Yes, the sun feels good, and a gorgeous golden glow can make you feel like a million bucks. But the loss of tautness, onset of wrinkles, and pigmentation that’s really hard to even out is enough reason to seek shade during the sunny summer months.
But that doesn’t mean you’re banished into a pale existence when it’s skin season. Spray tans and self-tanning formulas have come a loooooong way since their debut over a decade ago. We’ve tested ‘em all, and have rounded up the very best of the best. Glow on!
For a deep bronze: Ms.Lova Tanning Mousse
Newcomer Ms. Lova’s Australian-made tanning range may be the new mousse on the block, but its creator, Natasha Mikhaylova, is a golden goddess and seasoned professional. A pioneer in the tanning industry, Mikhaylova founded one of the first airbrushing tan academies in the nation over a decade ago. And the formula is nothing less than fantastically, fabulously delicious: giving a true, chocolate-brown tanned result, “Ms. Lova’s products are all comprised of 100% organic and natural ingredients. This means no synthetic colours, parabens, mineral oil, or perfume exists in the solution.”
“The range is also vegan, meaning it contains no animal products, and isn’t tested on animals. Other benefits of an organic solution include better hydration to the skin, which creates a longer lasting result that fades evenly. Another plus is the scent: the formula is odour-free, so it doesn’t contain the same unpleasant scent that traditional tan solutions may have. Problems such as skin irritation, rashes, wrinkles, dry skin and other skin problems are diminished, too.” Mikhaylova explains.
The pro’s at home DIY tips for a luscious, deep dark bronze are super easy to follow: “Prep by exfoliating two days before, and ensure any residual self-tan is removed before a fresh application for the most natural result. If you have large pores, you can rub an ice cube on your face to tighten them before applying self-tanner. When applying, use a tanning mitt such as Ms.Lova Tanning Application Mitt to avoid streaks, and for hands, feet and face, apply the mousse with an old makeup brush to really blend it in. It’s best to not wash your hands immediately after applying self-tan; no one wants the white hands, brown arms look. Maintain the colour by moisturizing daily.
For nourishing skin: KORA Gradual Self-Tanning Lotion
Supermodel Miranda Kerr has successfully made a name for herself as a beauty entrepreneur, and it’s easy to see why when it comes to her organic skincare line Kora. The Gradual Self Tanning Lotion is no exception to the rule: the super blendable creamy formula won’t stain, and is packed with skin-boosting benefits, and delivers a subtle, sun-kissed glow in just a few days.
Noni fruit, the brand’s prized ingredient, makes this pick a healthy one, as it contains more than 100 vitamins and minerals. Also boasting Rosehip Oil to reduce the visual effects of sun damage and scarring, Lavender to protect skin on a cellular level and Sea Buckthorn Oil for antioxidant repair, this dream cream seriously nourishes skin. If that wasn’t enough, each and every Kora product is infused with Rose Quartz crystal energized water to promote heart-healing and soothing energies, promoting self-love.
For a long-lasting tan: Carol’s Beauty Sun Tanning Lotion & Enhancer Oil
For those sunshine-loving sunbakers, achieving a healthy, organic tan is possible too, thanks to Carol’s Beauty Sun Tanning Enhancer Lotion and Sun Tanning Enhancer Oil. While the lotion has a luxe balm-like consistency and the oil is silky and lightweight, both boast the same natural and organic ingredients, and are the only Australian-made and the country’s sole sun tanning enhancer to be certified-organic by the ACO. “Certified organic is imperative for overall health — it’s important to use organic products on our skin because the ingredients go through our blood vessels and into our bodies,” explains Carol Jabor, Owner and Founder of Carol’s Beauty.
“Our innovative formula features complex carrot oil and henna, which both help to stimulate the melanin under the skin to naturally enhance a faster tan— in just 10 minutes in the sun, a golden glow is achieved. Carrot oil contains over 600 antioxidants to help combat the aging process, so this formula is an innovative and healthy way to spend a short time in the Aussie sun and get a natural dose of vitamin D. After applying the lotion or oil and spending 10 minutes in the sun, I recommend applying a minimum of SPF 15 or higher.” Bonus: both lotion and oil moisturize and nourish skin while battling wrinkles, eczema, psoriasis and stretch marks.
For an all-over golden glow: Endota Spa’s Gradual Tanner
Although it’s generally recommended to use specifically formulated products for your face, Endota Spa’s Lily Pilly & Lime Gradual Tanner is so full of skin-improving ingredients, it’s the perfect pick for a head-to-toe glow. After cleansing, use this dream cream daily to develop a rich, deep tan by starting with the face, neck and décolletage, and then work it in from feet up. Use long, sweeping motions to massage in to the skin to boost circulation, and let firming Lily Pilly, moisturizing aloe vera and invigorating lime oil do the rest for a flawless, seamless, healthy glow.
Need a deep, dark tan in a hurry? Loving Tan has got you covered (literally). Their 2 Hr Express Dark Self Tanning Mousse offers a generous dose of colour lickety-split, and even dries in a speedy 60 seconds after application. The professional strength formula features a bronze tint for an immediate hit of colour and easy to see application, developing into a deeper shade in just two short hours. Never streaky, blotchy or emitting that tell-tale tan scent, this mousse smells divine and glides on and blends super smoothly. Loving Tan’s all organic range also includes their classic mousse formula for times you’re in no rush, Bronze Shimmer Luminous Cream to instantly add luminosity and enhance a tan, and Deluxe Body Makeup for an airbrushed, radiant and perfected allover bronze. RELATED ARTICLES