A safe tan is a fake tan, and although I’m not one much for instant self-tanners, I do like the occasional gradual tanner (I usually apply every other day, just to keep skin with a healthy glow rather than develop a deep tan) and honestly, with the kind of weather we usually have, how else are we supposed to get that kind of sunkissed, glowing skin? Here are my picks as this Summer’s best in class in gradual and self-tanning products!
Evolve Sunless Glow Body Lotion, RRP £18.00 for 250ml
Beautifully moisturising body lotion that delivers a golden-brown tan, with no hint of orange in sight. The only thing I’m not in love with personally, is the scent (it’s not that fake tan smell, but it’s just not a scent that I particularly care for), but that’s neither here nor there, since it delivers a gorgeous golden glow. And because it contains AHA’s, it keeps skin smooth due to their gentle exfoliating action, and together with the Shea Butter makes it great for drier skins, and you can build up your tan – to an extent – and always have that healthy-looking glow, rather than a muddy-orange colour. Definitely one to keep on the repeat purchase list!
Available at Evolve Beauty
Skinny Tan Strawberry Whipped Gradual Tanner, RRP £22.99 for 150ml
This gorgeously scented tanning mousse is a veritable whipped cream texture with the luscious scent of Strawberries & Cream, so no scent of fake tan in sight. Develops quickly and evenly and it’s easy to spread because it has a slight pink tint, so you can see where you’re applying it. Also loving their Wonder Serum for it’s added ageing care ingredients and instant skin blurring effect, although it isn’t a gradual tanner and it is a bit more time consuming to apply since it requires rinse, but the results are fantastic and the Notox Beauty Elixir for the face as it delivers an instant plumping effect to the skin and develops in a golden hue so quick!
St. Moriz Advanced Gradual Oily Skin Tanning Serum, RRP £14.99 for 150ml
So this one is very specific to my skin type, but they also have a version of it for dry skin. This one however is a gorgeous and incredibly lightweight texture and designed to help rebalance sebum production, soothe and calm redness and hydrate oily and acne prone skin whilst imparting a gorgeous golden glow (which develops in about 8 hrs) and it works for both face and body. Another surprising fave from them is the Colour Correcting Tanning Mousse, (surprising because it’s an instant Self-tanner) which I tried in the light shade as this has a peach undertone to help add a bit of warmth to paler skin tones, and I love that all 4 shades have undertones that help correct redness (for the medium shade), yellow/shallowness (dark shade) and add warmth (ultra dark shade). Also really really loving the Radiant Glow Tan Boosting Facial Serum mixed in with my moisturiser to costumise my tan and add glow to my face!
Indeed Labs Nanobronze Bronzing Drops, RRP £24.99 for 30ml
Boosting the same brilliant blurring technology as the original nanoblur and enriched with Hyaluronic Acid, Giant Kelp and Cacao Seed extracts to hydrate and protect skin, the Nanobronze has a slight tint to add instant warmth and glow to the skin, which I absolutely love, but it also works to help reduce skin redness over time. You can use it on its own or mix it with your moisturiser for a customised everyday glow. It is a truly gorgeous bronzing serum, and it washes off at the end of the day.
That’So Sun Makeup Nature Tan Light Bronze, RRP £27.00 for 75ml
This hydrating, vegan, translucent spray tan lotion develops in 2 to 4 hours but delivers an instant boost of colour due to the very light translucent tint (which will wash off easily after the tan develops), and is really easy to apply, as it comes in a spray with no need to rub it into the skin. And it is also available in a darker shade.
Tanologist Self Tanner Overnight Oil, RRP £13.99 for 30ml
This gorgeous, overnight gradual tanning, hydrating treatment oil will literally have you waking up to sunkissed, glowing skin. Enriched with Pink Grapefruit, Goji Berry, and Juniper, this oil will soften, smooth, revitalise and add glow to the skin. If you don’t want a deep tan, opt to use every other night, or every 2 nights, rather than daily. You can use it directly or mix it with your moisturiser to customise your level of glow! Positively gorgeous, non-comedogenic and the glow is just brilliant!
Lancaster Sun 365 BB Body Cream SPF 15, RRP £27.00 for 125ml
Like everything else from the Lancaster Sun line, I love love love this body cream for an instant, gorgeous, blurred, bronzed skin effect. The slightly tinted gel instantly provides a gentle glow, for visibly radiant, blurred, perfected skin, without self-tanners. It’s also hydrating and quickly absorbed. And although it’s basically makeup for your body, once it’s dried, it won’t budge or stain your clothes, which is a brilliant plus! And for the face, the Infinite Bronze Face Bronzer is the perfect combo, as it delivers that same natural looking sun-kissed glow with a gentle blurring, skin perfecting effect.
Diego dalla Palma Tan Tan Mix, RRP £28.00 for 30ml
Another win for tan-enhancing drops. These come in an ultra-concentrated, long-lasting formula that can also be mixed with your daily moisturiser or serum for a natural effect and buildable tan intensity or used on its own for an instant, intense tan. If you just want to get that healthy looking glow and maintain it, use only 2 or 3 times a week mixing just a couple of drops into your skincare. I love this format because it’s so customisable and easy to control the intensity you want without having to deal with a streaky tan or any of the other possible messy complications of applying fake tan.
Available at Look Fantastic and other selected retailers
Soleil Toujours Organic Daily Sunless Tanning Serum, RRP £53.00 for 30ml
Perfect for mixing with other serums, your moisturiser or face oil, or simply use on its own for a deeper, glowing tan, this tanning serum creates an effortless, radiant glow whenever you want it. Gorgeous texture that is quickly absorbed, it also hydrates, soothes and protects the skin, with the added Vitamin C, Turmeric Root Extract and Raspberry Seed Oil, together with the other natural ingredients present. Again, love the ease of application and the fact you can customise the intensity of your tan.