The 5 Best Self-Tanners for Fair Skin

Get that perfect natural, golden glow for summer with a little help from these products.

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I love summer. It’s one of my favorite seasons. However… summer does not love me back. As a redhead, I have extremely fair skin and the second I step outside I usually burn. The traditional method of tanning is out of the question, and I can’t bring myself to go to a tanning bed since it’s so unhealthy for your skin.

That’s where self-tanners come in. While fair skin can be just as beautiful as darker skin tones, during the summer months I usually opt to get a little extra glow.

With fair skin, it can be difficult to find a self-tanner that doesn’t look streaky or have an orange tone, but I’ve rounded up five self tanning products that will have even the fairest of skin ready to show off this summer!

5 Self-Tanners for Fair Skin:

self tanners for fair skin

1. Saint Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse | 2. Fake Bake Fair Lotion | 3. Australian Gold SPF 30 Spray Gel with Bronzer | 4. Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer | 5. Nature’s Gate Sunless Tanner

1. Saint Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse $$$

I splurged on this self-tanner after hearing rave reviews about it. Overall, I was impressed with the product, and despite the higher price one bottle goes a long way.

I recommend buying the applicator mitt (sold separately) because it makes the application a million times easier. The unique mousse formula allows you to see exactly where the tanner has and hasn’t been applied, which prevents unevenness. 

What We Like:

  • Easy to apply
  • Dries quickly
  • Has a pleasant and citrusy scent
  • Amazing for all skin tones
  • It fades off evenly

What We Don’t Like:

  • Can be drying
  • More expensive
  • Looks a little crazy until you rinse it off

2. Fake Bake Fair Lotion $$$

Although I haven’t tried this self-tanner myself, I have heard amazing things about it from friends. This formula is specifically made for those with fair skin, though it also comes in other shades for darker skin tones.

The product also comes with a glove to apply the lotion and has a reputation for achieving a golden glow without streaks or orange-y spots

What We Like:

  • Provides a natural-looking
  • Streak-free tan
  • Easy to apply
  • Dries quickly
  • Comes with a glove

What We Don’t Like:

  • A bit expensive
  • This formula is only for fair skin

3. Australian Gold SPF 30 Spray Gel with Bronzer $

A steal at just $7.44, this product is ideal if you want a tan that isn’t permanent. I use this almost every time I go to the pool or the beach. It’s easy to apply, has a decent SPF, smells amazing, and gives you a subtle golden glow that will wash off in the shower. Highly recommended!

What We Like:

  • Provides a natural-looking tan
  • Sweat and water-resistant
  • Easy to apply
  • Tan washes away so you aren’t stuck with it

What We Don’t Like:

  • Could stain a bikini
  • Doesn’t last

Also read: 3 Products Under $5 to Give You Perfect Beach Waves]

4. Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer $

This product has been around for ages, and for a good reason. At just $9.99, it’s fairly cheap and works gradually so you can build up the tan to the shade of your preference. In just three days you could be rocking a nice, natural-looking glow. 

Tip: Make sure you exfoliate before using this product and apply it evenly. If you don’t, you’ll end up looking streaky! 

What We Like:

  • Super affordable
  • Great color control
  • Leaves no streaks at all and no blotchiness

What We Don’t Like:

  • Does sometimes stain clothing
  • Definitely has that “self-tanner” smell

5. Nature’s Gate Sunless Tanner $

This all-natural self-tanner is a great option if you’re looking for something that’s free of synthetic fragrance, parabens, and phthalates. As an added bonus, it also isn’t tested on animals! This lotion is more subtle than the others, and it takes a little bit longer to build up, but it is a great budget tanner. 

What We Like:

  • Immediately blends into your skin
  • Easy to apply
  • Dried pretty fast
  • Nice natural-looking tan

What We Don’t Like:

  • Doesn’t last very long
  • Takes a while to build-up
  • Doesn’t get super dark

Your thoughts?

Do you like to rock your fair skin during the summer or do you opt for a self-tanner? What self-tanners have you used and loved? Let us know in the comments!

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1 thought on “The 5 Best Self-Tanners for Fair Skin”

  1. If you’re on a tight budget but have wanted to try the St Tropez, try the Equate mousse self-tanner. It’s the Wal-Mart brand, but it’s only $8 and I was seriously impressed. It is almost exactly the same as the St Tropez. My only complaint is the scent is kinda strong for the first hour or so, and it takes a few uses to build up the color (though I prefer darker tans rather than just a glow).


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