Naturally Safe Cosmetics’ Guide to Faking It

We’ve all heard stories about people ‘faking it’. Some of us have probably faked it ourselves. In fact, all over the world, more and more people are faking it. So, what’s wrong with that? Nothing at all! After all, learning to fake it could be very good for your health, especially the health of your skin. We’re talking, of course, about faking your tan. What did you think we were talking about?

When it comes to tanned skin, as the saying goes “fake it, don’t bake it”. The dangers of baking our skin in the sun in an attempt to develop a gorgeous golden tan are well known. So, if you’re still doing that – stop it! The risk of developing skin cancer is simply not worth it. And just think of the ageing effects, too.


Image source: Canva

The best natural and organic fake tans

The good news is, you can enjoy beautifully tanned skin without any help from the sun whatsoever. It’s called a fake tan and, these days, you can achieve it with a range of products that are made with natural and certified organic ingredients and the results are even better than the bad old days not so long ago when self-tanners were filled with potentially toxic ingredients and often resulted in orange tones and streaky colour - not to mention the gross smell!

In this guide, we introduce you briefly to our range of natural and organic self-tanning products from the best in the business so you can have a beautiful glow without the nasties:

Sleep On It - The Overnight Tan

Eco Tan Invisible Tan – with 77% certified organic ingredients, this cream formula only requires a single application and fully develops over 8 hours. An easy way to use it is to apply two light even coats at night before bed. When it’s dry, pop on your PJs and jump into bed. There’s no need to rinse off and Invisible Tan works its magic while you sleep, so you wake up with a gorgeous, bronzed glow. If you prefer, you could apply it in the morning, get dressed and go about your day while your tan develops. It’s suitable for both face and body and includes nourishing ingredients like Aloe Vera, Avocado, Macadamia and Chamomile.

The Quickie - The Express Tan

Cacao Tanning Mousse – with 82% organic ingredients and a light-weight formula, this foam is easy to apply and also only requires just one application if you’re happy with a light coffee tone. Simply wash it off after just 1 hour. Alternatively, leave it on for up to 4 hours for an Earth bronze tone before washing off. You can also apply a double coat for an even deeper tan. Again, there are no hard and fast rules. You can apply your tanning mousse and leave it on while you go about your day and you can even sleep in it, too. It includes natural ingredients like Aloe Vera, Organic Coffee, Cacao and Chamomile.

Time for Another Quickie - The Other Express Tan

Hempitan Body Tan Water – as the name suggests, this is a tanning water that dries quickly upon application and provides the darkest express tan in the Eco Tan range. Like the Cacao Tanning Mousse, this quick formula provides results in as little as 1 hour or you can leave it on for longer before washing off for deeper colour. Your tan will continue to develop for up to 24 hours after washing the tanning water off. It includes amazing Hemp Seed Extract and Hyaluronic Acid to boost moisture in your skin.

Face Up to It - The Face Tan

Eco Tan Face Tan Water - who needs photo filters? This is another tanning water that’s like your real life organic filter. It’s basically a gradual self-tanning toner for your face, neck and décolletage. You can use it on freshly cleansed dry skin. It allows you to build-up your colour over time and you can use it to maintain the level of colour you prefer. Popular for its ability to camouflage blemishes and reduce the appearance of redness, you can simply incorporate it into your skincare routine 2-3 times per week. It includes Hyaluronic Acid and Aloe Vera and is non-comedogenic (won't block pores).

Slow & Steady - The Gradual Tan

Eco Tan Winter Skin – this one has a cream formula and is a nourishing body moisturiser and gradual tanning lotion in one. Perfect for light-medium skin tones, you can apply it to your skin after your daily shower (dry off first) until you reach your desired level of colour. It includes Aloe Vera, Cacao and Chamomile and won’t stain your clothes.

Wotnot Certified Organic Gradual Tan - a lovely everyday lotion for that 'healthy glow'. It includes hydrating, skin nourishing ingredients like Kakadu Plum, Camellia Oil, Green Tea Extract, Aloe Vera and Coconut Oil. It’s made in Australia, is toxin-free, vegan, cruelty free and suitable for sensitive skin.

Instant Gratification - The Instant Tan

Aussie Bronze Body Bronzer - this is a little different to the self-tanners referred to above. This bronzing lotion is really just a tinted moisturiser and is a fantastic option if you’re sensitive to DHA - the active ingredient in most self-tanners. Formulated with hydrating ingredients like Sunflower Seed Oil, Avocado Oil, Almond Oil, Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter and Vitamin E, this instant body bronzer gives your skin an immediate bronze glow – no developing time required. The moisturiser is tinted with cosmetic/food grade oxides and natural micas (non-nano, of course). It can be used on both the face and body and, while it is transfer and water resistant once dry, it washes off in the shower. What we love about Aussie Bronze, is that it is truly a last minute product. Can’t spare even an hour for Eco Tan’s Cacao Tanning Mousse or Hempitan to develop? No worries. Just rub in some Aussie Bronze, let it dry before getting dressed and you’re good to go. Naturally, it’s cruelty free, vegan and Australian made.

A Little Enhancement - Tanning Accessories

Eco Tan Double Sided Tan Applicator Mitt - if you'd rather not get your hands dirty, this mitt can help you achieve a more even result. The fluffy side is for the tanning creams and foam, while the smooth side is for the tanning waters.

Eco Tan Tan Remover Glove - removes old fading tan, deeply exfoliates to prepare skin for tanning and helps stimulate blood flow.

Wotnot Body Exfoliating Mitt - ideal for exfoliating, removing old tan and smoothing the skin.

Wotnot Tan Application Mitt - soft & velvety, helps ensure even distribution and streak-free application of your organic tanning lotion.

Aussie Bronze Tan Mitt - assists with the smooth and even application of your organic self-tanner.

The Players

Eco Tan - this iconic Australian brand made history in 2011 by becoming the first and only tanning brand to be certified organic by the Organic Food Chain. Ten years (and many awards) later, Eco Tan’s commitment to creating the best-performing self-tanning products, using only the highest quality ingredients, has never waivered. Eco Tan self-tanning products are certified organic, certified toxic free, vegan, cruelty free and Australian made.

Wotnot - well known for its natural sunscreen and its baby care products, Wotnot is a much-loved Aussie brand with a focus on products that deliver on performance and purpose. 

Aussie Bronze - another great, cruelty free, Australian brand offering an instant alternative to tanning products with DHA (see below).

The Active Ingredient

So, how do self-tanners work? Organic self-tanners, like the ones mentioned above from Eco Tan and Wotnot, are formulated with dihydroxyacetone (DHA), an ingredient derived from sugar cane. This ingredient reacts with amino acids in the dead layer of skin on our skin's surface, producing melanoidins which result in the appearance of a tan.

Now You Can Fake It with the Best of them

So, that’s it - our guide to the best natural and organic ‘fake’ tans on the market. You can click on the product names to view the individual product pages for more detailed product information, including instructions on use.