What is a tanning lotion?

The tanning lotions that we find in the skin care market are used by many to accelerate the tanning process by promoting the production of melanin in our skin.

Increased blood flow to the skin is a proposed mechanism that in turn can stimulate melanin production by the melanocytes found in it.

Tanning lotions generally do not contain sunscreen among their components and do not offer the necessary protection against the aggressive rays of the sun.

Unlike tanning oils that provide some protection against the attacks of the sun. The suntan lotion is generally designed primarily for use with an ultraviolet source such as a tanning bed or booth.

Components of tanning lotions

Some of the active components that can be found in tanning lotions most commonly include melanin and L-tyrosine.

Other components that are frequently found are tea oil, copper (in many different chemical compounds), green tea extract, and many other natural oils.

The tanning lotions interiors are designed for use only ingredients that do not cause damage or accumulate on acrylic surfaces. This is because all tanning beds use 100% acrylic in their protective shields.

This is one of the reasons why people should not use outdoor tanning lotions in a tanning bed as some common ingredients like mineral oil (a common ingredient in cosmetics including some brands of baby oil) will damage the surface of the skin. acrylics that have tanning beds.

Tingling is a standard description of tanning lotions as they contain compounds that increase blood flow to the skin and users report that it causes a “tingling” sensation that disappears within minutes of use.


Some tanning lotions have a tanning effect; There are three different types of bronzers that we can place in these lotions, these are of character: cosmetic, natural and DHA.

DHA (dihydroxyacetone) is a higher level of tanner this component can remain on our skin for 4-5 days; This will depend on how well you have exfoliated it prior to applying the tanning lotion.

Natural bronzers that are made from plant extracts and that remain on our skin for a period of about 3-4 days.

Cosmetic bronzers are the ones that stain the skin the most and remain in our skin for about 1 to 3 days and can be easily washed off during the shower. These bronzers work with the skin to provide a darker cosmetic color.

They take approximately 4-6 hours to develop in terms of their color potential. You must have a base tan before using a bronzer. These lotions produce a more natural color.

Natural bronzers use natural ingredients, such as caramel, riboflavin, etc. These ingredients provide an instant slight increase in color, but wash off in the shower.

Higher quality natural tanning lotions will have certain organic ingredients / natural or exotic extracts that aid in the tanning process (melanin production / oxidation).


One of the main purposes for using tanning lotions is to hydrate the skin. This is because tanning (indoors or outdoors) can dehydrate the skin so additional hydration is necessary to compensate and leave the skin smooth and healthy.

One of the most popular moisturizers in tanning lotions is hemp oil, although other oils are also common.

The primary moisturizing ingredients in tanning lotions are essentially the same as regular hand lotions, although they tend to have less alcohol in them.

Most indoor tanning lotions do not offer sun protection (they do not have SPF) and are not designed for outdoor use.