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Post in Beauty Confidential

Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I know I've posted about my self-tanner woes before (I invite you to read the following - .  Even I can laugh about it now!)


No matter what I do or what "fool-proof" brands/products I try I end up splotchy or orange or both.  I exfoliate, moisturize, and moisturize my knees and ankles again.  I've used the mitts.  I've tried sprays.  I've decided to be proud of my God-given paleness (but honestly it's not fair to the people who have to deal with the glare.)  I'm not looking to be golden and bronzed - that's never going to happen.  I'd just like to be at least a few shades above cool-whip.


Anyone else seriously self-tanner challenged who finally found something that worked?  Anyone have any new products maybe I should try?


Thanks in advance!



Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I've been alternating between the Nivea gradual tanner in light/medium and the Sephora Collection bronzing moisturizing lotion.  I go every other day between the two of them, and if I feel like I need more color just skip the Sephora Collection one.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Just wanted to let everyone know that the Sonia Kashuk tanning towels at Target are great!  They're only $10 for a box of 4 too!

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

ihi read on Pinterest about Victoria secret pink tanner I'm not sure what its called but its $18 and it smells like a beach apparently.  It's a great tanner for pale people that's what the article I read said.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I tried the Kate Somerville tan towel and I love it!  My feet and knees are the only parts I need some practice on.  I read the Q&A section before using but either I'm really that inept or didn't get the specific advice I needed! 

I didn't run the towel over my knees directly - just rubbed my hands over my legs while still damp from the towel and then across then my knees.  They're still darker so maybe I'll skip them completely next time.

My feet are the worst.  I won't be wearing flip-flops for a few days.  I remember reading to put lotion on the sides of your feet so they don't turn orange and then to do feet last when the towels isn't so wet.  That is what I did and the tops of my feet are a dirty orange and the sides are white!  My husband had another good laugh.  Smiley Happy


Thanks for the suggesting the towels!  These are by far the best tanning product I've tried.  I think I'll try some other brands next to find my fave. 

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I also have issues with tanners, and I love the St. Tropez tanning mousse- used with the self tanning glove it turns out perfectly!! I always moisturize my feet, knees, any other dry areas. If this doesn't work out for you you can always go to a spa for an airbrush tan!

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I'm a big fan of the St Tropez GRADUAL Tanning mousse Since it's gradual, I don't get that orange look & can easily see each day which areas need a little more/less attention. 

I also like the DDG glow pads, but sometimes they give a little too much color. I just watch my face/body until it's the desired shade & then wash my face or hop in the shower. Sounds silly, I know, but it works.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

@prettyinpa- That's another good thing about the tan towels their really a good size I can do my body twice with one towelette. They really are a great way to get color and are super easy.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I really liked the tan towels and st. Tropez stuff from last year's sun safety kit. I misplaced the st. Tropez while ppacking but that's ok because living in Arizona it's pretty easy to get tan (no scolding for tanning.. I know the risk and I only actively tan maybe once a week or 2 weeks).. I'm almost going to need new foundation because I never tan my face.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

The tan towels blow the Jergens awaySmiley Happy

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Great to hear about the Tan Towels, I actually got the Sun Safety kit last Saturday when they had them for a short time and I'm curious about the towelettes. I've tried ULTA towelettes and though handy, barely do my legs, I have to use about 3 to do my whole body.


Looking forward to this year's Sun Safety box, I hope there's new stuff in it and maybe a tote, the plastic box is kinda big....

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

the tan towels are the easiest in my pale opinion Smiley Wink ive just bought the st. tropez mousse and it is NOT easy to apply although it gives the BEST fake tan ever!! I've been sticking to the Jergens bc it's a good price and rarely goes on blotchy although it is orangey. I've tried million dollar tan and its similar to st tropes for the most realistic tan but again it's can be time consuming and tricky! 

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

@kalex - You can do these and they will look great! They are super easy and fast! Also you can get kits with these. Kate Somerville's golden glow kit is like 58.00 for 6 tan towels/6 face tanning pads, and a small exfolikate and the you can get tan towels set at or at Sephora. Also be sure to use the exfoliator towelettes that go with the Tan Towels. They exfoliate and mositurize so no need for putting on extra moisturizer.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

@beautylovingirl - I have not tried those!  I'll have to swing by Sephora and see if I can snag a packet to try!

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

@ lylysa - I actually have the Jergens.  Even though I add extra moisturizer to my to my knees and ankles and try to avoid using much tanner there, those spots always end up orange anyway.

  - Regarding the Oompa-Loompas... that's what happened to my feet in the incident I referenced above!


@lkuhl - I had planned to try their Delicious Tanning Cream.  Have you tried that one? 


@melissabt - I'm a little leery of the St. Tropez bronze line after my last experience with it.  Is the mousse less potent than the gel?

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Eep, well if you've had issues with Jergens in the past, try the Tan Towels that Beautylovingirl suggested. I never used them but have also heard good things.


There's a few more suggestions in the below thread posted by another fair skinned user!


Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Have you ever tried Tan Towels. There is the ones that are called "Tan Towels and then there is Kate Somerville's Tan Towels.Seriously there is no way you can mess these up. If you get them order the lightest shade in the Tan Towels,but even better Kate Somerville's are for everyone. If some how or some way you happen to mess these up you should learn to embrace your paleness. Any the two shades above cool whip was hilariousSmiley Tongue

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Hi Kalex,


I've tried a lot of different self tanners since its really foggy where I live. One of the best ones I found was the St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse. It has ZERO orange tons and gives your skin a natural bronze tone.


I noticed that after applying self tanner maybe a week or so later you might see some blotchy patches. Your skin naturally exfoliates and try to prevents this by applying a moisturizer every few days. St. Tropez also just came out with a trial size version.


st tropez.jpg


<3 Melissa

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

I second Jergen's. It allows you to work up to a natural color slowly instead of just making you instantly orange. Smiley Wink


I also really like Clarins Self-Tanning Instant Gel. I had never used self tanner before and this was so easy to use. You just have to exfoliate well before applying and make sure you lotion up your elbows, hands, feet, and knees and apply sparingly to those areas because I ended up with slightly orange elbows after. And you have to go slow and apply evenly over sections of your body starting at the bottom and working your way up. It's not too dark either so it shouldn't look unnatural on your "cool-whip" skin tone, hahaha.

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Trade in the cool-whip legs for Oompa Loompa legs...wait, no, that won't work either! Smiley Tongue

Re: Self-tanner for the seriously inept

Cool-whip legs! Smiley Very Happy


I'm not laughing at you (or your legs) but your use of terminology! Very clever!


Since it seems you've definitely played around with product, technique, and application, I would suggest something as basic as Jergen's Natural Glow products. They apply more like a body lotion so you're not worried about going overboard with initial application and some super dense colored product. They have formulas for Fair/Light or Fair to Medium shade results rather than a one color fits all item.


And because it's more like a lotion, color won't develop too quickly, allowing you more control over the build up.

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