10 Best Self Tanners

Do you enjoy a great summer tan but hate the burning, the freckling, and the peeling of a traditional tan? Maybe you’re concerned about the aging effects and skin cancer risks of laying out in the sun for long hours? No matter your reason for opting for a faux tan, we have products that are right for you.

Below are our top 10 favorite products for getting that summer glow without having to fry in the sun. None of them provide the exact same color or have the same benefits during and after application, so be sure to read the descriptions that accompany each product to determine which self tanner is the best bet for your needs!

Nip+Fab 365 Body Glow Fix
This product is a bit different from your typical self-tanner. It has the consistency of a sticky gel and doesn’t require layer after layer to give you that glow you’ve been looking for this season. In just four hours, your skin will be fully developed. The white tea and vitamin E within the product keeps your skin looking top-notch all day long. It may take practice in order to become a pro at using this stuff, but it’s worth it.

Self Tanner Bath
Photo Credit: Air Tan

Vita Liberata Phenomenal Medium
Are you looking for a tan that you won’t have to reapply tomorrow or even next week? You absolutely must check out this self tanner, which comes with a mitt if you order from Sephora and lasts between two and three weeks. You’ll be able to stretch this timeline out to the max if you keep your skin super moisturized by drinking lots of water and applying body cream between tanning applications. It’s expensive but it’s worth every penny.

Rimmel Sunshimmer Instant Tan Water Resistant
Have you ever applied a fake tan only to go outside and find that it’s raining? Or perhaps you’ve spilt a glass of water on your thigh after putting on your makeup, only to find that your tan wasn’t dry yet? These situations, among others, can leave you splotchy and desperate for a re-touch. Rimmel decided to solve these problems by designing a lotion that is not only a great color but also water-resistant. Let it rain!

BareMinerals Faux Tan Body Sunless Tanner
This brand is a favorite for many an enhancing product, and the self tanner is no exception. With cool packaging and just the right amount of lotion, you’ll be tan all month long with one all-over application every week. It has aloe and mineral copper to make your skin feel soft and encourage the tan to stick. It’s practically luxury in a tube.

Tanceuticals CC Self Tanning Body Lotion
If the stinkiness of faux tanning products is what keeps you from using them more often, try this cool lotion. It has a bright coconut scent that takes you directly to the resort every time you close your eyes, which is so refreshing. Plus, it also has properties that visually smooth and blur imperfections like a traditional CC would for your face.

St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse
This product gives you a great, natural-looking tan with less mess. It’s gorgeous, it feels hydrating during and after application, and it has a lot of product in a single full-size bottle so you are getting your money’s worth with every purchase. Be sure to shake this one well and then pump ample product into your hand before applying so that you get every bit of skin evenly tanned. The formula dries very quickly, so missing a spot on the first go-around can leave you with distinguishable edge marks. But when you do it right, it’s incredible.

Self Tanner Body
Photo Credit: Good Housekeeping

Fake Bake Flawless
This self tanner is called ‘flawless‘ for a reason. If you order it from Ulta, it comes with a mitt that you can use to get seriously even coverage that resists transferring to your clothes. Plus, it’s super simple to see where you’re applying it because it comes out of the bottle as a bronzed lotion. Oh, and if you’re grossed out by the odor of tanning products, this one also has a tropical scent.

Aqua Tan Self Tanning Body Milk
Are you ready for a self tanner that applies like silk rather than sticky honey? This cucumber and green tea-based product is clear in color upon application but darkens to a deeper tan within six hours, and feels creamy to the touch. You can layer it over a few days for a richer bronze and you can even use it on your sensitive facial skin. So, basically it’s your all-in-one tanner.

Skin Laboratories Very Dark Sunsation
If you’re looking for a really dark self tanner, you need a product that has lots of green undertones. This way, instead of winding up with a golden glow, you’ll find yourself with a more natural browned skin. This product is incredibly thick, so it may help to mix every two pumps with one pump of regular moisturizer to make application simpler.


Tarte Brazilliance
Tarte is an excellent, animal-friendly brand that creates legendary lip color and luxurious eyeshadows. In addition to several other products that the brand sells, their formula for their tanning cream is now a favorite of loyal brand followers. You’ll use a tanning mitt to apply the anti-inflammatory product and you’ll walk away without smelling funny. Four hours later, you can bet you’ll be gorgeously tan and your skin will feel incredibly soft.


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