The PR team for Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare (formerly MD Skincare) sent the line’s Alpha Beta Glow Pads to the TIA office. At first glance, I was a bit skeptical about the product. A self-tanning product that has been transformed into an easy to use wet towelette with anti-aging and exfoliating(!) properties? And it contains the actives vitamin D, soy protein, AHA, antioxidants and microencapsulated DHA? Really? That’s some potent towelette that promises to exfoliate and self-tan in one single step, and packs up additional anti-aging benefits. We’ll see about this one, I thought to myself sarcastically.

So I waited until Friday night to give this one a try. Yes, I usually reserve a Friday night for any type of self-tanning experiments. You just don’t know with new products; one can never be too careful. If my color resembles carrot cake, I have 48 hours before Monday morning to fix the disaster.

I washed my face and pulled out one of the “miracle” towelettes, which comes in a box of 20, each individually wrapped in foil sachets. The pad was quite moist, but not oily or emollient, which made it a bit difficult to apply in circular motions, as directed. I sort of just wiped my face and neck area with it all around in random movements - making sure that no patches were left behind and that each area received the same amount of product.

The application took literally 15 to 20 seconds. As I was applying it, the product absorbed and evaporated quite fast, so you must move quickly. As I was finishing up the neck area, my towelette became rather dry, and I felt that not all areas were covered evenly. At the same time, I was cautious not to open another pad and apply too much product - I didn’t want to look like the aforementioned carrot cake. So I left it at one this time around.

Within about 3 to 4 hours I saw a light, yet noticeable tan developing on my face and neck area. It looked very healthy and - most importantly - natural. And the tan lasted for 3 days. However, it did leave my typically oily skin a bit tight for the following couple of days, perhaps due to the light exfoliation caused by alpha hydroxy acid.

I repeated the procedure in about 4 days, but this time I exfoliated with YBF’s Prep ($80 in the TIA shop) prior to self-tanning to prolong the tan. I also used 2 towelettes to ensure even product distribution and to achieve a deeper glow. Again, the results were spectacular - I had a very natural, healthy-looking glow that lasted closer to 4 or 5 full days.

Overall, I am very excited to have found Alpha Beta Glow Pads by Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare. With its extremely easy and fast application, lack of an unpleasant scent, and fabulous results (natural, sun-kissed skin), it’s a very well-thought-out product for someone with limited time who wants professional-looking results.

Ingredients: Water (aqua), Ethoxydiglycol, Dihydroxyacetone, Glycerin, Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Ergocalciferol (vitamin D), Tocopheryl Acetate, Salix Alba (willow) Bark Extract, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Phospholipids, Phyllanthus Emblica Fruit Extract, Erythrulose, Phytic Acid, Disodium Edta, Phenoxyethanol