Skincare Tips Best Self tanner for olive skin how to avoid orange fake tan

Published on June 18th, 2015 | by The Perfume Expert

How to Avoid Orange Fake Tan | Best Self Tanner for Olive Skin

THE TRUTH behind Self Tanners is revealed: How to avoid the dreaded orange fake tan & which products are the best self tanners for olive skin.

No one wants to look like an Oompa Loompa, well…I take that back, if you’re from Jersey Shore or Essex England than perhaps you like your fake tans on the orange side.

But most of us are after that rich dark natural tan color. Whether you’ve tried self tanning before or are too scared to try, most of us are aware that this process can sometimes lead to that dreaded orange fake tan look! No matter how much you research the BEST self tanner for olive skin!


DHA or dihydroxyacetone is the tanning component found in ALL self tanners. Now are you ready for the shocker?!

DHA is DHA no matter what tanner you use or how expensive it is, they are all using the same DHA compound. It all works the same to increase melanin in your skin. In other words, there isn’t such a thing as a type of DHA that is more orange or a more olive toned DHA….it’s just DHA plain and simple!

Instead, what causes the orange color is how you use the self tanner.

One of the main reasons for an orange fake tan is an excessive buildup of DHA in the top layer of the skin, especially if the top layer of skin is dry and not exfoliated!

If you apply fake tan regularly or you use a product that has too high a concentration for your skin, the level of DHA can cause your tan to turn orange!

The right amount of DHA for your skin will gradually increase the natural amount of melanin in your skin, giving a realistic tanned appearance. But add too much too fast and the skin becomes overloaded causing an unnatural orange color.

So DO NOT overload your skin!

In order to get a more natural result it is better to use a gradual tanner (ones that have lower concentrations of DHA) several times a week, than it is to use a dark tanner once a week.

But, the orange effect of self tanning also happens when you have an extra layer of dry/dead skin cells sitting on top of your skin. These dead cells reflect light differently than moisturized healthy skin.

So it is crucial that your skin is exfoliated and moisturized. And NOT JUST THE DAY BEFORE! Start at least one week before you self tan to exfoliate every 2-3 days and moisturize daily. This will ensure that you have healthy, fresh, and moisturized skin for optimum results.

Also, some products may make you MORE orange looking than others and this is because they have some kind of secondary ingredient that’s drying out your skin even more, which in turns makes the skin look even more orange!


Now that we know the truth behind self tanners and how they cause that dreaded orange fake tan, there are steps that we can take to ensure that we are prepping our skin and using sunless tanners properly.

But which self tanners are the least “orangey”?

Which self tanners are best for olive skin tones or those of us who prefer the more dusty dirty tans versus the warm glowing tans?

Well, as explained above, there is no such thing as an anti-orange DHA or olive toned DHA. DHA works the same no matter what tanner you buy. However, there are additives in self tanners that can help ensure a more natural color pay off!

I have tried many sunless tanners and can now report the BEST self tanner for olive skin and the ones that WON’T MAKE YOU ORANGE!

Dior Bronze Self-Tanner Natural Glow

Best Fake Tanner Revealed Dior Bronze Self-Tanner Natural Glow

This innovative sunless tanner works with your own body chemistry to produce a natural looking tan that is NEVER orangey!

It uses the Bronze Perfect pH complex, that works with your body’s own PH balance to deliver just the right amount of tan, so no overload of DHA!

This allows the tanner to gradually deepen the complexion naturally for even tan that mimics the body’s natural tanning process.

This is one of my TOP RATED self tanners because of it’s absolutely gorgeous color! The BEST shade of perfect olive-toned sun-kissed and luminous tanned skin!

The Dior Bronze Self-Tanner is available on Amazon in the US or at JohnLewis in the UK


Vita Liberata Phenomenal 2-3 Week Tan

Best Self Tanner for Olive Skin Vita Liberata Phenomenal 2-3 week tan

My most recommended overall self tanner is the Vita Liberata Phenomenal 2-3 week Tan. Not only is it’s longevity unprecedented, lasting weeks instead of days like most tanners, but the color is superb for olive toned skin!

