Color Me Good

Dove Energy Glow

This moisturizer produces subtle, even, and very gradual results—you’ll need at least three applications to notice a glow. Light-skinned gals should try the medium-to-dark formula for faster tans, while olive-skinned women can layer it over a stronger self-tanner to cover up any streaks.

$8, Walgreens, 429 Brookline Ave., Boston, 617-232-7506, walgreens.com.

Kiehl’s Sun-Free Self-Tanning Formula

Kiehl’s formula, packed with natural ingredients like apricot kernel oil and cocoa butter, feels almost like a body lotion—and spreads easily and evenly for a medium glow.

$23, Kiehl’s, 112 Newbury St., Boston, 617-247-1777, kiehls.com.

Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel

It’s no mystery why this self-tanner is on its way to joining Chanel No. 5 perfume and Maybelline Great Lash mascara in the pantheon of best-loved beauty products. The clear gel yields natural color in one application, and its light scent, while not quite sophisticated, is the least offensive of the bunch.

$30, Saks Fifth Avenue, Prudential Center, Boston, 617-262-8500, saksfifthavenue.com.

Bronzing Treatment at Bella Santé Spa

The 50-minute therapy includes a full-body exfoliation followed by an extremely thorough self-tanner application that feels like a massage. (And we do mean thorough: Even veteran spa-goers may be surprised at the lengths the aesthetician goes—under full-strength fluorescent lighting—to bronze derrières and upper thighs.) The streak-free results are worth the mortification.

$90, Bella Santé, 38 Newbury St., Boston, 617-424-9930, bellasante.com.

  • G.A.

    Nature’s Gate Sunless Tanner makes a very nice tan (my natural complexion is medium-to-fair, without pink or ivory). EXFOLIATE before any self-tanner to make it more even and last longer. I have not used any of those reviewed here.