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articles & information > in focus > natural sun care & self-tanning

The holiday season is now almost upon us, so this month we've decided to test out various natural products designed to help you achieve and maintain a safe golden tan - from body moisturisers to self tan lotions, sun protection and after-sun care.

In the current economic climate we know that value for money is important, so we have given each product a mark out of 10 value for money.
Please note, these marks are intended purely as a guide to you. They are based solely on my own personal opinion, and have not been calculated particularly scientifically, so you may have a different opinion. If you have tried any of the products for yourself and disagree with my comments, please do feel free to let me know.

We've also included a key to help you to quickly see what each product is predominantly designed to do:
sun protection after sunmoisturisingself tanning

NB Although the active ingredient in most of the sun creams included in this feature in natural (titanium dioxide or zinc oxide), some may contain chemical sunscreens, such as octyl methoxycinnamate, oxybenzone or Padimate O (PABA Ester). We took the decision to include these products within this feature, as the remaining ingredients are natural or organic.

See our cosmetics industry information page for more about chemicals in skincare products.

If you want to see a full list of the ingredients in any of the products, just click on the link which follows each review.

If you want to find out more about any individual product, or purchase it, just click on its image.

Some previous bodycare features:
body moisturisers, cleansers, shower gels, night creams, hand care, bath products and winter radiance.


Green People
Delivery £2.50 to UK (free for 1st orders).

No Scent Sun Lotion SPF 22
Retail price £9.30 for a 50ml tube (or £16.30 for 200ml).

A rich, moisturising sun lotion made with 84% organically grown ingredients, and offering broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection. It contains no essential oils, so is ideal for sensitive skins, and is water resistant too!
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

Lavender Children's Sun Lotion SPF25
Retail price £14.00 for a 150ml tube.

A rich, moisturising sun lotion designed for children, but parents will love it too as it leaves skin feeling soft and moisturised, and has a lovely delicate fragrance from organic lavender oil. Water resistant and made with 84% organically grown ingredients.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

Self Tan Lotion
Retail price £15.65 for a 200ml bottle.

This is a rich, non-greasy self tan lotion, which gives a natural looking light/medium tan without any UV exposure. To avoid streaking make sure you exfoliate and moisturise before applying it in circular motions until it is completely absorbed. The large 200ml size is great value.
Self Tanningmoney iconvalue for money: 9/10

click here for ingredients


Green People products
Akamuti
Delivery £2.50 to UK.

Shea Mandarin Body Butter
Retail price from £6.95 for a 60ml jar.

Rich and creamy body butter with a delicious fresh mandarin fragrance. Use it before and after exposure to the sun to keep skin feeling soft and supple.
Moisturisingmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

Raspberry Seed Oil
Retail price from £2.95 for a 10ml bottle.

Cold-pressed oil packed with vitamins E & A and omega fatty acids. It is reputed to have fantastic anti-UV abilities, and is particularly good for distressed & upset skin.
Moisturisingmoney iconvalue for money: 9/10

Organic Virgin Coconut Oil
Retail price £3.95 for a 120ml jar.

This natural, cold pressed fair trade coconut oil is actually solid at normal room temperature, melting easily on contact with your skin, or in hot weather.
It is great for travelling as it can be used as a face and body moisturiser (its easily absorbed and non-greasy) and also as a pre-shampoo hair / scalp conditioner.
Moisturisingmoney iconvalue for money: 10/10

click here for ingredients


Sun care from Akamuti
Yaoh

Organic Hemp Seed Oil Sun Block SPF15
Retail price £9.73 for a 240ml bottle. Delivery £1.95 to UK.

This is a rich, non-greasy sun cream with a delicious light coconut fragrance. It absorbs easily into the skin, without leaving white marks and leaves it feeling soft and smooth.

sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

click here for ingredients


Yaoh Hemp Sun Block
Dream Botanicals

Lavender Balm
Retail price from £5.50 for a 30ml jar (or £8.50 for 60ml).
Delivery £3.00 to UK.

This lovely natural balm contains calendula and organic lavender, both renowned for their skin-healing qualities; organic apricot and sunflower oils for their nourishing properties; and beeswax and organic shea butter to soften and protect.
Great for soothing sunburnt skin.
Moisturisingmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

click here for ingredients


Dream Botanicals lavender balm
Essential Care
Delivery £2.95 to UK.

