In the glow: Sunless tanning products to try this summer

Pale is a thing of the past with some assistance from these top-rated tanning products.

Photo courtesy of Creative Family/Adobe Stock

Maintain a sun-kissed glow without the damaging UV rays with these top-rated sunless tanning products.

If you’re looking for both affordability and efficacy:

Banana Boat Summer Color Sunless Tinted Lotion // $7.99

Banana Boat’s Summer Color Sunless Tinted Lotion will get you glowing with its self-adjusting color formula made with aloe vera and vitamin E.

Jergens Natural Glow +Firming Daily Moisturizer // $9.99

Jergens is one of the most popular brands when it comes to tanning lotion, but this specific Natural Glow product goes the extra mile by adding firmness. Those wanting to lock in moisture may be interested in trying Jergens Natural Glow Wet Skin Moisturizer  ( $9.99), which you apply immediately after a shower prior to drying off. Don’t worry, the color does not come off on your towel, so just apply to wet skin and pat dry.

Sally Beauty Salon Bronze Airbrush Tanning System // $12.99

A 360-degree mist applicator makes sure no spot goes unsprayed, and the color (there is only one shade and the refill is $8.99) dries in seconds and lasts for 7-10 days.

If you’re in search of instant gratification:

Clarins Self-Tanning Instant Gel  // $38

For use on both your face and body, this non-oily gel is absorbed instantly so you can get dressed without worrying about getting yellowy gook on your clothes. In just two hours, you will notice a glow.

Fake Bake Flawless Self-Tan Liquid + Professional Mitt // $28

Thanks to its exclusive triple tan formula of DHA boosted by DMI and Erythulose, Fake Bake’s dual function bronzer (which is applied via the included mitt) “shows-where-it-goes” and lasts for days. It also dries fast, is suitable for all skin tones/types and has an appropriately tropical scent.

St. Tropez Self Tan Classic Bronzing Mousse // $32

Tailored to your unique skin tone, this lightweight, aerated product dries quickly, doesn’t feel sticky or transfer to other surfaces like sheets and clothes and lacks the dreaded self-tan smell. Like Jergens, St. Tropez has a  St. Tropez In-Shower Gradual Tan ($25), which you apply while wet and rinse off after three minutes. Use for two-three consecutive days to gradually build upon the previous day‘s color.

If you’re in need of some nourishment:

Clarins Radiance-Plus Glow Booster  // $32

While this product is ideally used with Clarins Golden Glow Booster for Body ($46), you can add three drops of this booster to your existing day or night creams. Note: Do not use the booster straight from the bottle and do not add the booster to your entire moisturizing product’s bottle.

First Aid Beauty Slow Glow Gradual Self-Tanning Moisturizer // $28

With coconut oil, vitamin E, mango seed butter, shea butter and aloe vera, you can feed your skin the ingredients it needs on the inside while also working toward the sun-kissed look you want on the outside.  

Tarte Brazilliance PLUS+ self tanner // $39

Using Tarte’s custom application mitt, you can smear this moisturizing self-tanner everywhere that you need a little extra hydration. The vegan-friendly tanner contains citric acid to exfoliate, sunflower seed oil, aloe, vitamin E, squalane (for skin smoothing) and maracuja (for firmer-looking skin).

Whish Self Tanner Body Butter // $30

Coffee arabica extract, seaweed extract and kigelia African fruit extract firm, while organic shea butter, mango butter and organic aloe moisturize, plus the refining properties of goji berry, soap bark extract and organic pomegranate extract. It also boasts a surprisingly sweet scent not characteristic of most tanning lotions.

Tanceuticals CC Self Tanning Body Lotion // $26.95

Substituting the traditional tanner odor with a light coconut scent, this color-correcting self-tanning lotion is infused with acai berry, mango butter and vitamin E to improve skin appearance by moisturizing, evening, smoothing and firming.

If you’re not used to lathering on lotion:

Hampton Sun Airbrush Bronzing Body Mist // $42

For an at-home airbrush look, this mist dries quickly so you are left with a silky powder texture and temporary golden glow. If you butcher your spray patterns, just wash off and try again but be sure to avoid wearing light-colored fabrics until the product is fully absorbed.

Josie Maran Argan Liquid Gold Self-Tanning Oil // $38

Pure argan oil, coconut water and aloe juice nourish while pure argan oil light produces a semi-matte finish. Not only is this body oil quick absorbing, it also comes in four different scents: Tahitian Vanilla, Tropical Orchid, Vanilla Apricot or Juicy Mango.

Vita Liberata pHenomenal 2-3 Week Tan Mousse // $54

The fast-absorbing formula of this mousse can last up to two-three weeks thanks to pHenO2 technology.