10 Best Sunscreens For Tanning (2024), Dermatologist Picks

Getting a sun-tanned glow is easier than ever with gentle formulations that are harmless.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Anna H. Chacon, MD, FAAD Dr. Anna H. Chacon Dr. Anna H. ChaconMD, FAAD facebook_icontwitter_iconlinkedin_iconyoutube_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) Kirtana Divakar MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) linkedin_icon Experience: 3 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Shiboli Chakraborti MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , MA (English Literature) Swathi E MA (English Literature) linkedin_icon Experience: 3 years
Last Updated on
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A glowy bronze look after a well-spent beach vacation is what we all desire. But what can we do about those fine lines, pigmentation, and sunspots? Using the best sunscreen for tanning will be the answer. Yes, we can achieve a healthy post-vacation glow with a bronzy tanned look while protecting our skin from the Sun with these sunscreens.

These sunscreens allow you to get a beach-tan look without causing any damage to the skin. In general, sunscreens are used to get a shield of protection from the Sun and also combat tan. But these sunscreens allow you to tan to get your desired look.

Dr. Anna Chacon, a board-certified dermatologist, says, “Sunscreen helps prevent sunburn, decreases skin malignancies, and helps your body protect itself from other dangers. It is also one of the greatest strategies to avoid premature aging and exacerbations of photodermatoses.

In this article, we have listed the 10 best sunscreens for tanning, and they help you in getting a picture-perfect bronzy tanned look. Have a look!

Top PicksCheck Price
Best Hypoallergenic:Sun Bum Browning LotionPrice on Amazon
Best For All Skin Types:Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning OilPrice on Amazon
Best Streak-Free:Australian Gold Instant Sunless SprayPrice on Amazon
Best Non-Comedogenic:Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Mineral SunscreenPrice on Amazon
Best Water-Resistant:Coppertone Tanning Sunscreen SprayPrice on Amazon
Best Tinted Formula:Surface Body Lotion With SPF 30Price on Amazon
Best Reef-Friendly:Panama Jack Sunscreen LotionPrice on Amazon
Best Organic:Nature Nation Self-TannerPrice on Amazon
Best Spray Formula - Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil SunscreenPrice on Amazon
Best Non-Greasy:Bronzo Sensuale Suntan OilPrice on Amazon

Get A Sun-Kissed Glow With The 10 Best Sunscreens For Tanning (2024)

1. Best Hypoallergenic:Sun Bum Browning Lotion

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4.4
Sun Bum Browning Lotion Image: Sun Bum

This dark browning lotion accelerates the process of tanning, so you spend minimal time in the sun for a gorgeous sun-kissed look. Unlike other chemical sunscreens, this tanning product is infused with natural ingredients like coconut oil, argan oil, and soothing aloe vera for brighter, healthier skin. Water-resistant, not tested on animals, and reef-friendly, it is suitable for all skin types. This daily sunscreen is also hypoallergenic and free of parabens to deeply moisturize the skin and protect it from skin damage.

Also Recommended By: The Sun Bum Browning Lotion has also made it to the list by Elitedaily and Themakup.[1]Best Sunscreens For Tanning Plus Your Essential Safety Guide.Themakeup. https://themakeup.org/best-sunscreens-for-tanning/
[2]4 Great Sunscreens That Actually Help You Tan. Elitedaily. https://www.elitedaily.com/style/the-4-best-sunscreens-for-tanning-9621920

Skin Type: Sensitive | Product Dimensions: 1.95 x 1.95 x 7.2 inches | Weight: 8.82 Ounces

Pros

  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Reef-friendly
  • Paraben-free
  • Water-resistant
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

  • Some might find that the texture of this product is a bit clumpy.

protip_icon Pro Tip
Always check for the UVA star rating. These indicate the SPF rating and can range from 1 star (minimum protection) to 5 stars (ultra protection).

worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has more than 625 reviews and is a top choice all around the world.

2. Best For All Skin Types:Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil

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4.5
Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil Image: Hawaiian Tropic

This lightweight sunscreen tanning oil provides SPF (sun protection factor) 15 and broad-spectrum sun protection against UVA/UVB exposure while deeply nourishing the skin. With a classic coconut fragrance, this tropical scent blend is infused with cocoa butter and aloe vera, which moisturize the skin for a glowing, radiant look. Best applied 15 minutes before sun exposure, this dry oil is enriched with exotic island botanicals like papaya and mango extracts to prevent sunburns while pampering the skin with hydration and a soothing, strong scent.

