If you have a tattoo, then you probably know that it requires not just regular touch-ups but also proper protection. Because, no matter whatever you do, your tattoo is going to naturally fade with time. But what speeds up this process of fading is unprotected UV exposure. And that is why tattoos and tanning are not such great friends. However, to change that, there is the best tanning lotions for tattoos.
You’ve spent money on your tattoo, right? More importantly, it’s a part of your body now. So keeping it from looking flawed or run-down should be a priority. Nevertheless, sometimes getting that perfect sun-kissed glow is also of the greatest importance. In that case, what you can do is cover up your beautiful tattoo with a decent sunscreen lotion right before tanning.
Another very effective method of protection is applying a tanning lotion specifically designed for tattoos.
18 Top-Rated Tanning Lotion for Tattoos
1. Ed Hardy Coconut Kisses Golden Tanning Lotion
For some tropical tanning, protection, and fragrance, nothing works better than Ed Hardy Coconut Kisses Golden Tanning Lotion. The coconut stuff in here provides all the hydration your skin is in dire need of. This stuff I’m talking about includes coconut oil and coconut milk. And what these ingredients do is soften and moisturize your skin.
As for tanning results, you’re reading about the best tanning intensifier. It has the ability to provide a dark golden glow. And with zero bronzing agents! There are quad tyrosine and melanobronze for boosting melanin production, which speeds up the tanning action. Then there’s also melactiva to produce a longer-lasting and darker tan.
Apart from that, the tanning lotion also consists of nouritan. What this particularly helpful ingredient does is stimulate the activity of tyrosine while also making sure you get an even tan.
A tanning lotion like Ed Hardy Coconut Kisses is proof that you can reduce the visibility of cellulite on your body by tanning. This formula promotes skin firmness, no doubt. It is also a very effective tattoo fade protector. No matter how many tattoos you have, this tanning lotion protects your skin very well. And that too without bronzers!
And lastly, the coconut fragrance is simply out of the world. You’re highly likely to put this on even when not tanning. That’s just how mesmerizing the scent of the tanning lotion is.
2. Ed Hardy Beachtime Dark Coconut Infused Tanning Lotion
Now here’s another creation by Ed Hardy. This #Beachtime Tanning Lotion can be applied for both outdoor and indoor tanning. Like the previous pick, this too is an intensifier that delivers a dark golden tan without any bronzing agents.
Coconut-infused means a tanning lotion with coconut oil and coconut milk. This implies the formula hydrates and softens your skin during and after tanning. And when the skin is well-hydrated and well-moisturized, the tan lasts for a longer time.
The tanning lotion is also enriched with seaweed extract for eliminating toxins from your body. Why is this useful again? It helps with getting rid of cellulite. And lucky for you, Ed Hardy Beachtime minimizes the appearance of cellulite by also providing firmness to the skin.
As for tattoo protection, you can expect it to maintain the radiance and prolong the life of your tattoo. There’s no way you can downplay this tanning lotion. Not as long as ingredients like hibiscus extract, passion fruit extract, Vitamin C, and Vitamin A are involved. Hibiscus is for improving skin elasticity. And the rest simply provide protection against free radicals.
In all, you’re very likely to cherish the candy-like fragrance, easy absorption, no-bronzer content, and the perfect orange glow of this best dark tanning lotion with tattoo protection by Ed Hardy.
3. Ed Hardy Tanista Indoor Tanning Bed Lotion
Now allow me to introduce you to the best indoor tanning lotion. Once again, Ed Hardy makes an appearance. But this tanning lotion contains bronzing agents, unlike the previous two options.
This is a self-adjusting tanning enhancer that gives your tan the wonderful opportunity to reach its darkest potential naturally. The formula has BB power to correct and prime your skin for providing a youthful, clear, and even appearance. Meaning anti-cellulite action is also a part of the tanning experience.
Ed Hardy doesn’t fail to include quad tyrosine and melanobronze in their tanning lotions for increasing the production of melanin. So you can achieve your desired tan faster. There’s a complex added to prevent skin redness. And then the fact that this tanning lotion is a tattoo fade protector as well also matters.
The bronzer formula is non-streaking just so you know. You can apply it on your skin without expecting the texture to leave a sticky feeling. Once the tanning lotion dries, your skin is bound to feel velvety soft.
