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Tanning Lotions buying guide

Radiant skin, shiny tan, and no damaged skin, the dream of every woman out there. Whenever you think of buying tanning lotions, you need to understand that you need to select the best as it goes over your skin.

While looking for information here and there, you will get confused with the types and ingredients. Not all lotion types are suitable for all skin types. Moreover, different kinds of lotions have a different purpose.

It is vital to check different aspects of the lotion. What are its ingredients and SPF strength? What type of enhancers are present in the lotion.

To remove the hassle of looking here and there, we have prepared a guide that will aid you in selecting the best lotion for your skin.

Just go through the detailed pointers and be ready to flaunt your gorgeous and tanned skin. Let us dive into this guide to begin our hunt.

What are Tanning lotions, and how are they different from sunblocks?

Many people enjoy the water activities at the beach, and having a fun time with friends is more of an opportunity to show off their healthy body tan. If you want that sun-kissed glow on your body, many products are available in the market to assist you with the glow that you desire.

The tanning lotions available in the market have a different purpose and do not usually yield similar results. There are tanning lotions for outdoor use and indoor use as well. Many lotions only protect the skin, while the other lotions may contain substances that often cause self-tanning at different temperatures.

The tanning lotions do not offer solar protection like sunblock as your skin is exposed to harmful UV rays. Usually, people use sunblock as their skin is more prone to skin cancer risks or getting moles.

Types of Tanning Lotions

The lotions that are available in the market are used to fasten the process of tanning. The centers that provide you with the tanning treatment apply several tanning lotions on your skin. We have listed below some types of lotions to find the one that suits you the best.

  1. Criteria 1: Bronzer or non-bronzer

These are the type of tanning lotions that will highlight the tan that your skin will receive naturally, giving it a bronze-like appearance. The excellent quality tan solutions offer this feature.

You need not worry about your clothes getting spoiled due to the tan or whether the tan will leave behind a streak on your body. It will act more like the makeup products that highlight your body to give it a natural glow.

  1. Criteria 2: Light vs. Dark

The tanning solutions also offer an option of the variable color of the body tan, like the dark or light color. The tan's shade will also depend on your body's natural color, along with the type of color tan that you want to receive. It is highly recommended not to go for a tan color, which will cause any drastic variation in your body color.

For instance, if your natural body color is light, do not aim for getting a very dark-toned color suddenly as the contrast of your fair natural skin and the dark tanned sports may be visible in certain spots of your body. Move gradually to the darker tones other than moving all of a sudden.

  1. Tingle tanning lotions

These tanning lotions make you feel a tingling sensation on your skin when the lotion is applied. The tingling sensation is that the added substances in the lotion initiate the process of microcirculation in the skin. This allows all the other substances to easily get absorbed by the layers of your skin.

The melanin production rate is also enhanced because of the microcirculation process caused by the tingling sensation in your skin. The customers' reviews for such lotions are brilliant, and the customers have listed their positive experience with the product.

If you are trying the lotion for the first time, you should expect redness, warmness, and a significant tingling sensation in your skin. These effects are temporary, and you need not worry about them. After applying the product, you should go out for tanning or lie down on a tanning bed.

  1. Bronzers

These lotions consist of tiny particles, which are often colored, and they provide a tan color to our skin, and there is no need to undergo the organic procedure for tanning. You may consider it to be like skin makeup, but the effects are achieved gradually, and they are permanent like the real tan.

There are many kinds of tanning lotions that are available in the market which can be suitable as per your choice:

  1. Gradual self-tanning solutions
  2. Bronzer lotions for highlighting
  3. Bronzer lotions for indoor tanning

Types of Skin for Tanning

According to scientists, there are at least six types of skin groups, and they are listed below.

  1. Type 1

This kind of skin will always experience a burning sensation whenever it is exposed to the sun rays, and this skin type is not known to get naturally tanned. The skin might appear pale white with light blonde or red hair accompanied by blue-green eyes with freckles.

  1. Type 2

This skin type will usually feel a burning sensation, and the chances of getting a natural tan are very rare. The appearance of the person is very similar to that of type 1.

  1. Type 3

The burning sensation felt by the skin is very mild, and the skin will go through a tiny tan. The appearance may involve white skin accompanied with any hair and eye color.

  1. Type 4

This skin type experiences minimum burning sensation and can quickly get tanned. The appearance of the person may involve brown skin with any hair type and eye color.

  1. Type 5

People with this skin type will rarely face any burning sensation, and their skin is known to tan well. The appearance of the person may involve brown skin accompanied by dark eyes and hair.

  1. Type 6

This skin type will never get tanned and will never go through any burning sensation. The appearance of the person may involve dark brown skin along with dark eyes and hair.

