Spray-on formulas like L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Pro Perfect Salon Airbrush Self Tanning Mist work in a similar manner as professional airbrush tanning, but are designed with the do-it-yourself customer in mind. L'Oreal's formula comes in only one shade, but multiple applications can be used to achieve a darker color.
There is a definite learning curve for applying L'Oreal Pro Perfect, but once you get the hang of it, most reviews say it's easy to apply. Editors at TotalBeauty.com say, "without a booth, getting an even blotch-free 'tan' is difficult." They explain that it's important to keep the spray at a consistent arm's-length distance for the best results.
Users at Amazon.com add that it helps to apply in slow and steady strokes. The can has a 360-degree nozzle that can spray in any direction to cover hard-to-reach areas. Most recommend applying this self-tanner spray in the shower stall, so that you can easily wash off any residue from overspray, but users say it's better to get a friend's help in order to ensure the most even application.
L'Oreal self-tanning spray has an ultra fine mist that reviewers say helps the formula to go on evenly and requires minimal blending. In fact, editors at TotalBeauty.com say it's best to not rub it in at all. The formula imparts a natural-looking tan that develops within a few hours. Users warn that the lack of tint also makes it hard to tell where the tanner has been applied.
Spray-on tanning formulas don't typically contain as many emollient (moisturizing) ingredients as lotions, which means they tend to have a lighter texture. L'Oreal's formula also earns praise from users for not leaving behind a greasy residue, which is common with lotion-based tanners.
Like all sunless tanners, reviewers say L'Oreal Sublime Bronze develops a slight DHA scent within two hours. It does contain a small amount of fragrance to help conceal the scent, however. Editors at TotalBeauty.com also warn that the formula contains alpha hydroxy acid which can cause sun sensitivity. It's important to wear sunscreen when using this product. For sunscreen recommendations, see our report on Sunscreen.
If you don't have a lot of time to wait for tanning lotion to dry, reviewers say a tanning spray like L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Pro Perfect Salon Airbrush Self Tanning Mist is an excellent option. Users at Amazon.com and Drugstore.com say it dries in about five minutes and the sunless tanner is colorless, so it won't stain bathroom surfaces or clothing.
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Writer Paula Begoun gives L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Tanning Mist a high rating, saying it dries quickly and requires minimal blending. She says that it contains some irritating fragrance chemicals and recommends using it infrequently.
Review: Sublime Bronze ProPerfect Salon Airbrush Self-Tanning Mist by L'Oreal Paris, Paula Begoun, June 22, 2010
2. Good Housekeeping
Editors recommend L'Oreal Sublime Bronze as a good option in their review of five instant and five gradual sunless tanners. The tanners were compared for ease of use, smell, even application and streaking, but not much detail is given about Sublime Bronze.
Review: Video: Self-Tanners Tested, Editors of Good Housekeeping
Reviewers at Amazon.com praise L'Oreal Sublime Bronze for drying quickly and creating a natural-looking tan. They have mixed opinions about odor, however. Some say that it smells better than most, while others say it's intolerable.
Review: L'Oreal Paris Sublime Bronze Pro Perfect Airbrush, Medium Natural Tan, 4.6 Ounce, Contributors to MakeupAlley.com
Users at Drugstore.com give L'Oreal Sublime Bronze a high rating, praising it for drying quickly and being easy to apply. Some say it smells bad, but that is a common complaint about all sunless tanners.
Review: L'Oreal Sublime Bronze ProPerfect Salon Airbrush Self-Tanning Mist, Medium Natural Tan, Contributors to Drugstore.com
Reviewers at TotalBeauty.com are more critical of L'Oreal Sublime Bronze tanning mist than those at Amazon.com and Drugstore.com. About 100 users here give the formula a mediocre overall rating of 6.5 out of 10 stars. Several complain about uneven coverage and streaking. Others, including TotalBeauty.com editors, warn that it's important to apply the mist lightly and follow instructions carefully in order to avoid mishaps.
Review: L'Oreal Paris Sublime Bronze Pro Perfect Airbrush Self-Tanning Mist, Contributors to TotalBeauty.com