I have a love/hate relationship with tanners. I really enjoy having a bit of color to my skin, rather than letting it be its true paper white self (just personal preference, don’t get it twisted pale skin is super beautiful too) but in the winter months I like to keep the color subtle and the routine as low maintenance as possible. For ages I have been looking for the most convenient self tanner for winter and fall, and I had settled on gradual tanning lotion as the best option.
I still think gradual tanners are the way to go in the winter because you don’t have to do the whole “put it on and wait and then shower it off and ugh this is taking up half my day” routine, not to mention they tend to be wayyyy more subtle. Not that there’s anything wrong with being super tan all year, I just personally don’t like all the upkeep and I feel like I can get away with doing less when I have more clothes on. My personal favorite is the St. Tropez Gradual lotion (which I also use in the summer between applications of the Express Tan Foam btw) For a drugstore/ budget friendly option there is the Jergen’s Gradual Tanning lotion which works really well too, but I do find that it’s a little more smelly…you know that distinct fake tan smell, and I also find the color is a tiny bit less natural and it takes a little longer to build up.
But the major downside of all of these is that If I put it on before I get dressed, as with any lotion really, it makes it nearly impossible to put my jeans on.
I know that’s a really small complaint, but it definitely deters me from doing it sometimes. My solution has been a new product that just released this year…
Since I stopped doing my full on self tanner routine I’ve been using the St. Tropez in shower gradual tan, and I’m so into it! It leaves me about the same color and level of tan as the gradual tanning lotion, but because you use it in the shower you don’t have to worry about it makeing your pants stick to your legs and stuff, and it never ever stains your sheets either which is really nice because I have white sheets and I hate when there’s like a pale brown outline of my body left in them in the morning.
I have to say that I don’t really love the process of using it in the shower. Basically you do your whole routine and shave and exfoliate and dance and sing into the shampoo and whatever you do. Then you shut off the water, apply this cream and wait three minutes. Now I don’t know if you’ve ever stood naked in the shower for three minutes without no water on, but it feels like a long time, especially if you’re cold. Then you turn the water back on, rinse it thoroughly and you’re done.
I put the emphasis on thoroughly because I got a little hasty about the rinding process the other day and I got left with some precarious looking brown spots. . .
But so long as you rinse yourself well it’s pretty much idiot proof to be honest. It makes it really easy to get an even application and I love that once you get out of the shower you’re completely done.
As far as self tanner for winter and fall I think this is the best option, but if you really aren’t into the standing in the shower for three minutes then gradual tanning lotion is definitely the next best thing!