Perfect Sunless Tan

The perfect sunless tan is the loch ness monster of beauty secrets. It’s seems easy enough when you read the instructions on the box, but once you get home it’s nothing but an orange mess.

I’ve read beauty blogs, asked friends and family, and scoured through Ulta, Beauty Brands, and Sally Beauty Supply. Every time I tried to self tan it’s never worked. My hands turn orange, and my feet look like a bad ombre.

First step to the perfect sunless tan is picking out the right tanner. Sadly, this is one time a trip to Target is not going fix everything. My absolute favorite product is Tanwise Dark Bronzing Sunless Mousse, and, unfortunately, you can only purchase Tanwise at two places, Sally Beauty Supply and Amazon. But, the good news is that unlike most of those top rated self tanners it’s only $13.99!

(If you have the time I would definitely get it from Sally’s because it’s $4 more on Amazon.)

For all those fare people out there, don’t be turned off by the word “dark”. I’m extremely fare (translucent really) and it looks really nice, and my friend, who has medium skin tone, also likes the color it gives her.

Here are the steps to take before applying your self tanner:


Exfoliate everywhere you’re applying self tanner to. Hot water and loofa works fine for this and after exfoliating, wash with an oil free body wash. Neutrogena Body Clear Body Wash is a good oil free wash to use. (And you can get it at Target!)


It’s important for most of your body to stay oil free, but dry areas like elbows, palms, knuckles, knees, and feet all need to be hydrated before applying tanner to make the perfect sunless tan. By hydrating these spots you’ll stop them soaking in extra color and turning orange, as they are known to do during sunless tan treatments.

My favorite way to hydrate these areas is with the Bathologie Body Butter. It’s made with natural ingredients like cocoa and shea butter, and doesn’t contain alcohol.


Instead of standing like a mannequin after applying the self tanner you can speed up the drying process by using your blow dryer on the cool setting. If you want to chill in your bikini all day you can, but this technique can help speed up the process of your perfect sunless tan.

Note: If you’re using the Tanwise Dark Bronzing Sunless Mousse, it actually dries in 15 minutes.

Wipe Away

If you notice excess self tanner in those trouble areas use an oil free wipe to get rid of it. Make-up wipes work well for this.


If your tanner requires you to rinse do so with only warm water, and then carefully pat dry. Toweling yourself down can smear the self tanner all over your towel and give you extremely awkward tan lines.

Note: The Tanwise Dark Bronzing Mousse does not require a rinse.

1 Comment

  1. This is such a good post.

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