Best Outdoor Tanning Lotions – 2019 Review

A rich and dark suntan can give your skin a healthy glow. Best outdoor tanning lotions can help you get the perfect shade in less time. Not all these products are the same though. Studies show that tanning lotions that include sunscreen do a better job of protecting your skin. Ultraviolet rays from the sun can eventually cause skin cancer

A strong sun blocking ingredient can cut down your risk and still give you the tan you're after. Here are a few tips to help you decide which brand and type is the best choice for you. You'll learn everything you need to know about what makes one better than another. We've followed up with a review of the top picks to help you find the best outdoor tanning lotions. 

What Is Outdoor Tanning Lotion?

There are many kinds of tanning lotions. Some are made for indoor use and others for outdoor. We're going to concentrate on the types that are used outside when you're enjoying the full sun. These products help to shorten the amount of time that it takes for your skin to darken from being in the sun. Different formulas are made to suit people with a variety of skin types.

These include lotions for skin types that are dry, oily, sensitive and for people that have combination skin types. When you're out in the sun, experts on skin health recommend that you use one with a sunblock to protect your skin. Tanning lotions contain accelerators that help you to tan faster. You can choose a formula made for the tone of your skin including a good, medium or olive, or dark, and the darkness of tan that you want.

Best Outdoor Tanning Lotions Comparison Chart

Product Image


Editor Rating


Maui Babe-Browning-Lotion

Maui Babe Browning Lotion


Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Sun Care 


Millennium Tanning Paint It Black


Hawaiian Tropic Sunscreen Protective Dark Tanning Broad 


Australian Gold Sinfully Black 15x Deep Dark Bronzing Tanning Lotion


Millennium Tanning New Solid Black 


SunGodZ Apollo/Artemis 375X Bronzer Tanning 


Ed Hardy Coconut Kisses Golden Tanning Lotion


Australian Gold Gelee Dark Tanning


Australian Gold Jwoww Black Bronzer Dark Tanning

The Best Outdoor Tanning Lotions Reviews

Maui Babe-Browning-Lotion

Use the secrets of Maui Babe Browning Lotion Hawaiian formula. This product is made from all-natural ingredients to offer a safer way to tan with a non-greasy formula that feels light on your skin. This product has a light pleasant scent and is made for all skin tones and types. It is safe for use with fair and sensitive skin with no harmful or irritating chemicals.


  • No oil is used in this product making it a good choice for all skin types
  • Does not contain bronzer for a more natural tan
  • Light and pleasant scent
  • Maui Babe Browning Lotion does not stain skin for an even and glowing tan


  • This product does not contain sunscreen protection. This problem is easily fixed by adding a sunscreen with SPF protection when used outdoors

Enjoy several benefits for healthy tanning in one tanning moisturizing oil. Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning oil moisturizes your skin while adding vitamins a, c and e for powerful antioxidant protection. Conditions your skin for a more even and glowing tan. Exotic botanical ingredients and rich oils from the Islands pamper your skin and leave it feeling smooth and hydrated.


  • Built-in skin conditioners moisturize and soften skin for an even and deep tan.
  • Includes nutrient additives for better skin health and antioxidants that fight against skin damage and irritation.
  • Coconut fragrance is light and tropical for a pleasant scent that is not overpowering.
  • This product goes on smoothly and sinks into the skin for better absorption.


  • This product sells out quickly in summer and is more expensive. It's best to purchase your supply in the offseason when the price is lower.

Millenium Tanning Paint It Black offers fifty times the results with a special auto-darkening tan technology for dark bronze tanning and dramatic results. The silicone emulsion is a blend that smooths the skin for a soft and silky feel. Your skin will feel pampered and healthy. Skin firming agents help to tighten loose or aging skin for a younger and healthier appearance. Accelerates the speed of your tan with multiple benefits in one formula.


