 5-10 minutes before dressing or sleeping so that it fully absorbs and doesn't stain.
You will end up with an overall light, natural, golden tan that lasts up to 5 days. You can build the tan up gradually by applying the tanner daily which will prolong the length of your tan as long as you continue to exfoliate and moisturise regularly!
This is suited for amateur + tanners due to the fact that there is no colour guide and this is best applied using the hands to ensure overall coverage and a full natural look.
''With just a touch of self tanner, Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Natural Bronze creates a delicate, sun-kissed, summer glow all year long. Gradually builds a subtle tan within a few days, while deeply moisturising your skin.
From fair to medium to dark, control the intensity of your skin tone year round with Palmer's Cocoa Butter Natural Bronze.''
ST. Moriz Dark Lotion
Every tan lover out there has heard of St Moriz tanning products! They sell sprays, mousses and lotions that come a variety of shades depending on how intense you want your tan, if you're opting for a light tan head for medium formulas and if you love a darker tan go straight for the dark formulas!
This is the second cheapest tanner and comes in at £2.99 from Bodycare, for my international readers this can be purchased at Feel Unique. his is a very popular tanner amongst the blogosphere and I believe that a lot of people love the mousse formulation, personally I prefer the lotion as this is more moisturising and does not leave the skin looking scaly after a few days of it being on the skin.
The scent of this product isn't that noticeable and disappears once you have showered, the best time to apply this lotion is at night time to allow the lotion to fully develop and avoid any contact with liquids which will cause streaks.
Best applied with either a mitt or gloves, this is easy to see where you're applying as it does have a colour guide that comes out very dark but once you've left the tanner on to absorb for the recommended 4-6 hours and shower, the guide disappears and reveals a gorgeous dark tan that will last up to 6 days and is easily buildable.
Perfect for begginers + teamed with a mitt/gloves for application, you can see where you apply the lotion and it dries quickly without being streaky.
ST Moriz Dark Lotion
''For girls who prefer a lotion application that develops into a fabulous golden tan and leaves you with a feel good glow, this award winning St Moriz Instant Self-Tanning Lotion - Regular is for you.
A unique blend of beautifully fragranced active tanning agents work their magic, leaving you looking subtly bronzed and ready for anything.
St Moriz Instant Self-Tanning Lotion - Regular is ultra easy to apply, quick drying and very moisturising, great for dry skin.''
Garnier Ambre Solaire Medium Bronze Mist
This is one of the self tanning body sprays featured (I've also added the facial spray) and comes in at £11.69 from Boots, I never see many raves about self spraying tanners but this one from Garnier is excellent, it contains apricot extracts and vitamin E.
It's perfect for anyone who has difficulty applying tan to areas such as the back of their legs, arms ect, there is no staining of palms however make sure that you apply this tanner in an area that won't stain any surrounding surfaces as this is a spray! As it's a dry spray this will highlight dry areas, so exfoliating first is a must have. This is the easiest tanner to remove also, just simply exfoliate in circular motions and away this goes!
The scent of this spray comes off as quite sweet but this scent does not linger and fades quickly and the tan begins to develop just after an hour without the need for any rinsing of a colour guide, meaning that you can apply this in the morning, dress quickly 10 minutes later and later on have an awesome tan. This lasts for around 3-4 days and can be built up by just spraying over the previous layer (remember to exfoliate lightly), you will need to moisturise more with this product as it is a dry mist.
The facial mist gives the same, fabulous colour and should be applied a while after you've moisturised (if necessary, I do not recommend however) as you will not be able to tan as effectively if oils are present on the face, this also did not break me out.
Perfect for beginner + tanners, easy to each hard areas and to ensure a full body coverage.
Garnier Ambre Solaire Medium Bronze Mist
''Garnier Ambre Solaire No Streaks Bronzer Natural Dry Body Mist in Medium Bronze.
UK's No. 1* Self Tan Brand
The spray application works at any angle making easy work of application to even hard-to-reach areas like the back of the legs. Containing extract of apricot & Vitamin E, the formula provides a uniform result after just one hour.''
Crazy Angel Golden Lotion
Crazy Angel Lotion isn't a self tanner that I've seen raved about so often, I don't understand why as this tanner is amazing! This pump dispensing bottle can be purchased at Crazy Angel for £14.95 and is available in golden or dark. When I've been at my palest NC 10-15 Golden gives me such a deep, golden (duh!) natural tan that doesn't look artificial at all and lasts me 7 days+ when exfoliating/moisturising and applying regularly.
This tanner is often used at spray tan salons, so if you're hesitant on dishing out on a bottle of your own you can always test this tanner at a salon for a cheaper price tag.
