DIY Bronzer

I have pretty fair skin and only tan if I burn first…no thanks, I don’t want skin cancer! I’ve tried several self-tanners, but have never been happy with them. I just hate the way they all smell! I pinned a recipe for a DIY bronzer last summer (, but never got around to trying it. It seemed like this was as good a time as any to give it a try. 

Before you see how to make it, I’ll give you my thoughts. I really wanted to like this, but it was just ok.  Despite there being more cons than pros, I’d still like to try it again with a little less cocoa powder next time.


  • It smells fantastic!
  • Since it uses coconut oil, it’s very moisturizing.
  • No yucky chemicals!


  • It takes a long time to rub it in so there aren’t streaks.
  • It rubs off easily onto clothing. Even after an hour it still rubbed off. 
  • It washes off with water, so you can’t wear it to the beach, pool, or lake.
  • It seems to settle into the creases of the skin, and it kind of makes you look dirty.

The ingredients needed to make this bronzer include:

  • Coconut oil
  • Cocoa powder
  • 3 black tea bags
  • Vanilla extract
  • Mixing bowl
  • Electric mixer

I started by steeping the three tea bags in 1/2 a cup of boiling water for about 5 minutes, then I let it cool for about 10 minutes. 

Next, I added 2 tsp. of coconut oil, 2 tsp. of cocoa powder, 2 tsp. of the cooled black tea, and 1 tsp. of vanilla extract to my mixing bowl.  This doesn’t seem like a lot, but it was enough for my arms and legs…a little goes a long way.


Then, I used my electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, to mix it all together to get a smooth consistency. 

Finally, I rubbed it into my skin like you would any lotion. You have to keep rubbing until all the streaks are gone. It smelled so good, I wanted to lick my arm! The picture on the right is my arm with no bronzer and the one on the left is my arm with the bronzer. It definitely gave my skins darker complexion.



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