If you’re a regular here, you know I don’t review tanning products often. I’m proud of my pale skin and I don’t see the need of turning into an Oompa Loompa just cos Allure says it’s cool.
But I do like antiaging serums. And when I heard that Coola combined the two, a sunless tan with an antiaging serum, what can I say? Curiosity got the better of me.
I had to try it. Here are my thoughts on the new Coola Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum and Sunless Tan Dry Oil Mist (cos I’d just look weird if my face were three shades darker than my body….)
How Do Sunless Tanners Work?
A little science lesson first. Sorry ladies, this is just how we roll here at BWB. 🙂
9 times out of 10, a sunless tanner uses dihydroxyacetone (DHA). It’s a sugar derived from sugar cane that reacts with the amino acids on the top of your skin, turning them a darker brownish hue.
How strong the tan is depends on how much DHA is in the product. The higher the dose, the more chance you have of looking like an Oompa Loompa.
The lower the dose, the subtler the tan (and the longer it takes to develop). I don’t know about you but this is a case when I don’t mind taking things slow.
Just one warning: when exposed to UV rays, DHA starts producing free radicals like crazy. Slather on your sunscreen afterwards!
Related: Spotlight On DHA
Struggling to put together a skincare routine that minimises wrinkles, prevents premature aging, and gives your complexion a youthful glow? Download your FREE “Best Anti-Aging Skincare Routine” to get started (it features product recommendations + right application order):
Coola Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum
DHA is the third ingredient in Coola Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum but its dose is still quite low compared to most sunless tanners out there.
How do I know? The first three days I used it, my skin didn’t change colour at all. It’s only on the 4th day that I started to see a change. And even then it looked more like a subtle glow than a tan.
I have to admit this is the kind of look I like. Just a hint of colour and a radiant glow instead than a full blown tan. So after this, I stopped using it every day. But if you want a proper tan, be consistent and use it every single day.
The texture is very lightweight, more like a toner than a serum. It dries quickly and it’s slightly hydrating thanks to that little sprinkle of argan oil and hyaluronic acid, a moisture magnet that attracts water from the air and drops it into the skin.
It’s also sprinkled with antioxidants to help you fight premature wrinkles. Those are always a welcome addition!
Related: Why You Need Hyaluronic Acid In Your Skincare Routine, No Matter Your Skin Type
Coola Sunless Tan Dry Oil Mist
I have to admit mists aren’t my fave way to get a self-tan. I’m always worried I won’t cover every little spot and will be left with small patches of skin here and there that are lighter than the rest. And that means that I take more time to apply it.
Coola Sunless Tan Dry Oil Mist gives me a darker tan than the Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum but it’s still pretty gradual. You won’t go from pale to dark brown in one go.
The texture is very lightweight, a feat made possible by alcohol denat. Recent research is showing that alcohol isn’t as drying and irritating as we previously thought BUT if your skin is very sensitive or prone to dryness, err on the side of caution and use it in the moderation.
Plus, alcohol helps it dry really fast. I didn’t have to wait too long before getting dressed and it didn’t stain my clothes. It’s streak-free too.
It’s not super longlasting. Three days later, it was already gone. But that’s a problem with all self-tanners. You have to be consistent to maintain that sunkissed glow.
Price & Availability
Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum, $54.00/£49.00 and Sunless Tan Dry Oil Mist, $46.00/43.00 at Cult Beauty and Sephora
Coola Sunless Tan Anti-Aging Face Serum Ingredients:
Water, Propanediol, Dihydroxyacetone, Glycerin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder*, Heptyl Undecylenate, Argan Oil, Polyglyceryl-6 Esters, Centella Asiatica Meristem Cell Culture, Hydrolyzed Algin, Caprylic/Capric Glycerides Polyglycerin-10 Esters, Sodium Hyaluronate, Chlorella Vulgaris Extract, Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract*, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract*, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil*, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil*, Cetearyl Glucoside, Alcohol Denat.*, Maris Aqua, Polyglyceryl-4 Caprate, Cyamopsis Tetragonoloba (Guar) Gum, Xanthan Gum, Fragrance, Gluconolactone, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate. *Certified Organic.
Coola Sunless Tan Dry Oil Mist Ingredients:
Water, Propanediol, Dihydroxyacetone, *Alcohol Denat., *Glycerin, *Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Powder, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, *Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, *Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Heptyl Undecylenate, Caprylic/Capric Glycerides Polyglycerin-10 Esters, Polyglyceryl-6 Caprylate, Polyglyceryl-6 Ricinoleate, Polyglyceryl-4 Caprate, Polyglyceryl-3 Cocoate, Alcohol, Caramel, Flavor, Gluconolactone, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate. *Certified Organic