The thought of tanning is nothing new for many people. Whether you prefer to get a deep bronze glow in the summer or maintain your natural skin tone year round, there are plenty of options out there.
But if you’re looking for something with less toxic chemicals and more natural ingredients, self-tanners might be the perfect option! In this blog post we’ll go through some of the best vegan self-tanners that will give you a gorgeous golden hue without any harmful side effects.
What are Vegan Self-Tanners?
A vegan self-tanner is a cosmetic product that will help you look like you’ve been in the sun without actually exposing yourself to UV rays. This can be achieved by a variety of methods, from chemical ones to using an actual tanning bed for a short amount of time. The final result should be already tanned skin, rather than the more pale look.
Unlike many cosmetics, most self-tanners are not tested on animals, so they are considered vegan products. As with any cosmetic, however, there will be ingredients which aren’t necessarily vegan or healthy for your skin. It is best to read the label carefully before purchasing and using products that you suspect may contain animal byproducts.
Vegan self-tanners are typically much safer for your skin than traditional tanners, causing fewer allergic reactions and other negative effects. The ingredients used to make these products tend to be natural, like aloe or green tea extract, which will not irritate the skin as much as chemical tanning agents may do.
How Effective are Vegan Self-Tanners?
The tanning process requires ultraviolet rays to reach your skin, which can put it through its paces. While most vegan self-tans are gentle on the skin, there is still a chance that you may break out with rashes and other ills as a result of using unsafe products. To get the most out of it, you can combine vegan self-tanners with a healthy diet and exercise plan to drop your tanning time in half.
There are different types of vegan self-tanners, including sprays that let you target specific areas for a better overall look, and gradual tanners that work over the course of a few days for a less noticeable result. For best results, always allow time for your self-tanner to develop before you head out into public or meet with people.
How do Vegan Self-Tanners Work?
Vegan self-tanners are made from natural ingredients that mimic the look of a real tan without ever stepping foot outside. These products work by “staining” your skin, or depositing a substance on top of it to create the effect you want. The most common ingredients used include:
- DHA – A sugar found in plants and animals, this is typically what stains your skin to achieve tan results . It will metabolize into free radicals that darken the outer layer of skin, but you can lessen this effect by consuming lots of antioxidants to counteract it.
- Caramel – This product is typically used in gradual tanners rather than instant bronzers for your skin . Over time , it stains your skin like DHA to give a sun-kissed look without years of real damage.
- Green Tea Extract – A powerful antioxidant, this can be used to help preserve your vegan self-tanner for maximum effectiveness. It is also useful in reducing inflammation and promoting healing to prevent you from developing rashes or other skin conditions after use .
- Grapefruit Seed Extract – This ingredient helps provide the same benefits as green tea extract, but has a more neutral smell to it. It also contains properties that are antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral in nature .
- Vitamin C – A powerful antioxidant, this vitamin can provide benefits similar to grapefruit seed extract with less of the typical self-tanner aftertaste.
- Shea Butter – This is typically found in great vegan self-tanners due to its moisturizing properties, which can help keep your skin from getting dry or flaking.
How do I Use Vegan Self-Tanners?
The process of applying a vegan self-tanner is known as exfoliation. In addition to removing dead skin and revealing fresher layers, this process also removes dirt and debris that can cause your tanner to look streaky or uneven.
The best way to exfoliate is with a scrub containing fine crystals, like the kind you would use in a facial. After rinsing all of the crystals away, lather yourself with moisturizer to help your skin absorb the vegan self-tanner better. Finally, you can apply your vegan self-tanner as directed on the bottle for best results.
How Expensive are Vegan Self-Tanners?
Vegan self-tanners typically cost around $20 – $30 or so, making them a slightly less expensive option than many chemical self-tanners on the market. Just remember that they don’t contain harmful chemicals, so they will not provide you with an instant effect like chemical tanners. You can expect to spend five to seven days developing your tan gradually, depending on which vegan product you choose.
How Long do Vegan Self-Tanners Last?
Vegan self-tanners typically last around five to seven days. However, it’s important to remember that these products cannot provide you with an instant tan as chemical tanners can. You will need to allow time for your skin to absorb the vegan self-tanner and begin darkening before you go out into public or head anywhere special.
What will I Need?
- Vegan Self-Tanner – Your vegan self-tanner can come as a gel, foam, spray, or lotion. Lotion tends to have the longest shelf life and provides you with great results without too much work involved. Gel is another good choice if you want something that’s easy to apply and easy to wash off.
- Vegan Self-Tanner Mitt – This is another term for the towel-like glove you will use to apply your vegan self-tanner, as it helps prevent streaks and unevenness in color. It also works well with lotions and gels , but may not be quite as effective with sprays.
- Topical Vegan Self-Tanner Remover – This is a product you will use to remove your self-tanner , especially if it’s in the form of a spray or lotion. Otherwise, make sure you are able to wash whatever is left off of your skin after you rinse.
