Jergens Natural Glow Express

I am super pale. It is true, I'm a MAC N3 foundation shade, which is just about the lightest that they make. I realize that this is due to my English/Irish heritage, and that someone has to be very pale, but I wish that if I had to be this pale that I could at least be the good pale, ala Nicole Kidman. Or have some good red hair to go with it (my sister got that gene, lucky girl). Instead, I'm the pale where everyone asks if I feel "alright" or "did you get enough sleep?"

My skin doesn't change colors in the sun, I don't even really burn. I do, however, change colors with the help of sunless tanners. That color is usually orange. So, I'm left wishing for skin that was tanner, but not orange.

I'm also a bit lazy/impatient. I want minimal effort, a quick result and I want it to be a good, natural looking result. I'm tired of the traditional sunless tanners, I waste so much time only to look streaky in the end. And orange due to the high DHA content.

Enter my experimentation with sunless moisturizers. I've tried Dove (I was pale until I suddenly turned bright orange on day 5), L'Oreal (this is a very picky formula that resulted in streaking), and I've also tried Jergens. I got an ok result after about a week with the Jergens, but I couldn't take the smell.

So, you can imagine that when Jergens asked if I wanted to try their new Natural Glow Express, I was a bit reluctant. But, the PR rep assured me that the formulation was very different. She even confided that she was also a pale girl, had issues with the first formula, but that this one worked much better. Okay, I will experiment on my legs. If I turn orange I have lots of body scrubs that I've been experimenting with, and I can wear pants to work for a week.

Well, it turns out that I actually do like this formula. It still has pretty much the same DHA that all sunless tanners have (they give the products those oh so great scents), but in this formula I don't turn orange. The moisturizer is formulated to work over three days of gradual color build up. It really does need those three days, but getting there is very easy. The formula is very forgiving, no streaking or issues with color buildup (I did apply a light coat of regular lotion to my elbows, ankles and tops of my toes first). It is a bit thicker than regular lotions, but I didn't find it hard to use.

Overall, this was an easy way to get a great tan. I love that the formula is so forgiving, I prefer using it for just one or two days (a lighter tan is better for me), then working on maintenance. The company does suggest that you maintain the tan with their regular Natural Glow Moisturizer (which is much cheaper). I'll be stocking up on this for summer!

Ingredients (For medium skin tones):

You might want to check out their website, they're having a great contest right now that could score you a $5000 travel voucher (where do you want to go?) or a GC for dinner and a movie!
Jergens Natural Glow Express


  1. I read somewhere that the colour the self-tanner turns on you has more to do with your own body chemistry than the tanner. Like, you said, they all have the same active ingredient, so there's nothing else in the lotion that will change the colour it turns. What do you think?

    I've tried all the ones you've mentioned and I always turn a lovely bronze colour, but I know that a lot of it has to do with the fact that I'm medium-toned.

  2. I actually really like this product too -- and I'm pale like you! :) It's definitely the best one I've tried.

  3. I will give this one a whirl. I am also a pale one with a problem finding a good self tanner. I'm glad to hear there is one out there that doesn't give the orange glow or have a crazy smell.

  4. I loved this tanner as well ... great review!!! xo

  5. Does this one stink too? I've tried a couple of the gradual lotion tanners that smelled okay at first, but after awhile that yucky smell always comes out. ;_;

  6. Henna- The color you turn has to do with both your body's chemistry as well as the formulation that the self tanner is in. It's shelf life and the way that it reacts with your skin are highly affected by both the pH and other chemicals that are present in the tanner. Personally, I turn very orange with some tanners, have a tan color with others. They all have the same active ingredient.

    Hana- It does have a bit of a smell (that classic self tanner smell that we all love so much), but it is not bad. I personally don't like smelling like that stuff at all, so i tend to apply and let it dry before going to bed (and yes, you do need to let the lotion sink in before getting dressed, i got sock lines the first night!), that way I shower it off in the morning.

  7. i struggle with the scent of this stuff. i don't mind the color it gives, but the smell vexes me.

  8. I definitely know where your coming from! I'm very Irish/Scotish/English etc and so I am so pale its not even funny. I've tried lots of other self tanners since regular tanning is out of the question (my dad had skin cancer). But I saw Jergens Natural Glow Express tonight at Safeway, but I figured I would read the reviews first..
    Your review was very good :) but I have a question..can you use it on your face? Or should I just use the Jergens natural glow for the face?

  9. Hi Anon-
    The company says that it isn't meant for the face and they recommend using the face product with it.

    I haven't used this product in a few weeks, but since we're in the middle of a "heat wave" here in So Cal and I've been wearing shorts, I did use this product this morning with the face lotion/self tanner from Jergens.

    A word of warning about that face product- it is very hydrating! I turned into a big grease-ball, good thing I was at home all day working on my computer rather than having to go in for work!

    As well, I have found that I still need to protect the dry areas of my skin with a bit of regular moisturizer before application.

