Going For a Natural looking
Sunless Tan?

Remember getting a really nice orange glow with a sunless tan product. Or maybe you went for a more yellow look.

I'm happy to say those days are over. Today it is possible to achieve a nice golden tan without ever having to go out in the sun at all.

The big question is... Is there a sunless tanner that contains safe, natural ingredients. Many products are made up of a long list of chemical ingredients. Not all of which are considered safe.

tanned woman

Finding a Safe Sunless Tanner

Starting with Skin Deep, the Environmental Working Groups (EWG) database of cosmetics I went searching for a safer, sunless tannning product.

There were quite a few self tanners on this list. Very few were made with safer, natural ingredients. Most products had ratings above 3 with most products rating at 5 and up putting them in moderate to high risk categories. Of the few safer brands even some of those I personally would not use because they contain parabens.

I have decided that I will keep my use of any products with parabens to a minimum. Not an easy task since parabens are used as a preservative in all kinds of skin care products.

What Are Parabens?

Parabens are chemical preservatives used in personal care products from shampoo, moisturizers, toothpaste and more. They come in many forms such as methyl, propyl, ethyl and butyl paraben.

Once absorbed into the body they have the ability to mimic our own hormones (estrogen) which can affect our endocrine system, potentially affecting the ovaries and thyroid along with other functions of the body.

While the EWG gives most parabens, and there are quite a few different kinds, a moderately safe rating I have decided based on the findings of parabens in breast tissue to avoid them. For more info see non toxic skincare

This eliminates many sunless tanners but there are still a few worth considering.

Where To Shop

Fortunately, there are some self tanners made with safer, natural ingredients that are getting good reviews.

tanned legs

Sircuit Skin soliel Firming Self Tanner

This self tanner has received good reviews for it's ease of application. It is mineral based so it is easy to see where you are applying it. Reviewers said it was pleasant smelling and gave a nice golden look. It's one of the higher priced natural self tanners but it offers the added benefit of firming and toning the skin, not something offered by most self tanners.


Organic ingredients in a safe, natural sunless tan product. They make both a self tanner for the body and one for the face. Easy application and a natural looking tan made this one popular although a few reviewers felt the results were a little light for them.

Chocolate Sun Absolute Sun Sunless Tanning Cream

Another product that has received some good reviews. One of my site visitors told me about this product. It is not listed on Skin Deep yet but from the looks of the ingredients would be considered among the safest. Shea butter for moisturizing and green tea for the antioxidants make this sound like it protects the skin as it adds color.

Unfortunately sunless tanning does not last very long. If you are lucky the results may last up to 5 days. Self tanners use DHA (dihydroxyacetone) a sugar derived from plants to tan the skin. Basically the DHA reacts with the skin cells on the surface giving a temporary tan but as these cells slough off your tan fades away. Keep in mind using a self tanner does not provide your skin with any sun protection so keep using that sunscreen.

Don't waste any of that expensive self tanner. Learn how to prepare your skin and use these products to get the best results by checking out:
How To Apply Sunless Tanners.

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