- Vegan Self-Tanner Guide – This can come in the form of a guide or list of FAQs, helping make sure you know how to avoid any problems associated with vegan self-tanners.
- Triacetin – Triacetin is an acetylated monoglyceride that helps other ingredients mix better. However, this ingredient can also cause you to look a bit greasy in the early stages of your tan . If you notice yourself having this problem, consider using a vegan self-tanner that does not contain triacetin.
What are Some Vegan Self-Tanner Myths?
There may be quite a few myths you have heard about vegan self-tanners over the years, so it’s important to know if they are true or not. Some common myths include the following:
- Vegan self-tanners will work immediately to give you a tan. You should use your vegan self-tanner daily to help build up color gradually, just like you would any other way of tanning.
- Vegan self-tanners will not work if you already have a tan. If anything, this can give you an even better base for creating the perfect glow .
- Vegan self-tanners may cause your skin to age faster. This is false – it’s actually vegan self-tanning ingredients that help protect your skin from aging and environmental damage, while also adding moisture to your skin to keep it hydrated.
- Vegan self-tanning products are typically harmful to the environment. This is false – they are actually vegan, which means there are no animal byproducts, and most of them are also cruelty free. If anything, vegan self-tanners can be better for the environment because they do not contain any animal byproducts .
How will I Apply My Vegan Self-Tanner?
You should be able to find a sample vegan self-tanning routine in the directions that come with your product. If you cannot, or if you want some extra help, here is a basic rundown of what to do:
- Step 1: Exfoliate – You should start exfoliating before you even get in the shower. All you need is warm water and an exfoliating cloth or mesh sponge to help remove any dead skin cells that could hinder your results.
- Step 2: Cleanse Your Skin – Wash your face and body with your preferred vegan, cruelty-free facial cleanser to remove dirt and oil that may be present. You should then pat yourself dry or use a clean towel.
- Step 3: Apply Your Vegan Self-Tanning Lotion – Squeeze out an ample amount of vegan self-tanner , making sure the product is evenly distributed across your skin.
- Step 4: Exfoliate Again – You will want to use a loofah or an exfoliating brush every time you dry off, throughout the duration of your vegan self-tanning regimen . This helps you achieve the best results possible. However, do not exfoliate the day you plan to shower because your skin needs time to heal.
- Step 5: Rinse – Give yourself a good rinse in the shower under lukewarm water. The water should be cool but not cold, or hot but not burning . You can pat yourself dry if you like, just stay away from rough towels that may damage your skin.
- Step 6: Apply Your Nightly Moisturizer – Make sure you reapply a night cream or oil after showering, while your skin is still slightly damp. A lot of vegan self-tanning ingredients can leave your skin feeling dry, so moisturizing before bed will help seal in that moisture and keep your skin hydrated.
What are Some Vegan Self-Tanning Tips?
Some vegan self-tanning tips to avoid include the following:
- Don’t apply too much – If you need a lot of moisturizer to help your skin look its best, it’s likely that you have applied too much vegan self-tanner . You should only need a thin layer of product to boost your color and enhance your glow.
- Don’t exfoliate too much – Exfoliating can be essential when you want the best possible results, but don’t scrub your skin too hard or for too long. You can easily damage your skin this way, making it harder for vegan self-tanning lotions to work their magic.
- Don’t shower too much – It’s a good idea to shower daily , but you should not take long showers or hot showers if you want the best color possible. A cleanse with lukewarm water is usually enough; anything longer or hotter can make your color fade faster and mess up your vegan self-tanning results.
- Don’t moisturize too much – As stated above, moisturizing is great for making your new look last longer, but you should not overdo it either. If you apply too much of a vegan moisturizer , that could be what’s stopping your vegan self-tanner from working.
What are Some of the Best Vegan Self-Tanners?
There are hundreds of vegan self-tanning products on the market today, but some of these are more superior than others. Here is a list to make finding one easier:
1. St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse
2. Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer
3. Vita Liberata Organic Gradual Tanner Lotion
4. Fake Bake Flawless Darker Self-Tanning Liquid
5. ModelCo Instant Sunless Natural-Looking Self-Tanning Lotion
6. Bondi Sands Self Tanning Foam
Is vegan self-tanners safe?
Yes, vegan self-tanning products are safe to use—and they’re safer than many tanning products on the market. Most contain rich moisturizers that will not only make your skin look great, but feel amazing too.
They typically do not contain any ingredients or chemicals that can be harmful to you, like most mainstream options. That’s why they’re considered the “healthier” choice in self-tanners.
Conclusion: Vegan Self-Tanning
Vegan self-tanning is a great way to enjoy the benefits of a darker skin tone without exposing yourself to the dangers and pitfalls of tanning. It’s also an easy process that can be done at home in your own time, which makes it even more appealing to many people.
From vegan moisturizers to vegan self-tanning lotions, there are many options out there for vegan tanners. So don’t be afraid to pick up a bottle or two and try it out! It just might be the best decision you ever made.