Tan Yourself Silly: How to Get a Cheap Self-Tanner

Knowledge Base

Self-tanning lotions are all the rage. The chance to get a simulacrum of sun-kissed skin without hours on the tanning bed or at the beach has made these products a popular addition to many people’s beauty arsenals. Self-Tanners come in various degrees of quality, and some at the lower end of the market are not particularly effective. However, a good self-tanner doesn’t need to be expensive. Keep a look out for the following things to find a great self-tanner at a great price.

The Quality of the Ingredients

Isn’t it all about the ingredients? Even the cheap self-tanners come with some of the most impressive ingredients. As with all cosmetics, self-tanners have evolved considerably. They now include ingredients that are not necessary for tanning but which nourish the skin and provide other benefits.

When a brand advertises natural ingredients, you need to be aware of a few characteristics. First of all, this doesn’t mean all of the ingredients of the formula are natural. This also means that the natural ingredients don’t need to be necessarily better when it comes to the look of the skin. Natural ingredients are normally added to nourish the skin more than to tan it.

When a brand advertises solutions which are to be used sporadically or in small quantities, this is exactly what you should do. In most cases, people apply too much product at first. As with make-up, every product comes with a learning curve. This is why the first and second applications are the hardest until you realize the potency of the formula.

If a product shows it has a processing time of 8 hours and another shows a processing time of 4 hours, this doesn’t mean one is better than the other. Some products may even darken the skin up to 24 hours after application. But this is why it’s important to know that patience is needed and you should wait until the product is completely processed before applying some more formula on the skin.

Quantity per Tube

The quantity per tube is also important. Not everyone can afford long term use of the most expensive cosmetics. Even make-up bought every month can be expensive. A self-tanning product doesn’t need to be expensive.

Usually, the actual quantity per product varies from 120ml to 200ml. Of course, this means one can be used for longer than the other. Furthermore, many professionals still recommend only using the product as needed.

Self-tanning is art form. Too much product makes the skin look unnatural. This is why even the largest containers should be used with small amounts of the applied product. Tubes that don’t feature a dispenser and which are squeezed also need some attention as they can splat formula across the home, potentially staining the furniture.

Application Process and Length

The application process and the processing time of the self-tanner vary to a large extent with every product. In multiple situations, the application is made with gloves. It’s rare to see a product that recommends application directly by hand. Even more, all products should be applied with surgical gloves as they may stain the hands.

The application should be made evenly across the face and the body. This requires plenty of patience and in many cases, a pair of helping hands. There needs to be plenty of attention given to key areas. For example, many brands recommend applying a bit less formula on the knee. As many know, too much product can destroy a good look at the knees and elbows may appear more tanned than they need to be.

When applying the self-tanner to the face, there needs to be even more attention given to the process. The tanner can come with irritation, especially around the eyes. In case of eye contact, it is immediately required to wash the affected eye with fresh cold water. In case eye discomfort continues, it might be a good idea to see a doctor.

Other precautions during the application process may refer to the storage of the product. Since most formulas have a milky consistency, it is recommended to only store it at room temperature or slightly colder. If the self-tanner is left out in the sun, it becomes runny. This means proper application becomes difficult. Similarly, if the self-tanner is left in a cold area, it becomes harder to spread on the skin.

Price per Weekly Application

In the long term, you can calculate their exact cost per application. A self-tanning tube normally comes with 150ml of formula, which is sufficient for a few weeks or months, depending on how often it’s applied.

However, the good news is most realize they save more with their self-tanning process than they would expect. A single tanning session at the salon can be more expensive than a self-tanning product which is applied for a few months.

Possible Long Term Effects

There are a few long term effects you should be aware of, as with other cosmetics. It is not that these products damage the skin but it is how the skin can have an adverse reaction. For example, clogged pores can come as an indication a break from the product is needed.

Oily skin should also not be caused by the cheap self-tanner. Many brands state that their formula does not cause oily skin even after application. In other cases, it is the ingredients that women expect less than react negatively.

In this case, aromas and perfumes might be the root cause of irritation, especially in the long term. Either way, since the self-tanner aroma fades within a few hours, it’s wise to look for a formula without any fragrance at all. This diminishes unnecessary risks.

However, compared to other types of tanning, self-tanners are considered safer. Compared to tanning salons, they are considerably safer for the skin. But even compared to natural sunbathing, the formula is safer on the skin than the sun’s UV lights.

The Healthiness of the Skin

The skin should be healthy when the self-tanner is applied. If there are any wounds, the self-tanner can cause infections and its recommended to delay its application. For general hygiene purposes, it is also recommended to wash the skin before application. Applying moisturized a day before self-tanning can be another method of ensuring the skin looks as natural and as youthful as possible.


Does a Self-Tanner Damage My Skin?

A good self-tanner should not damage the skin. If used according to the indications of the manufacturer, the product is always nourishing and rarely dangerous. Self-tanners should not be applied on the skin with open wounds, scratches or acne.

Which Self-Tanner Right for Where I Live?

The formula is independent of temperature and weather conditions. In theory, it may even be applied during the winter months with the same effect.

Which Ingredients Are the Best?

The ingredients of a self-tanner vary from Erythrulose to shea butter. Every brand develops a personal formula. But since the skin is so different from person to person, it is important to only focus on the products which work on a personal level.

Can Nourishing Ingredients Act With a Self-Tanner?

Nourishing ingredients are often added to self-tanners. Some women believe they don’t work and they can’t be absorbed into the skin because of the tanning ingredients. But as many other women attest, results are visible when the skin is properly hydrated and nourished.

Does a Self-Tanner Prevent Me From Wearing Make-Up?

A self-tanner changes the way the skin looks on the face. It still works with make-up but the amount of product to be used is different. You should also remember to apply make-up slightly less to allow their skin to breathe and not be clogged by all the beauty products in time.

I Have a Skin Rash From the Self-Tanner, What Can I Do?

In a rare case of a rash, you should stop using the self-tanner. The rash should go away in a couple of days. If it persists, it is highly recommended to visit a dermatologist.

Final Thoughts

Since self-tanners are independent of salon tanning, it is advisable to tan according to the season, where more formula is applied during the summer months. This ensures this type of tanning looks as natural as possible and that you feel comfortable in their skin, just as you would be with a natural tan.