If you ask me, everything about this Ed Hardy tanning lotion is perfect. Color? Spot-on! Consistency? Spot-on! Fragrance? Spot-on!
4. Australian Gold Jwoww Natural Black Bronzer
If there’s any highly recommended tanning lotion for tattoos, then it’s this one right here. The Jwoww Tanning Lotion by Australian Gold is a formula that brightens and moisturizes inked areas. No doubt, the tanning lotion makes your tattoos look fresh and bright.
It’s equipped with kendi oil, which is a natural extract that softens your skin without leaving it greasy post-application. But the ingredients that actually quench the metaphorical thirst of your tattoo are Vitamin E, Vitamin A, shea butter, raspberry, and beeswax. Together, they provide restoration and rejuvenation to your tattoo.
The manufacturer has also included black currant oil, pear extract, and yogurt to the tanning lotion. All this is just very useful for making your skin as smooth as possible.
What about tanning results? The formula is a combination of dark bronzers that produce a dark tan almost instantly. And the fact that kendi oil is added means you get a gorgeous sun-kissed glow.
In my opinion, this is the only tanning lotion so far packed with so many skin-benefiting and healthy ingredients. It’s a bronzer that not only tans but also makes your skin look and feel more youthful and vibrant. Thanks to Vitamin E and shea butter!
5. Australian Gold Jwoww Black Bronzer Dark Tanning Lotion
Here’s another Australian Gold Tattoo Tanning Lotion. Once again, it’s a Jwoww Black Bronzer formula. But this one is armed with sunflower oil, kukui nut oil, and black currant oil. And the fragrance is reminiscent of delicious berries.
The texture is non-greasy while the scent is pleasantly light. The tanning results it gives are on the darker side of the spectrum. And this darker tan is something you can achieve faster than expected.
Every Jwoww creation by Australian Gold is powerful stuff. The tanning lotion does more than just perfectly tan a natural olive complexion. It allows you to GET OVER your plateau. The pleasantly neutral scent and streak-free color you achieve are qualities ideal for serious tanning enthusiasts.
6. Australian Gold SPF 50 Tattoo Stick
Two things are unique about the third Australian Gold mention in the reviews section. This formula comes in the form of a tattoo stick, unlike the previous two that were tanning lotions. And the second unique quality is that the current Australian Gold option contains SPF 50. Unfortunately, the others are not endowed with sun protection.
It’s the ultimate go-to solution for those looking to prevent tattoo ink discoloration. And the fact that the tattoo stick is so small means you can carry it wherever you go. But this also implies that you might need more than one stick in case you’ve got a tattoo sleeve.
Application is the easiest part due to the stick convenience. The strong yet not-so-overpowering scent is infused with coconuts. But what matters the most here is that the tattoo protector keeps your ink’s colors from fading. Even if you plan on being out in the sun all day long! Just keep re-applying with sunscreen and you, your skin, and your tattoo are all safe and set.
7. Australian Gold Jwoww One and Done Intensifier
Every list of the best tanning lotion 2019 and 2020 is incomplete without at least 3-4 Australian Gold tanners/intensifiers. Now let me present to you the best tanning intensifier by the same brand. The Jwoww One and Done Intensifier provides a lot of hydration. And that’s because the manufacturer understands how helpful hydration is when it comes to prolonging the lifespan of tattoos.
The Australian Gold intensifier under the spotlight gives your tan the freedom to get in touch with its darkest potential. And the results are streak-free and rich while also providing moisturizing properties. After all, it’s a vitamin-rich formula that performs the task of deeply moisturizing tattoos in order to retain their vibrancy.
What are these ingredients by the way? There’s Vitamin E, Vitamin A, shea butter, raspberry, and beeswax. Shea butter and Vitamin E keep you looking vibrant. And the remaining ingredients bring about tattoo restoration and rejuvenation.
Even heavily tattooed individuals swear by the tanning results. The intensifier is not packed with bronzers. Despite that, it lets you get darker only after a few sessions.
8. Supre Tattoo Dark XXX Black Bronzer
This Supre Tattoo Tanning Lotion is actually a dark black bronzer that adds instant color right after tanning. The formula even smells good, not like some other tanning lotions that give off such an unpleasant odor.
