Self-tanning products gain popularity every year, and for good reason. Sunless tanners give you a beautiful glow, without exposing you to the harmful effects of UV rays. However, what if we’re trading one danger for another by putting harmful chemicals on our skin?
There is a wide variety of qualities when it comes to fake tanning products, from cheap, toxic, synthetic self-tanners, to organic all-natural ones. One of the things that most people want is at least to have a paraben-free fake tanning product.
In this article, we’ll talk about the 3 best paraben free-self tanners on the market. Beyond that though, we’ll talk about why many experts consider parabens to be dangerous, and why we don’t want them in our beauty products. We’ll also go over common questions and concerns.
Let’s start by talking about the best products for you.
3 Best Paraben-Free Fake Tanners
When I make a guide like this, listing what I think are the best of a certain product, there are a few things I want you to know. When I first set out to find self-tanners, I found myself kind of lost with how many products there were. Was it right for my skin, would it give me a good tan, was it easy to apply, and so many other questions would run through my mind.
So in these guides, I want to try and do that work for you. I spend many hours researching products, reviewing what I’ve tried, and condensing all of that information into a short and easy to navigate list. I use tons of criteria for my ranking, including:
- Customer Reviews
- Pureness of Ingredients
- Is it Completely Paraben Free
- Ease of application
And so much more…
Ok, enough wasting your time, let’s get to those products!
Pick it up on Amazon.
You’ve probably seen this pop up in a few of my other “best of” lists, in fact, I wrote a full review for the product. Skinerals has been making high quality, completely natural, self-tanners for quite a while, and has built up an enormous following of people who absolutely love their products. They pride themselves in never using chemicals, and instead opting for natural ingredients and minerals. They still have DHA in their products, but like we’ve talked about before, DHA is a sugar that can be entirely natural and organic. Instead of synthetically creating DHA as some products do, it can be harvested organically from sugar beets or cane sugar to the same effect.
This self-tanners from Skinerals is completely paraben free, so you don’t need to worry about that at all. In fact, it’s completely free of any dangerous chemicals, as well as being vegan, cruelty-free, and gluten-free. All of their products are made in the USA, and each comes with a specific serial number so that you know you’re getting the real thing.
As far as the quality of the self-tanner goes, this stuff is amazing. There is a reason it is one of the best-reviewed self-tanners on Amazon because it produces an absolutely beautiful bronze glow without subjecting your skin to harsh, drying, chemicals.
If you haven’t tried an organic or all-natural self-tanner, I would encourage you to start with this one!
First of all, this product is 100% organic and all natural. In fact, let’s take a look at the ingredients:
Water, Organic Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, Organic Shea Butter, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Organic Coconut Seed Oil, Dihydroxyacetone (DHA), Glycerin (Vegetable), Organic Japanese Green Tea Leaf Extract, Organic Pomegranate Extract, Organic Witch Hazel Extract, Organic Cranberry Fruit Extract, Organic Jojoba Seed Oil, Organic Argan Oil, Potassium Sorbate.
If you look through those, I hope you notice that there are no parabens or other chemical preservatives whatsoever. Just like the previous one, and just about all self-tanners, there is DHA in this product. However, it is completely organic and naturally derived from sugar cane or sugar beets, so don’t be worried about that.
This self-tanner works for any skin color and produces a beautiful tan without even a hint of orange. This, and many others on this list are also really great if you have sensitive skin, or are worried about skin allergies from self-tanners.
I did find that although this was really easy to apply, it worked best with a self-tanning mitt. It’s a very good value for how much quality self-tanner you get for the price, so I’d encourage you to give it a try!
Pick it up on Amazon.
If you’re looking for the best paraben-free self-tanning Mousse, this is the one for you. Just a reminder, Mousses tend to dry quite a bit quicker, so if that’s what you are looking for then this is a great option.
Miami Gorgeous self-tanner is:
- Gluten Free
- Has ECO-Certified DHA
- Completely Organic
- and Fast Drying
On top of all these things that you should be looking for in a quality organic fake tanner, it also produces an absolutely beautiful tan (something you don’t always find). You can use this product on your entire body, as well as your face. So if you’re looking for a paraben-free fake tanner that is easy to apply, safe and nourishing for your skin, and produces a beautiful all-over tan, give this one a try.
Alright, now that we’ve talked about the best paraben-free self-tanners, let’s talk a little bit about what parabens are, and why you should care.
What Are Parabens, And Are They Dangerous?
Parabens didn’t really start showing up in beauty products until the mid-1950s. Although some people think that “paraben” is a single ingredient, it actually represents a whole group of synthetically produced chemical preservatives that are used primarily in beauty products. Common parabens you’ll find on labels include:
So, if you see any of these on your ingredients list, that product is not paraben free.
You’ll find ingredients like these in tons of products, including shampoo, moisturizer, deodorant, toothpaste, makeup, and tons of other beauty products. They are intended to prevent the growth of bacteria and fungus and to preserve the life of the product. However, be aware that even if you are avoiding parabens in your beauty products, many grocery items also contain them.
Ok, so we know a little bit more about what parabens are now, but why should we be concerned?
The FDA has guidelines for safe limits of parabens in products. However, what worries health advocates and officials is the cumulative exposure as a result of using and consuming many products that contain parabens. These parabens build up in our bloodstream, and over time have been shown to contribute to a variety of health issues.
The largest risk from cumulative exposure is how parabens have been shown to affect hormone function. The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics (CSC) said this:
“Of greatest concern is that parabens are known to disrupt hormone function, an effect that is linked to increased risk of breast cancer and reproductive toxicity. Parabens mimic estrogen by binding to estrogen receptors on cells.”
In 2004 a British study was conducted on Parabens affects women with breast cancer. They found traces of parabens in tumors for 19 out of the 20 women studied. Citing this study, the CSC said the following:
“This small study does not prove a causal relationship between parabens and breast cancer, but it is important because it detected the presence of intact parabens—unaltered by the body’s metabolism—which is an indication of the chemical’s ability to penetrate the skin and remain in breast tissue.”
In 2012, the European Union banned the use of parabens in products sold there, and now, health advocates are fighting for a similar ban on products in the united states.
Health advocates are pressuring the FDA to ban parabens in products sold in the U.S.—like the European Union did in 2012—but concerned consumers must take matters into their own hands for now by reading product labels and avoiding products with parabens.
The CSC mentions that:
“Many natural and organic cosmetics manufacturers have found effective alternatives to parabens to prevent microbial growth in personal care products, Some companies have created preservative-free products that have shorter shelf lives than conventional products (six months to a year), but if used daily are likely to be used up before they expire.”
Ultimately it’s really up to you, the consumer, to decide if you’re concerned about parabens, but the research certainly points to wanting to avoid it. Considering that you can find just as high of quality self-tanners that don’t contain potentially dangerous chemicals.
I hope you enjoyed my list of the best paraben-free self-tanners, if you did, please consider sharing!