A Veteran Self-Tanner Tries Bondi Sands Self-Tanning Products

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    Hi, I’m Eleena, and I have an addiction. A self-tanning addiction. As a white, red-haired, blue-eyed girl, I’m sure you can imagine that the sun and I don’t exactly get along. In fact, it’s like the sun doesn’t even know I exist. No tan, no burn, nothing. And with the option of tanning booths and spray tans out (not trying to ruin my skin OR my bank account), I’ve turned to self-tanners. And let me tell you, I’ve tried a LOT. Everything from the CVS Jergens creams, to random finds at Sephora, to “salon quality” (aka EXPENSIVE) products. I finally settled on St. Tropez tanning mousse, and have been happily using for the past 2 years. So when I was given the opportunity to try out a new brand, Bondi Sands, I was wary. But, as the scientist and amateur tanning aficionado that I am, I decided to investigate.

Bondi Sands

    Bondi Sands is a self-tanner company owned and operated in Australia. Their website promises, “The Ultimate Australian Tan in minutes,” and I think I speak for everyone when I say that is the goal. They have an array of self-tan products and accessories, but I decided to try out the Original Self Tanning Foam in Light/Medium, the Self Tanning Mitt, and the Self Tan Eraser.

The Tanning Process

    As a veteran self-tanner, I know the drill: you want to make sure to shower and exfoliate your body, then moisturize before applying self-tanner. This is the best way to achieve a smooth, even tan without streaks and patchiness. I still had some leftover tan on from the week before, so prior to jumping in the shower, I used the Self Tan Eraser on the parts of my body that I have a hard time removing tanner from (elbows, armpits, neck, ankles, etc). I left it on for a few minutes and then got in the shower. Now, let me tell you: I don’t usually use self-tan eraser because I’ve read that it’s kind of useless. And for the majority of your body, it really is unnecessary; however, this stuff is amazing for the stubborn areas. This was the first time that I didn’t have to vehemently scrub my elbows and ankles to remove the excess tan. Most of it came off just with the water, and what was leftover easily came off with a little exfoliation. It was definitely a game changer.

    After I had done all the necessary prep, it was time to tan! I put on the Self Tanning Mitt, which was impressively sturdy and soft. Some companies sell mitts that are marketed as reusable but end up breaking down after only a couple of times. With Bondi Sands, I could tell that the mitt was solid and would definitely hold up in the future. I followed the instructions on the back of the bottle, which were basically the same as any other tanning mousse: squeeze 2-3 pumps onto the mitt, then apply to sections of your body in small circular motions. I found that the tanning mousse was very similar in color and consistency to my beloved St.Tropez– they both have a green/brown undertone instead of an orange one, which allows for a much more natural looking tan. The mousse applied really well and smelled amazing (I even got a compliment from my roommate!). The website notes that the mousse is enriched with Aloe Vera and Coconut, and it really did smell like a day at the beach.

    The bottle says you can leave it on for as little as 1 hour, which I thought was really impressive. However, I decided to leave it on overnight to give it time to really soak into my skin. The next morning, I rinsed off the excess tan with warm water and then patted my skin dry. And voila! I was left with beautiful, streak-free, tan skin.

*Note: Do NOT follow my lead and take off hair-ties to avoid lines!!

Final Thoughts

    I can be quite a harsh critic when it comes to self-tan, but I have to say, Bondi Sands really blew it out of the park. The products were of good quality, easy to use, and yielded great results. Plus, Bondi Sands is priced really well. The Light/Medium mousse is sold for $24, compared to St.Tropez, which sells the same sized bottle for $35. The Self Tanning Mitt was $6, compared to the much lesser quality St. Tropez mitt for $6.50. The biggest difference, however, is in the Dark mousse: Bondi sells it for $24, while St. Tropez sells it for $44! And for a much cheaper price, you get the same quality. Overall, I was really impressed by Bondi Sands. I will definitely be using it again in the future, and recommend it to anyone in the market for a self-tanner.

All photos are courtesy of Eleena Volk.