Item Weight: 8 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 1.34 x 2.8 x 6.86 inches

Pros

  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Skin-nourishing formula
  • Refreshing scent of coconut
  • Lightweight and fast-absorbing formula
  • Provides SPF 15 and broad-spectrum sun protection
  • Dermatologist-tested
  • No animal testing involved

Cons

  • May not contain reef-friendly ingredients

Our Tester's Experience

"The Hawaiian Tropic Sunscreen Protective Tanning Dry Oil has such a heavenly scent that transports you to the tropics. It is easy to use and adds a glow to the skin. It is perfect if you're after that sun-kissed look."


protip_icon Pro Tip
Take breaks from the sun to reduce UV intensity and sunburn for a healthier and longer-lasting tan.

worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

This product has made it to our top favorite list with more than 7,377 rave reviews on Amazon.

3. Best Streak-Free:Australian Gold Instant Sunless Spray

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3.9
Australian Gold Instant Sunless Spray Image: Australian Gold

This tanning, water resistant sunscreen spray is infused with antioxidant-rich kakadu plum, promoting collagen production and protecting the skin against free radicals. This spray provides an instant bronze, golden glow within 24 hours of application without unnecessary sun exposure. This quick-drying, oil-free blend also contains caffeine, which energizes the skin and improves skin tone and texture. Shea butter, maka extract, and vitamin B moisturize and repair skin for long-lasting and luxurious color. Click on the video to see the unfiltered reviewer’s experience of using the Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunscreen.

Item Weight: 8 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 1.34 x 2.8 x 6.86 inches

Pros

  • Vegan
  • Oil-free
  • Cruelty-free
  • Water-resistant
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Quick-drying and streak-free formula

Cons

  • Some might find the texture of this tanning spray to be watered-down.
protip_icon Pro Tip
Exfoliate a day before applying sunscreens for tanning for a long-lasting tan.
Sun Bum Browning Lotion
Best Hypoallergenic
Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil
Best For All Skin Types
Australian Gold Instant Sunless Spray
Best Streak-Free
Skin Type Sensitive--
Dimensions 1.95 x 1.95 x 7.2 inches 1.34 x 2.8 x 6.86 inches 1.34 x 2.8 x 6.86 inches
Weight 8.82 Ounces--
Weight- 8 Ounces 8 Ounces
Rating
Reviews6257,3773,262
Price$14.77$8.92$11.59

4. Best Non-Comedogenic:Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunscreen

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4.4
Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunscreen Image: Neutrogena

This is one of our favorite sunscreens for sensitive skin that offers SPF 60 while providing UVA/UVB protection. Made with naturally sourced active ingredients, this sunscreen moisturizes and nourishes the skin. Hypoallergenic and dermatologist-tested, this blend is free of fragrances and does not cause allergic reactions, making it ideal for those sensitive to scents. This non-greasy chemical sunscreen is water-resistant, and it is suitable for activities that include the sun, including gardening, swimming, hiking, boating, and more. Watch this video to see the unfiltered review of the Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunscreen.

Item Weight: 3 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 5.51 x 2.76 x 1.18 inches

Pros

  • PABA-free
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil-free and fragrance-free
  • Fast-absorbing and non-greasy
  • Water resistant up to 80 minutes
  • Gentle formula ideal for sensitive skin
  • Made with 100% naturally sourced ingredients

Cons

  • Might not be suitable for those with eczema.
worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The extensive 4,567 rave reviews on Amazon prove why we are vouching for this product.

5. Best Water-Resistant:Coppertone Tanning Sunscreen Spray

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4.6
Coppertone Tanning Sunscreen Spray Image: Coppertone

This tanning, broad spectrum sunscreen spray provides a natural, healthy glow and luxurious dark tan while ensuring sun protection. Enriched with antioxidant-rich vitamin E, this lightweight blend offers maximum coverage without leaving behind a sticky residue. The tanning oil is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, making it an ideal companion to a beach trip or any water adventures. Made with a nourishing and hydrating blend of ingredients, this product is suitable for all skin types and should be reapplied every 2 hours for complete protection.According to the reviews, it is a great buy because of its proven efficacy in sun protection.