Best applied with gloves, this tanner has a chocolate brown colour guide and has no scent. This is best applied at night time using gloves (as provided) and the colour guide washes off when showering. It moisturises effectively and fades evenly without leaving any opportunity for streaking or patches.
Perfect for amateur + tanners, as this does require slight circular motion blending into the skin with circular motions to achieve that all over uniform result. Also great for anyone who is really pale and wants a deep tan without having to layer or suffer from turning orange!
Crazy Angel Golden Lotion
''Contains naturally derived DHA and Erythulose to provide a more natural and long lasting colour.
Smoothes over the skin with a caramel colour guide for ease of application.
Benefits from Bearberry and a lush, light fragrance, skin is left nourished, smelling fantastic and beautifully tanned.''
ST Tropez Original Bronzing Mousse
One of the more famous tanners, this has won multiple awards for its tanning abilities! Usually with mousse tanners I find them really drying and hard to apply, this is far from opposite when in comparison to St Tropez mousse. This can be purchased at St Tropez for £20.43 (for 120ml) and comes in a pump dispensing bottle.
Great news for anyone with sensitive skin as St Tropez have released a sensitive skin formulation and also have a darker version for those who want to achieve a deeper looking tan - check em' out!
For the best application, use a mitt and use 1-2 pumps per limb and a few more for the torso and simply sweep across the desired area, this is easy to apply thanks to its brown colour guide and doesn't have the tell tale tan smell yet it has a pleasantly 'fresh' scent. This dries quickly and literally gives you the most natural, lightly sunkissed tan that doesn't look too strong and therefore perfectly suits the palest of gals that don't want an extreme tan or too intense colour as it appears very subtle and golden.
Suited for beginner + tanners, delivers exactly what's stated on the tin and applies like a breeze. Lasting 6 days with regular skin maintenance!
'' This super-lightweight, easy-to-apply, velvety mousse delivers that ultra-even all-over tan you’ve always wanted.
Our best-selling product is perfect for anyone looking to get a natural-looking, streak-free, golden glow that dries in an instant. Whether you’re a first-time tanner or a total pro, our tinted formula will ensure you know where to apply your tan for a perfect application, every time.
Infused with conditioning aloe vera and long-lasting colour, our innovative Aromaguard™ fragrance technology eliminates the tell-tale self tan aroma by a minimum of 70% and instead gives a beautiful subtle, yet refreshing fragrance. Never orange, St.Tropez Tan always gives a beautiful, golden colour.''
Fake Bake Original Lotion
Last but not least, Fake Bake's Original Lotion has infamously captured the hearts of the Hollyoaks set (So I've read!) and is their original tanner, yet still remains as one their most popular tanners around. This is available for purchase at Feel Unique for £22.95.
Best applied with gloves! When dispensed, this appears to be a thick lotion texture that surprisingly applies lightly like a gel, this also contains a colour guide that allows you to easily see where you've applied this lotion and whenever I've applied this to my whole body, I usually always find some areas where I miss (Even happens to us tanning experts) but as this sinks in slowly this allows me to quickly blend these areas in and does not affect my overall tan when I've washed off the colour guide!
This has a slight scent, that is in no way offensive and wears off after application. It delivers a gorgeous deep golden tan, I agree with Fake Bake in that if you are paler and want a darker tan then you do need to apply this tanner more frequently to achieve your desired shade. If you are medium toned then this definitely delivers a darker golden tan.
After every application, this tan looks absolutely natural and lasts for 7 days+.
Perfect for amateur + tanners, this does require some slight blending. Definitely use gloves as this allows you to blend this lotion in easier and a lot faster.
''Fake Bake will give you the richest, longest lasting self tan, completely streak and hassle free. Their 'SHOWS WHERE IT GOES' formula has a cosmetic colour guide that enables an even application and prevents streaking. Fake Bake also have two organic tanning agents, DHA and Erythrulose, in their product that gives you a deeper, darker, longer lasting, more natural looking tan.
If you are very pale, it will take more applications over several nights to get a deep dark tan. This enables you to control how dark you want your tan to be.
Once you achieve your desired tan, you will only need to apply the self-tanner once every five to seven days to maintain it. ''
I hope that this post helps any of you that are self tan curious/crazy! Remember that self tanning products are the SAFEST way to tan, for your skin, health and mind.
UK Article on the rise of skincancer due to sunbed use here
The dangers of sunbeds provided by NHS
More info on the danger of sunbeds and THE LOOK TO DIE FOR campaign here
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Disclaimer ** ALL Products featured in this post were purchased by myself and I am in no relation/association with any of these companies. Everything stated is my own opinion and I have shared my personal favourite tanning products.