Moisturising Sun Cream SPF8
Retail price £21.00 for a 100ml bottle.
Rich, deeply moisturising sun cream containing coconut and jojoba oils and shea butter. It provides full spectrum UVA and UVB protection, and is gentle enough to use on babies and on the face, although the SPF of 8 may not be high enough for prolonged sun exposure for most people. I think it makes an ideal summer moisturiser for the whole body, with the added bonus of offering some sun protection.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

Organic Hand & Body Lotion / After-sun
Retail price £14.00 for a 150ml tube.
Lovely rich lotion which absorbs easily leaving skin feeling soft and nourished. Delicately fragranced with essential oils. Contains 95% organically grown ingredients.
After Sunmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

click here for ingredients


Essential Care organic superfruit concentrate
The Organic Pharmacy
Delivery £2.95 to UK.

Self Tan
Retail price £29.31 for a 100ml tube.

This light-textured cream is ideal for anyone new to self-tanning as it is easily absorbed and gives a lovely even, non-streaky finish without too much effort. The colour is quite subtle (you won't go instantly orange!) but you can build it up by applying it daily.
Self Tanning money iconvalue for money: 7/10

Cellular Protection Sun Cream SPF25
Retail price £29.31 for a 100ml tube.
Lovely rich sun cream with active ingredients zinc oxide, pongamia and pearl extract for UVA and UVB protection. It applies easily, leaving skin feeling soft and protected, with an attractive pearly glow. The natural cellular protection formula makes it ideal for use on the face, neck and decolletage.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 6/10

click here for ingredients


Sun Care from The Organic Pharmacy
The New Zealand Honey Shop

Pot of Gold Skin Balm
Retail price from £8.20 for a 50g pot (or £15.40 for 100g).
Delivery £1.20 to UK.

Light-textured balm with a delicate fresh fragrance. It is designed to help with many common skin conditions, such as Eczema, Psoriasis, Dermatitis, burns, cold sores and dry, cracked skin, making ideal for soothing sunburn.
NB Not recommended for anyone allergic to sulphur or sticking plasters.
After Sunmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

click here for ingredients


Pot of Gold skin balm from the New Zealand Honey Shop
Lavera
Delivery £3.00 to UK.

Family Sun Spray SPF15
Retail price £14.50 for a 200ml bottle.
A rich, moisturising sun spray with Lavera's delicious sweet signature fragrance. 100% mineral based sun protection which is effective immediately, so you don't need to wait before going out into the sun.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

After Sun Lotion
Retail price £6.75 for a 150ml tube.
Lovely rich, non-greasy aftersun lotion to cool, moisturise and soothe skin after exposure to the sun. BDIH certified natural and, as with the above sun spray, it has a lovely sweet fragrance.
After Sunmoney iconvalue for money: 9/10

click here for ingredients


Sun Care from Lavera
Neal's Yard Remedies
Delivery £4.00 to UK.

Lemongrass Sun Spray SPF15
Retail price £4.85 for a 50ml bottle.

27% organic. This is a light, sun lotion with a light fresh fragrance. It absorbs easily into the skin, leaving it feeling soft and moisturised.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

Lavender Sun Screen SPF22
Retail price £11.70 for a 150ml tube.

44% organic. A rich, non-greasy sun cream with the delicious fragrance of lavender oil - ideal for protecting skin while relaxing in the sun.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

Aloe Vera After Sun Spray
Retail price £7.30 for a 100ml bottle.

99% organic. After sun spray containing aloe vera gel, lavender and helichrysum essential oils to cool and soothe reddened or tender skin. It smells delicious and leaves skin feeling soft and calm.
After Sunmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

click here for ingredients


products from Neal's Yard Remedies
Aubrey Organics
Delivery £4.00 to UK.

Natural Sun SPF25
Retail price £9.78 for a 118ml tube.

Rich sun lotion offering UVA and UVB protection. Its ideal for children as it initially leaves a pearly white sheen on the skin, so you can see if you've missed any bits.
sun protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

Pure Aloe Vera
Retail price £5.81 for a 118ml bottle.

Organic liquid aloe vera. Soothes and hydrates stressed skin on contact, making it ideal for after sun use.
After Sunmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

Tangerine Lip Balm
Retail price £2.93 for a 4.25g stick.

99% organic. Lovely softening lip balm with a delicious fragrance from tangerine oil. Reapply frequently during exposure to the sun to keep lips smooth and hydrated all through the summer.
Moisturisingmoney iconvalue for money: 9/10

click here for ingredients


Sun care from Aubrey Organics
Puresha
Delivery £2.50 to UK.