Also Recommended By: The Coppertone Tanning Sunscreen Spra has also made it to the list by tanningtouch and goodlookingtan.[1]The 7 Best Sunscreen for Tanning at the Beach. tanningtouch. https://tanningtouch.com/best-sunscreen-for-tanning/
[2]11 Best Sunscreens For Tanning – Complete Guide. goodlookingtan. https://goodlookingtan.com/best-sunscreens-for-tanning/

Item Weight: 5.5 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 2.13 x 2.13 x 7.38 inches

Pros

  • Lightweight and non-greasy formula
  • Water resistant up to 80 minutes
  • Provides SPF 15 broad-spectrum sun protection
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

  • Some might find this product a bit drying.

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunblock offers both sun protection and tanning. It is easy to use and has a non-greasy finish. It layers with my other products well. It is lightweight and gives even coverage."


6.  Best Tinted Formula:Surface Body Lotion With SPF 30

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3.8
Surface Body Lotion With SPF 30 Image: Surface Sunscreen

The Surface Body Lotion With SPF 30 is a water-resistant and tinted body lotion with SPF 30 that can provide sun protection for up to 80 minutes without reapplication. This body sunscreen has been formulated with non-nano zinc oxide sunscreen and titanium dioxide that can protect your skin from sun damage even in the harshest environments. The sunscreen is made of 100% naturally sourced ingredients and is free of oils and fragrances, making it suitable for sensitive skin.

Item Weight: 3 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 2.25 x 0.75 x 6.25 inches

Pros

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Suitable for all skin tones
  • Paraben-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Cruelty-free with no animal testing
  • Water-resistant
  • Sweat-resistant
  • Reef-safe
  • Travel-friendly packaging

Cons

  • Less in quantity

Our Tester's Experience

"I have had such a good experience with this sunscreen during my trip. It offers good sun protection and a nice tan. It suits even my dry, sensitive skin and does not leave any greasy residue."


7. Best Reef-Friendly:Panama Jack Sunscreen Lotion

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4.5
Panama Jack Sunscreen Lotion Image: Panama Jack

This one is considered the best suntan lotion for sun tanning and has a reef-friendly formula designed for ocean lovers. Infused with antioxidants and moisturizing oils, this versatile sunscreen tanning lotion with SPF 4 nourishes and hydrates the skin for a radiant, dewy glow. Water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, this effective sun protection is ideal for heavy-duty activities or indulging in water-based sports. Suitable for all skin types, bring home this tanning lotion with sunscreen for a sun-kissed tan.

Number of Items: 1

Pros

  • PABA-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Cruelty-free
  • Reef-friendly
  • Water-resistant up to 80 minutes
  • Free of parabens, octinoxate, and oxybenzone

Cons

  • This product may not provide adequate sun protection and has to be paired with a sunscreen with SPF 30 or more.

Our Tester's Experience

"The SPF 4 tanning lotion is perfect for those like me who prefer lightweight sunscreens. It is non-greasy and does not leave any residue. It has a watermelon scent that is subtle and pleasant. It is also reef-safe."


8. Best Organic:Nature Nation Self-Tanner

If you’re looking for a good sunscreen for tanning, your search ends here! This self-tanning sunscreen comes with a tanning mitt and a silicone brush, making it very convenient to apply. Its formula helps your skin achieve a bronzed, sun-kissed look without spending hours in the scorching sun. Made with natural and organic ingredients, this self-tanning lotion is suitable for all skin types and provides a natural-looking, deep tan without streaks or a messy residue. This is a lower priced chemical sunscreen tanner that starts showing results after 6 hours of application, and the effects last up to 14 days.

Skin Type: All

Pros

  • Cruelty-free
  • Streak-free and non-greasy formula
  • Made with natural and organic ingredients
  • Comes with a tanning mitt and silicone brush

Cons

  • May contain sulfates

Our Tester's Experience

"This self-tanning lotion is very easy to use. It gives the skin a natural-looking color. It includes a mitt that ensures a smooth, buttery application. It doesn't transfer to clothes and wash off easily in the shower."