  • Cotton blossom fragrance is clean and light without overpowering your senses
  • Auto-darkening tanning technology accelerates the tanning process, so you tan faster with less exposure to direct sunlight
  • Moisturizers condition the skin to leave it feeling healthy and comfortable
  • Skin firming ingredients are gentle and effective without causing tingling sensation


  • No SPF for protection from UV rays. The addition of a sunscreen solves the problem.

Moisturizing lotion pampers skin and prepares it for a healthy and glowing tan. Enjoy safer tanning with SFP 8 skin protection to limit the effects of potentially harmful UV rays. This combination outdoor tanning and sunscreen lotion are made with botanical and extracted ingredients including Aloe Vera for ultimate skin conditioning. The light coconut scent will remind you of the islands while helping to promote a deep and lasting tan.


  • Helps to prevent sunburn while moisturizing the skin
  • SPF protection lasts for up to 80 minutes after water activities before reapplication is needed
  • Light and pleasant scent
  • Botanical ingredients and extracts promote deep tanning while softening the skin


  • Comes only in coconut scent

Enjoy 15X for increased bronzing. Fortified with natural bronzing ingredients including monoi de Tahiti, caramel and walnut shell extract for maximum darkening effect. This lotion contains natural ingredients that moisturize and soften the skin.


  • Makes the skin feel soft and well-hydrated
  • Can be used both indoors and outdoors as a tanning solution
  • Does not stain the palms of hands, ankles, knees or elbows because it dries quickly when rubbed into the skin evenly
  • May be safely used with a tanning bed or outdoors in the sun with the addition of a sunscreen


  • Does not contain sunblock. For enhanced protection from ultraviolet rays, merely add sunscreen lotion with a high SPF.

Luxury tanning lotion with a patented tanning technology is what Solid Black has to offer. The advanced dark tanning formula helps you to achieve a darker tan without the danger of streaking that some other indoor tanning solutions create. Apply evenly and enjoy an enhanced tanning bed experience. Silicone bronzer softens and moistens the skin for the best possible results from your tanning sessions. Extreme bronzers promote a deeper and darker tan.


  • Softens the skin with silicone infusion for a more even tan
  • Safe for use with UV tanning beds
  • Longer lasting tan when used with tanning bed
  • Provides extreme hydration for better skin conditioning and a healthy glow


  • Does not contain UV protection Use with an SPF formula for enhanced skin protection

Enjoy multiple benefits with SunGodZ Apollo/Artemis tanning lotion that is formulated for use with indoor tanning, outdoor and with tanning beds. Luxury silicone ingredient makes your skin feel silky and smooth with good argan and coconut oil and agave extract for better skin health. Condition your skin while you get a rich and dark tan with this versatile formulation. Fast tanning is at your fingertips.


  • Moisturizes and hydrates skin with a unique protection for tattoos
  • Promotes deep and dark tanning in multiple settings including tanning beds, indoor tanning and outdoors
  • Natural ingredients improve skin health
  • Shower proof for long lasting results


  • Doesn't contain SPF protection but is remedied by adding a sunscreen lotion.

Pamper your skin with luxury class ingredients that promote hydration for extremely soft skin from coconut milk and coconut oil. A unique blend of tanning intensifiers allows deep tanning with a golden hue that is accomplished without the use of bronzing agents. This formulation includes Melactiva for an acceleration of the tanning process. Special ingredients stimulate your body's production of tanning accelerators so your tan will last longer. Protection for body art is also included to prevent the fading of tattoos for more even and radiant tanning results.


  • Provides tattoo protection to avoid fading
  • Stimulates the body to produce natural pigmentation for a darker and longer lasting tan
  • Coconut products promote deep skin hydration for improved skin health
  • Light and pleasant fragrance with a hint of the tropics


  • Doesn't offer protection from ultraviolet rays. Add sunscreen with recommended SPF protection before outdoor use.

Experience the clean feel of Australian Gold Gelee for light and comfortable tanning. This versatile tanning lotion is made for indoor or outdoor use. It contains no mineral oil, but offers the tanning power of an oil. The non-sticky formula has a pleasant fragrance and moisturizes the skin like lotions. Additional nutrients including vitamins A and E are added to improve skin health.


