Ask Jean: 7 Steps for the Perfect Natural-Looking Self-Tan

2 months ago 17
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woman laying retired  successful  the sun

Photo courtesy of Valentina Munton

Jean Godfrey-June

We privation to reply your astir pressing questions—or, you know, conscionable the things that you’re funny about. Please support them coming to: [email protected]. Below, a q for our quality director, Jean Godfrey-June.

Dear Jean, It’s summer, and I decidedly look amended with a tan. But I’m opening to recognize however not bully for my wellness tanning my tegument really is. How bash I usage self-tanner truthful that it looks similar a legit tan? And what’s the champion one? —Cate R.

Dear Cate, I’ll commencement with your 2nd question: Because my self-tanner obsession has to beryllium 1 of the astir aggravated of each time, I person tried them all—and I emotion precise few. What I privation successful a self-tanner is astir impossible: imperceptible beyond “Did you spell connected vacation?” and “You look truthful good rested!” I don’t privation it to smell, streak, oregon beryllium excessively acheronian oregon excessively light, and I privation it to past arsenic agelong arsenic possible. You’d deliberation that due to the fact that the progressive constituent successful self-tanner is ever the aforesaid (DHA, a earthy sweetener derivative that stains the top, dormant cells of your skin—I know, truthful appealing-sounding), astir tanners would springiness akin results, but this is not the case.

This cleanable self-tanner from Vita Liberata is simply a wide tanning “water” that whips into a light, fluffy foam arsenic it’s dispensed. It is simply a full-on occurrence successful presumption of however casual it is to blend, and the subtle, ultranatural colour it leaves down is thing you person to spot to believe. Somehow, the foam is airy and moisturizing capable that it melts into your skin, alternatively than seizing connected it, arsenic galore fast-dry, no-transfer tanners do. I person ever been skeptical of fast-drying tanners, peculiarly those that aren’t tinted: Ill-placed, unblended tanner invariably develops into unnatural streaks and blotches. But this one, arsenic I said, is simply a miracle.

  1. Vita Liberata Invisi Foaming Tan Water

    Vita Liberata Invisi Foaming Tan Water goop, $33


  2. Vita Liberata Tanning Mitt

    Vita Liberata Tanning Mitt goop, $5


It takes lone seconds to use due to the fact that of its lightness. I highly urge utilizing the company’s mitt truthful your hands ne'er sorb the tanner—the “water” fluffs pleasantly arsenic you creaseless it on, and it sinks close in. It feels similar thing connected your skin: not sticky, not tight, nothing. And erstwhile you aftermath up (I similar to enactment it connected astatine night, but due to the fact that of its no-transfer qualities, you tin use it, enactment connected your clothes, and spell astir your time if you like), the tan is smooth, wholly natural, splotchless, and perfectly glowy. The colour is neither an assertive tan nor a airy nothing, but genuinely the perfect steadfast glow.

The institution makes tanning wipes, if you similar them; I usage them for travel, and they nutrient the aforesaid natural, long-lasting, streakless glow. Either iteration is arsenic superb for a speedy leg-reawakening arsenic it is for a spot of glowy beingness successful your look oregon a full-on beach-day-tomorrow tan. (Having a tan earlier stepping into the prima not lone makes you look better; it besides means you won’t hesitate to slather connected SPF 30 oregon higher, which could not beryllium much important.)

  1. Vita Liberata Tanning Cloths 8-Pack goop, $20


  2. The Organic Pharmacy Cellular Protection Sun Cream SPF 50

    The Organic Pharmacy Cellular Protection Sun Cream SPF 50 goop, $69


  3. Grown AlchemistNatural Hydrating Sunscreen SPF 30

    Grown Alchemist Natural Hydrating Sunscreen SPF 30 goop, $39


7 Steps for the Perfect Natural-Looking Self-Tan

A natural, even, ace flattering glow is overmuch easier than you think—and overmuch easier than the backs of galore tanner boxes, on with countless articles connected the subject, marque it sound. The prevailing contented involves assiduous exfoliation, on with immoderate ace awks clip successful the bath waiting for the tanner to dry. In truth, neither is that necessary.


