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Not to be dramatic, but watching our tan fade every year when summer comes to an end makes us freak out a little! Luckily, there are a number of different methods you can utilize for a bronze, sun-kissed glow even in the fall, winter and spring. The summer too, depending on your preferred method of tanning!

The best and safest way to get that beachy complexion is by using a sunless self tanner at home, though some may opt to hit the tanning beds at a salon instead! Both methods will leave you with beautifully bronzed skin that you’ll be ready to show off year round. But first things first for our tanning bed fans. There a few things that anyone should know before heading to a tanning session.

What Do I Need to Know Before Booking a Tanning Bed Appointment?

We can’t sugarcoat the risks of using a tanning bed, even if you want to go in for just a couple of sessions. Exposing your skin to such an intense form of UV is proven to increase your chances of developing skin cancer by 75%, according to Health Research Funding, plus potentially accelerate signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles. But we’re not in the business of shaming anyone who prefers using a tanning bed over at-home tanning — just as long as the risks are understood.

There may not be any health benefits to indoor tanning, but some consumers prefer the cosmetic ones. Tanning bed tans last much longer and fade naturally and more evenly than self tanners. Plus, the ritual of going to the salon can be a relaxing experience. Just remember — if you plan on booking an appointment, you will need a great tanning bed lotion from a brand like The Fox Tan or Australian Gold to help you gain better results!

We found a slew of different tanning lotions you can use for the tanning bed, plus tan-accelerating options you can use outdoors as well if you’re not comfortable with using tanning beds due to the risks. Either way, these lotions may help you get a solid base tan that much quicker so you can feel confident in your skin. Read on for the scoop!

Sun Bum Browning Lotion

This lotion was specifically designed for use out in the sun while you’re at the beach, pool or simply catching some rays in the park! To keep your skin protected, we would use it along with a sunscreen, and you can also pick up the version that includes SPF 15 in the formula. It helps you get a tan faster so that you don’t have to spend a lot of time out in the sun. Your bronze glow is a few days away!

Pros

  • Fast-acting
  • Affordable

Cons 

  • Can be messy and stain towels
  • Not everyone loves the scent

Available at: Amazon

Tanning Paradise Black Coconut Love Tanning Lotion

Amazon shoppers say that this tanning lotion measures up to salon products that cost twice as much! It can be used in tanning beds or outdoors to help you achieve a deep tan in record time, while keeping your skin hydrated and protected. This is a great lotion to use if you have tattoos so that you can prevent fading from sun exposure.

Pros

  • Top selling product
  • Indoor and outdoor friendly
  • Salon-level quality

Cons 

  • Slightly pricier

Available at: Amazon

Banana Boat Deep Tanning Spray Oil

If you’re someone who loves to simply lounge out for hours and hours by the beach or pool, a tanning sunscreen might be up your alley. This one even contains tan-extending conditioners so your skin’s newfound radiance can last and last!

Pros:

  • Under $10
  • Infused with skin-friendly carrot and banana extracts, plus coconut oil

Cons:

  • SPF 4 means not much actual sun protection

Available at: Target

COCOSOLIS Choco Suntan & Body Oil

This is another accelerator that you can use in tanning beds or outdoors to get your glow on faster! The formula contains a slew of organic oils, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that keep your skin healthy and help your tan last longer. It also does have SPF for some protection, but we recommended using a more potent sunscreen alongside this product.

Pros

  • Rich formula
  • Works well for fair skin

Cons 

  • Some shoppers aren’t fond of the cocoa scent
  • Slightly pricier

Available at: Amazon

Millennium Tanning Products Solid Black Bronzer

If you’re a tanning bed purist, you might be more drawn to this tanning lotion, which claims to deliver 100x auto-darkening technology for a fast, pain-free tan next time you hit the salon. No more tingling or burning with this smooth, moisturizing fan-favorite!

Pros:

  • Tons and tons of reviews
  • Nice Orchid Blush fragrance

Cons:

  • May not look natural on ultra-pale skin

Available at: Amazon

Australian Gold Dark Tanning Accelerator Lotion

Although some Amazon shoppers did note that this lotion worked well in a tanning bed, the general consensus is that it’s better suited for outdoor use. It’s said to help your skin prepare for tanning with a biosine complex so that you’re left with beautiful long-lasting color after your sunbathing session! We would definitely use this with sunscreen in order to prevent burning.

