Which is the best tanning lotion for eczema? Just like any other product for sensitive skin, it should be fragrance-free with as few ingredients as possible.
Just because it’s described as “hypoallergenic” doesn’t mean that it’s safe. Unfortunately, the FDA doesn’t have rules for when a brand can use that label. But as you probably already know, a patch test will show you if the lotion’s okay to use.
Moreover, UV light may be the phototherapy you need for your skin. It provides relief from eczema symptoms for some people.
If you want to go catch rays indoors or outside, check the reviews below to find the best tanning lotion for eczema and sensitive skin.
|The best tanning lotions for eczema||Why we love them|
|Devoted Creations #TANLIFE Hydrating Tanning Butter||
|Devoted Creations Limited Couture||
|Hempz Dark Tan Maximizer, Hypoallergenic||
|VITA LIBERATA Advanced Organics Fabulous Self-Tanning Gradual Lotion||
|Beauty by Earth Self Tanner||
|Vanicream SPF 35 Sport Sunscreen||
How to tan with eczema
Let’s start by saying that the Skin Cancer Foundation never recommends tanning for anyone. Ultraviolet light exposure raises the risk of skin cancer even if you tan easily (1). With that said, we know that people are going to do it anyway.
Plus, a little sunlight may diminish the inflammation of eczema. The National Eczema Association recommends phototherapy under controlled conditions in a dermatologist’s office. Of course, not everybody has access to that kind of treatment.
Therefore, let’s discuss how to tan as safely as possible when you have eczema.
First, can you use tanning lotion on eczema?
The answer is yes if your skin doesn’t react to it. Obviously, slathering tanning lotion on broken skin isn’t a good idea. But if you’re not in the middle of a flare-up, test a dab of the tanning lotion on the inside of your elbow. Don’t wash that spot for at least twenty-four hours and keep an eye on it for allergic reactions. If the skin looks clear, hopefully, you’re good to go.
Second, are there tanning bed lotions for eczema?
No, there aren’t any specific products. Instead, we searched for indoor tanning lotion for sensitive skin. We also looked at self tanners for sensitive skin.
Third, how do you know if the tanning product is safe for eczema-prone skin?
Other than doing a patch test, read the label. Is it fragrance-free and made for sensitive skin? Does it contain any allergens you personally need to avoid?
One problematic ingredient is DHA, the active agent in sunless tanning products. It also appears in indoor tanning lotions because it boosts the natural tan. Since DHA interacts with amino acids in the skin, it can cause dryness. However, getting a fake tan for eczema isn’t a bad idea if the formula is moisturizing and not used too frequently.
Finally, what about tanning with sunscreen?
Those with fair skin already know that sunscreen doesn’t block all the UV rays. It’s still possible to get bronzed while wearing sunscreen, and it might be the safest way for people with eczema to tan. Even mineral sunscreens (which are the mildest for sensitive skin) will work. SPF 30, for example, filters out 97% of harmful rays and prevents sunburn.
It takes a golf ball-sized amount of sunscreen to cover the whole body. Put it on at least fifteen minutes before going outdoors. Tan in brief sessions of 15 to 30 minutes maximum and skip a day or two before laying out again. It may take a week or two, but you’ll achieve that sun-kissed glow.
Best Tanning Lotion for Eczema in 2023
Devoted Creations #TANLIFE Hydrating Tanning Butter
What is the best tanning lotion for sensitive skin? We saw several testimonials from people with eczema saying they’d had success with this one.
It’s described as hypoallergenic so we investigated the ingredients. Here are the highlights.
Instead of water, the base component is aloe leaf juice, which is a good start to a very moisturizing formula. There’s panthenol, also known as provitamin B5 that strengthens the skin.
Then, there’s silicone to seal in moisture and leave the skin feeling like silk. Shea butter also helps. Then, tyrosine is there to stimulate melanin production and deepen the skin’s color. Happily, the lotion protects tattoos from fading.
A variety of fruit extracts provide antioxidants while caffeine increases blood circulation to accelerate tanning. It also has Centella asiatica, a healing ingredient.
Although we didn’t see parabens, there is “parfum”, also known as an artificial fragrance. It’s pretty high on the list as the ninth ingredient, so your mileage may vary.
Users say it melts into the skin and has a mild clean scent. They say it isn’t greasy at all and it prevents the after-tanning burned smell.
- Hypoallergenic and paraben-free
- Moisturizing formula packed with antioxidants, healing ingredients, and tanning accelerators
- Melts into the skin and protects tattoos from fading
- Also prevents the after-tanning burned odor
- Contains an artificial fragrance, a potential allergen for persons with eczema
Devoted Creations Limited Couture
A better option might be this fragrance-free indoor tanning lotion. It’s also described as hypoallergenic and contains no parabens or bronzers.
Like many tanning lotions, it has tyrosine and other tanning accelerators that encourage melanin production. Still, the color you achieve with it is completely natural.
The creamy texture is enriched with macadamia, coconut, apricot kernel, and lemon peel oils. Not only do they condition the skin, but they also make it look younger and healthier.
The formula also features a proven anti-aging ingredient called Matrixyl. It helps rebuild collagen to firm the skin. That’s good news as UV exposure can break down collagen and cause wrinkles.
