Summertime always comes with the desire to appear with a golden, sunkissed, flawless, tan. However, you can keep this look beyond the short summer duration — Tanners help you achieve this.
Sunless tanner (Self-tanning Lotion) helps you achieve a flawless tan all year round, without the need to expose yourself to harmful UV rays.
The good news is that highly efficient products are available at drugstores, with affordable price tags and high efficiency. The bad news, however, is that they’re lots of drugstore self-tanners out there, choosing the best one for you might come with a certain level of difficulty.
Not to worry, our guide is here to provide a solution to that. In this article, we look into the best drugstore self-tanner suitable for you, and also the factors to consider when selecting one for yourself.
What is Drugstore Sunless tanner (Self-tanner)?
A drugstore is a term used to describe beauty products that can be easily purchased at a pharmacy. They’re much different from high-end products because they’re more affordable and easily accessible.
The general perception is that they’re of lesser quality compared to high-end products, but this isn’t true. Most Drugstore beauty products offer optimum functionality, and leave you satisfied, except those that fail to deliver on their promises.
To separate the grain from the chaff, we’ve helped you identify the factors to consider to make the best choice of drugstore Self-tanning lotion. They include:
A mini compatibility test on a small, isolated, part of your skin (inside elbow most advisable) can save you from buying a huge disaster. Apply the intended product on your skin at first, to ensure it has no harsh effect on your skin.
This helps you confirm the compatibility, and gives you little insight into the product’s functionality. Always look out for streak-free, transfer-resistant, and no-orange-tint self-tanner.
The quality of a product is dependent on its formulation. The ingredients employed to formulate it, the functions it performs, and the brand producing it are vital things to consider.
However, all these are impossible to know by merely seeing the product in the drugstore. This is why reviews and guides like ours come in handy. We’ve got the list of quality drugstore Self-tanning lotion you can choose from in here.
What’s a drugstore beauty product if it doesn’t come at the best price possible. Non-pricey products that give you maximum value for your money is the right way to go, and we’ve got them in our curated list of the best drugstore Self-tanning lotions.
Best Drugstore Self-Tanning Lotion in 2024
Below are the sunless drugstore tanners that made it to our list.
Mineral Fusion Gradual Self-tanning lotion
The medium-dark sunless tanner is formulated with Macadamia nuts, which makes it safe and gentle on the skin. It is 100% vegan, cruelty-free, and free of toxic chemicals or irritants.
The gluten and paraben-free self-tanner are hypoallergenic — suitable for all skin types. It contains no artificial fragrance and features natural-based ingredients only.
It provides your skin with a healthy natural-looking tan that safely builds overtime. This self-tanner is sure to offer your skin the long-lasting, streak-free, dark tan you desire without stepping into the sun.
It comes with an elasticity promoting peptides that leaves the skin firmer, thereby renewing its youthful appearance. It contains shea butter, Aloe extracts, Sunflower oil, avocado oils, amongst others.
These ingredients offer skin nourishing and hydrating benefits while aiding flawless tanning processes. The value for your money is indeed guaranteed with this drugstore self-tanning lotion.
Alba Botanica Sunless Tanner Lotion
This organic and natural self-tanning lotion helps you achieve the golden tan you’ve always craved without exposure to harmful UV rays. In less than three hours after application, you’re sure to be all tanned up with a stunning sunkissed glow.
The lightweight formula is non-sticky, smooth, and gentle on the skin. It leaves no oily residue or orange tint behind and absorbs quickly. It is streak-free and can be regarded as one of the purest sunless tanners.
It is formulated mainly from plant-based ingredients, making it 100% vegan. It is also cruelty-free (not tested on animals), gluten-free, paraben-free, and contains no phthalates or synthetic fragrance.
The sunless tanning formula contains ingredients like shea butter, sweet almond oil, safflower oil, and others.
These ingredients help keep the skin moisturizer and enhance a deep natural-looking tan. They allow you to improve your skin health, leaving it smooth, soft, supple, and tanned.
Sun Laboratories Tan overnight Sunless Tanning lotion
How about sleeping with pale skin, and waking with a natural-looking, deep tan. This is precisely what the sun Laboratories tan overnight self-tanner offers you.
It’s perfect for a medium to dark tan and works efficiently for all skin types. The highly efficient tanning lotion is formulated with all-natural ingredients. It is streak-free, paraben-free, and provides your skin with a flawless and even tan.
The quick-drying formula features a unique built-in bronzer that offers full coverage, thereby ensuring you don’t miss a spot on your skin. It revitalizes the skin and leaves you with an instant deep, dark tan while you sleep.
It is non-sticky, non-greasy, and leaves no orange tint, patches, or oil residue on the skin. The long-lasting tan formula provides the skin with maximum moisture, nourishment, and elasticity.
Fake Bake Flawless Self-tanner
This is a naturally formulated self-tanning formula. It provides the skin with an even, flawless, long-lasting and streak-free dark tan while leaving the skin with a natural summer golden glow.
It is quick-absorbing, fast-drying, and comes with a pleasant fragrance. It contains Dihydroxyacetone (DHA) derived from natural sources like sugarcane and sugarbeets.
This compound, in conjunction with HDMI and erythrulose, enhances skin pigmentation, thereby leaving you with a natural-based dark skin tone. The non-sticky formula is most suitable for medium to dark skin tone.
It is odour-free, doesn’t transfer, and leaves no orange hue or patches on the skin. The hypoallergenic self-tanner comes with a professional tanning mitt for non-messy and easy application. It also features a built-in colour guide that helps you maintain a flawless and even application.
It is an excellent choice of sunless tanner, and provides you with optimum satisfaction.
