Tanning in the sun is becoming less popular, with the much safer alternative of being able to use self-tanner to achieve that gorgeous glow.
You do have the option of visiting a salon to self-tan, but keeping appointments can be difficult on a busy schedule. There are also many different self-tanning products you can purchase to use at home, but that can become quite expensive.
Most DIY self-tanners include cocoa powder, but many do not like the feeling of cocoa on the skin, and the smell might not be everyone’s favorite.
So can you make a self-tanner at home without cocoa powder? Yes, there are quite a few recipes of DIY self-tanners to make at home that do not include cocoa powder. You can use coconut oil, tea, coffee, carrots, and sugar to make your own DIY self-tanner that does not include cocoa powder.
Keep reading for the exact recipes and how to apply them to your skin.
5 Recipes for DIY Self Tanner Without Cocoa Powder
Here are some homemade self-tanners which are both easy to make, and which will give you a golden summer glow without any damage!
1. Coconut Oil and Tea
Both coconut oil and tea are easy to find and are kept in most kitchens. Mixing the two can give you a safe and moisturizing self-tanner to use at home.
- Steep 4-5 black tea bags in a cup of hot water filled 3/4 of the way.
- Once brewed, add this tea water to half a cup of coconut oil.
- Stir it all together well and apply the mixture over your whole body.
- Leave the coconut oil and tea mixture on your skin for 5 minutes, and then rinse off in the shower.
Your skin will be left with a brown tone and your skin will be lovingly nourished thanks to the coconut oil, which helps to lock in moisture, to help the tan glow even more.
2. Carrots and Brown Sugar
This method takes a little bit more effort, but it is pretty effective!
- Take a pound of fresh carrots and peel them completely.
- Slice the carrots and place them into a pot of boiling water.
- Add brown sugar to the pot of boiling water, and allow this mixture to boil on low for around 3 hours.
- After 3 hours, strain the solution into a bowl.
- Once cooled, pour this liquid into a spray bottle and gently mist the liquid over your skin to give you a tanned look.
Carrots will help give you the tanned look but are also really beneficial for your skin as they contain vitamin A, natural antioxidants and beta carotene. Brown sugar acts as an exfoliating agent for the skin, and can even help fight against wrinkles.
3. Tea and Lotion
Once again, tea offers great color when it comes to self-tanner, so it is a popular DIY self-tanning ingredient.
- Brew 4 black tea bags in one cup of hot water, allowing it a good amount of time to brew.
- Let the tea rest for a few minutes and mix it into a clear or white lotion of your choice.
- Apply this mixture onto your skin and allow it time to absorb.
- Once it dries, you can apply another layer for a darker color.
- You are able to maintain this darker color by applying the lotion weekly, helping to both build and maintain your brown tan.
The tea contains anti-inflammatory agents that help to treat blemishes and soothe skin irritations, and with the lotion, it will keep the skin soft, hydrated and toned.
Rclbeauty101 on YouTube has a great video using this method. Check it out!
4. Coffee and Lotion
Coffee has a high concentration of tannins, which can help to stain the skin to give the illusion of a bronze, tanned complexion. Using coffee and lotion, you can have a self-tanner at home in almost no time at all.
You have two options when it comes to using coffee with lotion.
- Mix the instant coffee powder into the unscented lotion until it is all blended in really well.
- Brew the coffee granules first to a pitch-black liquid and then mix this into the lotion.
Once the lotion and coffee have been mixed in well, massage it into your skin and leave it to dry. You can apply this lotion once or twice weekly to maintain and build a bronzed tan.
5. DHA and Hyaluronic Acid
The self-tanners you buy over the shelf contain DHA. It is an active ingredient that works by reacting with amino acids in the dead skin cells on the skin, resulting in a dark color.
However, you will need to get the ratio perfect to avoid any risks. It is one of the trickier self-tanners to make at home, but it is also one of the most effective.
To make a DHA self-tanner at home, you will need 1 teaspoon of water, a pinch of hyaluronic acid and 12 granules of DHA:
- Mix the one teaspoon of water with the hyaluronic acid and the 10-12 granules of DHA.
- Stir the mixture together until the DHA has dissolved.
- Massage this mixture onto the skin, leave it to sit for up to 20 minutes and then hop into the shower and wash it off. You will notice the color darkening over a few hours.
You can repeat this process weekly to build up a tan without having to step into the sun!
If you don’t want to buy the ingredients for this DIY, you can buy this face tanner that contains hyaluronic acid on Amazon.
Other Natural Ingredients To Use
Using natural ingredients is the safest way to tan at home, without any additional damage being done to the skin. Bean, oysters, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds are effective ingredients to use to tan at home.
These all contain copper, which helps to increase the production of melanin, and an increase of melanin creates a darker looking skin.
Why DIY Self-Tanners Are Better
Many of the self-tanners for sale on the market contain different chemicals, and these chemicals can dry out and damage your skin. For those with sensitive skin, it is even more difficult to find a self-tanning product that will not cause breakouts, rashes, and blocked pores.
Making the self-tanner at home means you know exactly what is going into the mixture, and you can control exactly what you can use.
Not only are the safe ingredients a huge bonus, but using ingredients commonly found at home, you will be saving quite a bit of money as well. You can try a whole host of different self-tanning mixtures at home, and still not spend as much money as you would on one bottle of self-tanner bought from the store.
As with all DIY, there will be trial and error. You might take a few tries to get it right, but once you do, you will be thankful for all the work you have put in.
However, with self-tanning DIYs, the mistakes can be quite obvious, and you might need to remove the self-tanner ASAP.
Lemon juice is great to remove tan from the skin, learn how to do it here.
Most self-tanners including natural ingredients can be washed off quite easily with water, so hop into a warm shower and use some gentle soap to wash it off. Other self-tanners can be a bit more stubborn, so you might need to exfoliate.
Use a gentle exfoliator and an exfoliating mitt or washcloth and gently massage your skin until the tanned surface is back to normal. If it’s in your hair, read this guide to removing it.
Does cocoa powder work to tan the skin?
Most people do not like the feeling of cocoa powder on the skin or are maybe not comfortable with the smell, but the cocoa powder can work to tan the skin.
If you’re interested in learning more, check out this article I wrote about using cocoa powder to darken the skin.
Does baby oil help you tan?
While baby oil does help you tan, it is not the safest option to do so. Applying baby oil to your skin before heading out into the sun means that the sun’s rays will be more attracted to your skin, and while this will result in you tanning faster, it will cause more damage to your skin, and will more than likely end up in a sunburn.
The oil intensifies the sun’s UVA and UVB rays, allowing it to penetrate deeper into the skin for a darker skin tone.
There are many options available when it comes to tanning at home, which doesn’t include cocoa powder. Some can be left on the skin for a fake tan, and washed off when it is time to head to bed, and others help to develop and maintain a tan with regular application.
Whichever cocoa powder-free DIY self-tanner you use, you will be saving some money, and you will know exactly which ingredients you are applying to your very special skin!