SOOO I started self-tanning. Not because I felt like I needed to be tan, but honestly, only because I thought it would make a good blog post and Caitlin finally convinced me (after three years) to try it out.
So here I am, trying it out. I think I tried Jergens tanning lotion back in high school and all I remember was how much I hated it and how bad it smelled. I've been told it's much better than it was in 2007 so no judgment if you do use it!
Then at the end of high school, I (very dumbly) started fake tanning and spray tanning. IT WAS COOL and not at all dangerous at the time lol. I continued some into college and thankfully finally stopped altogether when I moved to New York. Since then it's been SPF 100 and protecting my skin from harmful rays.
I also adopted the "Pale and Proud" motto and embraced my very pale skin. It was who I was and I loved it because it kept me healthy and happy. I was never interested in self-tanner partially because of the girls who use it. I don't know about you, but I see some BAD, like B-A-D bad, self-tanner jobs on influencers out there. It's honestly the best advertising to not do it. You know?
So I didn't. I wasn't interested, and in Palm Beach, Caitlin had finally broken me down and I decided why not just test it out. I think the idea of new and improved products, and being smart about self-tanning helped me get there. Plus, I really loved the idea of these "tanning drops" that you mixed in with the lotion. It seemed easy enough so I hopped online to Sephora and Ulta and bought some items to try out.
I originally bought these products before we knew for sure we'd be staying inside for good, but honestly, it was kind of perfect timing because if I turned into an Oompa Loopa WHO WOULD KNOW? So look at this as a positive and as a time to try out self-tanner. See what it's all about, what you like, what you don't, and how it looks on you!
MicodermaMitt Exfoliating Mitt: Ok guys, this is possibly the BEST exfoliator I have ever used. A PR friend of mine (who has introduced me to a ton of cool brands and has yet to let me down) reached out asking to send this. I trust her, so I said yes. I received three: a body exfoliating mitt, a face exfoliating mitt and a makeup removing cloth. I've only used the body and the face mitts so far. The face was fine but didn't do too much since I'm pretty good at exfoliating already. But the body one ... OH MY GOSH.
Definitely read the instructions first because they're a little counterintuitive. In the shower, wet your body and the mitt, then wring out the mitt, step away from the water, and start exfoliating. Your body and the mitt need to be damp to create the proper friction and that's it! No need for anything else! When I tell you I turned into a snake in the shower because I completely shed my outer layer of skin I am not exaggerating.
It was coming off in PILLS of dead skin. I was covering the floor of the tub with them. It was crazy and gross, but also pretty cool and satisfying! I don't think I've ever used an exfoliating product that has worked so well before. A++++++++++++++
Isle of Paradise Primer Spray: I bought this out of curiosity. Out of the four times I've tanned, I've used it twice. It does a good job, but I don't think it is necessary. The big thing I noticed is that it smells. It doesn't smell bad at all, but it smells like a fake tan. If you're sensitive to that, I'd probably skip this one altogether!
That was actually one of the things I was most nervous about: the smell and smelling like fake tanner. Overall, the spray was strong but didn't bother me as much as I thought. Now I kind of actually like the smell. The first time I was applying it, Andrew asked what perfume I had on lol. It's definitely noticeable but not in a bad way.
Overall, the final verdict is still out, but I will keep testing. I had a few streaks both times I used it too (more on that below).
Isle of Paradise Medium Tanning Drops: This is the product we're talking about today! I ordered the medium because I'm pretty pale and I didn't think going too dark was in my best interest. I also didn't think the light shade made a lot of sense since I am trying to look tan. Like Goldilocks, I didn't want too hot or too cold, so I went for something in the middle.
The color is perfect for me. It's definitely buildable and you're able to control your color payoff by the number of drops you use. Overall, these drops are amazing. They are easy to use and they do a great job! I can't really compare it, or the price, to other tanning products seeing as this is the first one I've tried as an adult, but I am a fan!
Lotion: I just say lotion here because the one I used is way too expensive and is not all that good. It's fine, but not worth the price. You can use ANY lotion here. That's the best thing about these drops! Use whatever you want. You can even use your normal lotion/moisturizer when you apply it to your face!
Also, Isle Of Paradise (IOP) has a ton of other tanning products that I hope to try out soon like their tanning water, their mousse and their tanning mitt (which I did buy for my next trial of self-tanner!)
BUT!!!! If you want to try it out and need a good place to start, I really recommend this Glow Kit from IOP! It's an amazing deal and you're able to really get a feel for most of their products by spending a few more dollars than you would on just the drops themselves! How To Use + How MUCH To Use:
The best part about these drops is how easy they are to use! You mix in a certain number of drops into your moisturizer or lotion and apply like normal. The only real downside is that you can't see where it's applying, but you do have your lotion to see where it is rubbed in or not.
I usually do this after a shower. I find it's probably the ideal time since my body is clean, it's exfoliated and I'm nakie! I'll throw my hair into a bun (wet) and mix in the tanning drops with my lotion and apply all over my body.
YOU DO NOT NEED A TANNING GLOVE OR MITT WITH THIS PRODUCT. I don't use one and it's been totally fine! That is the whole point of the drops. You can mix them in with your lotion naturally.