Even though there are bronzing agents, they don’t turn your skin orange or stain your hands. In fact, the tanning lotion leaves the skin feeling very soft.
You can have lots of colorful tattoos and still expect this tanning lotion to maintain all the vibrant colors. It does a swell of a job when it comes to protecting colorful ink very well. And the fact that you get the opportunity to become dark quickly makes the deal even more enticing. So no complaints in that regard!
9. Devoted Creations Tanlife Hydrating Tanning Butter
What strikes me as exceptional here is that the product comes in the form of hydrating tanning butter. It’s shea butter by the way and the hypoallergenic kind. So if you’re on the hunt for the best tanning lotion for tattoos on sensitive skin, let this be your savior.
The tanning lotion has the ability to soften and hydrate the most irritated, sensitive, and driest of skin. After all, rich and thick shea butter melts into your skin to provide all the nourishment it requires for tanning and otherwise.
The #TANLIFE formula by Devoted Creations delivers skin-firming and anti-aging benefits too. Thanks to the inclusion of Matrixyl Synthe 6 and RevitaFit Body Fit. Then there’s also AcquaCell that fades the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
Needless to say, it’s a tattoo fade protector as well that doesn’t disappoint you and your ink. The lotion goes on smoothly without giving rise to any skin reactions. And the fact that, even without a bronzer, the formula produces a gorgeous, natural-looking bronze tan sort of seals the deal for most tanning enthusiasts.
10. Devoted Creations Camo King Black Bronzing Lotion
Indoor tanning lotions and instant bronzers, more often than not, go hand in hand. So if you’re looking for the former but without the latter, then here’s the perfect tanning lotion for you. The Camo King by Devoted Creations also contains skin-firming and tattoo-protecting nutrients.
The low-maintenance bronzing agents in this formula make way for an ideal golden tan. Along with skin tightening and mattifying benefits as well as deep moisturization. So the tanning process doesn’t end up dehydrating or damaging your skin.
On top of that, the fragrance is very intoxicating. But, to be honest, this is secondary given just how well-equipped the tanning lotion is. It’s got powerful antioxidants for protecting your skin. So fighting dark spots and preventing tattoo fade is a given.
When the results are darker, deeper, and more natural-looking, it’s hard to not keep coming back for more. That’s the kind of experience you’re signing up for with Devoted Creations.
11. Devoted Creations Camo Queen Bronzing Lotion
The previous was Camo King, meaning for men, and the current option is Camo Queen for women. This bronzing lotion by Devoted Creations is designed for hydrating, priming, enhancing, mattifying, and camouflaging. Let me make it clear that both Camo King and Camo Queen are tattoo fade protectors.
Moreover, the bronzing formula is packed with Vitamin C and green coffee extract. These two ingredients in tanning lotions and body moisturizers perform the task of tightening and smoothing skin while fighting free radicals.
If you ask me, it’s the perfect tanning formulation for creating a bronzed tan. And what makes the experience even more likable is the wild berry dahlia fragrance. The Camo Queen is often a favorite choice among weekly tanners who desire more color.
The lotion glides on easily and doesn’t streak unless you decide to go heavy. You don’t even have to deal with orange hands at the end of every application. It has the power to give pasty skin that perfect light bronze with no orange effect to be found anywhere.
12. Supre Snooki Hot Skinny Sizzling Super Dark Maximizer
Ever used a good skin stimulator? A tanning maximizer creates a tingling sensation to take your tanning experience to the next level. But not all maximizers have the capacity to prep the skin for a rich, deep golden tan. Unless it’s the Supre Snooki formula.
The Super Dark Maximizer is equipped with a firm and fit complex for minimizing the visibility of cellulite. So results like smooth and soft skin are inevitable.
But maybe what you’re more concerned with here is tattoo protection. Am I right? In that case, the tanning lotion features ink color-protection technology. This shield combines algae, aloe, and essential minerals. And what these do is help in maintaining the vibrancy and color of your beautiful tattoos.
Furthermore, what also appeals to me is the use of zero gluten, parabens, and nuts. It’s a great choice for sensitive skin and those who always go for safer and healthier alternatives.
