There is nothing like an awesome tan to give your skin that healthy glow. A great tan can really make bright colors pop.
While we all know that the sun can be damaging to your skin, we also know that our bodies need exposure to sunlight to make Vitamin D.
Overexposure to sunlight or exposure to sunlight without protection can leave your skin sunburned and dried out. Not a great look.
Not only is the look of sunburn bad, it’s painful and increases the risk of skin cancer.
If you want to get that sun kissed look or if you are going for a darker tan, a tanning lotion is a great option.
Whether it’s a day on the beach, an hour on a tanning bed or a self-tanning lotion, you too can get that amazing dark tan you have been wanting.
So what should you use to get the best tan? The confusing number of options available can be daunting.
Why not have a look at our selection of user-approved options to get a better idea of the right one for you.
Before you get started
To ensure an even tan before you start tanning, it is highly recommended that you exfoliate your skin well.
If you want to avoid the sun or there just isn’t any around, a self-tanning spray or a tanning bed can give you the colour and glow you are looking for.
Self-tanning sprays and lotions are awesome for a quick dash of color to your skin.
The downside is that if not applied carefully, they can leave streaks. Fortunately, these only last for a few days so no permanent harm is done.
The best news is that these days you get tanning lotions that are multi-active. They act as self-tanning lotion and can be used indoors on sunbeds and outdoors.
How’s that for an all in one solution to your tanning needs?
Best Tanning Lotion to Get Dark Fast in 2023
Let’s have a look at the best, user tested lotions out there.
Somewhere on a Beach
This tropical scented overachiever can be used as a self-tanning lotion to give you that bronzed colour before you ever hit the beach.
You can use this lotion for your tanning bed session and you can hit the beach with confidence, not looking winter pale.
The lotion doesn’t contain any SPF, so if you do plan on getting some sun outdoors, remember to slather on that sunscreen under the lotion. This will protect your skin and ensure that you don’t get burned.
The best thing about this lotion is that it is streak free so you won’t need to worry about having the effect of your tan ruined.
The lotion is buildable, so the more often you apply it the darker your tan becomes.
This product has so much to recommend it but its best feature is that it contains peptides and vitamins. These protect your skin from the aging effects of the sun and tanning beds.
Devoted Creations White 2 Black, Tingle, Ultra Fast, Darkening Lotion
Black tea and cranberry extract combined with body heat tinglers to help your skin get that darker shade faster and help your tan last longer.
The botanical extracts are also moisturising so that the health of your skin is maintained while you get the tan you want.
Body heat tinglers get your melanin working overtime.
This formulation does not contain bronzers but accelerates your body’s natural processes to ensure that dark skin tone you want so that your body is beach ready before you ever set foot on the beach.
This tanning bed lotion has a pleasant smell and users report a mild tingling sensation.
The product may leave your skin looking red and irritated but this subsides after 2 – 3 hours.
Some users noted that the product should be washed off before touching people who are not tanning bed users as their skins react badly.
Best to avoid this product if you have sensitive skin or are new to tanning.
For experienced tanning bed users the product does what it says it will do which is give you up to three shades darker than when you started.
Onyx Magnifique Sunbed Dark Tanning Lotion Bronzing Accelerator
A blend of bronzers in this firming lotion will help you get that dark tan fast.
Sesame, Tamanu and Walnut Oil combined with vitamins and coffee extracts will get you that dark tan you want and firm your skin at the same time.
Bronzers are known for their ability to help darken your skin and this tanning bed lotion combines three bronzing ingredients.
A light jasmine fragrance ensures that you get a relaxing experience in the tanning bed.
This easily absorbed lotion won’t leave you feeling sticky and the relaxing fragrance will make you feel as though you have spent time in a spa.
For the environment and health conscious, note that this lotion does contain DHA. This means it is not reef friendly.
For immediate results and long lasting colour, this tried and tested formula is one to look out for.
