As summer is approaching, I look in the mirror every morning and I swear I am getting paler as the days go on. I rarely get sun in the winter, for obvious reasons…. It’s cold AF outside and I am wearing 100 layers. I refuse to use a tanning bed because I don’t feel the need to assist my skin in getting freckles or wrinkles or cancer. I have used tanning beds in the past in high school but have since sworn off visits to the tanning salon. Since I found self-tanners that actually work, I end up saving money in the long run and my skin is damage free!

These are the self-tanners that I absolutely love, and each has their own use. I have been through several products and these specific ones seem to outshine others. Now I’m not saying I have tried them all, so if you have tried a product that works even better and it’s your “Holy Grail” tanner, help a girl out and let me know in the comments because I am always on the lookout for the next best thing!


BODY TAN- For my body I use Loving Tan 2 Hour Express, you only have to leave it on for two hours and you are good to go. Right when you wash it off it may not look like you are much darker, but WAIT because the DHA (dihydroxyacetone) in the foam takes a minute to process. The first time I used this product I thought it didn’t work and made the mistake of trying to apply it twice…. don’t do this, I repeat do not be an idiot like me and do this! You will regret it, I promise! The foam is easy to apply and streak free. I use a tanning mitt that I got from Amazon; I will leave the link here. I do apply this to my hands and my face but I use the remnants of what is on the mitt, don’t add extra product to the mitt and apply it to your hands and face because they will end up being darker than you would like.

FACE TAN – Like I said above I use the same tanner on my face as I do on my body, I just drag the excess across my face and leave it at that. What I do use to make my face look extra glowy and bronzey (not sure if bronzey is a word?) is Bali Body BB cream. I am currently using the shade “Natural” as I’m a bit more pale right now but I will be upgrading to the shade “Tan” as the summer progresses. I love this BB cream because it looks great in the sun and it makes your skin look flawless without the appearance that you are wearing make-up.

GRADUAL TANNER / MAINTENANCE – I use this gradual tanner as my Loving Tan starts to fade, which is about one week, it’s not completely gone but the skin starts to turn over at that point and the fake tan needs some maintenance but doesn’t need to be completely redone. There are so many options out there but I find that St. Tropez Gradual Tanning lotion works the best. I used to use Jergen’s Self-tanning lotion because it was half the price but I felt that it left my skin splotchy and had an orange tint to it. This lotion also doesn’t have the trademark self-tanning smell, if you have used tanning lotions you know the one I am talking about. It also doesn’t rub off on my clothes and my skin is so soft after application.

INSTANT / WASH-OFF TAN – If it isn’t already obvious, I love Bali Body products! I can’t help it, they know what they are doing with tanners, self-tanners, and sun skin care. The Bali Body Bronzing Lotion is a wash off tan and not a gradual tanner, if you want to be instantly tan use this! It’s perfect for days at the beach when you want to already appear a bit darker, a girls night out, or date night. Seriously, you need this if you want an instant, clothes safe tan.


  • Make sure to shave and exfoliate really well with a sugar scrub or a loofah before self-tanning.
  • Apply a body lotion to your hands/feet and all dry spots, such as elbows and knees. The self-tanner will stick to your dead/dry skin and leave darker spots, which is why exfoliating is SO important. Body lotion will help the tan not be as intense in these areas. I usually apply a face lotion to my face after applying the Loving Tan 2 Hour Express.
  • If you are having trouble using a mitt to apply the Self Tanner to your hands, neck, and face use an old make-up blush brush.

These are my favorite products / Tips and Tricks, everything listed on my blog I have used and will give an honest opinion. Let me know if you have “Holy Grail” products I need to try out!

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