Best Indoor Tanning Lotions

Woman on tanning bed

Specially formulated to speed up the tanning process, give you a deep, dark glow, and keep your skin soft and supple, indoor tanning lotions are a must for sunless tanning. There are a lot of great products on the market, but a few really stand out in reviews from beauty professionals and consumers alike.

1. Millenium Tanning Products Black & Tan

Offering a natural looking bronze tone and warming sensation on the skin, Black & Tan is a silicone-emulsified lotion that leaves you tan, soft, and moisturized. This 75x bronzer darkens when exposed to ultraviolet light and deepens the color of your skin for several days after use.

With more than 250 reviews and 4.3 stars on, Black & Tan stands out as a winning option. Reviewers comment that it helps them achieve a darker tan than they ever have in the past and that it smells great too. A 13.5-ounce bottle retails for about $15.

2. Designer Skin Luminary

Designer Skin Luminary

This beautifully packaged, glittering blue lotion is a stand-out option if you're looking for a deep, glowing tan and a bit of firming too. Designer Skin Luminary is a 25x bronzer with what the company describes as "celestial stardust," micro-glitter than helps add luminance and dimension to your skin.

This option is a top-selling product at Amazon, where it has four stars and almost 1,000 reviews. Specifically, people who have tried this product praise its great smell, quick results, and streak-free appearance. They recommend buying it online, rather than in the salon. The MSRP is $120, but you can find it for under $40 online.


3. James Read Tan Accelerator

Designed to speed up the tanning process by boosting your skin's natural melanin, James Read Tan Accelerator is another excellent option for getting the most from your indoor tanning regimen. You can apply it daily, whether you are tanning that day or not, to give you soft skin and maintain your glow.

This is one of the top-selling self-tanning products at Amazon, where more than 650 customers have "loved" it. Reviewers praise the deep, dark tan it provides, as well as the fact that a little goes a long way. Some people had minor complaints about the smell but said it was worth the odor for the effective tan. It retails for about $40 at Sephora.

4. Maui Babe Browning Lotion Tanning Salon Formula

Maui Babe Tanning Lotion

Maui Babe Browning Lotion Tanning Salon Formula is a great option if you're looking for an all-natural product. Based on the popular original formula Maui Babe Browning Lotion, this version uses sunflower oil instead of mineral oil which can harm tanning beds. It also includes Kona coffee to maximize your tan while keeping your skin super soft.

As the top-selling indoor formulation at ULTA, this product has 3.8 stars and lots of positive reviews. Reviewers praise its effectiveness and the long-lasting results, but there are a few complaints about the texture of the lotion being oily or greasy. An eight-ounce bottle retails for about $30.

5. Australian Gold G Gentleman Natural Bronzer

Based on the idea that men and women have different skin types, Australian Gold G Gentleman Natural Bronzer offers a special formulation for guys who want a darker tan. This is a base builder than helps establish and maintain your tan while protecting and softening skin. It even includes special ingredients to keep tattoos from fading during indoor tanning.

This is the top-selling men's indoor tanning lotion at TanforLess. Reviewers there have given it four stars and say that it gets them several shades darker than tanning without lotion. They also love the masculine scent. An 8.5-ounce bottle sells for about $20.


6. European Gold Sweet Brown

If you need a budget option, consider European Gold Sweet Brown tanning lotion. This lotion is available from a variety of retailers, including, and is less than half the cost of most other options. It has a light fragrance, seven bronzers, and skin firming ingredients.

This is a stand-out product on Makeup Alley, where it has 4.7 lipstick tubes (like stars). Reviewers are excited about the quality of the product for the price as well as its consistency and effectiveness. An 8.5-ounce bottle retails for just over eight dollars.

7. Supre Snooki Ultra Dark 70x Black Bronzer

Supre Snooki Ultra Dark Bronzer

If you want to get noticeably darker in just a few sessions, try Supre Snooki Ultra Dark 70x Black Bronzer. This paraben-free formula has sweet almond and coconut oil to keep your skin soft and healthy while you tan. With this product, your skin continues to darken for hours after your tanning session.

Tan Insider calls this product one of the 10 best tanning lotions, praising the scent, the consistency, and the quick results. A 12-ounce bottle retails for about $26 at Amazon.

Tanning lotions can help you get the most from your time and money investments at the tanning salon, but it's important to note that they don't offer protection from potentially damaging UV rays. If you want to tan indoors without a tanning bed, consider using a self tanner. Either way, you'll have a deep, beautiful glow all year long.

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