I’ve Found The Best Fake Tan On The Market, No Really!

Random streaks?

Smelling like a Digestive biscuit? Transforming into an orange right before your very own eyes…

Sound familiar? Why is it that fake tan causes more problems than maybe it’s worth? Even some of the spray tans I have had in the past aren’t completely perfect. But it would seem a lot of us still need that sun kissed glow, it gives us an air of confidence and makes us feel slimmer.

Picture of lots of people sunbathing on a beach

Photo Cred: Mike Wilson / Unsplash

So how to pick the best one? I have read tons of articles on those swearing by the best fake tan and on being a marketers dream, off I trot to the shops and purchase them all, only to be disappointed once again that what they claim to do, just don’t for me. I have spent an absolute fortune testing various tans and then leaving the full can in the bathroom cupboard. What a waste of money.

I have that kind of skin which seems to take a hardcore tan solution to take and actually make me look brown. Most of them I have tried give me that horrible wet dog smell and I persevere for hours, sometimes overnight hoping that I will wake up to be a bronzed goddess, only to find absolutely no change, not even a slight tint! Annoyed isn’t the word.

What do you look for in a fake tan?

For me it’s something that can give me an immediate colour without me looking like bright orange. I don’t mind keeping it on for a few hours if it is going to have staying power once I have had a shower. I don’t even mind a slight smell but I would rather not smell like a wet dog if I can help it.

As Autumn is now upon us and Winter will soon be here, it’s time to find the perfect fake tan. So I have reviewed some of these supposed top fake tans and found my ultimate favourite, which actually does work and has an affordable price tag!

St Tropez Gradual Tan In Shower

This tan says it will give a healthy looking colour as part of your daily shower routine, especially if you use it for 3 consecutive days. The instructions are simple, shower then apply to wet skin and wait for 3 minutes.

So the actual application is super easy, it glides on your skin without a problem however I wasn’t actually sure if I had covered all parts of my body.

I religiously followed the instructions, towel dried and then went about my usual night-time routine and got into bed. Within an hour that digestive smell started to waft its way up the duvet. I just can’t stand it. I persevered with a bad ass attitude of, “No come on I am going to wake looking like I’ve been on holiday for 2 weeks!”

I didn’t. In fact, not one single part of me had a tiny weeny bit of a tan. I just stank. For days.

St Tropez Gradual Tan Classic

Ok so I was hopeful once again, it says classic after all so you can’t go wrong right?

This time it claims to give your skin an instant hint of bronze, awesome I had transparent legs so let’s give it a go.

I actually applied this in the office bathroom, who cares if you smell in the office? Although no-one actually noticed, I am not sure if that means I usually have an odd body odour or whether I just got away with it!


I waited and waited, past the 4-8 hours it suggests but not one incy-weeny-teeny bit of a tan. I just stank. Again.

James Read Self Tan

This brand is new to me, I have never used or read many reviews about this tanning product other than it offers protection of SPF50 and gives a warm shimmery glow after a few hours. My initial thought was that it must be quite good because it was hard to get hold of, it was sold out online for ages!

This is a clear mist and it is so light you barely feel it has landed on your skin. So much so it dries immediately and yes there was a slight smell but nowhere near as bad as some of the others. I challenge any firm to please produce a tanning product that doesn’t smell…please!

It gives a nice base, a natural colour and I didn’t come across any streaks nor did it wear off in patches (you know how when it’s wearing off all the tan seems to gather in one spot and go patchy?!). This one I do recommend as it is so easy to apply and actually does what it says on the tin. It is also a favourite with the celebs!

FakeBake Airbrush Instant Self-Tan

Ah FakeBake, this takes me back to my younger days when I used to have the spray tans. They used to be good but I always felt I had more of an orange tint to me than a natural sunkissed look.

This is the Airbrush version which I thought would be pretty easy to apply. It also says streak free…winner.

Except unfortunately for me it gave a cloggy clumpy orange appearance, I had to shower immediately so I didn’t have major orange patches. I didn’t find it easy to apply. Maybe it’s better to stick to the spray tans for this one.

St Moriz Professional Self Tanning Mist

Now this is a little beauty with a reasonable price tag. I think I got my bottle from Poundland but I do know you can get this for a super-duper £5 in selected stores.


It is really easy to apply, the fake tan odour is still there but the even natural bronze colour which develops is a winner. I love the fact that there is an affordable product which actually does the job. It is much better if you use a mitt to avoid streaks (this is a bit of a streaky product without one) and also to avoid more of the mist going on the floor than on your skin. What I also like about this product is that on the first application it gives you an immediate natural colour and it has some staying power.

But my ultimate winner….
SEPHORA’s Tinted Self-Tanning Body Mist

This is my absolute favourite which I discovered when I lived in Singapore. It is Sephora’s own brand, ticking all the boxes and is affordable at just SGD18 (approximately GBP10, USD13). It’s a light spray giving a gorgeous sun kissed natural colour the minute it lands on your skin and somehow it seems impossible to have streaks (believe me I tested it!) and it hardly smells….yes I know! I can’t believe I have just said that either!

The tan lasts for days, it has been a week since I last applied and it fades naturally without any patches. The only downside is that it is not sold in the UK yet. I stocked up on my last visit to Singapore and I am currently placing a new bulk online order which you can do here.

Trust me, this is a product you definitely won’t want to run out of!

Do you have a favourite tanning product? I would love to hear of any other good ones out there!

N x

So hey you, yes you..I want to thank you for reading my post. Whether you’ve stuck around since the beginning of my journey or whether you’re new to my blog, thank you for reading and supporting. I genuinely appreciate it.




  1. August 15, 2017 / 9:32 pm

    Ok i’m kinda upset you didn’t like St Tropez Gradual Tan Classic…. I love this one… Now I’m pale as pale can be and it turns up on me.
    St Moriz…. I find it goes green 🙁
    SEPHORA’s Tinted Self-Tanning Body Mist, i’m on the look out for this bad boy now!! So nice of you to show me something I can’t get here though hahaha! If you find it let me know!!
    Have you tried Cocoa Brown? Another fav of mine AND it’s a Irish company so whoop whoop form me 🙂

    • niccimcshane
      August 15, 2017 / 9:34 pm

      Oh sorry didn’t mean to upset you my darling ha! The St Moriz it goes green on my mitt but not on my skin thank god I wonder if this is all down to skin types?!! Not tried Cocoa Brown where can I get it? Are you back now? Xxxz

      • August 16, 2017 / 10:00 pm

        😂😂 shame on you hahahh
        It could be skin types actually…. There’s a thought!! Cocoa brown is now I’m Primark!! She’s all over home but just there here in UK!!
        I am!! Back in work til Friday then off to Hull!!! I work in Greenwich actually so if you wanna meet up after work next week…. Shout 😘 xxx

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