Pros

  • Under $10
  • Thousands of five-star reviews

Cons 

  • May not be best for indoor tanning

Available at: Amazon

Somewhere on a Beach Instant Dark Tanning Lotion

This lotion is another solid option that shoppers love picking up when they want to save money before heading to the salon! It works just as well as the products that are sold behind the counter, and reviewers say it’s worth every penny. You can use it in a tanning bed and outside to help you achieve a perfect glow — while giving your skin a touch of bronzy shimmer right after application!

Pros

  • Shimmery finish
  • Gorgeous tropical scent
  • Salon-level quality

Cons 

  • A bit pricier

Available at: Amazon

The Fox Tan Rapid Elixir

This lotion is a bit different than the other ones we’ve mentioned, because you can actually start using it to prep your skin for up to five days before your sunbathing or tanning bed session! What it does is help to kick start your skin’s natural melanin levels in order to give you the best tanning result possible once you step into the sun! That being said, make sure that you’re using a high SPF to prevent burning while using this product.

Pros

  • Great for fair skin types
  • Amazing dark results

Cons 

  • Needs to be used with other products for best results

Available at: Ulta

Maui Babe Browning Lotion

This is the OG tanning lotion! Shoppers have been using this product for years and years, and claim they haven’t found an accelerator that works as well as this one does. It’s made from natural ingredients sourced in Hawaii that give you an even, deep and dark tan in a matter of hours, as opposed to baking all day. This outdoor-only formula blends with all sunscreens and has earned countless five-star reviews from shoppers!

Pros

  • Great results
  • Affordable
  • Go-to product for countless shoppers

Cons 

  • A bit messy to use
  • The scent isn’t everyone’s favorite

Available at: Ulta

Devoted Creations Famous Faces Skin Perfecting Hypoallergenic Facial Tanning Lotion

This lotion was specifically designed for the face to help you get a beautiful complexion safely. Most of the tanning products that we’ve mentioned already are safe to use on the face, but may cause irritation for sensitive skin types. This lotion is hypoallergenic, lightweight and even includes anti-aging ingredients to help retain your skin’s youthful appearance while tanning!

Pros

  • Just for face
  • Anti-aging formula
  • Light and pleasant scent

Cons 

  • Didn’t work for some shoppers

Available at: Amazon

Hempz Dark Tan Maximizer

Sensitive skin types who are prone to irritation may need a tan accelerator that’s a bit gentler, which is where this product can come in handy! The 100% vegan formula is paraben free, nut free and hypoallergenic, plus includes natural calming ingredients like oatmeal extract to calm and soothe the skin while using.

Pros

  • Non-greasy
  • Extra hydrating

Cons 

  • Some shoppers reported irritation
  • Slightly pricey

Available at: Amazon

Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Sun Care Moisturizing Oil

If you’re looking for an incredible value, look no further! This set of two dark tanning oils costs under $20 for the pair and has been a mainstay with shoppers for decades. It hydrates the skin and leaves you with an intoxicating coconut scent that will transport you to a tropical paradise, plus help you get your perfect bronze tan faster!

Pros

  • Super affordable
  • Great coconut scent

Cons 

  • Best for only outdoor tanning
  • May be a bit greasy for some

Available at: Amazon

That’s What Sea Said Tanning Lotion Accelerator

You can use this bestselling accelerator for both outdoor and indoor tanning in order to stimulate melanin production, which helps you achieve tanned skin faster. A blend of Tyrosines are included in the formula which essentially jumpstarts the tanning process so that you don’t have to spend as much time in the sun! It’s also ideal for tattoo protection and includes anti-aging ingredients to keep your skin looking and feeling youthful!

Pros

  • Less tan time
  • Lovely tropical scent

Cons 

  • May cause sunburn without proper SPF use outdoors

Available at: Amazon

Treat Yourself With Kyle Richards’ Favorite 24K Gold Eye Patches

Still haven’t found what you’re looking for? Check out these related product articles below:

  • The 10 Best Long-Lasting Self Tanners
  • 12 Best Self Tanners Available at Ulta — Starting at $12
  • The 11 Best Swimsuit Cover-Ups for a Beach Vacation

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