Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Self-Tanning lotion--Why does it have to smell like that?

Aaargh! Cant a girl get her fake tan on without smelling like a chemical factory?
Short answer: No.
That's not how it goes.

The very chemical that causes your skin to subtly change colors is what makes it smell as well.
The perp is dihodroxyacetone, or DHA, and apparently in pure form it's a white powder that tastes "cooling and sweet."
(But if you do, please tell me if it tastes that way)

The stuff you get at the store will have 3-5% DHA, and professional lotions are more like 10-15%. This is a case where the smaller percentage is probably a good thing- it lets you build a glow instead of BAM...I'm BROWN!
It's safe unless you are a hairless dog (I guess those studies didn't go well), but watch out for the other ingredients in these lotions because they might irritate your skin.

And don't think that a fake tan gives you SPF coverage--you still need to wear sunscreen.

That said, here are the self-tanners I have liked the best and seen around the most:

The one I remember smelling best (I actually got compliments on the smell) was a Bath & Bodyworks lotion that is now discontinued.
Bath & Bodyworks Breathe Romance tanning lotion
now discontinued but you can still buy on Amazon or ebay at a huge markup for like $40

This is the one I currently have and it's all organic and crap.
The smell is ok, but for sure still there.
I hate it when I don't use it in a while and then a brown hardened lotion lump condenses at the tip of the pump, but pretty much any lotion would do that I think.

$8 Neutrogena Built-a-Tan lotion
People say this one smells less. I haven't used it.

$3 Jergens Natural Glow
Everyone online seems to love this one, I have not tried it.

I've also heard good things about the Coppertone one

$8 Coppertone Sunless Tanning lotion
Coppertone put out the original tanning lotion with DHA in 1960, so they should know what they are doing by now.


  1. I've used Jergens Natural Glow. I would use it more but (surprise!) it doesn't smell all that great.

  2. Hi all,

    Treatment for acne depends on severity. Mild cases may be eased by washing the face with a gental toilet soap or by drying agents such as benzoyl peroxide which can be found in most acne products. Thanks a lot.....


Follow Me on Pinterest