Despite the popularity of celebrity self-tanner trends like the Vermillion Valentino, the Lohan Streak and the White-Hands Hilton, some women are just unsatisfied with an oompa loompa glow. Then what’s a girl when she wants to practice safe sun without getting streaky limbs, staining her nails and emitting a chemically-laced odor?
Solérra Sunless Tanning Science understands your pain. The company has invented the most logical solution we’ve seen yet — a line of single-use mitts that exfoliate, gradually build a natural-looking sunless tan or deliver an instant bronze glow, with full control on the palm of your hand (no additional lotions required – they’re right in the mitt!).
Solérra’s sunless-tanning mitts are infused with products using patented Invisicare® technology to create an evenly-applied, strong bond between active ingredients and your skin while keeping it moisturized. Constructed of four layers, the mitts have a plastic liner on the inside to keep hands mess-free during application. What’s more, the company boasts they have a light, tropical scent that won’t compete with perfumes or colognes.
Sounds great — but do they work? We tested the line ourselves to find out.
- Solérra ExMitt – A gentle exfoliating mitt made of a course fabric containing a blend of gentle cleansers and moisturizers. Can be used in or out of the shower, with no rinsing required. $12 (three count).
- Solérra Instant Bronzing Mitt – A four-layer construction mitt with a plastic liner on the inside to keep tanner off your hands. Delivers instant color application, with additional sunless tan developing in four to six hours; lasts 7-10 days. $24.95 (four count).
- Solérra Sunless Tanning Mitt – A four-layer construction mitt with a plastic liner on the inside to keep tanner off your hands. Sunless tan develops in four to six hours; lasts seven to 10 days. $24.95 (five count).
The ExMitt is pretty straightforward – just slide your hand in the mitt and buff away. On to the self-tanners. Again, both the Solérra Instant Bronzing Mitt and the Solérra Sunless Tanning Mitt seem pretty cut and dry – just snip off the end of the package and put your hand inside the plastic lining (make sure it goes inside the lining, which might be stuck together; otherwise, it’s pumpkin hands for you!). What’s that smell? There isn’t one! Well, okay, there’s a slight smell – but it’s extremely light and pleasant. But will the mitts have enough “lotion” soaked in to cover up everything evenly?
The ExMitt definitely worked as promised, and it was impressive to be able to exfoliate without having to rinse off afterwards. The only word of caution – be careful not to rub too hard with the coarse fabric, especially if you have sensitive skin.
As for the self-tanners, the Solérra Instant Bronzing Mitt was extremely useful in being able to see exactly where the color is going (no streaks that way), and it was nice to get that instant gratification of glowing skin. However, since it’s so easy to apply with the mitt, there didn’t seem to be any problem with streaks when applying the regular Solérra Sunless Tanning Mitt, which simply doesn’t have that initial hint of color. As with any self-tanner, make sure to rub in fully and avoid lingering over rough patches like elbows, knees and heels
Another plus? There’s no worry that the mitt won’t have enough lotion – after a full-body application, the mitt was still moist with product. But after only a minute or two (for real), the product was dry and it was safe to get dressed. And unbelievably, that light smell actually stayed just a light, chemical-free smell – even after application. (Editor’s note: According to Anne’s husband, “Usually you make me want to puke [after self-tanning]. This time, I didn’t notice any smell.” *Gee thanks, sweetie!*)
After all was said and done, the color developed into a nice, medium tan color after four hours, as promised (see before and after pictures). It was completely natural-looking, without any trace of “orange glow.”
The Bottom Line
Solérra stands up to its promises, and we’re worshipping a new sun god. While we’re not sure we’d shell out the dough for individual ExMitts for every self-tanning session, they’re definitely worth it for traveling or any time convenience is the number one priority. As for the self-tanners — with convenient packaging, mess-proof application, a quick-drying, streak-free, wonderful-smelling formula and natural color that lasts, what else could you possibly ask for?
Get Your Own
Solerra products are available at Solerra.com, Drugstore.com, Beauty Brands Salon, Spa and Superstores, and other spas and salons throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Photos courtesy of Solérra and Anne Houseman