Best Products To Use For Body Tanning For Amazing Results

While tan can look gorgeous, uneven tanning is not a very pleasant sight!

Written by Aashika Rajendran

On Aug 26, 2023 – 8 minutes read

Best Products To Use For Tanning

Nothing can beat the beauty of evenly tanned skin and the glow a perfect summer can give you. But getting the perfect summer glow from the sun is no easy task especially if you are not a fan of spending hours under the sun.  Keep reading to know the best products to use for body tanning. We will also give you tips on applying self-tanner the right way and how to get a spray tan for instant results. Here are some of the easiest ways you can get a tan right while not risking excessive UV exposure.

What Is Body Tanning?

Body tanning is just a phrase used to describe tanning of the skin. Tanning is a natural process that takes place when the skin is exposed to UV radiation and this can happen anywhere on the skin that’s exposed and not just the body. Our faces can tan faster than our bodies. Also tanning our body naturally can be hard especially if you want to get tanned evenly. That is where products to use for body tanning can come in handy.

Products To Use For Body Tanning

The basic purpose of our skin is to protect. Hence when the skin is exposed to the sun, melanin, the skin pigment responsible for giving the skin its color, goes from melanocytes to keratinocytes. This mechanism is triggered to protect the skin from excessive UV exposure. After spending hours in the sun, you might notice that the skin on the exposed area is darker than areas of the skin that were covered. Products to use for body tanning also work similarly but they can help you achieve an even tan while staying safe.

Fun fact: Melanin is a naturally occurring pigment in the skin that is black or dark brown. It’s seen in higher concentrations in people with darker skin tones and lesser in people with lighter skin tones. Melanin is responsible for determining the color of one’s hair, skin, and eyes. Melanin also protects the skin against harmful UV radiation hence in light-skinned people where the body does not have a high level of melanin, the sunburn from exposure to the sun is higher.

How To Differentiate Between Tanning And Sunburn?

The cause of tanning is UVA radiation while UVB radiation causes sunburn. UVB radiation affects the upper or outermost layers of the skin and if the skin is left unprotected it gets burned. UVA rays penetrate deeper into the layers of the skin triggering melanocytes leading to the production of melanin causing a darkening effect known as tanning. Usually, if your skin seems okay but just one or two shades darker then it’s a suntan but if your skin feels red, itchy, and burns you probably have a sun burn.

 Most products to use for body tanning mimic the naturally occurring tan but with zero risk of overexposure to UV radiation(1).

Tanning vs. Sunburn

Different skin reacts to sun exposure differently and this largely depends on the amount of melanin in the skin. The higher the melanin count, the lower the tanning. Let’s see how sun exposure affects different skin tones.

  • Very deep skin tone: Tanning is very minimal, and the skin has high levels of melanin content. Hence higher protection.
  • Deep skin tone: The melanin content in this skin tone is moderate. This skin type undergoes very minimal tanning, and when exposed to excessive sunlight the skin tans to a deeper shade.
tanning vs. Sunburn
  • Wheatish skin tone: Wheatish skin usually turns a shade of brown when tanned. This skin tone too has moderate levels of the melanin in it making the tanning minimal. Hence fewer the risk of sunburns.
  • Light skin tone: This skin tone could burn easily. Hence wearing a generous amount of SPF is mandatory to reduce skin sunburn. This skin type could also tan to about two to three shades darker.
  • Very pale skin tone: Very pale skin is at high risk of sunburn and sometimes trying to get a tan from sun exposure can also be damaging to the skin.

How To Tan Evenly And Safely In The Sun?

Getting good products to use for body tanning is the safest way to get a tan. However, if you prefer to tan evenly under the sun, then try following these methods:

  • While outdoors, always wear an SPF and make sure the SPF is at least 30+. Tanning products without SPF can cause severe damage to the skin. SPF 30 is perfect for those who want to tan without getting sunburnt.
  • Reapply sunscreen every two hours and even sooner if your sunscreen is not sweat and water-resistant.
  • Keep changing positions frequently instead of tanning on a single side for long periods.
  • Beta carotene is a natural food supplement that provides the skin with the necessary strength to tan without burning the skin.
  • Tanning oils are great for skin tanning as they provide a certain level of sun protection. Oil also acts as an extra layer between the skin and the UV rays but this protection is not enough to replace a sunscreen.
  • Sun exposure results in the production of melanin but even this has a cut-off point. Your skin cannot get tanned beyond a certain limit. However, exposing the skin to direct sunlight for more than 3 hours could cause sunburn or even worse skin cancer.
  • Do not try to tan at noon when the sunlight is at its strongest. Instead choose times either in the morning or evening for a healthy golden tan.
  • Take a break between tanning for safer and less burns.
  • Use after-tan soothing gel to keep the skin feeling cool and soft.
  • Wear less strappy clothing to avoid embarrassing lines on the body.

