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How to Use Self-Tanner on Your Face

Sun Care & Self-Tanning

How to Use Self-Tanner on Your Face How to Use Self-Tanner on Your Face How to Use Self-Tanner on Your Face

By now, you may have mastered using self-tanner on your body. After all, applying one is an easy way to help fake a summer tan—even in the middle of winter. But using self-tanner on your face can be a little more daunting than applying it to the rest of your body. That’s because you can always cover up your legs if your faux glow turns out streaky—but it’s a little harder to hide self-tanner mistakes on your face. That being said, there are a few tips you can follow to help make applying self-tanner to your face easy. Below, learn how to apply self-tanner to your face like a pro.

1. Cleanse Your Face

Before you apply self-tanner to your face, cleanse your skin. Try a no-rinse cleansing option, like the L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof - All Skin Types, which removes makeup (even waterproof!) and cleans dirt and impurities. Just sweep a micellar water-soaked cotton pad across your face and you’re ready to move on to the next step.

2. Gently Scrub Your Skin

If you’re a faux tan fan, then you know that one of the most important steps you can take before application is exfoliating. Dead skin cells can build up on the surface of your skin, and this can cause your self-tanner to go on streaky. So, use a facial scrub, like the L’Oréal Paris Go 360° Clean Deep Exfoliating Scrub, to help slough away dead skin cell buildup before applying self-tanner.

3. Moisturize

After exfoliating, apply a moisturizer to help create a smooth base for your self-tanner. The L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal/Oily Skin, L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal/Dry Skin, and L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Extra Dry Skin are formulated with hyaluronic acid and aloe vera water to help provide long-lasting hydration. Smooth your water-based moisturizer of choice over your face and neck.

4. Pick Your Self-Tanner—and Apply It the Right Way

When it comes to choosing the right self-tanner to apply to your face, you have two options. You can use wash-off bronzing makeup or a more traditional self-tanner. Below are two products to consider from L’Oréal Paris—just remember to extend the self-tanner past your jawline to your neck, otherwise it’ll be super-noticeable that your tan is fake.

L’Oréal Paris Sublime Bronze™ Summer Express Wash-Off Face Bronzer Cream SPF 20: This wash-off, transfer-resistant bronzer cream provides long-lasting hydration and a tanned golden finish.

How to use it: After moisturizing, lightly squeeze a small amount of product into your hand and apply it directly onto your face and neck using your fingertips to blend it in. Wash your hands thoroughly after use—and let your skin dry completely before putting on makeup or clothes. Wash it off with your L’Oréal Paris facial cleanser of choice at the end of the day. Try the L’Oréal Paris Ideal Clean™ All Skin Types Foaming Gel Cleanser, which lifts dirt and impurities, without drying out skin.

L’Oréal Paris Sublime Bronze™ Self-Tanning Serum: This self-tanning serum goes on streak-free, dries quickly, and can provide long-lasting color.

How to use it: Once you’re done moisturizing, pump the serum directly into your palms and apply it evenly to your face. Let your skin dry completely before getting dressed or applying makeup. Use daily for three days for a gorgeous-looking summer glow.

5. Match Your Body to Your Face

Of course, the key to creating a believable-looking summer tan is applying self-tanner all over your body so that your color looks even. The L’Oréal Paris Sublime Bronze™ Wash-Off Body Makeup Lotion is a full-coverage lotion that leaves skin looking bronzed and radiant while providing long-lasting hydration, plus, it washes off with soap and water. As you did with your face, cleanse and exfoliate first, then smooth the lotion evenly onto clean skin using your hands. Apply a second time for a more intense result, then wash your hands thoroughly. Wait until your skin is completely dry before slipping into your clothes.

For more self-tanner options, read our guides to self-tanning towelettes and self-tanning mist.