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Sunless Tanning Top Picks

Dear Dr. Dave and Dr. Dee,

I used to sunbathe every summer, but I'm getting older and more wrinkles at age 37, so I've decided to try a sunless tanning lotion. Do these sunless tans really work and how long will the tan stay? Are some products better than others? If I do decide to sunbathe, will the fake tan help protect me from the sun?


Sun Scared

Dear Sun Scared,

As the sun is the number one cause of aging and skin cancer, it's a good idea to cut down on the sunbathing. The tan from sunless tanning products will not protect you from the sun and a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 is still necessary. The sunless tan will appear instantly or in a couple hours and will last a few days up to a week depending on the product, so reapplication is necessary to maintain the tan.

Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after applying the self-tanning lotions or your palms will be tan.

A website called recommends these affordable sunless tanning products that are equivalent to drugstore prices instead of buying expensive department brands (

10 Best Sunless Tanning Products (alphabetical)

1. Bain de Soleil Mega Tan

2. Bain de Soleil Streakguarde Self Tanning Crème, Dark

3. Banana Boat Sunless Summer Color Tanning Foam, Deep Dark

4. Coppertone Oil Free Effortless Color Sunless Tanning Lotion

5. Coppertone Endless Summer Sunless Tanning Gradual Tan

Moisturizing Lotion

6. L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Lotion, Deep

7. L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Towelettes

8. Neutrogena Sunless Tanning Foam in Deep and Extra Deep

9. Neutrogena Sunless Tanning Spray Micro Mist Deep

10. Savage Bronze

For more information, see