Chocolate Sun Cocoa Enhancer
Retail price £24.50 for a 240ml bottle.
With its delicious sweet fragrance this self tan smells almost good enough to eat (but we wouldn't recommend it!) It has a light texture which makes it very easy to apply, and it comes in 2 shades - light and medium. I tried the light shade and it produced a very natural light tan with no streaking. To build up to a darker shade just apply it every day.
Self tanningmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

Chocolate Sun Cocoa Illume
Retail price £22.00 for a 120ml bottle.
Lovely light-textured sunless tanning gel designed specifically for use on the face. As with the version for the body above, it comes in 2 shades - light and medium. I tried the light shade and it produced a very natural light golden effect with no streaking. Nice fresh citrus fragrance too!
Self tanningmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

click here for ingredients


Chocolate Sun self-tanning from Puresha
KuK

Aloe & Marigold Healing Balm
Retail price from £21.28 for a 235ml pot.
Delivery free to UK.

Light fluffy balm with a delicious fresh fragrance. It is designed to help heal and repair dry, itchy skin caused by eczema, psoriasis, sunburn, heat rash, bites and stings.
Also available in a 'fragrance free' option for those with sensitive skin.
NB don't be put off if it separates a little in transit, as it mixes back together very easily.
After Sunmoney iconvalue for money: 6/10

click here for ingredients


KuK Aloe & Marigold Healing Balm
The Natural Skincare Company

Caribbean Blue Sun Shield Sport SPF15
Retail price £13.95 for a 120ml tube.
Delivery £2.50 to UK.

A light textured 100% natrual sun cream with a delicate fresh fragrance from peppermint and lavender essential oils. It absorbs effortlessly into the skin leaving it feeling soft and smooth, with no white marks, and its water resistant too.
Sun Protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

click here for ingredients


KuK Aloe & Marigold Healing Balm
Trevarno Skincare
Delivery £3.00 to UK.

Day Cream with SPF15
Retail price from £13.00 for a 30ml jar.
A rich, easily absorbed daytime moisturiser with added vitamin E and UVA & UVB protection. It has a delicate pleasant fragrance from Lavender, Geranium and Palmerosa essential oils. It leaves skin feeling soft and nourished with a subtle pearly sheen, and also makes an excellent base for make up.
Self tanningmoney iconvalue for money: 8/10

Elements Protection Balm SPF15
Retail price £10.00 for a 17ml stick.
Organic balm designed to offer sensitive areas such as lips, eyelids, ears and nose protection against the sun, sea and wind. Easy to apply stick formula which leaves skin feeling smooth and moisturised.
Self tanningmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

click here for ingredients


Chocolate Sun self-tanning from Puresha
Pur Skincare

No Shrinking Violet Organic Coconut & Grapefruit Body Butter
Retail price £5.99 for a 60ml tin.
Delivery £3.50 to UK.

100% organic rich, semi-solid body butter, presented in a tin so it fits nicely in your handbag. Comes in 4 yummy varieties including an unfragranced version - we tried the Coconut and grapefruit, which smells gorgeous. It melts on contact with the skin, leaving it feeling soft and nourished, with a healthy glow.
Its great for travelling as it can be used on dry skin anywhere on your body: face, neck, lips, elbows, heels, and even as a pre-wash hair conditioner or make-up remover.
Sun Protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 9/10

click here for ingredients


KuK Aloe & Marigold Healing Balm
AlternateStyle

Shea & Jojoba Body Butter
Retail price £9.50 for a 100g pot.
Delivery £1.70 to UK.

Lovely light body butter with a delicious fresh fragrance. It melts on contact with the skin, leaving it moisturised and glowing. Shea butter also contains some natural UV protection, although this is quite low, so we would still recommend using a dedicated sun block.
Sun Protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 7/10

click here for ingredients


AlternateStyle Shea & Jojobab Body Butter
Ruby Red

Organic Smoothing Body Scrub
Retail price £38.15 for a 700g jar.
Delivery £2.50 to UK.

Organic dead sea salt body scrub with the delicious fresh fragrance of mandarin and lemon essential oils. It also contains a blend of sunflower, jojoba and macadamia oils which moisturise your skin beautifully - take extra care in the bath / shower though, as it can make the surface a little slippery.
Its ideal for use before applying self tanning lotion, and the gorgeous kilner jar can be re-used afterwards to store all manner of bits and bobs.
Sun Protectionmoney iconvalue for money: 6/10

click here for ingredients

AlternateStyle Shea & Jojobab Body Butter
   


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