Spring has officially sprung, and all we can think of is barbecues, beach romps, and being outside as much as humanly possible, especially after a socially distanced couple of years. Still, the weather has some catching up to do. One day it can feel like summer, and the next it can feel as though winter is taking its sweet time to end. Ladies and gentlemen: transitional weather.
Despite the unpredictable weather patterns, our minds are still months ahead, and the least we can do is start working on our summer glow. Thanks to the existence of self tanner, sunkissed skin is achievable any time of year, and you don’t have to bake underneath the sun or in a tanning bed—risking damage and overexposure—to make it happen.
Self tanners are like body lotions but better. Not only do they moisturize, but they also enhance your skin tone by giving it a vibrant luster that doesn’t take away from your natural beauty but simply enhances it. Of course, this depends on finding a formula that feels as good as it looks. For many, that means sticking to a clean and/or organic self tanner made without DHA, fragrance, and a host of other chemicals that can cause skin irritation or bad reactions. That’s why we’ve rounded up a list of the Top 10 non-toxic self tanners known for delivering the kind of results you’ll want to tell everyone about.
How We Found The Best Clean Self Tanners
To round up this list, we used our data-powered algorithm that factors in beauty editor reviews, expert product recommendations, social media buzz, and more to find and rank the top products on the web. Scroll on to see which clean self tanners made the cut.
Next up, check out the 10 Best Self Tanners For The Face. Opening image: @isleofparadise
Top 10 Lists serve as unbiased shopping guides to the most trusted product recommendations on the internet. Products are scored and ranked using an algorithm backed by data consumers find most valuable when making a purchase. We are reader-supported and may earn a commission when you shop through our links.
Vita Liberata Advanced Organics Invisi Foaming Tan Water
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: The clear-as-water formula means zero possibilities for color transfer onto your sink or clothes, though you’ll still want to apply it with a tanning mitt. It’s also infused with hyaluronic acid, a restorative property that boosts moisture, and raspberry seed extract, whose antioxidant properties protect the skin against environmental stressors.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: The ingredient list is short and everything is organic.
The Organic Pharmacy Self Tan
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: If you prefer something that feels more luxurious, you’ll love The Organic Pharmacy’s cream-based self tanner. It's also clean beauty-friendly since the coloring agent is derived from beets instead of the traditional DHA chemical.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: A host of essential oils, vegetable glycerin, and shea butter means it can also double as a body moisturizer.
Alba Botanica Sunless Tanning Lotion
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: An affordable brand that doesn’t compromise its values is one worth paying attention to. This self tanner is quick-absorbing yet highly nourishing thanks to sweet almond oil and shea butter. And as with all Alba Botanica products, the formula is completely vegetarian and paraben-free.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: Alba Botanica is also Leaping Bunny Certified, meaning this product hasn’t been tested on animals.
Supergoop! Healthy Glow Sunless Tan Spf 40
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: The standout feature of this self tanner is the spray applicator that makes buildable coverage easier to achieve. As for the formula itself, it’s reef-friendly and dermatologist-tested, making it good for you and the environment.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: No tanning mitt is needed for application—just be sure to let it dry before getting dressed.
Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Glow Pads Exfoliating Anti-Aging Self-Tanner For Body
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Who knew a little wipe could do so much? These self-tanner towelettes pack plenty of multitasking action with a formula that includes vitamin D for combatting irritation, a trademarked property called Capislo for minimizing hair growth, and microencapsulated DHA for color. Glycolic acid is also included to gently exfoliate and prevent blemishes.
USER REVIEW: “I bought this on a whim. I have never had much luck with self tanners or professional spray tans for that matter. They stink, and when they fade, they leave my skin tone horribly uneven. But not this one! It develops into a beautiful tone and fades very naturally. The smell is barely existent."
Coola Sunless Tan Express Sculpting Mousse
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Coola’s anti-aging self tanner performs double duty, providing color with a beet-derived DHA and firming the skin with ingredients that encourage circulation in the skin. It’s also made without synthetic colorants and many other harmful properties found in traditional self tanners, including formaldehydes and oxybenzones.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: An organic formula means it works for all skin types.
Bondi Sands Self Tanning Foam
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: This Australian brand is beloved for its intoxicating scents, time-efficient tanning formulas, and vegan/cruelty-free ingredients. The Self Tanning Foam in particular is enriched with aloe vera and coconut to prevent the skin from drying out upon application.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: Leave it on for as little as one hour or as long as six, depending on how deep you want your tan to be.
Tanologist Self Tan Mousse
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Those new to self tanning will love this clean beauty-approved option, as it provides color for up to one week so you can practice without having to wait too long between trial runs. It also upgrades your complexion in a variety of ways with brightening pink grapefruit, hydrating aloe vera, protective goji berry, and more.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: It’s “express” for a reason—expect results in just one hour.
Beauty By Earth Self Tanner Tanning Lotion
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Amazon shoppers have spoken, and they are obsessed with this botanical-rich self tanner that can be used on the face and body. The brand prides itself on using only organic ingredients, including ones that help prevent irritation and dryness, like green tea extract.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: The formula also includes non-nano minerals, which protect the surface of the skin, as opposed to penetrating the skin like chemical-based active ingredients.
Isle Of Paradise Self-Tanning Water
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Isle of Paradise takes the work out of applying self tanner with a spray applicator that dispenses a lightweight and newbie-friendly water formula. It’s also enriched with ingredients that absorb quickly, condition the skin, and protect the skin barrier. Plus, when you’ve run out, you can keep your routine sustainable by purchasing a refill instead of an entirely new bottle. Shoppers also love the brand’s signature fragrance, a beautiful yet understated eucalyptus leaf oil.
USER REVIEW: “For self-tanning novices this is so great! Applied well and gave good coverage. Smell is minimal. Glow has lasted at least five days now. I would recommend this to anyone wanting a quick, even glow.”