The vitamin-rich lotion is based on aloe leaf juice instead of water, making it extra soothing and moisturizing. Users say it hydrates dry skin and speeds up tanning. Commentaries from those with eczema say it didn’t cause itching or irritation.
- Features tanning accelerators and anti-aging ingredients like Matrixyl
- Very moisturizing with aloe, macadamia, and natural oils
- Contains no artificial fragrance or parabens
Hempz Dark Tan Maximizer, Hypoallergenic
Tanners with sensitive skin turn to this tanning lotion because it’s free of parabens, nuts, gluten, and animal ingredients. It does, however, have a light scent. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, there was no official list of ingredients available.
Still, in its favor, it has oatmeal and mango butter to moisturize and calm the skin. It’s surprisingly lightweight and not greasy at all. One of the key ingredients is hempseed oil which is an excellent moisturizer for all skin types.
There is no bronzer, but there are tanning accelerators to intensify the effects of UV light and help you bronze faster.
- Free of nuts, gluten, parabens, and animal derivatives
- Recommended by tanners with sensitive skin
- Contains hemp seed oil, mango butter, and oatmeal to moisturize and soothe the skin
- Has tanning accelerators, too
- No official list of ingredients was found on the manufacturer’s website
VITA LIBERATA Advanced Organics Fabulous Self-Tanning Gradual Lotion
If you’re looking for the best DHA-free self tanner, this isn’t it. (You’ll probably want something with erythrulose which hasn’t yet been cleared by the FDA for sunless tanning).
On the other hand, this lotion is highly recommended by people with eczema or sensitive skin. It’s extra hydrating for dry skin and made with certified organics.
Moreover, it’s odor-free and un-tinted. There’s none of that self-tanning smell and no staining on your sheets or clothing. Some folks like to use it to extend a spray tan or natural tan.
Since it’s a gradual tanning product, it’s milder than a spray tan or mousse. That’s why it’s nice for people with eczema – it has a lower concentration of DHA.
Each time you use it, it deepens the color of the skin just a little bit. The results are surprisingly natural-looking. The color also fades evenly if you don’t use it for a few days.
What’s also nice is that it’s a body lotion that offers up to seventy-two hours of hydration. It’s not surprising since it’s full of botanical goodness like shea butter, grape seed, and licorice root.
- Gradual self-tanning lotion that’s extra-moisturizing
- Offers up to seventy-two hours of hydration
- Builds a natural-looking bronze without causing dryness
- No added color or fragrance
- Contains several ECOCERT-certified organic ingredients to nourish the skin
- No need for an applicator mitt
Beauty by Earth Self Tanner
This sunless tanner also uses DHA to darken the skin. It doesn’t streak or go orange, plus it’s a delicious moisturizer that’s free of harsh chemicals. There’s no artificial fragrance or color.
Think of it as a tanning lotion with benefits. Many of the ingredients like aloe, shea butter, coconut oil, and green tea leaf are organic. The formula is vegan, cruelty-free, and gentle to sensitive skin.
Furthermore, it’s infused with antioxidants and nutrients that keep the skin healthy, hydrated, and rejuvenated.
If you’re not familiar with self tanners, here are some tips. Go light on elbows, knees, knuckles, and ankles as they tend to go darker than the rest of the skin. Also, it helps to exfoliate and shave before applying it, but not immediately before. Otherwise, it may settle in the pores. Start with a small amount and rub it in and let it dry before dressing. It will take at least four hours and as long as eight to develop the color, so don’t shower until after that time has passed
- Fragrance-free and vegan, with no artificial color or parabens
- Moisturizes and rejuvenates the skin with organic botanicals
- Gentle enough for sensitive skin
- None – but it’s always a good idea to do a patch test
Vanicream SPF 35 Sport Sunscreen
Vanicream’s sunscreen uses both zinc oxide and a chemical filter (octinoxate) to protect the skin from sunburn and premature aging. It’s a dermatologist-recommended product that’s free of artificial fragrances and masking fragrances, dyes, parabens, harsh preservatives, oil, and gluten. In other words, it’s friendly to eczema-prone skin.
What’s more, it’s water-resistant for up to eighty minutes. That makes it ideal for swimming, sweating, and enjoying the great outdoors.
Users say it starts out white and spreads easily, plus it disappears into the skin with no white cast after it’s rubbed in. It’s not tacky or greasy, either.
Why did we include this sunscreen? Ask any person who spends time outdoors and uses sunscreen if they tan. Chances are that they did it while wearing sunscreen. It may take longer, but it prevents sunburn and hopefully any flare-ups, too.
- Free of harsh ingredients including fragrances, dyes, preservatives, oil, and gluten
- Water-resistant for up to eighty minutes and not tacky or greasy
- No white cast on dark skin
- From a dermatologist-recommended brand
- Not a tanning lotion
It may take a little experimentation, but there are ways to tan eczema-prone skin. When in doubt, check with your doctor for recommendations and do a patch test before trying something new.
In the meantime, we hope our tanning product reviews inspired you to find solutions. If so, we’d love to hear about your experience. Feel free to leave us a comment below.
1. https://nationaleczema.org/slather-sunscreen-eczema-skin/ accessed June 20, 2021