COCOSOLIS CHOCO Sun Tan & Body Oil
Cocosolis uses only organic, natural ingredients in their tanning oil. This ensures that the tan you get is both dark and healthy for you and your skin.
Using coconut, cacao, jojoba, sweet almond and avocado oils and fragranced with chocolate, you will look and smell good enough to eat.
The oils used in this tanning lotion are known to have excellent skincare properties. Your skin will be kept moisturized and hydrated while getting that dark color.
This amazing organic oil is suitable for use both indoors and out and will ensure a deep tan.
It is recommended that you apply the lotion ten minutes after applying a high SPF both for outdoor and sunbed tanning, to prevent burning.
Formulated with vitamin E to give your skin the best care while getting a fast dark tan, this tanning oil is sure to impress those who want color without sacrificing the wellbeing of their skin.
Be sure to use your high SPF sunscreen whether tanning on a sunbed or outdoors to keep your skin firm and youthful looking.
Ed Hardy BLACK XXX Instant Dark Color Tanning Lotion
Another Ed Hardy favorite, this instant dark sunbed tanning lotion gives instant colour.
Quad Tyrosine along with bronzers and other accelerators allows skin to develop the darkest results possible. Natural oils and extracts take care of your skin while you are getting chocolatey.
A powerful anti-aging peptide, Advanced Matrixyl Synthe 6 takes care of fine lines and wrinkles and ensures that your tanned skin is smooth and firm.
Tattoo & Color Fade Protectors ensure that you won’t regret your tanning bed sessions. The protectors protect the pigments in your tattoos from fading or discolouring.
Triple bronzers and four tan activators including DHA known for its skin darkening properties will give you the results you want, fast.
You can be sure of getting dark fast with this tanning bed favorite. This triple active lotion does contain DHA, as mentioned, so be aware that it is not considered reef friendly, if you plan on going in the water.
If you are using this tanning bed wonder to make that outfit pop, this tanning lotion may be just what you have been searching for.
The Sicilian 200X Double Dark Black Bronzer Tanning Lotion
This self-tanning lotion has the highest amount of DHA to give you that bronzed look.
It doesn’t just give you instant color though. This self-tanning lotion cares for your skin with a blend of antioxidants and moisturisers.
Walnut and macadamia oils are blended into this lotion so that you can get the immediate results as well as cared for skin.
Melanin boosters work with your natural body processes to give color intensity in the longer term.
Instant color is just an application of this lotion away.
With any tanning product, it is important to ensure that your skin is well exfoliated to get an even streak free look. With self-tanners this is even more crucial. Make sure that you don’t skip this important step.
The addition of CoQ10 to stimulate collagen production for younger, healthier looking skin makes this lotion a real winner.
If instant is what you are looking for, high levels of DHA ensure that instant is exactly what you will get.
SUPRE Snooki Get Real Tanning Lotion
With its trademarked hyper dark technology, this tanning lotion, prepares your skin for the instant results of a dark tan.
This blend of special ingredients will get you dark fast and take care of your skin.
Moisturizing and firming ingredients can ensure that not only will your color be beautiful and deep but your skin will be firm and healthy.
The benefits of skincare with fast tanning results is just what you need to get the best possible tan without sacrificing the health of your skin.
Whether you are tanning indoors or out the added benefit of skincare in your tanning product will give you peace of mind, knowing that you will never have cause to regret your tanning bed sessions.
St. Tropez Self Tan Express Advanced Bronzing Mousse
This self-tanner comes in a mousse formulation for a smooth, even tan. You decide how dark you want to be.
The self-tanning mousse develops over the hours and depending on how dark you want your tan, you decide how long to leave it on your skin. The longer you leave it on, the darker the tan.
It is not recommended to leave the mousse on for more than three hours. After rinsing the product off the skin will have a light color but the tan actives will continue to develop the color for up to eight hours.
Remember to use only warm water (no soap or shower gel) to rinse the product.