If it's your first time using the product, I would start with small drops. I started with three my first time, and (for this post) went up to seven drops by the end of it to see how much you can build it up. The product says you can drop anywhere from 3-12 drops with ease. I'd suggest if you're using more than seven drops to go up to the darker color!
The way I apply it is pictured above: put some lotion in my hand, drop some IOP next to it and then mix them together in my hand until I feel like it's even. For my arms, I do them together (the photo above was for my arms) meaning after mixing the drops and the lotion together, I start rubbing it into both arms. If we're doing five drops this time around, the five drops would be split between both arms.
Then I move on to my chest and neck, doing the same thing: mixing and splitting the same batch all over. I go over my shoulders (front and back), armpits, chest (and boobs), and then up to my neck and around the back. To be totally honest -- because a lot of you asked about it -- I skip my back!! Especially right now I don't really care about it hahaha. So it's kind of white. I'll show you guys in IG stories today. Out of sight out of mind? If I was doing this for real or for a beach trip, I guess I would probably just ask Andrew to help me. Idk, my back is never really "out" for those to see.
I do the same thing for my stomach and lower back, just making sure I'm staying consistent with the same number of drops I used throughout my arms and chest. Then it's on to legs! If I were to do five drops for my arms, splitting the one batch, I would do five drops per leg. I hope this makes sense lol.
I do my legs individually so I can focus on them but also because they have a lot of surface area! I want to make sure I'm getting from butt cheek to toes and everything in between. I'm pretty liberal with applying to my thighs and shins, without worrying about my knees because it's just lotion. It's not going to build up in weird places! I cover my ankles and feet (sides and top, not the bottom) but I try to use less down there.
I apply the bulk of the lotion from my butt to my ankle and then take the little that's left to be rubbed in and cover my feet. I try to give it that natural fade.
After that is done, I throw on a robe and wash my hands. It's important to wash your hands after this to make sure they don't stain and give your fake tan away. They will get a little tan during the process of applying but there is no ticking clock. When you're done, wash with soap and water.
This is again a personal preference, but after that, I don't go back and apply anything to my hands. I do this for a couple reasons but I would say the biggest is I'm washing my hands raw right now from the virus and whatever I would put on there would be gone anyway. The next reason is that I'm home and don't really care to have a weird line at my wrists. Maybe that's just me! And finally, when I do get to go outside and be normal again, I wear bracelets that will hide the line either way. The biggest time I noticed a real "line" or difference was when I used seven drops!
For my face, I don’t put anything on it. I feel like my skin is too sensitive and acne-prone to risk it. I let my bronzer do the work when need be! I think the key is to not go too much darker than your natural skin tone so you don't have as strong as a line!
In terms of how often I re-apply, I've been doing it every two to three days. If I weren't just testing it out, I would probably do once a week but I was getting flooded with questions so I sped up the process a bit. I also haven't had time to let it fade on its own so I'm unsure what that process looks like. I can't imagine it would get blotchy because of how I applied it, but TBD!
After I apply it, I do my hair and then go about my day. Idk if it's just me being aware of it, but I don't feel totally dry until about an hour or two after I apply. I wear loose clothing and try to avoid anything that makes me sweat too much. I usually apply in the early afternoon!
I definitely am more tan than normal, but Andrew says he doesn't notice a difference, sooo you decide! And idk if it's the filter or just my computer screen, but I'm not as orange IRL as these photos may appear. I actually don't feel orange at all. I think it gives a really nice natural tan glow! Mistakes & Transfers:
I think my biggest fear would be blotchy spots and lines because those are always the most noticeable! Overall, I think it does a really nice job of not doing that, but there have been a few exceptions! I've been having the hardest time around my forearms for some weird reason. I keep getting this weird line on the inner part of my arm (the second picture above; first of my arm) and someone said that it might be because of how I sleep -- with my arm under the pillow.
Either way, it's weird and no matter what I do it's always there. Maybe that side of my arm doesn't take a tan very well? The best thing about self-tanning right now is that you can trial and error as MUCH as you want and no one will know the difference!
I also noticed more patches and splotches when I did the seven drops. I'm unsure if that was because seven is a lot or if it was because I didn't exfoliate before doing so. I would say it's probably best to exfoliate about once a week to make sure you're keeping your skin fresh.
When it comes to mistakes, there's really nothing to fix it. I'll try rubbing it off with the mitt, but it hasn't helped that much so far. IOP also sells a "magic self-tan eraser" but it doesn't have the best reviews so I didn't feel inclined to buy it!
In terms of rubbing off or transferring, I've had only one issue. But I also don't do it right before bed. I give it time to set in and dry down. The only issue I had was during a workout when I was wearing a white bra (pictured above) and the sweat of the workout made it transfer. I applied the self-tanner the day before and was going to shower after a workout, but I noticed where I was sweating. The bra got a little discolored.
It washed right out and I've had no issues outside of that! I have white bedding and white towels as well so that's something to note! Even when it did transfer on my bra, there were no spots or marks on my body that indicated it came off. I will see it sometimes also come off on cotton pads when I'm doing my skincare routine. Toner on my neck will come back a little darker, but again, no issue with my actual skin looking blotchy!
WHEW! That was long, but I hope it was helpful! I'm going to stop using the IOP to see how it fades away and how long it takes. Then I will move onto testing Loving Tan! Feel free to leave me any questions below!! #AtHome #Review #IsleOfParadise #Beauty #Lifestyle