One of the ways this tanner prevents orange tones is it’s Moisture Lock system. Saccharide Isomerate and Hyaluronic provide draws constant hydration to your skin and keeps moisture in for the first 72 hours while the tan is developing, ensuring a more natural look. Remember that moisture is key because dry/dead skin makes self tanners appear orange!

Another way, Vita Liberata ensures a more natural looking tan is incorporating a brand new technology called pHeno2 that works alongside the traditional active tanning ingredient DHA to ensure the formula takes to the skin in a way regular self tans can’t.

The exact formula for this compound is hush hush so I can’t even explain to you how it works exactly, but after trying many self tanners I can tell you that this produced the most natural olive-toned tan! And the fact that it lasts weeks makes it truly phenomenal!

The Vita Liberata 2-3 Week Tan is available at Sephora in the US and in the UK

Xen-Tan Dark Lotion

Best Self Tanner for Olive Skin Xen Tan Dark Lotion

Xen-Tan are the leaders in self tanning and pride themselves on producing more olive-toned tans! And their famous Dark Lotion has been a cult favorite for years! A favourite of A-list celebrities and beauty editors alike!

Also understanding moisture to produce the best looking tan, Dark Lotion contains a host of moisture-rich oils like hazelnut, walnut oils and jojoba oil to produce natural development of the DHA.

Furthermore, they also have a secret ingredient! Thanks to a unique time-release ingredient, DHA develops more gradually which means skin won’t be overloaded…which causes the skin to turn orange.

In addition, their formula also has a more green tint to the guide color which gives the illusion of a more olive toned tan while the color is developing.

The Xen-Tan Dark Lotion is available at Nordstrom in the US and Space NK in the UK

 Tanceuticals CC Self Tanning Body Lotion Dark

Best self Tanner for Olive Skin Tanceuticals cc self tanning body lotion

This is one of the HOTEST self tanners around right now! Everyone is raving about it’s AMAZING color, longevity, application, and smell!

In fact, it is rated the #1 Self Tanner right now on the most popular and trusted self tanner review site!

Now, we’ve all heard of “CC” creams and the benefits of using a cream that not only works on color but also corrects various skincare issues. And The Tanceuticals CC Self Tanner does have these beneficial “CC” elements.

Containing a forumla that not only has a decent amount of DHA to produce a deep bronze tanned look, but also Acai Berry, Pomegranate, Rose Hip , Aloe Vera, and Vitamin E to protect, moisturize, repair and firm your skin.

This lotion is loaded with moisturizers like Mango, Cocoa, and Shea butter, plus, Grape Seed, and Almond Oils. These ingredients help develop the tan naturally and evenly because they are maintaining the skin’s moisture content. They also help the tan to last longer!

The Tanceuticals CC Self Tanner is available at in the US and is not currently available in the UK

Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Best Glow Pads for Body

How to avoid Orange Fake Tan with Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Glow Pads for Body

Remember that exfoliation is the key to a natural looking tan?! Well, these handy little pads do it all for you!

These convenient wipes not only deliver gentle exfoliation with Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids, but they also give you a realistic tan color!

As explained above, the dreaded orange fake tan color occurs when there is either a DHA overload, or the DHA is applied to dry, dead skin! So exfoliation is extra important to slough off these dry dead skin cells!

Not only does this product do that for you, but it also helps develop a more natural looking tan by using time released Microencapsulated DHA, meaning the DHA and sink in deeper into deeper layers of the epidermis gradually without overload to ensure not only a rich realistic tan but also one that will last a long time!

And it gets better…..

The Glow Pads also contain Caffeine to firm and slim, Capislow to minimizes growth, and Vitamin D to relieve dry skin, itching, and flaking.

The Dr. DG Alpha Beta Glow Pads are available at Sephora in the US and the GorgeousShop in the UK

Now that you’re body’s covered, on to the face! Read my article here on the BEST Face Tanners for your specific skin type here:

[Vita Liberata and Xen-Tan Products featured in this review are Press Samples Courtesy of Vita Liberata UK & Wizard Publicity]

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The Perfume Expert is an online Perfume Blog, Beauty Blog and Skincare Blog all rolled into one so you can stay looking good, smelling nice and feeling great all in one place! Written by an expert you can trust, I provide you with Perfume reviews, Best Perfumes, Beauty reviews and Makeup trends that are all written with passion and an eye for excellence.

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