Thursday, June 26, 2014

Cocoa Brown Gentle Bronze & Tough Stuff review - wedding worthy!

As you know, I'm not a big self tanner because I'm crap at life and no matter how careful I am, I'll end up looking like a dirty big zebra with the amount of streaks and patches I manage to create.

But for Joanne's wedding, I knew I'd have to bite the bullet and make the effort purely because I was wearing navy and I needed a bit of somethin' somethin' to take away the blue tinge from my skin.  So I decided to give Cocoa Brown's Gentle Bronze a go and hoofed myself into Penneys where I picked it up for under €6 along with the Cocoa Brown Tough Stuff which was €5.80.


Even tanning newbies like me know to exfoliate before tanning and so a couple of days before applying Gentle Bronze, I give myself a good buff in the shower with Tough Stuff.  If you want a more intense scrub, then applying it to dry skin makes it more abrasive.  And can I just say how much I LOVE the packaging because it makes life so much easier being able to squirt out some of the product into your hands while in the shower rather than trying to open a tub, scoop some out and then put the lid back on so water doesn't get into it, all while trying to keep the scoop of scrub in your hands.  Not fun.  So kudos to the squirty tube.


Tough Stuff is pink, works fantastically as a pre tan scrub or when you need to get rid of any leftover tan from your previous application.  I'll definitely repurchase this when I run out.

On to the tan itself.  I've used gradual tanners in the past and haven't been too pushed with them, each one more meh than the last.  I found that they either left me orange, or more often it took me nearly a week of using them before any kind of colour would come up on my skin.  I ain't got time for that and while I mightn't be ready to to a proper overnight tan, I needed something that would work quickly but also be forgiving.


Gentle Bronze is tinted light brown so you can kind of see where you're applying it.  It smells lovely and floraly, no hint of a biscuit scent and sinks into the skin quickly leaving an ever so light tint to the skin.  Happy days.  I generally apply it at night and then wake up to lightly bronzed skin that looks like me.  It looks like I've had a few days in the sun, sans freckles and the colour it leaves me is so natural, not orange toned and gorgeous.  I love that after one use, I'm good to go but can also build it up if I want.  Because of my newbie-ness to the tanning world, there's no way I'm going to put this in my face and it's mainly for everyone who'd have to look at me because guaranteed I'd make a hames of it.  So I can't say how it works on the visage.

Now, the tube says to make sure to wash your hands after using or else you'll look like you've been Tangoed (my words, not theirs) and it's worth noting that each time you apply some to a body part, your palms get more orange and no amount of washing with soap will get rid of it.  So either apply the tan with a mitt, or use some Tough Stuff between your palms to get rid of it and you'll be grand.  Thin layers are the way to go because in my haste one day, I lashed it on my legs and became a giraffe/zebra hybrid when it set and took hold.  My own fault.

I felt fantastic on Joanne's wedding day and even though I only had my arms on show, I knew the tan looked natural and for the entire day, I wasn't self conscious about waving my arms in the air like I just didn't care.  When you're dancing to tunes of the 80s, this is very important.



I think Gentle Bronze and Tough Stuff will be in my repertoire and bathroom for a long time and being able to get a tan and scrub for under €12 is pretty fantastic in my book.  The fact that I wore it to Joanne's wedding speaks volumes lads, volumes!

Have you Cocoa Brown-ed yourself at all yet?  What's your favourite product so far?
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9 comments

  1. I used the original mousse on my legs last week and it looked awful, I really don't think I'm cut out for tan, too lazy to do the whole prep and I always expect it to look great even though my poor legs haven't seen daylight since last year! Cocoa Brown always seems to look lovely on everyone else! I've been using a gradual tanner on my arms & chest & it's grand :)

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    1. Deffo give this gradual tanner a go Sharon, it's honestly faboosh

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  2. You all looked fab! If you use latex gloves it doesn't absorb any extra product and it means you don't get any on your hands. My friends and I have all had pretty bad experiences with the cocoa brown instant tan, so its made me a bit afraid of any of the rest of their products.
    Emma Xo | Missemmalouise12.blogspot.ie |

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    1. Thanks Emma, yeah I must invest in some gloves actually, good thinking x

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  3. I tried this the other week, you might remember I was freaking out on twitter that I hadn't used a mitt and my hands were turning orange. I ended up having to use Dove handwash and a scrubby kitchen sponge to scrub it off......yet I still had bog all colour the following day. I'll give it another go, and the 1 hour tan version that I bought too, but I think i'll go back for that Tough Stuff first and make sure I use a mitt.

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    1. No way! I could have stopped after one application and in fairness, I did apply a decent amount, so maybe lash a bit more on or do a double layer on night 1?

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  4. Tried to comment there - dunno where it went?!

    I tried the 1 hour moose for the first time and I love it. Normally a Dove gradual tanner fan, as I want a glow/take away the deathly pale look, but don't want to look like Nicola from Girls Aloud in the early days. I admit I did really prep the skin, but that's not a bad thing, skin feels great, so there were no streaks, but also no smell and a gorgeous colour oh and it didn't feel sticky! Love! It's cheap and it's Irish which is even better.

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    1. I'm actually obsessed with this, love it and the lack of streakage is always good!

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