13. Supre Snooki Skinny Streak Free Bronzer Tanning Lotion
Not every tan looks flawless. I mean if you’re a weekly tanner, then you know what I mean. Sometimes the appearance of tan gets invaded by skin concerns like cellulite and loss of elasticity. In that case, why not use a tanning lotion that tans while also getting rid of such common issues!
This streak-free bronzer features a firm and fit complex for strengthening, tightening, and toning your skin. Now please understand that the tanning lotion doesn’t eliminate the loss of elasticity or skin sagging. But it certainly reduces such visible signs to a large extent.
The bronzer is equipped with a combination of ingredients for preventing the fading of tattoos as well. The lotion glides on very smoothly and gets soaked into the skin quickly. Once your tan starts to build, you notice and even begin to appreciate the excellent bronzing quality of the formula.
It’s no joke just how impressively well every Supre tanning lotion protects color tattoos. Without producing a fragrance that’s either too coconutty or perfumey.
14. Devoted Creations Somewhere on a Beach Instant Dark Tanning Lotion
The brand Devoted Creations has definitely enriched the market with some of the best indoor/outdoor tanning lotions. Personally, I love to choose tanning formulas that work for both tanning beds and sun exposure.
This is yet another dark tanning lotion but with sea buckthorn berry, walnut oil, and coconut oil. The first of its kind for sure! The tanning intensifiers are pretty powerful. And they blend well with the natural bronzers in here to give you a streak-free bronzed tan. Speaking of natural bronzers, the tanning lotion is DHA-free.
The part I love the most is how smooth it feels against the skin. No thickness or stickiness to deal with, unlike some other tanning lotions I’ve applied. And the difference in the color you get to see only in two uses.
The coconut oil in here is perfect for protecting your skin and tattoo from UV radiation. But if you’re thinking of buying this one, do it for the tropical tantini scent. You’re highly likely to apply the lotion even when not tanning just because of its delicious tropical fragrance.
15. European Gold Dark Star 100X Ultra Tattoo Enhancing Complex
There’s no doubt this bronzer is 100x more powerful than any on the list. Plus, it’s a tattoo enhancing complex that creates the darkest tan without fading the vivid colors of your beautiful tattoo or tattoos.
The special DeepWave bronzing technology makes the most impact, that’s for sure. Another benefit set in stone is the tattoo-enhancing capacity of the formula. And you know what, no animal testing is done. So you know that the product is cruelty-free, which opens the door to guilt-free tanning and tattoo care.
The tanning lotion smells pretty good and doesn’t leave any oily residue post-application. In my opinion, it’s the most reliable option if your goal is to make sure you achieve the darkest bronzed look without affecting your ink.
16. SunGodz Indoor Tanning Lotion with Bronzer
This one is for those who simply do not believe that you can get a dark tan extra-fast. The indoor tanning lotion is formulated with bronzing agents. It feels smooth on the skin and leaves your skin feeling super-soft after every application.
What’s guaranteed is safe, anti-fade tattoo protection. The lotion is scientifically created to tan indoors. And it helps with producing a longer-lasting color that doesn’t look orange at any point.
But just because it’s advertised as an indoor tanning lotion doesn’t mean you can’t use it at the beach. It’s a multipurpose formula that works in both scenarios.
It’s the perfectdark tan acceleratorof the highest quality. The faint fragrance and the fact that your skin doesn’t smell burnt post-tanning make a huge impact. Particularly if you’re into frequent tanning!
17. Gentlemen G Natural Bronzer Tanning Lotion
The last on the list is a natural, instant streak-free bronzer for men. That also provides tattoo fade protection. Firstly, it’s difficult to come across male-specific tanning lotions. And secondly, it’s even more impossible to find a good tanning lotion for men that also offers tattoo protection.
The fragrance here is reminiscent of geranium, cedarwood, orange, moss, and patchouli. So men who don’t appreciate the fruity scent of other tanning lotions might enjoy this one.
The bronzing agents are natural, not black. So you can get decent, natural-looking color. And since the formula’s got coconut milk, you don’t have to worry about skin moisturization. So you’re doing everything under your control to keep the process of tanning from damaging the health of your skin.
What Effect Does Tanning Have on Tattoos?
I’m sure your tattoo artist has told you to avoid stepping out in the sun until your tattoo wound heals. It takes a while for a new tattoo to fully heal and for the skin to feel normal again. In the meantime, what about tanning? I mean does that mean you can’t tan until your ink heals completely? Unfortunately, the answer is YES.
