Surprised no one's written a review of this yet! (For reference, my skin is incredibly pale with neutral undertones)
I'm a super pale lady, and although when I was younger I used to long for a beautiful tan, my experiences with self-tanners were so discouraging that I just gave up and embraced the pale. I know self-tanners have come a long way since then, but the memories of vivid orange streaks and splotches on my legs were enough to keep me from trying a new formula.
Well, lately the lure of the tan's been calling my name again, so I did my research and decided I would try the Sienna X self tanner. I must say, I've been pleasantly surprised!
The tanner is in a lotion form, and has no colour guide - something I was a little worried about, but actually was no problem at all. I bought a set of Sienna X products, so I exfoliated with the Polishing Body Scrub and rinsed with the Balance Body Wash (I'll write separate reviews), and then applied the Gradual Glowing Self Tan. I just tanned my legs because I wanted to test the colour/application before I went ahead and did my whole body. I had watched a YouTube tutorial on the best way to apply the tan (because I'm a total newbie, lol), which suggested a certain amount of pumps for legs, etc. I followed the suggestion (2 pumps for lower leg, 3 pumps for thigh), pumping directly onto my leg and blending with two St. Tropez mitts on my hands. Because the tanner is in lotion form, if you use mitts you definitely lose a bit of product, but I was very wary of getting orange hands, so I didn't mind. Like I said, the tanner doesn't have a colour guide, so you just rub it in like a lotion, and take some care around knees, ankles, etc. As a sidenote, the smell is GORGEOUS - hard to describe, but definitely not the chemical-y wheat-y smell I usually associate with self tanners.
I tanned before bed, wasn't particularly careful around my knees or ankles, but nevertheless woke up to a beautiful even layer of subtle tan on my legs without streaks or patches! The colour is absolutely gorgeous - very natural and no orange to speak of - in fact, I it blended incredibly well and matched my more "tan"/darker areas perfectly.
My ONLY qualm, and why I didn't rate this higher, actually is that it's not darker! That said, it is meant to be a gradual and buildable colour... I know Sienna X makes a Dark Glowing Self Tan, so I might try that next.
*I WILL UPDATE THIS REVIEW WHEN I KNOW HOW LONG IT LASTS*
As for the practicalities:
Packaging is good - I like the fact that the 200ml bottle has a pump as it makes for easy "measuring".
Price is OK - I managed to find a set for £11 a bottle on Ebay, but from Sienna's website their tanning products are more in the £15-25 range. Although not expensive, I don't think it's fantastic value for money, because the pumps are large, and the tan is subtle, so if you want a darker tan you'll be going through it really quickly...
So to summarise:
- Subtle natural colour, FANTASTIC for uber pale ladies
- Very easy to get an even application
- Gorgeous smell
- Very Moisturising, and additionally has an "anti-cellulite formulation"
- Quite light layer, so if you want a DARK tan, this isn't the best product for it
- Not great value for money (not BAD, just not fantastic)
*UPDATE* With no re-application and no upkeep, this tanner lasted me a week and a half - it faded slowly and naturally. Definitely pleased with it!