The concealed is that assemblage cream—or lotion, oregon articulator balm—makes everything a 1000 times easier and amended blended. I alternate betwixt the ultranourishing, melts-right-in GOOPGENES assemblage food and the gorgeously scented Garden of Earthly Delights manus and assemblage lotion from Sangre de Fruta. Smooth a bully dollop betwixt your palms and betwixt your fingers (this besides helps forestall tanned palms), past dab the excess anyplace you person thicker oregon drier skin—your elbows, ankles, tops of toes, knees. Thicker, drier tegument pulls successful much tanner, creating uneven acheronian spots and splotches that look decidedly unnatural. By smoothing pick implicit those areas, you marque them a small much resistant to the tanner, and the effect is an adjacent glow alternatively of splotchiness.

The bully happening is, the pick oregon lotion rule works either way: If you hide astir it and use tanner without it, you tin conscionable spell implicit the drier areas straight aft you bash the tanner—results are the same.

  1. GOOPGENES Nourishing Repair Body Butter

    goop Beauty GOOPGENES Nourishing
    Repair Body Butter
    goop, $55/$50 with subscription


  2. Sangre de Fruta Garden of Earthly Delights Hand and Body Lotion

    Sangre de Fruta Garden of Earthly
    Delights Hand and Body Lotion
    goop, $93



Once you’ve protected the drier spots from overtanning, use your self-tanner. Start astatine the feet: They’re the hardest to get right, truthful absorption your astir aggravated blending attraction connected them. The feet person a jillion antithetic unusual angles, truthful marque definite to get the tanner successful determination truthful you don’t extremity up with glaring airy spots.

  1. KORA Organics Gradual Self-Tanning Lotion

    KORA Organics Gradual Self-Tanning Lotion goop, $48



Move up your legs and blend. There’s nary specified happening arsenic overblending. It’s besides hard to overdo the magnitude of tanner connected your legs—adding much tanner successful a azygous exertion won’t marque you much tan, counterintuitively. It volition simply guarantee nary streaks and nary missed spots. So beryllium generous.

  1. NORMALIFE Glow Color Enhancer

    NORMALIFE Glow Color Enhancer goop, $40



Tan lone wherever you want—no request to bash your full assemblage unless you’d similar to.
(Though if you’re going for the partial, see who mightiness beryllium seeing you naked.)


When you’re done, lavation your hands with beyond-thorough enthusiasm; “tanned” palms look ridiculous. Do it adjacent if you utilized a mitt. When your hands are wholly dry, enactment a spot of tanner connected the backmost of 1 manus and hitch the backs of your hands unneurotic to blend the tanner. (A tan assemblage with airy hands is an alarming look.)

  1. Sangre de Fruta Garden of Earthly Delights Hand Soap

    goop, $48



If you forgot oregon didn’t privation to bash the body-cream instrumentality astatine the beginning, bash it present (it works conscionable arsenic good earlier oregon after). Or teardrop unfastened a look hitch and dab lightly astatine the thicker, drier spots. When you’re through, usage the look hitch to springiness your palms and betwixt your fingers a last swipe.

  1. Ursa Major Essential Face Wipes

    Ursa Major Essential Face Wipes goop, $24



Instead of shivering bare successful the bathroom, propulsion connected a loose, dark-colored sundress, shorts and a T-shirt, oregon immoderate such, and spell astir your business. You shouldn’t ablution for astatine slightest 8 hours, but there’s nary crushed not to get connected with your life! Note: If you usage a no-transfer look similar the Vita Liberata tanning water, you tin enactment connected paler apparel close distant without worry.

  1. G. Label Maas Slip Dress

    G. Label Maas Slip Dress goop, $525


  2. G. Label Goop University T-Shirt

    G. Label Goop University T-Shirt goop, $125


  3. G. Miller High-Waisted Pleated Shorts

    G. Label Miller High-Waisted Pleated Shorts goop, $325


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