Things to deem about while selecting appropriate Tanning Lotions

SPF strength

Mostly all the tanning lotions don't come with added substances like the SPF or products that will offer protection from the sun. Thus the lotion for tanning does not contain the properties for sun protection. If your skin is fair, it becomes imperative for you to purchase products with sunscreen properties, or the product should have features like the SPF with their number being higher for delivering extra protection.

You can always apply sunscreen before applying the lotion for tanning on their skin. This will protect your skin from the harmful UV rays of the sun.


The tanning lotions contain many added ingredients. It is likely to need a lotion for tanning, which is rich in the concentration of the vitamins, especially the vitamins B complex, E, and C. The best tanning lotion for your skin should also be rich in moisturizing properties.

It should contain the ingredients which play a massive role in cooling like the aloe Vera, green tea extract, cucumber, coconut oil or olive, sunflower oils, etc.

There is a massive variety of tanning lotions in which all the natural and organic ingredients have been used. Nearly all the lotions for tanning have no added chemicals in them as the customers' first preference is to use natural organic products on their skin.

While looking for the appropriate tanning lotion, you must make sure that the lotion has substances that can provide moisture and make your skin look plump as the sun's rays will be able to penetrate effectively. Ingredients like Shea butter and coconut butter work the best.

If you want your skin to be smooth, look for the presence of vitamin E in the product as it will be able to deliver smoothness and make your skin look younger as it will slow down the aging effects caused by the harmful UV rays.

If your skin has pigmentation, which is dark, Vitamin A will enhance it most naturally. A chemical known as DHA can deliver even better results in this context.

If you have been out there in the sun for long, then you must use aloe vera on your skin as it will be able to calm your skin. It is an essential ingredient to look for while purchasing the perfect tanning lotion.

Fragrance or no fragrance

Fragrance or no fragrance counts as your personal choice. No one else but you can know whether you like the mild coconut scent from the tropics in the tanning oils or if it is more likely that you would go for the fragrance-free tanning lotion.

The presence of any fragrance will be well described on the labels of the tanning lotions' bottle, so while purchasing them, you should look at what you will prefer to avoid any surprise which might be unpleasant later.

Some users prefer purchasing lotions which have hypoallergenic and fragrance-free properties. This is the best for people who have sensitive skin as they have a tough time sometimes with the fragrance containing lotions because of irritants.

These are also appropriate for people who do not like the presence of glitter in the lotion or the smells of the other lotions that are available in the market.

The tanning lotions, which are conclusive of fragrance, make you smell good after you have applied the product on your skin. The pleasant aroma is there on your skin until the lotion is present on the skin.

Many users prefer using tanning lotions with a unique fragrance as it gives them joy. However, it is highly recommended to check the labels to know about the status of absence or presence of any odor.

Natural or chemical

The choice of either the natural or the chemical lotion for tanning lies with the user. Some people are very cautious about their skin and health, so they are more likely to buy tanning lotions entirely free of chemicals. Usually, all the products that we purchase are conclusive of chemicals, and we cannot assure you 100% that these chemicals are safe for your skin and health.

There are chemical particles that are added to the lotion that will make your skin look bronzed, giving it a natural highlight look. There are also tanning lotions that have added natural oils and moisturizers in them for the fragrance and protection from the harmful UV light. Ingredients like cucumber, aloe vera, coconut oil, etc., are also added to calm the skin and play a role in cooling the skin.

Indoor vs. Outdoor

People might consider indoor tanning fake, but the process is very similar when compared to the operation of tanning. The tanning, when done indoors, can be controlled more carefully because the user can set the timer and can manage the effect of the intense UV rays, which depends on your bed. You should initiate the process slowly and try gradually working up the time.

Before using the indoor tanning procedure, you should be well aware of the type of skin that you have. The list is given on the bed, and you should consider consulting your salon professional to help you with the same without overexposing.

Those of you who are going through the procedure for the first time should use the tanning lotion, which has been designed mainly for beginners. If you are tanning outdoors, then you should be more careful as the longer your skin is exposed to the sun, the more it will tan.

Sometimes people overexpose their skin in the sun, and that damages the health of your skin.


When you are tanning on the beach, the water-resistant feature is the most important. The tanning lotions, which are meant for indoor tanning, will not be having the characteristics of the waterproof cream. The same goes for the self-tanning lotions, which have bronzing features as they also do not provide the user with the qualities for waterproofing.

It would help if you looked for the lotion which can deliver you with the appropriate benefits and advantages of your preferred tanning lotion. The features provided by the tanning lotions are irresistible as they provide you with effects like the bronzer and also provide you with appropriate moisture.