  • Additional nutrients including vitamins promote good skin health
  • Versatile tanning product that is intended for both indoor and outdoor use
  • Moisturizes skin without feeling sticky
  • Pleasant fragrance


  • Does not provide protection from UV rays, but the addition of a sunscreen offers an easy solution

Hemp seed and Black Currant oil lead the parade of natural ingredients that offer extreme moisturizing to prepare your skin for the darkest possible tan. Nourish your skin with this vitamin-rich formula that includes potent skin smoothers and moisturizers. Black Bronzer includes walnut shell extract, caramel and Monoi de Tahiti for achieving a rich and deep tan.


  • Natural ingredients and vitamins promote skin health
  • Strong moisturizers prepare skin for the tanning process
  • The fragrance is light and pleasant
  • This lotion spreads easily for even coverage and less hassle when applying


  • There is no SPF protection. It is recommended that you add a sunscreen with outdoor use of this product

How Does Outdoor Tanning Lotion Work?

The lotions work by protecting your skin from absorbing ultraviolet rays. While there are some that will make you absorb more, these are the ones that are not as safe to use. The products with a higher sun protection factor, also known as SPF are the wiser choice. If you are willing to pass on the extra skin protection and just want to tan faster, you can choose an outdoor tanning formula that contains special oils that allow your skin to absorb more UV rays. 

This causes your body to produce more melatonin. Melatonin is the pigment that helps your skin to darken when it is exposed to sunlight. Using products that allow more UV rays are better for faster tanning. Although there is a higher risk of skin damage, this doesn't mean that they will cause skin cancer or other types of sun damage. The choice is yours to make. If you decide to go with the quicker solution, you should limit the amount of time that you spend in the sunlight to lessen your risks.

Benefits of Using Outdoor Tanning Lotion

We all know that too much sun can cause skin cancer and pre-mature aging of the skin. This is why using a high-quality tanning lotion that has ingredients to protect your skin is so important. Another advantage for using outdoor tanning lotion is that it can also help to prevent sunburns which can be painful and damage your delicate skin.

There are many different brands and formulas available for you to choose from. This can make it hard to decide which is the best outdoor tanning lotion review, but on the other hand, it's good to have a variety to choose from. You can decide on one that will have everything that you are looking for in one product. Selecting a formula for oily skin will help you to avoid breakouts. If your skin type is dry, choose one with a built-in moisturizer that will condition your skin.

Outdoor tanning products also help your skin to tan faster so you can get the perfect look in time for important events. You may be looking forward to a wedding, an outdoor barbecue or a trip to the beach with friends. These are great places to show off your new suntan. If time is short, tanning lotion can help you achieve your best look with less effort and time.

Difference Between Indoor and Outdoor Tanning Lotion

Indoor tanning lotions do not contain a sunscreen while most outdoor solutions do. There is no need to block the sun if you're not going to be out in it. The indoor type is meant to be used in tanning beds. They contain ingredients that accelerate your tan without needing the sun. It is typical for an indoor tanning lotion to increase the effect of the UV rays produced by a tanning bed by 95% of the UA rays and by 5% for the UVB rays. Outdoor tanning lotions block both types, so it doesn't work for indoor tanning. Indoor tanning lotions ae made for the more intense tanning sessions that require less time. Outdoor tanning lotions partially block UV rays and are made only for use outdoors in the sun. These are the major differences between the two.

Advantages of Using Outdoor Tanning Lotions

There are several benefits of using outdoor tanning lotions over the indoor type. The first is that your skin is protected from the potentially harmful effects of UV rays. There is less chance of developing skin cancer or sunburn. In addition to these, another advantage is that you are less likely to have premature aging of your skin. While it takes longer to tan, your skin is more likely to stay healthier than if you chose the indoor tanning option. Outdoor tanning lotion is the best choice for people who are concerned with skin health.