NKD SKN Pre-shower Gradual Tan lotion
This pre-shower tanning lotion is formulated from natural, organic, botanicals. The sunless tanning lotion is suitable for both the face and body. It provides your skin with a rich, deep, dark tan when you wash it off ten minutes after application.
Its major base ingredient is Aloe Vera extract which is known for its soothing, hydrating, and skin’s health improving benefits. Your skin is conditioned to these benefits upon application.
It is suitable for all skin types and contains natural, Eco-certified DHA that helps enhance skin pigmentation, thereby improving tan production. The quick-absorbing formula leaves you with no streaks, patches, or odour.
It is vegan, cruelty-free, contains no paraben, fragrance, or alcohol, and doesn’t transfer.
L’oreal Paris Sublime Bronze Self-tanner
This liquid tanner comes with excellent features and functionality while leaving you with optimal satisfaction. The lightweight formula absorbs quickly for ease of application, and it’s also long-lasting.
It provides your skin with a fully developed tan in 4-8hrs, after which you can shower and rinse off the formula while maintaining your stunning dark tan. For an even, darker tan, apply three times within 12-24hrs.
The quick-drying formula is streak-free, transfer-resistant, and leaves your skin smooth and soft. It contains coconut water + Vit E, which ensures your skin stays hydrated all day.
The gradual Sunless tan can be easily picked up at any nearby drugstore. It comes with a fresh fragrance and leaves you with a natural-looking tan, sunkissed glow, and an even finish.
Australian Gold Instant Sunless Tanning lotion
The brand Australian Gold is known for producing some of the best tanners (indoor or outdoor) available. This drugstore from them isn’t short of being called a highly efficient and quality product.
It is formulated with skin-nourishing and moisturizing ingredients. This self-tanning formula improves skin’s health while providing it with a golden glow. It contains DHA, erythrulose, caramel, and other derma dark bronzers that help you achieve an even dark tan. It also contains Vit B and Caffeine, which helps energize and tightens the skin.
It excellently conditions and nourishes your skin while performing its primary function effectively. This is made possible by its fade-defy technology that blends perfectly with skin softeners to ensure your tan lasts longer, stays nourished, and softened.
It’s an excellent choice of self-tanning lotion and will give you the functionality and satisfaction you desire.
BT cosmetics Paris Jet Set Sun Instant self-tanner
Here’s an odour-free, streak-free, and easy to apply sunless tanner by BT cosmetics. The affordable self-tanner gives you optimal value for your money, as it leaves you with an excellent golden tan.
It can also be used as a setting spray after makeup application. It is suitable for all skin types and provides your skin with a natural-looking tan without leaving any residue on the skin.
It is dermatologist tested, contains no alcohol, paraben, or other irritants. It is also devoid of harsh chemicals, making it gentle and safe on the skin. Beyond tanning, this instant Self-tanning mist keeps the skin hydrated, smooth, and soft.
It is non-comedogenic and maintains efficiency during the winter or summer.
Jergens Natural Glow Self-tanning Daily Moisturizer
The Jergens Natural Glow self-tanning lotion is highly functional. The multipurpose formula acts as a moisturizer, a self-tanner, and it’s also enriched with antioxidants like Vit E.
It comes in two different shades — fair to medium, and medium to tan. This to ensure you pick the one that fits your skin tone, thereby leaving you with a natural finish.
It is streak-free and adds natural-looking colour to your complexion. It contains blends of ingredients that ensure your skin stays moisturized at all times. It also protects the skin from radical damages and leaves it nourished.
The fresh-scented multipurpose lotion enhances your natural skin tone, leaving you with the darker tan that you desire.
St. Tropez Self-Tan Express Advanced Bronzing Mousse
Here’s a fast-absorbing, streak-free, and long-lasting self-tanner. It offers you comprehensive and buildable coverage, thereby allowing your tan to be as deep as you want.
For a lighter tan, you can wash off the formula after an hour of application, two hours before washing off means you want a medium golden tan, and await for up to three hours leaves you with a darker bronze tan.
The non-sticky formula doesn’t transfer, it dries quickly, and it’s easy to apply. It is a vegan-friendly formula and features a 100% naturally derived DHA.
It is sulfate, phthalate, and paraben-free, and doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals.
Bondi sands Self-tanning foam
This lightweight formula is enriched with Aloe Vera and coconut extract. It provides the skin with a streakless tan while ensuring the skin stays hydrated and well-nourished.
It leaves you with a natural-looking, deep, and golden brown tan. It comes with a pleasant scent, leaves no orange tints, and leaves the skin with a flawless finish.
It is vegan, cruelty-free, and easy to apply.
Beauty by Earth Self Tanner
This self-tanner is suitable for all skin tones and offers optimal effectiveness. The natural sunless tanner is formulated with organic ingredients from plant-based sources.
It gradually deepens and darkens the skin for a flawless glow, leaving you with the perfect skin tone to hit the beach.
It contains ingredients like coconut oil and Japanese Green tea. These ingredients leave your skin hydrated, soft, smoothened and protected.
Effective use of this tanning lotion leaves you with buildable light to medium or dark tan. It is excellent for pale or pasty skin, making it highly efficient.
Drugstore Self-tanners are excellent and functional replacements for their high-end counterparts. They offer the same functionality and satisfaction while leaving less strain on your pocket.
We’ve compiled our top pick with quality, functionality, safety, and affordability in mind. We’re confident that any of the listed self-tanners above will provide you with satisfaction.
You can also search for the choicest drugstore tanner on your own if you’ve got the luxury of time. Our guide is there to make it a comfortable ride for you.