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Using a self tanner can be the quickest and most affordable way to get a summer glow. Getting used to self tanner can be a trial and error process, especially when making sure there are no streaks or smudges to the tan. Something else to consider is, does self tanner expire?

In this article we will explore if self tanner can expire, the expiration signs to look out for and what happens if you use expired self tan.

Does Tanning Lotion Expire?

Does unopened self tanner expire? Yes,. Just like other cosmetics, self tanner products can expire and will have expiration dates. These dates will be printed either at the bottom or on the side of the bottle. As a self tanner will contain a mix of chemicals and natural ingredients to create the formula, these ingredients will start to separate or go out of date after a period of time.

Does old self tanner expire? Yes, old self tanning products can expire. The main chemical ingredient in self tanning products is DHA. When DHA expires it will lose it’s color and may even react with the skin.

Does self tanner expire after a few years? The general rule is that most self tanning products have a shelf life up to one year from opening the product. Self tan also contains other chemicals that are used as preservatives which can expire. This may cause the product to look, smell and feel different.

Does self tanner spray expire? A self tan shelf life is based on when you can expect the product to have the same quality and be safe to use. This can depend on the brand, the ingredients used and also how it is stored. Expired self tan tends to be non-toxic but it can be ineffective and it’s always best to be on the safe side with cosmetics.

woman in black tank top

When Does Self Tanner Expire?

No matter what the brand of tanner is, it’s the general rule that the self tanner has expired after one year since the product has been opened. This can vary from brand to brand, but if you can’t see an expiration date of your self tanner bottle, then assume it is one year.

Can expiration dates vary depending on the type of tanning product? When does self tanner mousse expire? The answer is yes, the expiration date can vary from product to product but the general rule still remains. A tanner mousse will have expired after one year of opening, if not sooner.

The other exception to this rule is self tanner products kept in jars. Self tanner products stored in jars will have an expiration date of 9 month. If the packaging has a pump to remove the product, this means that the self tanner will last up to 12 months. This is because a pump keeps the product tightly sealed and allows less air to the product than a jar would.

You can still use self tanners past the expiration date but you will most likely not get the same result and the quality of the product and your tan will not be the same. A watery self tanning product can evaporate over time and this can change the products texture and color. When self tanner evaporates the DHA ingredient can become more solid and turn a slightly different color – this could be lighter or darker, depending on the product.

Side Effects Of Expired Tanning Lotion

Can you use a self tanner after it expires? Unlike other cosmetics, when self tanner expires it is unlikely to be harmful to the skin or cause any kind of reactions. This can vary depending on what chemicals and ingredients have been used in the tanner, especially self tanners that use natural ingredients.

What happens if I use expired self-tanner? Most self tanners contain safe, non-toxic ingredients meaning that an expired self tanner will most likely only affect the quality of the tan and the desired effect of the product.

Even though most self tanners contain safe, non-toxic ingredients, it is always best to do a patch test 24 hours before use, especially if the product has expired. If the self tanner has expired, the product may not blend into the skin well and may appear clumpy or watery in texture.

woman in half shadow

How Do You Know If Tanning Lotion Is Expired?

The key things to look out for when looking to see if your self tanner has expired is its appearance. The consistency and formula of the product may look different if the self tanner has passed it’s expiration date. Oils in the self tan can start to separate from the formula. Thus, the self tan can look watery or thicker than it did before. When the oils in the self tan break up it can also cause the formula to look lumpy or flakey.

Here are a list of changes to look for when investigating if your self tanner has expired:

  • Change of color: If your self tanner appears to be slightly darker or slightly lighter in color then this may be a sign that your self tanner has expired.
  • Texture is flaky or lumpy: Your self tanner may appear to be lumpy or flaky. This is due to the oils separating in the product. This is a clear indication that the product has expired.
  • The product looks watery: Your self tanner may appear to be watery. This is due to changes in the DHA and oils. If you use your self tanner when it has expired and is very watery, you will not get a very even application or quality.
  • The product’s oils have risen to the top: This is a sign that the oils have separated in the self tanner formula and the product has expired.

Do Tanning Products Expire?

Yes, tanning products do expire. Although the date they expire can differ from brand to brand.

We have researched the most popular tanning brands to see when they expire.

  • Does Minetan expire?: Yes, Minetan is recommended to only keep for one year after opening as most self tanners have a shelf life up to one year. The expiry date should only be from the moment you open the product. That is when the product first reacts with the air.
  • Does Tanceuticals expire?: Tanceuticals recommended that their products should generally be used within 6 months of purchase. They do state that they may last longer. But for the best results it is recommended to use them within the 6 months time frame.
  • Does Isle Of Paradise expire?: The Isle Of Paradise expiration date is 10 months after opening the product. This is due to the natural and organic ingredients. The expiration date can be postponed if you keep your Isle Of Paradise product in your fridge.
  • Does Bondi Sands expire?: It’s quite difficult to find where the expiry date on Bondi Sands Tan is. All expiry dates for any cosmetic product should be shown on the product itself. If you can’t find the expiry date it’s best to keep it within one year of opening the product.
  • Does Jergens Self Tanner expire?: The Jergens Natural Glow daily moisturizer self tanner does not have an exact expiration date. The advice is that the  product is best if used within 12 months of opening.
  • Does Tarte Brazilliance Plus Self Tanner expire?:  Tarte’s Brazilliance Plus Self Tanner can expire as there are a range of chemicals in the product that can go out of date. If the Tarte Brazilliance Plus Self Tanner does expire the product is likely to not be of the same quality.
  • Does St Tropez Self Tanner expire?: The St Tropez Self Tanner can expire like all other tanning products. It is advised that you use the product up to 12 months of opening.
  • Does Fake Bake Self Tanner expire?: The Fake Bake Self Tanner can expire like all other tanning products mentioned. You are advised to use the product up to 12 months of opening. 

Chuck Out That Expired Self Tan

We advise that it’s best to chuck out that expired self tan as it may be harmful for your skin and it will not produce the quality of tan that you are aiming for. Self tan does have an expiration date up to a year but there are clear signs to look out for. It is best to check for expiration signs after 8 months of the product being opened, just to be safe.

Do you use expired self tanner?