I’m tan! With Jane Iredale Tantasia Self-Tanner


JaneIredale_tantasia_bottleI’m just going to start this out by fully admitting, I’m pale. Really pale. Thankfully I have some freckles which give the appearance of color, but I can’t kid anyone when I say I’m about as pale as they come.

I wish I could embrace my paleness, but it’s hard when I see pictures like this….


The truth is, my beautiful friend here isn’t all that dark, I’m just THAT PALE. Do you see how the color of my skin seems to blend in with the white towel? It’s like I’m a freakishly white chameleon. It’s hard not to think “Get some sun, Cori!”. But the problem is, I’m kind of allergic to the sun. Really. I break out in a heat rash and get headaches and it’s not fun. And of course I live in Arizona! (And yes, I DID break out in a heat rash from being in the sun the day this picture was taken and had to spend the rest of my vacay in the shade).

So anyway, I use self tanner. Here’s the problem with self tanner though. It’s not really made for pale people. It’s made for people who already have color! Not fair at all in my opinion. I’ve tried quite the number that make me look orange, or freakishly dark. Or, if they look good, they wear off all splotchy. Sometimes I turned orange AND splotchy! Double fun!

So when I received Jane Iredale‘s Tantasia, I was very excited, yet hesitant. Would this be what my skin needs this summer to not look so sickly amongst my tan companions? Or would I end up a splotchy tan-pale mess? I’m happy to report, this not only looks great, but wears great too!

The texture of this is like a light lotion, but it has a dry finish. It really is an interesting texture, I will get into the ingredients later, but there are no oils like most lotions I use. There is dimethicone, which helps it slide smoothly, but overall the lotion still feels dry.

The color out of the bottle is DARK. When I first applied this I was very scared and almost thought of washing it off! It comes out dark and pretty peachy. But once you rub it in, it really lightens up. This is the exact opposite of most self-tanners I’ve tried. I really love it because it shows me where I’ve put the self-tanner, whereas others you don’t know until hours later and then you realize what a horrible mess you’ve made! Or is that just me?

The smell of this a little citrusy, but sweet. It has grapefruit peel extract and lemon fruit extract, giving the citrus smell. The after-smell of this is pretty faint, but has a very slight metallic smell. I’m not sure what causes that, perhaps the Copper Gluconate, but I can only smell when I put my nose right up to my arm or leg and it’s gone after a few hours. It’s not a deal-breaker, but it’s something worth mentioning.

Now for the before and after picture!

Jane Iredale Tantasia Review - Before and After

I know what you’re thinking, “those are some pretty sweet slippers.” But try to focus on my tan legs ok? These aren’t the best pictures, but it’s actually hard to take a picture of your own leg from the side! Because I wanted to play it safe the first go-round of using Tantasia, I applied a thin layer. You can see though that after about 10 minutes my legs look a little tanner. Not a whole lot, but I’m not trying to look like Snookie here. And it’s a natural tan, not super dark, not orange. Just some natural color – exactly what I want!

So I was very pleased with my new tanness. I felt…..tan. It was nice. But then, I had to wait and see how it wore off. Once again, I was excited about the possibilities and nervous about the possibilities! I will say, I am VERY happy with the way this wore off. I didn’t have any splotchiness or dark spots or anything. Sometimes self-tanner sticks to certain parts of my arms, mainly near my wrist bone and then around under my wrist, on my legs it sticks to the back of my ankle. I didn’t have any of that. Everything wore off at the same time. I even wore some khaki shorts to see if it would wear away on the shorts and it didn’t! Another win.

This didn’t last very long though. I would say after 2 days (maybe 3), I was back to my original color. So this is something that you would use a couple times a week if you wanted a consistent tan.

Now for the ingredients! From Jane Iredale’s website: Water/Eau/Aqua, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Vitex Agnus Castus Extract, Glycerin, PEGCrosspolymer, Acetyl Tyrosine, Copper Gluconate, Dihydroxyacetone, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Mica (CI 77019), Caramel, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Xanthan Gum, Tocopherol, Sodium Chloride, Raphanus Sativus (Radish) Root Extract, Iron Oxides (CI 77489).

