Tan-Luxe The Butter


What is it? Gradual body tanner.

What does/should it do? Give you a subtle, but buildable, faux glow.

Repurchase? Yes, probably.


Tan-Luxe The Butter

Tax-Luxe has been my only foray into the world of faux glow, and I have not been disappointed. After many (many!) repurchases of Super Glow for my face, I was intrigued by the launch of Super Glow for the body.

And then I bought The Butter instead.

Faux glow requires a lot of faff. You need to thoroughly exfoliate beforehand. You need to apply the goo and let it settle in. You need to wreck your white bedsheets with the colour guard. You need to smell like fake tan. You need to make sure you properly moisturise but not until the colour has developed. I am not here for any of that.

Tan-Luxe’s The Butter takes some of the faff out. It’s a gradual tanner in a moisturising formula, and so you apply it just as you would a moisturiser. There’s no colour guard (the colour in the product that lets you see where you’ve applied), so there’s a bit of concentrating on where you’ve tanned and where you haven’t, but it means you can get dressed straight away. That fake tan fragrance is definitely there, but it’s not outrageous. I kind of like it. And although you still should exfoliate (to make sure the tan is even), you don’t have to scrub hard – my daily AHA moisturiser (more about which another time) is good enough. Finally, your moisturiser is in-built.

Photograph of upper arm and chest showing result of fake tan application.

Tanned arm, pale chest. The difference is tiny, but enough to make me feel good about life.

I’m not going to lie to you: I still managed to stuff it up, and it’s been hilarious. Mainly, it’s a case of me learning to fake tan. The first time I used it I was so worried about getting weird orange fingers, but in preventing that I managed to give myself tanned arms and pale wrists. Another time I was so concerned about making sure I got the back of my shoulders that I forgot to do my forearms. Concentrating on my décolletage left me with a wobbly hash of a tan line on my boobs, although the only other person looking at my boobs didn’t notice until I pointed it out.

This is why I bought a gradual tanner: like with my face, it’s subtle enough when you start out that making newbie mistakes isn’t so dire. One application is enough to take off the winter pale – which is all I want – and lasts me about a week.

Composition of two photos showing results of fake tan on arm.

The Butter works like all DHA-based tanning products. The DHA (dihydroxyacetone) darkens your surface layers of skin by reacting with the dead cells on the surface. Because it’s the surface layer it will wear off with your natural cell turnover, but how fast your turnover is will determine how long you’ll stay tanned for.

Alongside the DHA we came here for, there’s vitamin E, cocoa butter, shea butter, and raspberry seed, oat and coconut oils – all of which are gorgeously nourishing and hydrating.

Given the amount of product I’m using, and the frequency with which I’m using it, I’m sure I’ll still be working my way the tube this time next year. Would I buy it again? Yes, probably. It’s fairly unfussy, it’s great for beginners, it’s a light-but-buildable colour.

Tan-Luxe The Butter is $45 from Sephora.

This page does not contain affiliate links. All products featured were purchased. Prices in Australian dollars unless otherwise noted and current at time of publication. Products trialled on my skin and may not be suitable for yours. Have an excellent day!

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