Six stellar bronzing lotions (and a streak-preventing balm) give you perfectly glowy, sun-kissed skin. Counter-clockwise from top:
Glycolic and lactic acids in Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Glow Pad for Body ($45 for eight pads; dgskincare.com) exfoliate to create smooth, soft skin so the DHA (the chemical in self-tanners that darkens skin) colors evenly. One deeply saturated pad is enough for your entire body.
Start using Sephora Moisturizing Bronzing Body Lotion ($16; sephora.com) a few days before a summer wedding or poolside barbecue. The nongreasy cream moisturizes with glycerin while slowly building a beautiful bronze tone.
One allover sweep of Kate Somerville Somerville 360° Face Self Tanning Pads ($48 for 12 pads; katesomerville.com) is enough to provide your complexion with an immediate glow (courtesy of mica particles) and, in two to four hours, a hint of tint.
The fast-drying formula of L'Oréal Paris Sublime Bronze Clear Self-Tanning Gel ($10.50; drugstores) features a light, citrusy fragrance and a unique jelly-like consistency. Spray on the gel, then blend for a streak-free finish.
For olive skin tones: Rodial Brazilian Tan Dark ($56; rodial.co.uk) has a silky texture that absorbs quickly and gives you a deep, rich color that lasts up to ten days.
Because DHA can develop a deeper, uneven color on rough or dry skin, apply a bit of Xen-Tan Blending Balm ($16; xen-tan.com) on your elbows, knees, and ankles after self-tanner. Moisturizing aloe vera, jojoba oil, and vitamin E in the balm prevent streaks and dark patches.
Wary of applying self-tanner on your face? Try Philosophy Here Comes the Sun Age-Defense Gradual Glow Self-Tanner for Face
($26; philosophy.com). The ultralight formula looks and feels like a moisturizer but has enough DHA to give you a very gradual tan.