I found myself staring at my blindingly pale skin in the mirror a mere week before my upcoming trip. It’s been pretty chilly and rainy here in the Bay Area this winter so I’ve been layering up. Most of my skin hasn’t seen the sun in weeks or maybe even months. I’ve always had fair skin, so it goes without saying that I burn easily, and it’s not worth the risk to cut back on the SPF in the hopes of a tan.

Nonetheless, I wanted a little glow before I go bathing suit clad to the beach. That’s where Jergen’s Natural Glow Moisturizer comes in. I’ve used the product a few times before leading up to vacations, but it’s been a while. They have a face moisturizer and a wet skin moisturizer in addition to the classic lotion. My forays with other self-tanners have previously left me bearing some resemblance to an Oompa Loompa. What I love about Jergen’s Natural Glow line is that it’s gradual and works over several days. I’m not suddenly stuck with a horrendous mistake. And it looks more even and natural over time.

There are other versions of this type of product out there, I just haven’t tried them yet. One that looks particularly good, but more pricey, is the St. Tropez Gradual Tan that comes in a variety of formulations. While the Jergen’s price point is nice and it works alright, it does leave a hint of that self-tanner smell. For my next trip I may try St. Tropez Gradual Tan and see if there is less of a smell. I’ll let you know how that goes.

For now, see the results of my Jergen’s lotion. It’s more noticeable over my whole body than it is on just my arms, but I didn’t get a before picture for that. I will say the color is a bit more subtle this time than it has been in the past, and maybe it’s because I used the wet skin moisturizer this time. I avoided my knees and elbows, and applied regular lotion to those areas after applying the Jergen’s everywhere else.

I’d love to hear what your favorite products are to get a summer glow. Leave me a comment!