9. Best Spray Formula:Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil Sunscreen

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4.5
Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil Sunscreen Image: Banana Boat

The Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil Sunscreen is a spray sunscreen oil infused with the benefits of aloe vera, vitamins A and E, and SPF 8 that nourishes and protects your skin from the sun. Blended with banana and carrot extracts, this oil based sunscreen is water-resistant and has a lightweight and hydrating formula that gives comfortable wear. The sunscreen is infused with natural ingredients such as coconut, carrot, and banana extracts, making it ideal for everyday application. It provides long-lasting color and broad-spectrum UV protection without drying out or irritating the skin.

Number of Items: 3 | Item Weight: 0.17 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 2.25 x 2.25 x 6.88 inches

Pros

  • Reef-friendly
  • Paraben-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Vitamin-infused formula
  • Contains mineral zinc
  • Gentle formula
  • Suitable for sensitive skin

Cons

  • Can feel greasy

Our Tester's Experience

"I love using this tanning oil on days when I'm in the mood for poolside lounging. The formula is super nourishing and helps me achieve a nice tan. It also has a very pleasant scent."


10. Best Non-Greasy:Bronzo Sensuale Suntan Oil

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4.1
Bronzo Sensuale Suntan Oil Image: Bronzo Sensuale

 This tanning oil helps your skin achieve a healthy-looking bronze suntan without having the risk of sun damage. This blend is infused with organic and natural ingredients like carrot, hemp seed oil, aloe vera, and allantoin, which leaves the skin soft and smooth with a radiant glow. The shea butter in the formula deeply moisturizes and hydrates the skin, while vitamin E maintains your skin’s health. Non-greasy and hypoallergenic, this sunscreen tanning oil is suitable for all skin types.

Product Dimensions: 2 x 2 x 7 inches | Weight: 8.5 Ounces

Pros

  • Non-greasy formula
  • Vegan and cruelty-free with no animal testing
  • Reef-friendly ingredients
  • Contains organic and natural ingredients
  • Free of parabens, PABA, and mineral oils

Cons

  • This product may not provide adequate sun protection and has to be paired with a sunscreen.

Our Tester's Experience

"This tanning product is perfect for that deep tan. It is easy to use and settles into a nice bronze. It has a pleasant scent and makes the skin really soft."


*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

“Sunscreen helps prevent sunburn, decreases skin malignancies, and helps your body protect itself from other dangers. It is also one of the greatest strategies to avoid premature aging and exacerbations of photodermatoses,” says Dr. Anna Chacon, a board, certifies dermatologist. Now that we have looked at our pick of the 10 best sunscreens for tanning in 2024, let us look at some things to consider when picking a product best suited for your requirements.

How To Choose A Sunscreen For Tanning 

  • Sun protection

Nothing is as essential as adequate sun protection when planning to spend any time in the sun. Excessive sun exposure not only causes the skin to age faster, but it can also increase your chances of getting skin cancer. One of the first things to consider is if the sunscreen you have picked provides adequate sun protection. A quick look at the SPF can tell you if you can use the tanning lotion alone or if it needs to be paired with sunscreen. As a general rule, an SPF of 15 or higher is desirable to provide broad-spectrum sun protection against UVA/UVB rays. If your tanning lotion has less than this, consider applying sunscreen as added insurance.

  • Skin Type

Picking a product best suited for your skin type helps address any specific skin concerns you might have. Those with dry skin type would benefit from choosing a sunscreen tanning lotion with added hydrating, skin loving ingredients like shea butter, aloe vera, and vitamin E. Those with oily and acne-prone skin should pick a product containing non-comedogenic ingredients and a lightweight and oil-free formula. Sunscreens without added fragrances and synthetic dyes would be best suited for those with sensitive skin.

  • Texture

The desired texture of the tanning lotion depends mainly on personal preference. A non-greasy and fast-absorbing gel-based lotion is ideal for those looking for a matte look. An oil-based product might be better suited for those looking for a little extra moisturization.

Infographic: Why Sunscreen Is Your Best Bet In Skin Care

No amount of skin care and expensive products can make a difference to your skin health if you skip your sun protection. It is the first and foremost step to safeguarding your skin health. Did you know that your sunscreen offers much more than just protection from UV rays? Yes! It should be a must in your skin care routine. Find out more about the many benefits of using a sun protection formula every day and mistakes to avoid in the infographic below.