How to Use Outdoor Tanning Lotion

There are steps that you should take to get the best results from outdoor tanning lotion review. The first step is to learn how to apply it properly. It is always recommended that you use a pre-tanning lotion that moisturizes your skin first. Apply it evenly to prepare your skin for the next step. Pre-tanning lotion helps to ensure that the outdoor tanning lotion you use will absorb evenly in the skin and give you a more even tan. You should let the first lotion absorb fully into the skin. Give it at least an hour before you apply the outdoor tanning lotion.

Apply the outdoor tanning lotion before you go out into the sun. Make sure that it is applied as evenly as possible. When you are finished with your tanning session, apply an after tanning lotion. This will help to hydrate your skin to keep it in the best possible condition. Choose lotions that are recommended for your skin-type so you can avoid breakouts or drying of the skin. Ideally, your outdoor tanning lotion will contain a high level of SPF protection to protect your skin from sun damage.

Tips for Getting a Stellar Outdoor Tan

We've covered all the bases for tanning safety and choosing the best outdoor tanning lotion for your skin type. You're ready to apply the knowledge that you've gained to start working on your sun tan. These are the things that you can do to get the best possible tan and keep it longer.

Set a tanning schedule

When you first start tanning, it's best to limit the amount of time that you spend in the sun. As your skin tans, you will develop a tolerance to the sun, and there will be less chance of burning. Start with between 10 and 20 minutes for each side, then give yourself a break from the sun. Plan on tanning every other day for skin safety, but don't let more than three days pass in between sessions. This will help you to maintain your tan for longer. If your skin is sensitive and you have discomfort, decrease your tanning time. You can increase it in five-minute increments as your tolerance to the sun builds.

Arrange for privacy to avoid tan lines

Once you've established your base tan, you will already have tan lines where the skin has not been exposed to the sun. To avoid obvious tan lines, tan in a private area where you can expose body parts that you may not want others to see (if this is the case). Once you've tanned, they are hard to hide. If you wear strapless attire, it's best to consider how to solve the problem ahead of time. This includes removing watches, jewelry, shoes and socks, and putting hair up, so it doesn't interfere with sun exposure to areas of the skin you want tanned.

Remove all makeup and start with clean skin

Wearing makeup can cause you to get an uneven tan. Start with fresh skin that has been moisturized with a pre-tanning lotion applied an hour before tanning. Your skin should be exfoliated, smooth and well hydrated for the best results. A daily skincare routine that includes exfoliation and moisturizing is recommended.

Be mindful of your body position while tanning

To get an even tan, make sure that all body parts are evenly exposed to the sun's rays. Position your body, so there are no shadows on the side that you want to tan. Consider using a timer, so you don't overexpose your skin on the one hand. Expose both sides of the body an equal amount of time so you don't tan darker on one side.

Does Outdoor Tanning Cause Cancer?

There is a reasonable question that everyone should ask. The answer is yes, there is an increased risk of developing skin cancer from ultraviolet rays. This doesn't mean that everyone will though. If you use outdoor tanning lotion that has sunblock protection, you lessen your risks. Getting sunburns increases your chances of skin damage or cancer, and you should limit your time in the sun. Whether you are trying to tan or just need to be outdoors, you should use sunscreen to protect your delicate skin from damage. 

There are things that you can do to reduce your risks for developing skin cancer. Sadly, many people do not realize the danger until they are older, and the damage has already been done. Skin care experts recommend that people under the age of 18 should not tan. This is because repeated exposure is what causes the most significant risks over time.


These are the top ten best outdoor tanning lotions under review. Each offers different benefits that offer you a range of choices as you decide which one would work the best for you. We've included this diverse collection to help make it easier for you to find the outdoor tanning lotion that will most closely meet your needs in one convenient place. We've included descriptions along with benefits and any potential drawbacks to help you in making your decision. We hope that you find this information helpful for finding the ideal tanning solution.

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Michael Ethan

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