My Favorite Self-Tanning Products

It Works Perfect Legs // Vita Liberata Body Blur // Tan Towels for the Face & Body // Dr. Dennis Gross Glow Pad // St. Tropez Gradual Tan // Tan-Luxe The Body Drops

Best part of December: Not having to be in a swimsuit.

Worst part of December: Not having the tan you get from being in a swimsuit.

If you are an avid follower, then you know that I 100000% believe that “if you can’t tone it, tan it!” There’s nothing better than the confidence boost you get from when your skin is a little more bronze than usual. But if you want to protect your skin from harmful UV rays, or you are someone who burns easily, then self-tanning products are probably on your radar.

But they can be really overwhelming, right? Which ones are best for your skin tone? Which ones do or don’t streak? Which ones will stain my skin and which ones wash off in the shower? Which ones are safe for me to use on my face? As a self proclaimed expert, I’ve got the answers…alongside some of my favorites!

-It Works Perfect Legs: Ever watched the Real Housewives reunions and wondered how their legs look so glowy and shiny and blemish free? Yeah, me too. Honestly, its probably this product. While its got a bronze tint, don’t expect your skin to look 5 shades darker. Do expect your skin to look radiant & hydrated. I would almost venture to say that this product is what it looks like if a liquid highlighter and a liquid bronzer had a baby and you rubbed it all over your body. And FYI: you can use this all over, not just your legs!

Vita Liberata Body Blur: So after further investigation, I have realized that I totally thought this product washed off in the shower like a body makeup. And I still think it does because honestly I have never noticed that it left a self-tanning-esque stain to my skin. But here’s what I do know: This is basically like full coverage foundation for your body. You will look like a greek goddess…it covers cellulite, it covers discoloration or reddness, and its basically like an Instagram filter for your body. I wear color LATTE.

Tan Towels for the Face & Body: While I don’t use these regularly because I find them somewhat drying, they are awesome to have in your suitcase in the event you need a quick glow to develop in about 4 hours or so. They resemble a large papertowel and are incredibly easy to use. I’ve never felt orange afterwards or had any reaction to using them on my face.

Dr. Dennis Gross Glow Pad: I’m not lying when I say these are aggressive…like aggressive in a good way. If you want, say, your face/neck/chest to be tan overnight, rub one of these bad boys on and VOILA! One thing to note though: They have skincare elements built into them so 1) they are more hydrating than others, but 2) you might have a reaction if you have sensitive skin.

St. Tropez Gradual Tan: Scared of self-tanning in general but on the flip side you’re so pale that you’re practically see through? Pick up a bottle of this. The color will develop over time so slowly that you’ll think its not working….but you’ll look back at pics from a week before and go, OH I AM TANNER!!! HOW BOUT THAT?! Also, the watermelon smell beats the hell out of that horrible cat piss smell that most self-tanners have!

Tan Luxe The Body Drops: These are probably the simplest in terms of not fucking it up…if I’m being honest. If you are scared that your hands are going to look bright orange or that you are gonna be left with streaks that make you look like you got fondled by Chester the Cheeto, then these are what you need in your life. You drop 3-4 drops into your hands and mix with the lotion of your choice. BOOM, DONE.

Any self-tanning favorites of yours that we all need to try? Tell us about them in the comments below!

Photos by Danielle Sabol

  • Colleen

    L’oreal Bronze Sublime in Dark is my go-to. Cheap in price, but works really well. It has a small amount of shimmer in it too. I use it on my face with no break-outs and just dust bronzing powder on to take away the shimmer. It has color in it too , so you have some color until it fully develops in 2 hours. I stock up in it. People ask if I have been on vacation when I use it.

    • Katie

      Love the St. Tropez Gradual Tan Watermelon, was my go to. Now I use and I am obsessed with the Isle of Paradise oil drops and spray mist! Just mix the oil drops into any face or body moisturizer that you use! Prevents breakouts from weird lotions and it is color correcting, so no orange tones. Truly is the best self tanner I have ever used and I’ve tried a lot.

  • Jillian

    I love the Loving Tan foam for goof-proof color with an olive undertone, looks great with my coloring. Also for drops I love the Isle of Paradise drops! I use them on my face because self tanner on my face still freaks me out haha Isle of Paradise is also “clean at Sephora” if that makes a difference. Now I am wanting to try the Body Blur!

  • Becca

    LUNA BRONZE is my absolute favourite. I have been using for about a year and it’s fantastic. The glow gradual tan moisturizer is great for natural glow. They have a spray you can use on your face, and a mousse for a darker tan. It’s natural, vegan and organic.

  • Katie D

    Cat piss smell.. HAHA.. needed that chuckle. Enjoy Cabo, here now but leaving tomorrow.
    L’Oréal sunshine spray and lotion and hydrating milk. No I’m not sponsored, they are just the best. 360 coverage from the spray and lotion for a hydrated look. I have used on my face (more oily) and it’s been just fine!
    Thanks for all your great posts. Will you please do a Cabo post and great luxury gifts for yourself and men?