If you have kept the product on for the maximum time, you will develop a deep bronzed color.
An application mitt is recommended for applying this mousse.
The product is vegan friendly and contains moisturizing ingredients to keep your skin soft and healthy too.
For those wanting to avoid sun or sunbed damage, this self-tanning mousse is sure to please.
A product that allows you to control how dark you want to be is great for first time tanners and those starting out.
Versa Spa MONTEREY Bronzing Mist Sunless Self Tanner
Another sunless product is this VersaSpa tanning mist. It has a formulation that is suitable for both face and body, not something you often find.
This tanning mist is suitable for all skin types and is non comedogenic. The micro-spray application of this product ensures that you will have a fast and flawless result.
Easy to apply and trademarked eco-friendly DHA formula means that you can use this product with a clear conscience.
A special blend of green and brown marine algae works to protect and oxygenate your skin, to keep it healthy while getting you instantly bronzed and beach ready.
Dimethyl Isosorbide helps tanning pigment to penetrate into your skin for a deeper, darker glow.
For no fuss, instant color, users rate this product very highly.
Odour ban technology means that you won’t have to tolerate that chemical smell.
When you are looking for a natural-looking and deep tan, in a short time, look no further than this sunless tanning mist.
Bella Black 100x Bronzing Tanning Bed Lotion
Bronzers and melanin boosters in this tanning bed lotion will give you results fast.
Extreme Silicone and banana extract takes your tan to another level while restoring and repairing dry skin.
Well moisturized skin will help your tan to last longer so whether in the sun or on a tanning bed, keeping your skin hydrated and moisturized is a non-negotiable.
DHA in this lotion will give immediate and delayed results.
Melanin boosters give you that quicker darker and longer lasting tan.
When you need that dark color, fast, you need look no further than this tanning lotion.
This lotion is safe for use on all types of skin.
Tanning Paradise Black Coconut Love Tanning Lotion
For the sun worshippers, this tanning lotion is suitable for outdoor use.
Multiple tan stimulators and melanin activators will get you that great dark color without DHA.
Coconut Milk, Coconut Butter & Cocoa Oil give your skin a boost of moisture to keep it healthy while you are tanning.
Tattoo and color fade protection prolongs your enjoyment of the sun because you don’t have to worry about your ink fading.
As though a dark tan and moisturized skin is not enough, this lotion will also help to firm up your skin.
If you are eco-conscious and still want great results, you should check this lotion out for sure.
Australian Gold Rapid Tanning Intensifier Lotion
This natural lotion is suitable for use in a tanning bed or outdoors.
Using only natural ingredients this tanning intensifier can get you your deep natural glow.
Tea tree oil and vitamin E gently nourishes and cares for your skin while you get on with the serious business of tanning.
Biosine Complex, a proprietary blend of premium ingredients, prepares your skin for tan development by increasing pigmentation.
This lotion is also loaded with Kakadu Plums and Safflower Seed Oil for an instant radiant tan.
The lotion does not contain sunscreens so it’s best to apply your sun protection first to ensure that you don’t burn.
Sun or sunbed, it’s your choice with this great natural lotion.
Maui Babe Browning Lotion
A natural Hawaiian blend of ingredients will give you that tropical island look you have been wanting.
Light Mineral Oil, Kukui Nut Oil, Antioxidant Vitamin E, C, & A, Kona Coffee Plant Extract, Aloe, and potassium iodide work together to stimulate your natural tanning ability.
For use with sunscreen, this tanning lotion is safe and environmentally friendly. This lotion is suitable for all skin types and tones.
An added benefit is that it is pocket friendly too.
Whether you are new to tanning or an experienced tanner, there is a tanning product here that can get you the deep tan you want without sacrificing skincare.
Your natural looking, deep color that is really going to make that special outfit pop, is just a click away.
Why not try one of the amazing products we review here? The only thing you have to lose is that winter pale look.