So, this is very different than the lotions I usually review because lotions tend to be a mixture of water and oil! Or at least, the all natural ones I use are (and how all lotions should be!). This is mainly water and emollients such as dimethicone and cyclopentasiloxane. Glycerin also provides an emollient feel, but it is a humectant and helps draw water in. These give it a lotion-type texture, but a little different/drier since there are no oils in it.

I had never heard of Vitex Agnus Castus Extract before, so I googled it and it’s the extract of the Chasteberry tree. Chasteberry extract/tincture is often used for hormonal issues in women, such as pelvic pain, PMS and menopause symptoms. Very interesting to see it in here! I’m not sure what it does on skin to be honest.

Note: This does also contain hydrolyzed wheat protein. Gluten is the protein in wheat, so this very well could contain gluten. Since I am not celiac but gluten intolerant, I do not have a true gluten allergy so do fine with it topically in small amounts. However, if you are true celiac you could have a reaction to the wheat protein in this. Just wanted to point that out since the rest of my blog is gluten free!

Overall, this is a GREAT product. It’s an awesome self tanner and I love that it’s all natural too!

Disclosure: This was provided to me by Jane Iredale to try. Opinions and the choice to review are 100% my own! I’m not compensated for anything I write.

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  1. in Asia women would kill for your milky white skin, babe! self-tanners don’t have a huge market here, hehe. looking great by the way :)

    • Thank you! I guess I really should try and be ok with my pale self…. maybe some day ;o)

      • You should…tan is not in, pale is the new tan, Google it. I stopped (purposely) laying in the sun when I was 30. I wish I would have stopped sooner but it did help. I’m in my late 40’s now and people tell me all the time how great my skin looks and ask me what I’m “doing”. Your friends that are tanning and think that looks great are wrong, and it’s cheesy. Just think about being you’re in your 40’s and they are sagging (huge side effect) and are wrinkled and blotchy and you aren’t. They are headed for laser treatments in the $1000’s, IF they can afford it. I have quite a few friends that freaking out and doing this now. I didn’t believe it either at the time but it’s TRUE! Stop laying in the sun now, you won’t regret it!! Self tanners bring out brown spots. You’re young and might not have any yet, but you will if you keep laying in the sun…even w/sun screen. :)

  2. Cori, you look like me about 40 years ago. I, too, am a LILYWHITE senior citizen now. My dermatologist told me last week that I need to live in another country where the sun doesn’t shine like in my state of Georgia, after removing a few skin cancers. So please, don’t bake in the sun. You’ll just have a few freckles and a pale skin, and skin cancers down the road. I, too, still try every kind of self tanner there is…….haven’t tried this brand yet. They always seem to fade in splotches. Do you think I should try this one? I still don’t like to show my LILY WHITE legs during the summer. It seems that TAN is in.

    • I’m sorry to hear about your skin cancer. Skin cancer runs in my family too! Don’t worry, I really don’t lay in the sun often. When I do, I’m in the highest SPF available! As for this product, I had no splotchiness at all – it was pretty awesome! I’ve had that problem too in the past, but none with Tantasia. You should definitely try it! And let me know how it goes!

  3. Dear Cori,
    Thank you so much for this review – really helpful, and for some moments of smiling and laugh (slippers are cute! :)). Now I will definitely get myself this JI tanner. I was looking something like this for so long – all natural, but doing its job. And here you are. Thanks again.

  4. Hi! Have you by chance tried the Rodan and Fields self tanner? Curious your thoughts if you had. Also…not sure of the ingredients as I also like to stay as natural as possible. I too am pale, blonde hair, and blue eyes…completely relate with how you feel. Try to love my skin, but in the summer it just seems SO white!

    • I haven’t tried it, I haven’t even heard of it before. I’m guessing its an all-natural self tanner? And it sounds like we have very similar skin! If you freckles too, we might just be twinsies! haha

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