I Tried a Self-Tanner With a 30k-Person Waiting List—Here Are My Honest Thoughts
Ever since high school, I've been obsessed with being tan. It's the one self-esteem booster that anyone can reap the benefits from—with instant results. It doesn't matter how much you weigh, how clear your skin is looking, how well you dress—a beautiful bronzed glow looks good on everyone.
Tanning is something I do for myself. It makes me feel good. It's something that I've always relied on to make my feel more confident immediately, regardless of what's going on in my head. It may sound silly or surface-level, but everyone has their thing, and tanning is mine.
I don't use cancer-causing tanning beds or lay out in the sun, so my mode of color is applied via spray-tanning or self-tanner. Pre-COVID, I'd get spray-tanned regularly at the local salon. But since March, I've let my skin go au naturel since salons were closed. I also wanted to see just how long I could go without driving myself insane—no one would see me anyway. Months had gone by, and I just wasn't feeling like myself.
It was definitely a sign when I received a press release about the restock of Coco & Eve's critically acclaimed Sunny Honey Bali Bronzing Foam in Ultra Dark. I immediately reached out to review the coveted product, which had a massive waiting list of 30k! A rep for the brand happily obliged, and sent me a sample.
This handy item (which retails for $39.90 individually and $46.90 as a bundle with applicator mitt and kabuki brush) is said to look "better than real," with "no streaks or orange tones, thanks to an innovative green-grey base."
It additionally promises "the best smell in life: No bad, biscuit-y smells, thanks to tropical mango and guava fragrance."
Aside from the rich tone I was looking to achieve, I was also drawn to the product's actual skincare benefits—it contains anti-cellulite and anti-aging properties, and it's made with a unique CellushapeTM formula to hydrate and firm the skin, while blurring imperfections. It's also enriched with raw virgin coconuts and mandarin oils rich in amino acids to deeply hydrate, firm and nourish.
Following a fresh bathe and shave, I couldn't wait to dive into my new bottle. The first thing I noticed (aside from the cute, feminine packaging, of course), was the aroma. The brand lived up to its promise of not smelling like your traditional ol' self-tanner. I felt like I was instantly transported to the tropics—from my West Hollywood bathroom.
I grabbed the mitt, spritzed on two pumps of product, and proceeded to go in up and down strokes, starting with the legs and spritzing some more and going over the rest of my body (only up to my neck, as I use a separate non-foam spray for the face). The color shows up immediately, and it's pretty dark. It's important to go over certain spots multiple times or else it can have a discoloration effect. It's also important to avoid the actual toenails, but to get as much of the toes as you can (including those tricky in-between areas). As soon as I was done, I washed my hands. That's the only area you should immediately rinse.
I let the solution dry for about three to five minutes and got dressed for my day. I already felt worlds of difference, and I was completely streak-free. I walked over to a friend's house to do a socially distant hangout, and the first thing she said was, "Wow, you look hot!—and so tan!"
Whenever I go tanning, I'm more inclined to dress cute and put a little more effort into my overall appearance. It's a package deal. Not gonna lie, I was feeling myself that day (as evidenced by the photo my friend took of me below).
Six days went by, and the color remarkably remained. Usually, self-tanner of any kind disperses from my skin by day three. Granted, the color had lightened quite a bit by this point (the stomach more than the rest of my body), but I would still look in the mirror and think I looked "tan." Also, unlike other products, when the color does start to fade, it does it cohesively and doesn't leave weird splotches.
The only issue I encountered with the product is it does leak from the bottle. It's important to keep it somewhere out of harm's way (I keep it in a plastic ziplock with its mitt).
Needless to say, the major pop of color brought on by this incredible formula has done wonders for my self-esteem. The deep bronze, combined with my long, dark hair makes me feel exotic. Bright colors look a million times better on me—everything just works.
And for a whopping $40? What a steal. Individual spray tans (if you use the high-quality VersaPro) typically cost around $45 a pop. I've tried many, many self-tanners in my day (and some have indeed been solid). Coco & Eve's product definitely ranks among the highest. Its longevity, combined with scent and ease of use make it a dependable go-to when I need a pop of color. It's easy to get down amid quarantine, but having this immediate confidence-booster will help me through the days ahead!
If you love being tan as much as we do, you'll want to see the gift bag we received from THIS summer soirée last year!