Glow Your Own Way: How to Self-Tan for Acne-Prone Skin

4 min read

When it comes to self-tanning for acne-prone skin, it's essential to take extra care to avoid aggravating your skin and causing breakouts.

By following a few simple steps and using the right products, such as tanning drops or tanning mousse, you can still achieve a beautiful, sun-kissed glow without compromising your skin's health. Here are some expert-backed tips to help you self-tan effectively:

Step 1- Prepare your skin:


Start by thoroughly cleansing your face and body to remove any dirt, oil, or makeup. Use a gentle cleanser that is suitable for acne-prone skin.

One option to consider is the Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm, an oil-based cleanser that effectively removes impurities and makeup while nourishing the skin. It contains a blend of precious oils, including elderberry, starflower, and optimega™ oils, which help to dissolve excess oil and unclog pores without stripping the skin.


When exfoliating your skin before self-tanning, it's crucial to choose a mild exfoliator that won't aggravate your acne-prone skin.

One option to consider is the Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant. It is a popular product that contains salicylic acid, a beta hydroxy acid known for its ability to penetrate and exfoliate within the pores.

This gentle exfoliant helps to remove dead skin cells, unclog pores, and improve the overall texture of your skin.


When moisturizing acne-prone skin before self-tanning, choose a lightweight, non-comedogenic moisturizer. Cetaphil Oil Control Moisturizer SPF 30 is a reputable option formulated for oily and acne-prone skin.

It provides hydration and broad-spectrum sun protection without clogging pores. You can learn more about it on the official Cetaphil website.

Remember to patch-test new products and consult a dermatologist if you have concerns or specific skin needs.

Step 2 - Choose the right self-tanning product:

When choosing a self-tanning product for acne-prone or sensitive skin, it's important to opt for non-comedogenic formulas that won't clog pores or cause breakouts.

Tanologist offers a range of self-tanning products, including gradual tanners. These products are formulated with consideration for sensitive skin types, allowing for a gradual build-up of tan while minimizing the risk of irritation.

Check the ingredient list and read the reviews

Avoid self-tanners that contain heavy oils or comedogenic ingredients such as cocoa butter or coconut oil, as these can potentially worsen acne. Also, read reviews of others with similar skin types. Whilst this will not confirm how the product will work for you, as everyone is different, it may clarify further which products are more suitable for you.

Step 3- Apply the self-tanner

Use a tanning mitt

To ensure an even application, use a tanning mitt or glove to apply the self-tanner. This helps to prevent your hands from getting stained and allows for smoother, streak-free results.

You can find these applicators on beauty retailer sites like Sephora, which offer a variety of options to choose from.

Start with a small area

Begin by testing the self-tanner on a small area of your body to check for any adverse reactions or irritation. If your skin reacts negatively, discontinue use immediately.

Blend carefully

Pay extra attention to blending the self-tanner around acne-prone areas, such as the jawline or forehead. Take your time to ensure a seamless application and avoid excessive product buildup.

Nothing should stop you from getting that gorgeous glow!

Self-tanning can be a great way to achieve a sun-kissed glow without the harmful effects of UV rays. However, if you have acne-prone skin, it is important to take these extra precautions to avoid breakouts. Follow our advice, and there’s no reason why you can’t still glow with the flow!


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