In the words of Meghan Trainor, ‘It’s all about that base”.
Today, we’re talking tanning, and more specifically – comparisons between just a few of the brands I’ve tried and tested in the last year, and a few tips I’ve learnt from making my own mistakes in my attempt to get an even, wearable tan.
I’ll be comparing three tans which I bought from Priceline: Bondi Sands Self Tanning Foam in Dark ($19.99), Model Co’s Super Tan in Dark ($24.99) and Le Tan’s Fast Tan Instant Foaming Mousse in Bronze ($13.99). I will be comparing/ranking them using four different categories: Consistency, Colour, Finish and Application and hopefully this will give you a pretty general overview of the products.
Consistency – How the Product Comes Out of the Bottle
1. Bondi Sands – This is by far the best of the three, hands down we have a winner. It’s an incredibly light, smooth mousse which makes application with a mitt an absolute breeze. It’s also a “no mess” solution, it glides on, no spillages, and you’re pretty much good to go. It also smells amazing.
2. Le Tan – It’s a nice mousse, it’s easy to apply and like Bondi Sands, it’s a no mess situation. When using this mousse I have found sometimes it can be on the runnier side of things which is a downside.
3. Model Co – If I could go back and save my towel from the horrific damage it gained from me standing on it while using this tan, I probably would. It was less of a mousse and more of an awful liquid which spilled on everything despite me using a tanning applicator mitt. I shook the bottle prior to use, then when I realised it was still a liquid, I shook it again with zero success. The consistency, to put it bluntly was awful in some cases, in others it was more mousse-like, but I like the consistency to be consistent thank you very much.
Colour – The Colour When Applied
1. Bondi Sands – It’s perfect, not too dark, not too light – it’s actually a very natural colour. I’ve worn it as is a number of times just as it is when applied, and left it to develop on my skin for several hours before applying another layer etc. I have no complaints where this colour is concerned, even if it does transfer to clothing quite easily even when dry.
2. Model Co – I’m not going to lie, it’s the darkest of all three, but it’s also got the most orange of the bronzers used as a guide in the tan. In fact, the colour is so dark it’s almost concerning because I sure as hell didn’t want my tan to turn out that dark. It also makes a mess of the clothing you may be wearing whilst it develops, so wear something dark.
3. Le Tan – I really struggle to see any colour in this at all. There is a serious lack of a bronze guide which makes it difficult to apply evenly, and even worse, as it’s instant you’re not really getting the full effect that you could be getting were the solution just a tad darker.
Finish – The Colour When Developed
1. Bondi Sands – Perfect, it’s dark even with a single layer and importantly it’s an even tan and it’s also build-able. It also lasted about 5 days if looked after, eg. moisturized and a gradual tanning solution applied daily.
2. Model Co – A single layer was dark. The darkest of all three but also the less durable of the three, it was patchy after a day. Once rinsed my initial impression was that it is a gorgeous colour, I just found that it didn’t develop as evenly as it could have, despite taking as much care as possible and it faded far too quickly despite attempts to maintain it.
3. Le Tan – It’s not dark enough for me, I left it to develop and it just comes out a little too lightly with just the single layer and it was gone within days.
Application – How the Product Applied
1. Bondi Sands – Very easy to apply, best done with a tanning applicator mitt (and if you’re worried about how much these cost, you can pick up one at Kmart for as little as $5) you can actually see where you’ve done already using the instant guide, and it’s very easily smoothed out, particularly if it’s a little uneven in some areas eg. around the knees. I’ve also found it didn’t really matter too much that I have dry patches on my legs, it was all even, and I’m absolutely in love.
2. Le Tan – With a mitt I would say the overall application wasn’t all that much different to that of the Bondi Sands, my one complaint would be that you have to use quite a lot in order to get results, and this wasn’t the case with either of the other products.
3. Model Co – At times, I’ve found this “mousse” was incredibly messy to apply. It’s hit and miss. It would be best applied in a shower or bathtub, essentially, any location you can then spray down afterwards, as it’s very easy to make a large unexpected mess with this product. Sometimes, it comes out as a nice foamy mousse, other times, well it’s just runny. I had trouble getting an even finish with the product also. I found a mitt was of zero help, and to apply, overall the consistency of this product makes it something of a nightmare.
- Exfoliate! Exfoliate! Exfoliate! If you want your tan to be even, this is an absolute must. An exfoliating glove will set you back a couple of dollars and it’s a valuable tool for removing dry skin prior to tanning.
- Loose clothing! No exceptions. Tight anything will ruin your tan. Bra included.
- Apply a light moisturizer to the knees and elbows, this helps even it out in these areas where the tan tends to “stick” a little more.
- Don’t forget your face! Use the residue on the mitt while applying your tan to do your face, and knees and elbows for that matter – never apply heavily in these locations – it shows.
- Avoid deodorant while applying. It’s not a good result, trust me.
- Shave/Wax 24 hours in advance. Don’t want to look spotty? This is the best way to avoid it.
- Pat yourself dry after a shower rather than scrubbing, this will help the tan to last longer.
- A hairdryer set on a cool setting can speed up the drying time a little, but you still need to give it time to develop!
- Don’t forget your hands and feet, I know it’s easy to do – but don’t. Apply lightly and evenly, but unless you want your tan to look obvious, hands and feet need to be tanned.
- Gradual tanning moisturizers are a life saver. Apply daily to prolong the life of your tan!
That’s it. That’s me wrapping up my comparisons and top ten tips for tanning. Hopefully when I eventually move into including YouTube tutorials I will be able to do a ‘How To’ but this is it for now. Bondi Sands is a definite winner for me, and if you haven’t tried it, it’s worth the money. A bottle goes a really long way and it’s just a gorgeous finish.
Got a brand you think I should try? Pop it in the comments, and as always have a lovely day!