Dry Shampoo + Self Tanner

It’s no secret that I am so not a “beauty guru.” I’m lucky if I walk out of the door with properly applied bronzer. My makeup routine is fairly basic. I try to control my hair, but I generally fail. Bottom line, this is going to be somewhat of a beauty post, so bear with me. (And, if you’re new around here… beauty posts almost always mean I need your opinion and input!!)
But I recently hopped on the dry shampoo bandwagon!!! I’m not sure what took me so long! It’s amazing!!!!! (Exclamation points both necessary and intended.)
I have super thick, unruly hair. To the point where it actually is too crazy on the first day that I wash it. Shower caps have always been my friend for as long as I can remember. (I look like an absolute grandma, but they’re hair-savers!) Anyway, even though 90% of my hair is good to go for multiple days in a row, the roots eventually get not-so-pretty. Blasting my roots with the dry shampoo and then dragging the brush through the hair is a great quick fix. I know that as we move into the summer, it’s going to be even more of a timesaver.
So far, so good. It’s doesn’t have a scent, which I like. And it also is completely invisible. With someone with super super super dark hair, I have to be careful about sprays. (Sometimes even regular hairspray will make my hair look like a granny!)
Okay and while we’re in the realm of beauty… I desperately need some self tanner. With warmer weather fast approaching (hallelujah!), cute shorts, skirts, and dresses are coming out in my closet finally! My ridiculously pale legs, however, are not as cute.
Have you jumped on the dry shampoo bandwagon? What brand works best for you?
What brand of self tanner do you recommend?

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Highly recommend the Jergens 3 days to glow lotion – it builds up more slowly so you dont get streaky spots and looks natural.

Nena Annette

I agree with Claire! Jergens 3 day is great. I'm a very pale person, and I used it a while back and all my friends complimented that I'd gotten some sun.


Pssst brand makes a dry shampoo specifically for curly hair. I also recommend just embracing the pale skin – in my opinion self-tanner looks like what it is: fake.

Katy Z

The Jergens lotion is great! I believe Dove makes a good one too. They don't look orange and fake because it is gradual build up and isn't over done.


Love dry shampoo As for self tanner I swear by St. Tropez mousse self tanner. I've tried just about everything and nothing works as great. It's comes with a mitt so you avoid tanned hands and it shows up immediately so you can see where you're applying it-which scared me a little at first but works out great!


I am super, super pale and the jergens one is awful, it doesn't come in enough of a range of colors so even the lightest one will give you a super fake tan. I highly suggest tan towels!!! They don't leave you streaky, orange or unnatural looking – I think a natural looking fake tan is so hard for pale people like me, but tanning towelettes have been my life savers.

Sarah McGovern

I use the Jergens Daily Glow a few times a week. I'd recommend that one over the 3 days to glow one because it's a bit less intense – I have fair skin as well.


For Dry Shampoo: I've used Oscar Blandi, Suave, and Lush No Draught dry shampoos. Lush's smells the best (citrus) but it the most PITA to apply as it's a loose powder and not a spray. But all three work great. Suave is obviously the most financially snesible option.

Self Tanner: I swear by the Comodynes Self-Tanning towels, which you can get on birchbox and amazon. There is a noticeable color difference within 3-4 hours, but you don't end up orange. The tan only lasts for about 4 days, but it's a good base for vacation or in the early days of spring and summer when you need to not blind people while working on your coloring.


Perfect timing for this post! After a friend's recommendation, I settled on Kiehl's self tanner (which I just applied this weekend). It's a little streaky, but hopefully my self tanning skills will improve. I really want to try St. Tropez after reading the reviews.

Bonnie J

From one VERY fair skinned girl to another, I love Neutrogena Micro-mist spray. It dries quickly, develops quickly, and gives a nice bronze color. Plus, it's only about $9 so I'm not afraid to use it liberally. Just make sure you exfoliate before applying to make sure it develops evenly.


I just use the jergens daily glow moisturizer, or if I'm in a hurry I'll use the jergens 3 day express!

Hillcrest Acres

I have been a self tanner for years and have tried every brand from the very expensive to drug store brands. I too love the St. Tropez self tanner. It's the only one I use now for my body. As for face self tanners, I use one from Lancome.


I'm about as pale as you and I hate most self-tanners because they tend to smell, are super messy, and irritate my sensitive skin. However, I love Palmer's Cocoa Butter Natural Bronze Lotion. It's cheap, is light lotion formula which leaves skin soft, easy to apply, it smells good, and there's an immediate natural color payoff.

Julia Robinson

St. Tropez: expensive BUT lasts a long time on the skin, doesn't have an atrocious smell, gives a very natural & darker tan, quick color pay-off

Jergen's lotion: cheap & found at most drug stores, has that self-tanner smell (kind of smells like pretzel goldfish to me), good for those who haven't used a self-tanner before, build-able color but won't create a very beach-bronzed tan

During winter I have auburn hair, very fair skin & freckles. When I used to live in Philly, these were my saving graces. Now that I'm living in Florida, it's not so necessary (I guess you know this, seeing as we have lived similar/inverted lives). BUT when I do find myself wanting a glow for a special function down here in sunny FL, I prefer the St. Tropez because it's an instant tan rather than the gradual Jergen's lotion.

