Everyone thought that was it. But we had buried self-tanners a little too soon… If the market has been slowing down – because of the ‘glow’ and desire to get more and more natural and invisible results – a few cosmetics innovations will actually take you by surprise this spring...
It is true there has been a loss of interest in self-tanners recently (not easy-to-use, lack of immediacy, little convincing and too visible results, no inventiveness in formulas…). DHA (dyhydroxyacetone) and erythrulose were overused, so to seduce new customers, brands needed to find a real added value that did not involve any new gesture (real hydration to replace the daily hydrating cream, creation of a pretty glow thanks to pigments…). Self-tanning capsules also had their day of glory. They did not require any additional product (they acted both on the face and body), nor did they create any blotches or orange effect. But with the triumph of the nude trend, self-tanners do need to be reinvented.
Clarins did it two years ago, with Radiance-Plus Golden Glow Booster for the face (15ml, €28), or for the body (30ml, €39), a real easy gesture designed to be added to any face or body care product – three drops are enough. Thanks to their success, they have just launched a new one for men: ClarinsMen Tanning Booster (15ml, €28).
Then, other brands emulated it, as can be seen with the Bronz'Express Face & Body Magic Radiance Drops Tailor-Made Self-Tanner by Académie Scientifique de Beauté (dropping bottle, 30ml, €37).
However, in 2017, none of the major French players on the self-tanner segment (L'Oréal Paris, Garnier Ambre Solaire, Lierac, Clarins, and even Vita Liberata, which was removed from Sephora stores…), launched any real new product. Even L'Oréal Paris only sells their Glam Bronze self-tanners on their online store! Of course, no one can create impacting innovations every year. So, renewal comes from niche brands, which have been releasing new original creations.
Sleeping masks are also spreading to self-tanners!
A newcomer in France on the self-tanner segment – this American brand is presented as the ‘world's self-tanner expert' – James Read has arrived exclusively in Marionnaud stores, with funny – typically American – messages like this one: ‘we think a self-tanner should be like a good lifting: absolutely undetectable!' The brand has developed two self-tanning night masks (Vita Liberata had initiated this gesture in 2016):
• Sleep Mask Tan Face (50ml, €34.90)
• Sleep Mask Tan Body (200ml, €49.90)
• Coffret Découverte Bronzage Progressif Sans Soleil (a discovery box for a progressive tan without any sun exposure), which comprises the tanning ritual essentials, including the two masks in travel size, 1 x 30ml + 2 x 50ml, €25)
Ingenious, they both make the skin get tanned and take care of it (aloe vera, cucumber, hyaluronic acid…), while you are sleeping, so you wake up with a nice, glowing complexion.
The very French Garancia brand also offers a Bal Masqué des Sorciers, Self-Tanning Stress-relieving High-Tech Night Mask in pharmacies (50ml, €22), for a ‘1-week holiday in 1 night'!
Progressive tinted self-tanners have become a must
They are convenient and provide colour immediately, preventing any excessive quantity or transfer on the clothes. The result is softer and can be modulated as you wish. The tan develops gradually and daily, application after application, according to your desires and the tan you want to get.
Among the latest launches, there is Gradual Tan Tinted Everyday Body Lotion, by St Tropez (200ml, €32.50), which adorns the skin with a golden veil to mask any imperfections. The perfume – a major reproach to classic self-tanners! – has been changed for the best, thanks to the new ‘wellness' fragrance, which does not produce the unpleasant smell of DHA.
The Face H20 Tan Mist by James Read (100ml, €27), in the tradition of Gradual Tan products, brightens the face with a golden tan. Boosted with moisturizing rose water, soothing aloe vera, and astringent witch hazel, it also fights against imperfections: and that is a good idea, since self-tanners often highlight them. Some of them are even enriched in evening powders and blurring mother-of-pearls for an additional pretty complexion effect:
• Dior Bronze Face Self-Tanning Jelly Gradual Sublime Glow, 50ml, €38
• Dior Bronze Body Self-Tanning Jelly Gradual Sublime Glow, 150ml, €38
• Perfect Bronze Self-Tanning Tinted Face Cream by Mary Cohr, 50ml, €29
• Sunny Magic Spray Face & Body Anti-Aging Progressive Tan by B.O.T.A.N, 125ml, €37
Here, the self-tanner can – almost – replace makeup: well done! As for Nivea, they offer a non-tinted progressive formula: Bronze Effect Progressive Tan Nourishing Milk for Matte or Light Skins (400ml, €6.80), which provides a healthy glow and hydrates the body (grape seed oil, gingko biloba + Nivea moisturizing Hydra IQ technology).
Self-tanner-free tinted skincare
Last option: self-tanner-free skincare products with golden pigments ‘idealize' and even the complexion. The tint can be removed with water and soap at night. These products are similar to sun makeup, and had already made a – shy – appearance last summer.
For example, there is the 365 Sun-Kissed Drops by Lancaster (20ml, €29). Its lightweight texture and natural colourants – derived from caramel! – instantaneously enhance the complexion to create a natural tan with a flattering naked skin finish. It is enriched with a tan-activating complex which helps stimulate the rise of melanin to the skin surface, day after day. This one can also be mixed with your day cream.
Masters Colors launches the Sun Tinted Gel Body & Leg in their Sun Color Collection (150ml, €27), which evens the complexion, quickly dries, and does not stain the clothes.
Ultimately, instead of pigments, the L'Occitane Terre de Lumière Radiant Balm (30ml, €8) has light reflectors to provide the face with a golden glow, thanks to light iridescence.
Ariane Le Febvre© CosmeticOBS-L'Observatoire des Cosmétiques