9 hydrating gradual tanners for a subtle golden glow
Brozned but believable
By Team BEAUTYcrew
August 05 2021
There are three top reasons to use a gradual tanner: 1) you don’t want everyone knowing you get your bronze from a bottle so you need a formula that tans you subtly over time instead of rolling into work after #faketanthursday looking like Ross from Friends; 2) a true self-tan is too bold on your skin (fair-skinned friends, we know you feel us); or 3) you like having more control over the coverage and colour than a classic formula will allow.
Or, if you're like us, it's all of the above, as well as the fact that once the weather starts to cool down, the minimal levels of skin that your winter wardrobe/beloved loungewear will show just don't warrant the effort that goes into a full-fledged faux glow.
But while you may be keen on the idea of gradual tanning, you may not have found the right formula... luckily, we've rounded up some of the very best. Here are seven gradual glow-boosters we recommend adding to your kit this season...
Eco Tan Winter Skin Gradual Tanning Moisturiser
Able to deliver anything from a lightly honey-dipped glow to a deeply bronzed tan depending on how often you apply it, this natural tanning product will give you the hue you want no matter the season.
$29.95 at Adore Beauty
Essano Coconut Oil Organic Gradual Tan
A natural, plant-based gradual tanner made with 99 per cent natural origin ingredients, the only thing more impressive than the subtle glow it imparts is how long it'll last thanks to its hydrating nature.
$10 at Chemist Warehouse
Dove Summer Glow
Subtly sun-kissed and super soft skin are all in a day’s work for this supermarket self-tanner, and you can choose between 'Fair to Medium' and 'Medium to Dark' to make sure you get the perfect believable bronze shade for you.
$9.99 at Chemist Warehouse
Garnier Body Summer Moisturising Lotion
Scented like summer fruits, formulated to be extra nourishing on skin, and designed to gradually coat skin in a natural-looking tan, there is a lot to love about this product; the bargain-status price included.
$5.99 at Chemist Warehouse
St. Tropez Gradual Tan Classic Everyday Body Lotion
This one’s for those who like their shade of tan to err on the richer side without looking OTT. It builds to a bronzed colour that somehow looks both natural and deep, and the addition of aloe vera is great for soothing sensitive skin types.
$20.50 at Beauty Bay
Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Natural Bronze Gradual Tanning Moisturiser
If you want to cut down on products in your body care routine, this one does the jobs of both a self-tanner and a moisturiser as well as two separate buys would. The cocoa butter blend is ace for softening and smoothing skin, too.
$8.99 at Chemist Warehouse
Tan-Luxe The Gradual
A lotion and oil hybrid, you can use this formula as a face tanner, as well as a self-tanner for the body. While it is a gradual tanner, you’ll start to see signs of your subtle golden tan in as little as an hour after application; a definite win.
$39 at Sephora
Jergens Natural Glow + Firming Wet Skin Moisturiser
It's time to clear out prime position on your shower shelf; this gradual tanning moisturiser is made to be applied to wet skin. It glides effortlessly along damp limbs for a glow-giving solution that'll leave skin glossy even after you towel off.
$7.49 at Amazon
Bondi Sands Everyday Gradual Tanning Foam
Unfortunately some gradual tanners do still come with a side of sheet stains if you apply a hearty amount, but this clear foam certainly does not. It's also enriched with aloe vera, so your bod will be bronzed and nourished.
$19.95 at Bondi Sands