Infinity Sun - At Home Spray Tan - Tanner - $35, Exfoliator - $40, Tan Extender - $40.
Infinity Sun are well known for their spray tan systems but now they've engineered their spray tans into a bottle and are providing some fantastic back up products.
The tanner itself is not that easy to use, it's hard to spray yourself evenly and it's sometimes hard to get the right angle to spray far enough away. So the first time I used the product was a little messy, and I did not get the even tan I'd hoped for.
However with each of these products we'd agreed between us to give them a second go - tanning at home isn't easy and can take some practice. For my second round with the system I enrolled Mr Style to spray me down. The results: a perfect tan and a happy husband (he's apparently quite the spray tan artiste) Again it was messy. I stood in the bath tub and it did need a good run down with water afterwards -and it was still hard to stop my feet getting too dark.
The 'back-up' products were absolutely wonderful. The exfoliator is entirely non abrasive, breaking down the dead skin with enzymes and smells like pineapples! It actually works - which was unexpected - as you know I'm one to scrub and scrub to exfoliate! You put it on dry, rubbing it in - leave it on for five minutes and the shower off - it can be a little awkward waiting for five minutes with sticky legs - but it's worth it.
The moisturizing tan extenders one with shimmer, one without works really well....my tan lasted 10 days and I received compliments on the colour from many. I love the shimmery moisturizer as it really is very subtle.
So all in all I really recommend this line of tanning products..you just need to enroll a friendly friend or husband for your perfect tan! I'll be heading to Infinity Sun to try out their professional spray tan soon - I'll let you know how that goes!
Whipped Chocolate Self-Tanning Mousse by Body Drench - via Amazon - $12.99
This tanning mousse by Body Drench is a good option for first-time tanners. It goes on easily and gives skin just a hint of color. In my experience, the amount of tanner applied in one sitting did not necessarily mean a darker tan, so no waking up to dark orangey skin that you want to cover up!
Even though it takes about two hours following application to see the result of the tanner, a dark tan takes a few applications over several days. Because I did not notice a huge change (other than a healthy glow) on the first try, I followed with a second application a day later, which resulted in a slightly darker color. My sister tried the tanner as well and did not reapply the tanner after the first try, so it faded within a couple days.
Again, this is a nice product for first-time tanners since the color comes on gradually after numerous applications. The foamy mousse is fun, and it smells good!
By Sarah Corley
I was so so excited to try these tanning mitts from Solerra, I do like to tan - and as we know now it's not safe to do it naturally - but I'm often put off by the mess, so the idea of a completely mess free tan was definitely a draw.
I got to try both the Ex-Mitt and the Instant Bronzing Mitts. The Ex-Mitt is an exfoliating and moisturizing disposable mitt that works really well - it is rough - but it does the job and it smells exactly like blue raspberry freezer pops (it took me awhile to put my finger on what the smell was - but that's exactly it!)
The bronzing mitt is the best tanning product I have ever used. The mitt isn't very easy to get on, if I could try it again (this was one I was unable to try again as it was a one use product) I would use baby powder or talc on my hand to get on with ease. However, once on, the mitt glides over the skin evenly distributing tanner over your body, and the mitt makes even the hardest to reach places, not easy, but at least reachable! And because the mitt only has so much tanner on it, there's very little risk of patches or too dark spots (I left my feet till last which solved my usual too much tanner on the feet problem)
I used two mitts for my entire body - however I think I could of gotten away with one, it's hard to say because I didn't even try to use just the - that and I'm not exactly short at 5ft 10!
The colour the mitt produced was even, deep, natural but bronzed. I was so very impressed by this product. Easy to use, great colour and at just under $25 for four, it's affordable too and is therefore the winner of this little challenge!
By Kelsi Smith
Dark Lotion Absolute Luxe by XEN-TAN - $56
Since I am naturally very fair and especially prone to sunburns, I have never been one to just layout in the sun without sunscreen. I gave up trying to get tan years ago when I realized that my sunburns hurt too much and did not even turn to tan skin. So I have embraced being fair and dressed in a way that complements it. But recently, XEN-TAN found me and made me realize that a natural-looking tan can be possible without the sun.
As advised on the instructions, one should apply to clean skin and use the instant color as a guide. You can use your hands or a mitt provided by XEN-TAN—I preferred using my hands. On my first application, I doubted that it was even working because the instant color was not very noticeable on my skin. Since it is a time-release tanner lotion, it was difficult to know how much was being applied. At one point, I went a little overboard on the lotion and had to correct later-realized skin smudges with some exfoliation. But when applied not as thick, the tanner worked well and showed up in a natural color with minimal streaks.
In the application process, I found it important to allow myself plenty of time. At one point, I spread the lotion on my legs and went on to work. When I came home, my legs were a beautiful color, but there were a few streaks from my clothing (my mistake!). On my second round, the result was much better, as I devoted more time to let everything dry completely. Expect it to fade slightly after 5-7 days and reapply to keep up the look or go darker.
Overall, this is a fantastic product. The color is rich, the lotion smells good, and the tan lasts!
By Sarah Corley
Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer (Revitalizing, Medium-Tan) - Drugstore.com - $8.49
The Jergens 'natural glow' daily moisturizer is one of those products that does exactly what it says on the tube. Use it every day and the colour will gradually build up over time and at the same time will keep your skin moisturized and revitalised at the same time.
The colour that builds up is very light but very natural, making it the perfect first step for a first time tanner. That said is as the colour does build up it starts to look dull and you do notice a build up, I'd recommend a good exfoliation between every two-three applications to keep the colour fresh and natural.
It's remarkably available in two shades and two formulas - fair-medium and medium-tan and revitalizing or firming. It's also available as a facial moisturizer.
Altogether the best looking natural colour you're going to get for under $10, a great and inexpensive way to try out a tanner for the first time and is therefore the winner of our best value prize.
By Kelsi Smith