It’s summertime, which means you’ll be spending plenty of time out in the sun! Whether you’re at the beach or by your pool, you should always be wearing sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV rays that can cause wrinkles and skin cancer. 

But, if you’re going to be outside all day, sometimes sunscreen can get messy and feel like it’s caked on your skin. If you want something lighter and easier to apply but that still offers broad-spectrum protection against the sun, try using tanning lotion instead!

1. Decide what type of tan you want

What type of tan do you want? Do you want an instant tan or a gradual tan? If it is an instant tan, then choose a lotion with dihydroxyacetone (DHA) in it. If it is a gradual tan, then choose a lotion that contains vitamin D3 and has SPF protection. 

You should also take note of your skin type when choosing your lotion. For dry skin, use lotions that contain shea butter and oils in them to keep your skin moisturized. For oily skin, use products that have ingredients like aloe vera and tea tree oil in them as they will help balance out your skin’s oil production.

2. Consider your skin type

If you have dry skin, then you should use a lotion that has high levels of moisturizers in it. If you have acne-prone skin, then make sure that your lotion does not contain any oils or fragrances. 

When considering your skin type, make sure to think about how often you plan on using your tanning lotion. For example, if you are going to be using it every day, then you want a product that is going to be long-lasting and won’t clog up pores.

3. Factor in your budget

The first thing you should do when choosing a tanning lotion is to figure out your budget. There are both expensive and inexpensive tanning lotions, so this step will determine which ones you can afford. The next thing you need to think about is what type of skin tone you have, as certain types of lotions will be better for different skin tones. 

For example, if your skin is fair, it would be best to use a product with an SPF in it since that would help protect your skin from burning too quickly and looking blotchy. If your skin is darker, then it might not be necessary to buy an SPF-containing lotion because darker skin has more protection from the sun than lighter skin does.

4. Read the labels

Look out for any warning signs such as a high SPF. If you are pregnant, ask your doctor if it’s safe before using a tanning lotion. For best results, wait at least two hours after applying lotion before tanning. Don’t use it more than once a day or too close to bedtime because it can interfere with sleep cycles. 

If you’re taking medication, check with your doctor about potential interactions with tanning lotions and other medications. Follow directions carefully and be aware of skin conditions that could make UV exposure more dangerous such as lupus, diabetes, or psoriasis.

5. Check the active ingredients

The active ingredients you want to look for are sunscreen, moisturizer, and tanning agent. Sunscreen is important because it protects your skin against harmful UV rays that can cause wrinkles and skin cancer. 

Moisturizer is good because it helps keep your skin hydrated while preventing dryness. And finally, a tanner that gives you a tan will help you achieve a healthy-looking glow in just one day.

6. See what other users are saying

When it comes to tanning lotion, you have to be careful about what you put on your skin. Some are high quality and will give you a natural glow, while others are just as bad as the sun when it comes to your skin. You must know what ingredients go into your lotion and how they may affect your skin. 

Find out if it has sunscreen in it. If not, find one that does. Make sure that it doesn’t contain any parabens or other harmful chemicals. Find out if there is any added fragrance or alcohol.

7. Check for allergies

Before you start tanning, you must do a patch test. You can find a product at your dermatologist’s office or purchase one online. It’s also important to check if there are any allergies before using any product. This includes ingredients like fragrances and preservatives in your lotion, as well as personal items such as jewelry, makeup, and hair products. 

Simply place a small amount of the cream or lotion on an inconspicuous area of skin (like behind your ear) and wait up to 24 hours before applying it anywhere else.

8. Try before you buy

You must pick a tanning lotion that works with your skin type. If you have dry skin, look for moisturizers and oils in the ingredients list. If you have sensitive skin, try products with natural ingredients and avoid synthetic ones. Finally, if you are acne-prone or prone to breakouts, look for products that are free of fragrances or harsh chemicals.

9. Storage

No matter what skin type you may have, you must find a tanning lotion that works well for your specific needs. It is important to remember, however, that when choosing the best lotion for your skin, there are many factors to consider. You will need to think about things such as whether or not you want an SPF or if you suffer from dry skin. 

10. Shelf life

It is important to take note of the shelf life as it can help you make an informed decision. Some lotions have a very short shelf life and some have a longer one. You should also know that some lotions are not suited for people with sensitive skin. You should read up on any product before purchasing them.


The best way to find out what tanning lotion is best for you is by going into a tanning salon and trying them all. Many salons offer samples of different lotions so you can test them out before buying one. If you can’t afford that, then go online and read reviews. Make sure that there are no harmful ingredients in the lotion that could cause any problems with your skin or health. There is no such thing as a perfect product, but it will come down to personal preference with what’s best for your skin type and lifestyle.