My Recommendations: STAY AWAY from the spray-on self-tanners; they run a very high risk of developing streaky. Lotion allows you to feel where you've already put the lotion on & where you've missed. SHAVE & EXFOLIATE in the shower and apply the self-tanner immediately after you've dried yourself off. This will keep you from getting dark & light patches of tan. PUT A VERY THIN LAYER of regular lotion on your kneecaps, elbows, ankles, & any places that have dry skin & allow it to completely soak in BEFORE you apply any self tanner. These areas tend to really soak up the product, leaving you with dark & orange-y knees & elbows (awkward…). USE REGULAR LOTION every day because self-tanners tend to make skin dry.

Good luck!


I use the Jergen's gradual tan lotion. The smell bothers me, but apparently they reformulated and the smell is gone (I haven't bought a new bottle yet so I can't attest to this). I like that it's gradual and looks decently natural…it's less obvious that you're self-tanning, compared to being pale one day and dark the next.

I've been looking for a good dry shampoo so I can try to go a day without washing my hair…I'll look into the Julep one as well as the others that have been mentioned in the comments!


I know a lot of people swear by St Tropez, but I can't say enough good things about Jergens Natural Glow foam self tanner. It's subtle but gets the job done!

xx, Eleanor


I recently jumped on the dry shampoo bandwagon myself, and absolutely LOVE it. I use the plain ole Suave variety, which works beautifully for me (but I have medium/dark blonde hair, so there's no real issue with residue for me – it might not work well with darker locks).

As for self-tanner? My absolute favorite ever has to be the Tanwise lotion from Sally Beauty Supply. It's cheap (like $8 or $9 for the bottle), tinted, never streaks or cracks, and while it looks really pink/weirdly sunburn-y after first applying on pale pale skin (like mine) it develops into a gorgeous brown glow in just a couple hours, with absolutely no orange-y tones. Best of all? No parabens, like most drugstore brands are loaded with. 🙂

Bethanie Perrin

For dry shampoo, the best drug store option is definitely suave! BUT only the keratin version. You can get it on amazon for around $3 a bottle!

Self-tannerwise, jergens lotion or St. Tropez!


I'm pale too and my advice is to NOT USE the Jergen's 3-Day Express. I tried that a week before my senior prom and was streaky ALL OVER my legs. Luckily I was wearing a floor-length dress so nobody could really see, but it would have been a disaster otherwise. Jergens Natural Glow is better, but not great. I think St. Tropez is probably your best bet (or even just wait for some actual sun)

Kara Hawk

Bath and Body Works Moisturizing Gradual Tanner with Aloe Vera is my favorite! It works so well, and is only about $15 a bottle! I'm very pale, and it doesn't make me orange…which is a plus! It's a good one to try 🙂

Allie Abroad

St. Tropez one night only is a great quick fix! But St. Tropez gradual moisturizer and Jergen's fair skin tones gradual moisturizer are great for building over a few days.

Cairee Alyse

I want to try dry-shampoo again. I just don't know if I will find one that works. My hair never lasts more than 1 day, sometimes less. It is too humid and my hair is too frizzy (and straight.. worst combo) so dry shampoo would be a friend if it didn't make my hair too oily. I guess I should try other formulas!

Lots of people said Jergens for self tanning and I agree it is a good, inexpensive lotion tanner that wasn't streaky for me or orange-y. I am pretty pale too.


The Bare Minerals self tanner is perfect in every way. I am very pale on my legs and a bit darker on my arms but this tanner made everything look even and I had wonderful color. There was no streaking and the tan stayed for quite a while without reapplication. I've never tried St. Tropez but I've heard wonderful things about it as well. 🙂

Christine Bearer

I've never tanned naturally and have always struggled with self-tanners and my pale skin. However, Kate Somerville sunless tanning towelettes have changed my life! I've tried so many different tanners from Sephora and Kate Somerville definitely tops them all. It gives pale skin a very natural glow and one application lasts about a week.

Allie Emme

I can totally relate to the crazy-just-washed-first-day-hair. It's a pain. I've only tried drugstore dry shampoos (the Tresemme one) but I wouldn't recommend it because it leaves sort of a grey cast.
xx Allie

Rebecca McKevitz

Banana Boat Summer Color! There is a lighter and a darker shade which are both great! The smell isn't too strong and it looks better and better the longer you wear it. Plus, it's totally affordable! Good luck!


I'm fair and used Bath and Body Works True Blue – Strike Gold tanner!

It goes on with a brownish tint so that you can see where you've applied it (reducing streaks) and colors develops in a few hours or overnight. If I apply it at the beginning of the week (or twice for darker color) it lasts until the next week! The smell is a little musky but not bad and usually fades my morning if I apply it before bed.

Totally worth the $15 – I love it!

Breanna Firth

Best tanner that actually makes you tan? Victorias secret. Any of their products or Pink products that say "long lasting tan" on the back will make you look like you have been in the sun! goodluck

Laura C

Kate Somerville360 Tanning Towelettes. No streaks, minimal dry time, great smell, and the perfect bronze shade.


I always use baby powder (instead of dry shampoo), cheaper! Also just got jergens tanning lotion. It smells a little less weird with each version they come out with!