Why Sunscreen Is Your Best Bet In Skin Care (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

The Bottom Line

Use sunscreens for tanned skin to get a sun-kissed bronzy tanned look without causing any damage to the skin. These products act as shields and block the rays from penetrating your skin. Hence, they protect the skin from premature aging and skin damage. Choose the Sun Bum Browning Lotion for accelerating the tan and a sun-kissed glow. For a nourishing treatment, you can opt for the Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunscreen. With its soothing formula, the Surface Body Lotion with SPF 30 offers reliable and solid sun protection. However, they do not block the sunrays entirely so that you can get that natural tan and look exotic. The products on our list are lightweight and non-greasy. Some of them are even cruelty-free. Read the reviews of products carefully before buying any, and stay away from those formulae that dry out the skin, form a white cast, or do not provide enough sun protection.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do sunscreens prevent tanning?

Sunscreens prevent tanning to some degree; however, some amount of tanning is inevitable when spending extended periods of time in the sun. Sunscreens protect against harmful UV rays and help reduce the chances of premature aging and skin cancer.

Does SPF 50 prevent tanning?

Since sunscreen does not block all UV rays, some tanning is bound to happen despite wearing an SPF 50 sunscreen. But sunscreens with SPF 50 prevent more tanning than ones with a lesser SPF.

Does sunscreen make your skin darker?

Sunscreen alone should not darken skin unless it causes an allergic reaction that triggers hyperpigmentation. Besides this, sunscreens with added tanning benefits may darken the skin as they are intended to protect the skin against sun damage.

Do you tan quicker without sunscreen?

Yes, you will tan quicker without sunscreen. Sunscreens are designed to protect your skin from the sun rays and hence it prevents tanning.

Can you tan with sunscreen SPF 70?

Yes, you can still tan while wearing SPF 70. Sunscreen shields our skin from the sun rays but does not provide 100% protection.

Is SPF 30 good for tanning?

Yes. Around 30% of UVB rays can still enter our skin with SPF 30 and can cause tanning or darkening of the skin.

How long does it take to tan with sunscreen?

It takes around 1-2 hours in the sun to tan with sunscreen on.

Does coconut oil help you tan?

No. Coconut oil is not the best option to use if you want to tan. Coconut oil does not protect your skin from sun rays and can lead to sunburns and other skin issues.

Why do some people tan more than others?

Some people tan more than others because of the difference in melanin production, which causes tanning. People with darker skin produce more melanin and tan better than those with lighter skin tone.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

Kirtana Divakar, the author, is a skin care enthusiast with a passion for exploring various skin care products and reviewing them to find the best. She researched multiple sunscreens for tanning and read through numerous online reviews to compile a shortlist of the best options on the market. The products she recommends on this list are formulated to give you a bronzy, beach-tan look without causing any damage to the skin.

Recommended Articles:

Dr. Anna H. Chacon
Dr. Anna Chacon is a board-certified dermatologist specializing in medical, surgical, and cosmetic dermatology with over 9 years of experience. She enjoys practicing all aspects of dermatology and is licensed to practice in 49 states.

Read full bio of Dr. Anna H. Chacon
Kirtana Divakar
Kirtana DivakarCommerce Writer
Kirtana has a postgraduate degree in mass communication and journalism from St. Joseph’s College, Bengaluru, and 3 years of professional experience. She developed a deep passion for writing after reading the brilliant works of Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl and has chosen a career that is driven by creativity.

Read full bio of Kirtana Divakar
Shiboli Chakraborti
Shiboli ChakrabortiCommerce Editor
Shiboli has a master’s degree in English literature from The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, and is a certified skincare coach with four years of experience. As a commerce editor, she guides her team members on the best practices to create crisp and authentic content.

Read full bio of Shiboli Chakraborti
Swathi E
Swathi ESenior Beauty & Lifestyle Writer
Swathi has a postgraduate degree in English literature from The English And Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, and over three years of experience in writing on beauty, health, and lifestyle. She also has a diploma in English journalism from the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, Kottayam, and is a certified skincare coach.

Read full bio of Swathi E