How about if you decide to use a tanning lotion? Even then, you have to wait for your tattooed area to heal. When you apply tanning lotion on an unhealed wound, it’s obviously going to cause a lot of irritation during tanning. Irrespective of whether this formula is fragrance-free or not!
It’s important that you wait for your tattoo to stop peeling before you even decide to use sunscreen on that ink. Now let me tell you why.
The thing about tanning is that it causes skin dehydration. The process involves darkening your skin complexion by using ultraviolet radiation, natural (sun exposure) or artificial (tanning bed).
Another very important piece of factual information is that tanning tends to slow down tattoo healing. When you tan, free radicals cause your skin cells to break down and also damage collagen. And you don’t want this to happen to your tattoo. Your ink might just start to fade or look dull.
In that case, even UV rays give rise to tattoo fading. So you have every reason in the book to stay away from the sun for at least a few weeks after getting a new tattoo.
Do Tanning Lotions Actually Work?
Are they real or are the manufacturers just trying to scam you? Now it’s undeniable that tanning lotions are not 100% effective since every skin type is different. However, the science involved behind tanning lotions is genuine.
The thing about tanning lotions is that they enhance UV radiation during controlled sessions of tanning. They prepare your skin to absorb the tanning pigments better.
Amino acids like L-tyrosine in tanning lotions boost melanin production, which makes the process of tanning even more effective.
Then there are other ingredients like minerals, vitamin, natural oils, etc. to moisturize and hydrate the skin. Dehydration causes your skin to peel. And when the skin peels, it creates an uneven complexion and also reduces the lifespan of your tan.
I have come across many tanning lotions with dihydroxyacetone. And I’ve made sure to stay away from them since DHA is a chemical that alters your skin cells. Even though FDA-approved, the safety factor of tanning lotions with dihydroxyacetone is debatable.
What Makes a Tanning Lotion Good for Tattoo Protection?
Tattoo care involves pampering your skin with minerals, vitamins, and moisturizing elements. So after reviewing so many tannings lotions for tattoos, here are some ingredients that nourish and brighten your ink during and after tanning…
Vitamin A and Vitamin C
Both vitamins come in the form of antioxidants in tanning lotions. What antioxidants do is destroy free radicals to protect your skin from cell damage. Keeping that in mind, even Vitamin E contains a lot of antioxidants required for indoor tanning sessions.
When it comes to tattoo protection, antioxidants repair damage often caused by both UVB and UVA rays.
So look for raspberries to make the most of Vitamin C and Vitamin A. And pomegranate for Vitamin E.
This particular ingredient offers antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is very popular used for tanning lotions, so they can heal, soften, and protect your skin.
In the case of tattoos, beeswax creates a protective barrier between UVA/UVB rays and your skin to activate healing after the tanning session.
No other ingredient in tanning lotions hydrates your skin as well as shea butter. It also helps with the healing part, which makes it suitable for tattoo care.
But you should know that not every tanning lotion with shea butter does the trick. Most formulas are scented, right? And what these fragrances do is chemically change the nature of shea butter, thus compromising its integrity.
So what you can do is get a separate bottle or container of the all-natural version of shea butter.
Plant extracts have exceptional hydrating, soothing, and antioxidant properties. No wonder so many products designed for skincare post-sun exposure are equipped with aloe vera as the main ingredient. It’s what heals and restores your skin. So there’s no reason why aloe vera won’t do the same for your tattoos.
The Best Tanning Lotion for Getting Dark Fast
It goes without saying that every skin tans differently. Your body chemistry is not the same as someone else’s, right? So how do you decide what to pick to get a darker tan in a shorter span of time? Do you go for a bronzer, tingler, or accelerator?
Let’s find out the differences between the three types of tanning lotions…
The majority of tanning bronzers contain DHA as the colorant. And as you already know, dihydroxyacetone is not considered to be 100% safe for your skin. The safer alternative is natural pigments.
Most men and women go for intended “pro” bronzers for a deeper tan. This is very useful for a lighter skin tone. As for the “con” version, it turns your skin orange and/or streaks.
These types of tanning lotions stimulate your skin by activating micro-circulation. They maximize pigment absorption while also firming and smoothing your skin along the way.
