Top sunless tanning products and application tips for an even, realistic glow.
Next to sunscreen, an amazing glow is one of the most important accessories to wear during the summer.
But many people are intimidated by the application of self-tanners, afraid of ending up with an orange streaky mess. Here are some tips for better results, and top products that result in a more natural radiance — minus the harmful rays.
A main cause of streaks is dry skin that soaks up excess product. To avoid that, start in the shower with a good exfoliation. Trader Joe’s Lavender Salt Scrub ($6) is great for sloughing off dead skin.
Or, if you find that a salt scrub stings, try a sugar-based scrub, such as Alba Botanica Hawaiian Body Polish ($8 at amazon.com) or Tatcha Indigo Smoothing Black Sugar Body Gommage ($74 at tatcha.com). Rub whichever product you choose up and down and then in circular motions for a thorough finish.
Self-tanners that develop more slowly are growing in popularity. Jergens Natural Glow Wet Skin Moisturizer ($10 at Ulta) is conveniently applied in the shower onto wet skin. The color builds up over a few days, and can be maintained with less-frequent applications.
Overnight self-tanners have come into vogue in recent years, such as Charlotte Tilbury’s Overnight Bronze and Glow Mask ($55 at charlottetilbury.com), which moisturizes skin while delivering a wash of color.
Looking for full-blown color right now? St. Tropez Self Tan Express Bronzing Mousse ($44 at sttropeztan.com) develops in as little as an hour, has no orange cast and lasts about a week. Or try beauty-blogger favorite Loving Tan Deluxe Bronzing Mousse ($35 at usa.lovingtan.com), also lauded for its believable color.
Go light on the self-tanner on your face, and use bronzer to boost your glow. Nudestix Nudies Glow All-Over Face Color Bronze + Glow ($30 at nudestix.com) are dual-ended sticks with bronzer on one side and a blending brush on the other.
Nars’ Sun Wash Diffusing Bronzer ($40 at narscosmetics.com) adds color and diffuses imperfections with a matte finish. It’s available in the cult-favorite Laguna shade.
Or try one of the new sheer bronzing tints that wash off. Charlotte Tilbury’s Healthy Glow Summer Tint Moisturizer ($40 at charlottetilbury.com) is applied like self-tanner but without the commitment.