SoulFactors Approved: Best Body Tanning Products of 2023

Best Body Tanning Products of 2023
  1. Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs
  2. Coola Sunless Tan Luminizing Body Serum
  3. M-61 Hydroboost Body Butter Gradual Tan
  4. Bali Body Watermelon Tanning Oil SPF15
  5. Bali Body Cacao Tanning Oil Spf15
  6. Bali Body Dark Self Tanning Mousse
  7. Pradas Glow Sunless Tanning Mousse
  8. St. Tropez Self Tan Luxe Whipped Crème Mousse
  9. St. Tropez Self Tan Express Advanced Bronzing Mousse
  10. L’Oréal Paris Sublime Self-Tanning Water Drops
  11. Tan-Luxe The Crème Gradual Self-Tanning Face Moisturizer
  12. Tarte Brazilliance 2HR Express Deep Foaming Self-Tanner
  13. Soleil Toujours Organic Sunless Tanning Cream
  14. Bondi Sands Technocolor 1 Hour Express Self-Tanning Foam
  15. Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer
  16. Isle of Paradise Even Skin Tone Self-Tanning Body Butter
  17. Vita Liberata Fabulous Self-Tanning Gradual Lotion

What Determines Your Tan Shade?

Everyone tans differently. So your tan shade depends on how much melanin your skin can produce and how dark it can get under exposure to sunlight. While some people tan very lightly, some might burn as soon as they expose themselves to direct sunlight. Some people turn red under the sun. Some turn dark brown and some turn golden brown(2). Though deeper skin tones tend to tan less, this does not mean they are not prone to risk of skin cancer. Even while getting products to use for body tanning, the end result would depend on your natural skin tone.

Products To Use For Body Tanning For The Best Results

The only issue while getting  products to use for body tanning is that if they are not applied properly, they could end up looking patchy and grey. Here are some of the basics one can follow while using body tanners.

  • Always apply the products to use for body tanning on clean skin. Right after a shower would be the best time to apply body tanners for a flawless application and look.
  • Proper exfoliation before applying body tanning products can make sure no dead skin cells stand between the tanner and the skin. Body tanners can look patchy and less even on dry and flakey skin.
  • Unlike your body lotion, don’t apply products to use for body tanning on wet skin. For best-looking results apply the product dry bit clean the skin and spread the product evenly.
  • Instead of taking products to use for body tanning in your hands and rubbing it all over your body, try applying the products in sections. Applying in sections will help you apply the product evenly.
  • Do not dab or rub the body tanning products into your skin. For best results, try rubbing the product into your skin in circular motions.
  • Make sure you get the products well in the joints especially your neck, behind your knees, and ankles.
  • Always apply a thin layer of products to use for body tanning in the joints. This could prevent flakiness.
  • Wait for the product to dry and settle in before dressing to avoid any rub-off
  • Even though your body tanning product might have an SPF in it, it’s still important to wear a good SPF every day. Try finding a good water-resistant sunscreen for maximum protection.

Bottom Line

While soaking up the sun can look cool, it does come with its fair share of risk. Take the necessary precautions for a healthy and even tanning experience. Tanning beds and rooms are gaining popularity today. But most people don’t realize that these methods could be more harmful than direct sun exposure as they use high levels of radiation to bring the skin to the desired color. 

Products to use for body tanning are comparatively the better and safer alternative. They can also help you achieve an even glowing tan like never before. Sunless tanning is a great alternative if you find the right products. Hope you found our picks effective and useful, Let us know which is your favorite method to tan and your personal favorite products to use for body tanning.

Follow the precautions, soak up some golden rays, and glow like a goddess!


Which Bali body tanning oil is the best?

The best Bali body tanning oil will depend on your skin type and the kind of tan you are trying to achieve. The Bali Body Watermelon Tanning Oil SPF15 would be perfect for you if you have dry and sensitive skin. The Bali Body Cacao Tanning Oil Spf15 would be your ideal body tanner if you are looking to get a very light and natural-looking tan.

What is body blush in tanning lotion?

Body blush in tanning lotion is a body tanning product that has high amounts of antioxidant in it to help skin achieve a natural blushed glow rather than just a tan.

What does tanning do to your body?

If you are not following proper precautions and the right products to use for body tanning it could damage your skin, cause early aging and at risk of skin cancer.

How to exfoliate the body before tanning?

To exfoliate the body before tanning, you can either use a body scrub or loofah.

  1. United States Environmental Protection Agency. (n.d). Health Effects of UV Radiation. (Online). Available at
  2. Brenner M, Hearing VJ. The protective role of melanin against UV damage in human skin. Photochem Photobiol. 2008 May-Jun;84(3):539-49. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-1097.2007.00226.x. PMID: 18435612; PMCID: PMC2671032. (Online). Available at
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Aashika Rajendran


Aashika is a makeup and beauty expert known for creating stunning looks that not only accentuate facial features but also empower women to feel confident in their skin.

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