Celeb Tanning Artists Share 17 At-Home Self-Tanners That Rival an Actual Tan
Celebrity clients: Kate Moss, Sienna Miller, Poppy Delevingne
The best at-home self-tanners he loves: I’ve worked for over 10 years as a celebrity spray tanner, and I could never find products that delivered natural-looking results for my clients. So I started creating tanning solutions myself backstage for shoots or for the red carpet to create a believable self-tan. I’ve always been a fan of color-correcting ingredients—hiding any redness, brightening a dull complexion and canceling out sallow orange tones in the skin to create a flawless undetectable result. This is why I created Isle of Paradise products with color-correcting technology—the peach (light) option helps to even out and brighten overall skin tone, the green (medium) helps balance redness and calm the skin, and the violet (dark) option helps counteract orange/sallow tones.
The best at-home self-tanners she loves: My favorite self-tanner at the moment would have to be St. Tropez’s New Self Tan Express Bronzing Gel ($44). You pump this dark tinted gel onto a Luxe Double-Sided Applicator Mitt ($8) and apply directly onto clean, dry skin. It immediately disperses into a gorgeous transparent glow that can be smoothed over your whole body in record speed. The gel delivers cool water break technology where natural vegan-friendly tanning actives absorb faster and deeper into the skin leaving behind a protective gel polymer that makes it completely transfer-proof and wearable from the get-go. It is also packed with hyaluronic acid, Pentavitin (anti-age infusion), and melanin boosters for zero orange. The color is customizable, so if you wish to have a light glow, rinse with water after just one hour or leave on for two hours then shower to achieve a medium glow. You can even leave on for three hours or don’t shower at all (as it is completely wearable) and receive your deepest glow.
In between self-tanning and to give your skin a boost of color and hydration, I highly recommend St. Tropez’s Gradual Tan Watermelon Infusion Body Lotion($25). Simply apply like a body lotion and make sure to wash your hands after application. This lotion will also hydrate your skin for 72 hours and purge your skin with more anti-aging ingredients like hyaluronic acid and vitamin E.
For the face, I’m in love with St. Tropez’s New Self Tan Purity Vitamins Bronzing Face Serum ($30). It’s a clear water serum that stimulates vitamin D production to enhance the health of your skin. It also contains vitamin C and avocado oil, which is rich in vitamin D, A, and E, plus hyaluronic acid, green mandarin water base, and a tropical peach-infused scent.
Celebrity clients: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Lady Gaga, Ellie Goulding
The best at-home self-tanners he loves: For the tanner who’s always on the go, I would recommend a water tan mist for the face, as this can be used under/over makeup/skincare or SPF, in addition to a clear bronzing mousse for the body since it allows you to tan and go without transferring onto your clothes and can also be layered over your SPF. The James Read H2O Tan Mist ($31) and St. Tropez’s Self Tan Purity Bronzing Mousse ($42) are my favorites!
If you prefer to tan overnight while you sleep, I would recommend a clear gel/serum self-tan formula that’s hydrating, acts as a form of skincare, and will dry instantly without transferring onto your bedding. For, the body I would go with tanning drops that can be added into your favorite body moisturizer. James Read Sleep Mask Tan Face ($38) and Clarin’s Self Tan Radiance-Plus Golden Glow Booster ($32) for the face.
Celebrity clients: Demi Lovato, Ariana Grande, Ashley Graham
The best at-home self-tanners she loves: My Pradas Glow Sol Solution Sunless Tanning Mousse ($25) and Flawless Finish Body Mitt ($8) are the perfect solutions for easily self-tanning at home. Sol Solution glides onto the skin effortlessly when applied in circular motions using our sustainable Flawless Finish Mitt that can be machine washed and dried. Sol Solution is infused with hyaluronic acid, aloe, vitamins, antioxidants, seabuckthorn oil, borage seed oil, and so many more skin-healthy benefits! It comes in one solution that is suitable for every skin tone. After application, leave it on for one hour for a glow, two hours for a light tan, three hours for a medium tan, four hours for a dark tan, or longer if you prefer very dark before you shower.
For a non-commitment tan, try my Pradas Glow CAMO Bronzing Skin Enhancer ($30)—it’s a mousse that does NOT contain DHA. Apply it the same way as the Sol Solution (in circular motions)—it’s like an Instagram filter for your skin. It dries quickly upon application and doesn’t transfer onto clothes. When you shower it washes off.
The best at-home self-tanners she loves: First and foremost, I love Tan-Luxe’s The Body Illuminating Self-Tan Drops ($59)—they’re are my absolute favorite. They work really well for everyone and are such a user-friendly product—especially for those who are new to tanning and might be nervous to try it out. Simply add a few of the drops to your favorite body lotion to create a completely custom self-tanner. Just remember: Every two drops equals one shade darker, and don’t forget to thoroughly wash your hands after application. My trick is to swap your regular hand soap for a brightening or exfoliating cleanser/scrub, as it really helps remove any remaining products from hands.
I also love the Tan-Luxe Illuminating Tanning Butter ($36). This product is a gradual tanner with an illuminating finish, so it provides the most gorgeous glow for all skin types, and it really helps to even out the overall skin tone.