I’ll be heading to the beach in a couple of weeks, so I figured I’d get a jump start on my tan so I don’t look like a complete ghost. I have loads of tanning products – from St. Tropez, Tarte, Jergens, and Josie Maran (which I reviewed a bit earlier, at the very start of shorts season) – but this time, I wanted to try something new: NKD SKN’s Gradual Glow Daily Tan Moisturizer.
NKD SKN Gradual Glow Daily Tan Moisturizer
NKD SKN’s Gradual Glow is a daily moisturizer that gradually tans as it nourishes and hydrates the skin with organic extracts. The lotion works to develop natural-looking color over 4-8 hours, and can be used daily for deeper color. It comes in one universal shade that’s designed for all skin tones, and is also formulated to have no smell and leave zero transfer onto clothes.
How to Apply: Exfoliate thoroughly beforehand. (Do not use another moisturizer or moisturizing shower lotions before application as this will stop the tan from developing.) Leave at least 6 hours for the color to develop before showering.
The ingredient list is one of the most impressive I’ve come across in the tanning category. (I believe this is actually a re-formulated version of their original Gradual Glow Moisturizer). The lotions boasts a ton of natural and organic ingredients – from aloe vera to shea butter, to a long list of fruit extracts. Plus the tanning agent – dihydroxyacetone or (DHA) is Ecocert-Certified (Ecocert being the European organic certification organization).
Full Ingredients List: Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Water*, Dihydroxyacetone***, Glycerin*, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Panthenol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter (Beurre)*, Saccharide Isomerate***, Tocopheryl Acetate, Cucumis Melo (Melon) Fruit Extract**, Hyaluronic Acid, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract**, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract*, Fucus Vesicolosus (Bladderwrack) Extract**, Litchi Chinensis (Lychee) Fruit Extract*, Sodium Benzoate***, Potassium Sorbate***, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Seed Extract*, Hydrolysed Silk (Soie), Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Extract*, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Extract*
NKD SKN Gradual Glow Daily Tan Moisturizer Review
I already use moisturizer everyday, so this lotion fit perfectly into my routine as a 2-in-1 solution. It’s also formulated for use on both the face and body, so you don’t need to buy a separate product for the face like with most other brands, which I really appreciate.
As a moisturizer alone, NKD SKN Gradual Glow works amazingly well. It provides a healthy dose of hydration that leaves my skin feeling super soft and supple. The lotion itself has a lightweight, silky consistency that makes it incredibly easy to spread evenly, plus it dries almost instantly.
The lotion has virtually no scent (thanks to the brand’s ‘Odour Remover’ technology). You can’t smell anything that signals ‘tanner’ in the brain. All that’s noticeably is a subtle mixture of raspberry, pomegranate, melon, and lychee.
As a self-tanner, it starts working surprisingly fast. I applied a rather heavy application for my first go, and noticed a slight deepening of color at around the 5 hour mark that same day. After three days (showering 2x in between), the color continued to build up gradually to a healthy, subtle glow – nothing super dark or ultra-bronzey. The color wasn’t at all orange – instead, it perfectly mimicked the tone of my skin after it has been naturally tanned. The only downside? It did over-darkened my driest areas around my knees and ankles, but that’s to be expected with all tanners.
Here’s my before & after following 3 days, with one application per day…
Before & After
Overall, I love the NKD SKN’s Gradual Glow Daily Tan Moisturizer. It simplifies my routine, works amazingly well as both a moisturizer and tanner, and best of all, it’s formulated with organic and natural ingredients, including a safe, natural form of DHA. If you have fair to light skin and are looking for a subtle, gradual tanner without the chemicals and annoying scent, I highly recommend this one! (However, if you’re a bit darker-toned or are looking for deeper color, NKD SKN also has two additional gradual glow lotions – their ‘Natural Gradual Tan Lotions‘ – in Medium and Dark).
Available at Ulta, Target & Amazon
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Have you tried tanning products from NKD SKN? What’s your favorite self-tanner?