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Updated December 2021
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Bottom line
Pros
Cons
Best of the Best
L'Oreal Sublime Bronze
L'Oreal
Sublime Bronze
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Ultra Light Gelee
Bottom Line

Vitamin E and alpha hydroxyl acid helps nourish skin as it tans.

Pros

A lot of faithful followers. It goes on silky, dries quickly, and doesn't streak, developing just the right amount of color. Customers also prefer the gelee to the lotion variety from the brand.

Cons

A few users found it dried a little too quickly, before they could smooth it out, but results remained good.

Best Bang for the Buck
Suave Visible Glow
Suave
Visible Glow
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Subtle Color
Bottom Line

Moisturizers help keep the tan streak free while giving a natural looking color.

Pros

Light lotion goes on evenly and is easy to apply, without having an obnoxious odor. Stays colorfast without transferring to clothes. Gives a light, sun-kissed glow.

Cons

Some felt it needed too much reapplication to keep the color, but the great price point makes that less of an issue.

Fake Bake Flawless
Fake Bake
Flawless
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Good for All Skin Types
Bottom Line

Natural ingredients without chemicals works with your skin pigment for a natural look.

Pros

Tinted lotion helps you see where the lotion has been applied so you can achieve a smooth color. A comparable result to airbrush spray tans, with an appealing coconut scent.

Cons

The color needs a long time to set before being waterproof.

Suited by Nature Bahama Tan Sunless Lotion
Suited by Nature
Bahama Tan Sunless Lotion
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Organic Ingredients
Bottom Line

Suitable for sensitive skin, since this is paraben-free.

Pros

Lots of good ingredients like shea butter, coconut oil, argan oil, jojoba, and monoi de Tahiti oil for super smooth skin. Color develops evenly and without any weird smell.

Cons

Takes a long time to dry. It can rub off on clothes even after a few hours of setting time.

Jergens Natural Glow + Firming
Jergens
Natural Glow + Firming
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Affordable Price
Bottom Line

This lotion is a multi-purpose product that provides a gradual tan, extra hydration, and firming of the skin with consistent use.

Pros

Will gradually deepen the skin color and enhance the natural glow. Collagen and elastin will work to target cellulite and improve the overall look of the skin. Is paraben- and cruelty-free.

Cons

A few customers did not like the scent.

HOW WE TESTED

We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

38
Models
Considered
156
Consumers
Consulted
16
Hours
Researched
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Thank heaven for sunless tan lotions. Not only do they save your skin from the UV damage accrued from laying out in the sun, they also give you a healthy-looking glow even in the depths of winter. These lotions have come a long way from the days of orange streaks and blotchy color, and are now available in a range of shades and types to suit your skin tone. For best results, thoroughly shower and exfoliate before applying, followed by a moisturizer, paying extra attention to dry patches like knees, elbows, and heels. Read the directions for the brand’s recommendations regarding drying time, when the color is waterproof and smudgeproof, and how often to apply for best results. Then show off your sun-kissed tan knowing you aren’t prematurely aging or doing untold damage to your skin.

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