Sunless Tanner Sales 'Pale' Compared to 2006: Study

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Sunless Tanner Sales 'Pale' Compared to 2006: Study

Consumers are opting to get their tans the natural way these days, resulting in a drop in sunless tanner sales since 2006, according to a new study by Mintel.

"Consumers rushed to the market to try new products but backed off after the initial trial," said Kat Fay, senior analyst at Mintel. "It appears that people weren't fully satisfied with the effects of sunless tanners."

The study found that in 2007, the sunless tanning market netted just $181 million, down 5 percent ($10 million) from 2006, when a stream of new products were introduced to the market.

The desire for a "natural-looking" tan is not the only reason people have begun to shy away from sunless tanners, the study found. The main complaint of survey respondents who have stopped using sunless tanners is that they are too hard to apply (42 percent). Additionally, 33 percent said they've stopped using the products because the results appear too artificial.

Among those who do use sunless tanners, the greatest motivation is time. Sixty-one percent said they look for a product that works quickly and reliably. Thirty-nine percent use them to decrease the risk of damaging sun exposure. Only 16 percent use sunless tanners on a regular basis in place of moisturizer.

"Consumers are looking for a product that offers both tanning and skincare benefits without requiring too much effort, so anything that promises to enhance this experience would attract new users," said Fay.

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