But tinglers are not such a great choice for those with sensitive skin. They cause an extremely unpleasant and sometimes even a painful sensation.
If accelerators are known for anything, it’s hydration. No other type of tanning lotion is as well-equipped as an accelerator to provide your skin and tattoo with so much hydration.
Plus, they don’t run the risk of making your skin look orange. Those with sensitive and fair skin usually go for accelerators.
What To Keep In Mind When Tanning With Tattoos
Being in two minds about tanning with a tattoo is only common. Both outdoor and indoor tanning seems risky when single or multiple tattoos are involved. Tanning, after all, does fade the appearance of ink, particularly if you’re a frequent or weekly tanner. That’s quite unfortunate news, isn’t it?
But the good part is that you can get tanning lotions that do a great job of protecting your tattoo from UV radiation. The first form of protection is to stay away from artificial UV rays (tanning beds) as much as you can. Especially if your tattoo is brand new!
Natural tanning is a better choice here. And that’s because tanning beds emit the concentrated version of UV rays, which don’t react well with tattoos. But if you still wish to tan, then do so once the inked area heals.
As for sun-tanning, it’s safe to step out in the sun after applying a good amount of sunscreen. This means choosing a tanning lotion with SPF or one that’s specifically designed to provide tattoo fade protection.
What about spray tanning with tattoos? No worries in that department either. It’s normal for any tattoo to become darker after the session. This darker look, more often than not, goes back to normal as soon as the spray tan effect starts to fade.
How Long to Wait for Tanning After Getting A Tattoo?
The answer to this question depends on person to person and tattoo to tattoo. Think of your brand new tattoo as an open, fresh wound.
Apply nothing but aftercare products such as water and the right kind of sunscreen. Speaking of sunscreen, do not expose the tattoo to direct or too much sunlight. Along the same lines, keep the inked area from coming in contact with water.
Generally speaking, indoor or outdoor tanning and using tanning lotions are not recommended when you have a new, unhealed tattoo. Wait for the final peel to take form, which happens in not less than 2-3 months, and then think about tanning.
But this doesn’t mean you can’t apply the tanning lotion on the rest of the body. Just make sure the inked areas are out of the tanning picture. This benefits not just your skin but also the lifespan of your expensive tattoo.
How to Protect Tattoos When Tanning Indoors and Outdoors?
Be it tanning beds or sun-tanning, UV rays fade the color and vibrancy of your tattoo. So here are a few steps you can take to ensure maximum anti-fade protection…
Like I told you before, don’t tan if your tattoo hasn’t healed completely. One of the most common mistakes people make is tanning when the tattoo wound is still fresh. Wait for 2-3 months for the area to fully heal before you expose it to UV light. Otherwise, expect your ink to start fading or looking dull. Even skin damage is a possibility.
You already know that UV rays speed up the process of tattoo fade. This means you have to protect your skin against these rays with the help of sunscreen. A protective barrier makes the world of a difference. Trust me. So don’t forget or neglect to apply lots of sunblock on your tattooed areas before you decide to tan, be it outdoors or indoors.
After tanning, keep your body moisturizer ready. A good moisturizer does the job of hydrating your skin. Tanning tends to dry out the skin, no doubt. So if you want your tattoo and skin to look and feel healthy, then don’t ditch the moisturizer post-tanning.
Q: Is Coconut Oil Safe for Tanning?
As far as safety is concerned, coconut oil provides only 20% protection against the UV rays of the sun. And this percentage is not enough to prevent sun damage or tattoo fading.
For complete protection, your skin and ink demand sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. And re-applying this sunscreen every two hours is also a must.
So don’t rely on just coconut oil. It’s not enough.
The Bottom Line
Needless to say, you have to protect your tattoo when tanning. In the case of both tanning beds and sun-tanning! At the same time, you should protect your skin from the harsh ingredients most tanning lotions are packed with.
In my post, I have reviewed the top 18 choices. The majority is specifically designed for tattoo care during tanning. The formulas keep your ink from fading or looking dull and dehydrated. Along with that, they nourish, hydrate, and moisturize your skin too.
Body moisturizers, ink protectors, and sunscreens are great products to prevent fading when all you can think of is relaxing on the beach.
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