Clear Self-Tanner Is Officially a Thing, So You Can Say Goodbye to Stained Clothes

December 10, 2018
Nicolette Pezza
By: Nicolette Pezza | by L'Oréal
Clear Self-Tanner Is Officially a Thing, So You Can Say Goodbye to Stained Clothes

Are you a lover of sun-kissed, bronzed skin? If you’re going about achieving a tan by lounging outdoors or in tanning beds, we urge you to reconsider. The American Academy of Dermatology states that unprotected exposure to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, and tanning beds, could cause premature signs of skin aging including wrinkles, age spots, and fine lines. Is a temporary tan worth damaging your skin? Not in the slightest. 

But that doesn’t mean you have to look pasty and pale all year long. You could use a sunless tanning product, like a self-tanner, to achieve a faux glow without the skin damage. Still, while a self-tanner is a great alternative to basking under the sun or within a tanning booth, some formulas can stain your sheets, clothes, and even your fingers. That’s why we’re stoked about a new clear self-tanner trend that is about to change sunless tanners as we know them. Keep reading to find out why clear self-tanner is an absolute must-have!


A clear self-tanner, as you may have guessed, is a self-tanner that has a clear formula. Unlike traditional self-tanners that boast shades darker than your natural skin tone, a clear self-tanner does not. The benefit of a clear self-tanner is that there’s no need to worry about stains on your clothing, bed linens, or fingers during and after application, one of the most common complaints of using a self-tanner to begin with. In other words, a clear self-tanner takes all of the stress out of sunless tanning while still giving you a natural-looking tan.


Ready to get in on the clear self-tanner trend? Of course you are! Below, discover a step-by-step tutorial for a seamless clear self-tanner application.

Step #1: Remove Unwanted Body Hair

Before applying any type of self-tanner, you’ll want to remove any unwanted body hair. Since shaving or waxing after applying self-tanner could cause the color to fade or look uneven, we recommended eliminating any body hair beforehand. This will prevent the need to shave or wax directly after your self-tanner has developed.


Step #2: Exfoliate Your Skin

To help promote an even-looking tan, you’ll want your skin to feel soft and smooth. Remove dead skin cells (which can cause your skin’s surface to feel rough) and promote smooth skin by exfoliating prior to applying a clear self-tanner. To exfoliate your face, try the L’Oréal Paris Pure-Sugar Resurface & Energize Kona Coffee Scrub, which is formulated with three pure sugars and real Kona Coffee Grounds sourced directly from the Kona Coast of Hawaii. 

Step #3: Moisturize Your Skin

After exfoliating, it’s important to apply moisturizer or cream to help lock in any lost moisture. Use the L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect Hydra Nutrition Manuka Honey All Over Balm - Face/Neck/Chest/Hands to wrap your skin in soothing moisture. 

Step #4: Apply a Clear Self-Tanner

Now that your skin is prepped, it’s time to whip out a clear self-tanner. The L’Oréal Paris Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Water Mousse boasts a clear, streak-free finish that’s super easy to apply. The formula has a lightweight, water-like texture that feels invisible and hydrating. Self-Tanning Water Mousse can deliver smooth and soft skin with a natural-looking tan and even finish. To help ensure you don’t miss a spot, tan your body section by section. The color will develop gradually, so allow a few hours before you see results. For a longer-lasting tan, you can apply Self-Tanning Water Mousse up to three times over 12-24 hours. 


After spending time perfecting your clear self-tanner application, you’ll want to keep your bronze glow lasting as long as possible. Here are some tips and tricks to get the most out of your faux glow:


Tip #1: Keep Your Skin Hydrated

One of the easiest ways to help ensure your self-tanner lasts is to keep your skin hydrated. This can help prevent your tan from cracking, flaking, or becoming blotchy over time due to dry skin. We recommend the L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care - Normal/Dry Skin for intense and continuous hydration.

Tip #2: Wear Loose Clothing

While a clear self-tanner can help prevent color transfer onto your clothes, you’ll still want to ensure you’re wearing clothing with a looser fit. Tight clothing can cause your tan to rub off before it’s had the chance to develop.

Tip #3: Use a Tanning Mitt

If you’re using a lotion or mousse formula, using a tanning mitt will help keep the palms of your hands from getting stained.


Tip #4: Apply Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen

While you may be rocking a fake tan, it’s important not to forget to apply broad-spectrum sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Knock out two self-tanner hacks by using a moisturizer formulated with sunscreen, like the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Bright Reveal Brightening Day Moisturizer SPF 30.

Need help finding the best self-tanner for your skin? Check out our ultimate guide to self-tanners here!

Read more

Back to top