Gradual tanners are perfect for everyone — from first time self-tanners to fake tan fangirls. We've rounded up the 10 best - for every budget...
When coveting a faux glow, you need to choose your camp. You either lust after: a) a deep, mahogany tone that suggests summers spent on a yacht and winters spent in Barbados, or, b) you prefer the edge taken off pale or wouldn't mind a hint of freshness under the bronze.
For the former, you want to get your hands on a proper fake tan of the variety you put on with a mitt and need expert tips to remove should things go wrong; nothing looks worse when faking a teak tan than streaks. Need a bronzer for your face? This bronzer quiz can match you with a good one.
If, however, you're all about softening your winter pallor or slowly building a believable hint of warmth over a few days, our edit of gradual tanners will be your new best friend.
The pros? They're far less likely to leave streaks on your skin (or, for that matter, on your bed sheets), will moisturise as they go on (so are less likely to leave your skin dry than a traditional fake tan), and they also really do create that natural, sun-kissed look. They're also ideal if you're busy - just slide them on after a shower, massage into skin (this bit is crucial to avoid any unevenness), and dress. Done.
Our final words of wisdom? If you use gradual tanners often, don't skip regular exfoliation - just as a single hit, deep-hued fake tan will collect on dry patches and its colour will pool in crevices after a few days, similar will happen if you don't slough off the top layer of your dead skin and thereby refresh your gradual tan regularly. Take to your dry skin with a body brush before you shower, or grab a good body scrub and work it into your limbs while in the shower.
Need a hand picking one? That's where this guide comes in...