    But, I'm now a very natural looking light tan. I'll probably re-apply in a day or two to slightly deepen the tan, but I may switch to the regular lotion to try and maintain this color for a bit.

  10. I just bought this stuff this evening and just put it on! Jergen's also makes a face version of the Natural Glow moisturizer so I bought that also! I hope it works!

  11. I bought it yesturday and today I had patches of color and non color, i probably didnt put it on right so tonight im going to scrub off the places where it looks blotchy and re apply it and hopefully it looks better tomorrow!

  12. I'm Japanese and Irish so I have the yellow under tone and I'm sort of pale. I used another brand of self tanner and had my fiance airbrush it on me before a Hawaiian Tropic model search I participated in and my color didn't develope until the next day....and I had streaks...and runs...blotches...we picked up the Jergens Natural Glow for medium skin tones and the face stuff too...I've been using it for almost a week now and I'm happy to say my runs and streaks are blended now. I'm not cracking and flaking like I would have had I just used the spray on..or any other fake and bake for that matter! This product has kept my skin soft and because it's not only giving my skin that moisture it needs but the color I's easy for me to use it...and it doesn't smell bad at all considering what some of the products out there smell like! Sacramento has beautiful weather but when you spend the majority of your time in an office it's not easy to get out and soak up the sun...but with this's easy to look like you do...this is now on my list of favorite must have beauty products!
    Now I'm ready for round 2 of the Hawaiian Tropic model search and maybe...with my new..natural looking tan...I'll get in tomorrow and move on to the finals!! Kinda hard to push Hawaiian Tropic pale....unless of course you're pushing the sun block hahahahaha!

  13. Thanks for this review.
    I will take this into consideration whilst sunless tanning item shopping.

  14. They sell the facial lotion, It's in the same aisle , you just have to hunt for a bit. But the facial lotion is very trick i think, you have to make sure you get it even, and not too much, its kinda bother some, and sometimes its hard to get around the eyes..

  15. The scent is overwhelmingly sweet. I do not leave the house after I've applied it, as I know it would be offensive to those around me. It smells like very cheap perfume, drug store brand 2.99 clearance bin cheap.

    However, this is just my opinion AND the product does work and performs well.

    My tan appeared within one day and sustained through my sweaty work out sessions and consequent showering and scrubbing.

    I did not take any extra precautions when applying the product, in fact I applied it just as I would regular lotion. I experienced no blotching or streaking either.

    And kudos to all of you who opt for sunless tanning over baking in the sun or using a tanning bed.

    If you are in your twenties, take heed, the sun will age you far faster than you could ever imagine. In fact as a 33 year old woman I am surprised at how old some women in the 20's appear. Visible lines around the eyes and mouth, come on ladies this is not the norm!

    So slather this stuff on and deal with the smell, you will get a great tan and save your skin all that damage.

  16. this product is great!
    but if you are applying it to your face remember to put it on your neck and chest too otherwise you could look uneven

  17. I applied it last night, washed my hands thoroughly afterward, and woke up this morning with orange palms!

  18. I do get yellow palms from this stuff so I've started wearing latex gloves while applying it half of the time. More than that, I dislike it coloring my nails.

    Still, the color works really well for me. I hate orangey or bronze looking tans so the light brown look of jergens is quite nice.

  19. I am super pale and was a little nervous about trying the express lotion. I have used the original but didn't like the smell and didn't see a very significant difference in my skin tone. Last night, I decided to test the express lotion on my stomach to make sure that it wouldn't turn me orange. When I woke up this morning and looked at my stomach I was very pleased with the results. The tan looked completely natural and wasn't a bit orangey. I was amazed at the difference after just one use...I can't wait to try Jergens Natural Glow Express on my ghostly practically transparent legs! So far I am very pleased with this product...It even smells a little better that Jergens original stuff.

  20. For me the Natural Glow Express was a lot better than the Natural Glow. One reason was that I find it a pain to keep applying something day after day, not knowing whether you got it even with yesterday or the day before that. Actually, I had no results after 3 days, and on the 4th day, an admittedly natural-looking yet uneven tan surfaced from out of nowhere. The darkness was nice, but since I was unable to see where I needed to cover more until I actually had all the tan I wanted, it was awful. My knuckles and edge of my wristbone were way too dark compared to my arms and face, and my arms were that much darker than my face. With Natural Glow Express, I just had to apply one day at about 2 p.m., and I saw vague results, but enough to guage what I was doing and to have a nice little glow after one use. I just had to make sure to rub in the mosturizer around my wristbone and knuckles to leave those areas with a thinner layer. Also, make sure you wipe your palms right after. Also, after I used Express for 3 days, my tan showed almost no fading for about 4 straight days of no use. I recommend Express, but use Natural Glow at your own risk. I know results vary from person to person, but that's my opinion.

  21. I absolutely love Jergens! I got really pale skin too so. It did take me a while to get the hang of it though.I learned the hard way that you gotta applythe lotion evenly or else it will streak...and you gotta golight on the hands, wrists, and feet. Took me a little bit of trial and error, but the product definitely works good! :-)


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