The price of the lotion will not necessarily indicate the value and the quality of the lotion. It is not apparent that the most expensive lotions will provide you with the best results, and the cheapest lotion will always deliver you bad results. All the features that are provided to increase the quality of the lotion add to the cost of the tanning lotion.

The design of the lotion, the ingredients, and the manufacturing process, along with the price of marketing and the distribution of the cost, will determine the reasonable value of the lotion for tanning that you wish to purchase.

The price should not be the factor that should be looked upon while buying the best lotion for use. Instead, one must consider the number of ingredients that are added to kick starts the tanning procedure above the price of the tanning lotions.


The products have a shelf life of a long time if the parabens are added to them. These parabens are the preservatives that are known to enhance the longevity of the product. These parabens are chemicals that can also be harmful to your health as they are known to interfere with the natural synthesis of the hormones in your body.

It would be best if you looked for the presence of parabens in the description which is provided in the bottle labels. The labels carry all the information about the fragrance, ingredients, or added parabens in the tanning lotion.

Like the parabens, the lotion also comprises bronzer, which also plays a role in enhancing darkening. Self-tanning lotions have these added bronzers that yield the users a natural highlighter like glow on their skin.

To increase the longevity of such products with these features, the parabens are added. But there are products which don't add any parabens in their lotions. If you do not want to use any harmful chemical on your skin, you can also go for the paraben-free tanning lotions.

Packaged size

The package's size generally lets you know about the volume of the tanning lotion that will come along with the purchase. The package size is of crucial value while you are trying to determine the amount of solution you will get compared to the price you are paying for the tanning lotion.

The package size is also essential when you consider repurchasing the tanning lotion that you bought earlier because you like the size of the package and the volume of lotion that you received.

It would be best if you avoided the sun during noon as it is the most powerful at that time and wear a sunblock even for the minimal activities you are performing at the beach as you are at the risk of exposure from the harmful rays of the sun.

Safety of Tanning Lotions

Tanning accidentally became very popular, and it was brought by the Chanel owner Coco Chanel into the world. Tanning is often associated with a healthy, relaxed lifestyle, including leisure and travel. Tanning has gained immense popularity, but it comes with certain health risks that you must be aware of.

If you are tanning yourself the outdoors, you are at a greater risk of developing sunburns, skin damage, or even skin cancer if you stay out there for too long. You should avoid using the tanning beds and the booth as the dermatologists suggest that it can increase skin cancer chances.

You should also avoid consuming the sunless pill and the accelerators. These pills are taken by individuals orally, and they are known to distribute their coloring additives throughout your body evenly. These pigments may be noticeable in your eyes in the form of yellow crystals, and they can even impair your vision.

How to use a tanning lotion

People with fairer skin are more prone to getting burned by the sun, and also the people with sensitive skin are likely to get a sunburn. Suppose you are at a higher risk of getting sunburns in the outdoor tanning procedure. In that case, you must consider the indoor tanning process as it provides the user with a suitable environment to yield a healthy glowing tan without having any sunburn or reddish skin.

It is recommended that before going out to the beach or pool, you must apply some tanning lotion to avoid getting sunburned. If you are a person who has sensitive skin, you should consider purchasing the indoor tanning lotion, which will suit your skin type to provide proper moisture to your skin so that you get a healthy tan.

The tanning lotions are usually composed of all the natural ingredients like plant extracts, seed butter, seed oil, etc., to provide proper hydration to your skin. The skin needs to be well hydrated as it will enhance the color of the tan and will increase the tan's longevity.

The tanning lotions for the sensitive skin type are free of any parabens, nuts, etc., so that the ingredients do not cause harm to the user's skin and the user is willing to buy that product quickly.

All the essential nutrients are required by the body to maintain its healthy state, so you can begin with the intake of carotenoids, which are very rich in fruits, and you can also retain the hydration of your skin.

The information of antioxidants like lemon, spinach, kale, broccoli, etc., also enables the body to fight the damage caused by the harmful UV rays of the sun. You should also consume food that is rich in beta-carotene like tomatoes, apricot, sweet potatoes, etc.


I have sensitive skin. Can I use tanning lotion on it?

Yes, you can choose the one that moisturizes your skin. Make sure it contains natural ingredients so that it does not damage your skin.

Are tanning beds safe?

Yes, but you should not rely on them for a long time. They can damage your skin and have potential risks. So to avoid any unnecessary risk, you should not use them for a long time.

Final Verdict

So here is everything to know about tanning lotions. All you need to do is analyze your requirements with the aspects and pick the best lotion for your skin.

Hopefully, you will get answers to all your queries from this guide. Give a quick look at skin and lotion types to understand the relation properly. / - © Copyright 2020