Get bronzed faster when you apply a tanning accelerator. They are a popular choice to prepare for summer vacation and events. Getting a good tan can take some time so why not speed things up? The problem is that a lot of tanning accelerators on the market don’t live up to the hype. Some are just plain ineffective.
Luckily we’ve put together a top 20 list of reputable products that will speed up your tan. Whether you need an intensifier for a sunbed or outside we have you covered in our reviews and buying guide.
- Best Tanning Accelerators Lotions
- 1. Maui Babe Tanning Salon Formula (Best for Sunbeds)
- 2. Ed Hardy Coconut Kisses Golden Tanning Lotion
- 3. Supre Smoke Black Bronzer
- 4. Australian Gold Cheeky Brown Accelerator
- 5. Millenium Tanning New Paint It Black Lotion
- 6. Hempz Hypoallergenic Dark Tan Maximizer
- 7. Devoted Creations #TANLIFE Hydrating Tanning Butter
- 8. Ed Hardy Peace & Harmony Tanning Intensifier Bronzing Lotion
- 9. Australian Gold Dark Tanning Lotion
- 10. Australian Gold On the Prowl Advanced Bronzer Tanning Bed Lotion
- 11. Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil Spray
- 12. Maui Babe Browning Lotion
- 13. Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil Original
- 14. Panama Jack Amplifier Oil
- 15. Australian Gold Bronzing Dry Oil Spray Intensifier
- 16. Australian Gold JWOWW One and Done Intensifier
- 17. Australian Gold Sinfully Black 15x Deep Dark Bronzing Tanning Lotion
- 18. Supre Snooki Ultra Dark Leg Bronzer W/ Hair Growth Inhibitors
- 19. Designer Skin Picture Perfect Facial Tanning Lotion (Best for Fair Skin)
- 20. New Sunshine Swedish Beauty Bronzer, Shea You Want Me
- 21. Millenium Tanning New Solid Black Bronzer Tanning Bed Lotion
- 22. Sun Bum Moisturizing Sunscreen Lotion
- 23. Maui Babe SPF 30 Sunscreen Lotion
- 24. Bain de Soleil Orange Gelee Sunscreen and Tanning Lotion, SPF 4
- How to use a tan accelerator
- Are tan accelerators safe?
- How to suntan as fast as possible
Best Tanning Accelerators Lotions
1. Maui Babe Tanning Salon Formula (Best for Sunbeds)
If you want a superior sunbed cream to go dark as fast as possible, apply the Maui Babe salon formula. It provides an instant bronze, then continues to deepen your color over time.
The label lists Kona coffee extract that has caffeine to increase blood flow and natural dye for your skin. There are Vitamins A, C, and E that are antioxidants which protect against signs of aging from sun damage. Finally, the lotion has Kukui nut oil, a time-honored Polynesian cure for sunburn.
2. Ed Hardy Coconut Kisses Golden Tanning Lotion
Ed Hardy’s Coconut Kisses Golden Tanning Lotion is a perennial favorite with a traditionally beachy coconut scent. It relies on Tyrosine and melanin to increase the amount of pigment in your skin. Plus, it disguises cellulite and protects tattoos from fading.
3. Supre Smoke Black Bronzer
If you have naturally dark skin or have already tanned a lot this year, try the Supre Smoke Black Bronzer to go deeper. It contains both tan maximizers and bronzers that darken your pigmentation to the limit. But there are also plenty of vitamins and moisturizers to protect your skin.
4. Australian Gold Cheeky Brown Accelerator
The Cheeky Brown Accelerator from Australian Gold is well-liked among tanning aficionados because it’s perfect for that first tanning session of the season. The formula tingles ever so slightly from the tea tree oil. And the bronzers make pale skin look sun-kissed right away.
5. Millenium Tanning New Paint It Black Lotion
Millenium Tanning figured out how to stop the odor that sometimes happens after a session. The Paint It Black lotion smells like clean cotton and flowers. Moreover, it has both instant bronzers like caramel and tan intensifiers like tyrosine and erythrulose. And the selection of natural ingredients like green tea prevents wrinkling and dryness.
6. Hempz Hypoallergenic Dark Tan Maximizer
If you tend to react badly to typical creams and lotions, try the hypoallergenic Dark Tan Maximizer from Hempz. Its main ingredients are hemp seed oil, mango seed butter, and oatmeal. Those three moisturize and soothe your skin.
This vegan tanning lotion lacks irritants like perfumes, dyes, and parabens. But it not only helps you tan more safely, but it also extends the lifetime of the bronze tone you achieve.
7. Devoted Creations #TANLIFE Hydrating Tanning Butter
The #TANLIFE butter from Devoted Creations isn’t greasy like some lotions. It absorbs quickly so that you’re ready to build your tan right away. Then while you soak up the rays, it keeps your tattoos safe from fading and nourishes your skin, too. But this is a tan accelerator without any bronzers, so what you see is what you get.
8. Ed Hardy Peace & Harmony Tanning Intensifier Bronzing Lotion
The skin-rejuvenating Peace & Harmony lotion from Ed Hardy contains the proprietary MelanoBronzer accelerators that begin darkening your color from the moment you put it on. Additionally, it protects against fine lines and age spots with wheat protein and green tea extracts.
9. Australian Gold Dark Tanning Lotion
Australian Gold Dark Tanning Lotion is a well known and extensively sold lotion in the tanning business. The new improved lotion is enriched with vitamin E and A, and native Australian oils. This exotic combination is an excellent tanning solution that allows the natural pigmentation in your skin to tan quickly.
Additionally, it also supplies vital nutrients to the skin for deep and dark colors. The Australian Gold Dark Tanning Lotion has a great scent as it is enriched with cocoa. This is a good lotion for all those who want a dark color.
10. Australian Gold On the Prowl Advanced Bronzer Tanning Bed Lotion
The On the Prowl lotion from Australian Gold conceals cellulite and freckles as it gives you an instant bronze. It contains erythrulose and DHA, two sunless tanning ingredients that darken your tone over the course of a few hours. They also help minimize redness that might result from tanning.
11. Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil Spray
If you have a base tan but want to go darker, try the deliciously fragrant option from Banana Boat. It’s reef safe so that it won’t harm coral when you go for a dip in the ocean. Plus, it has anti-aging ingredients like coconut, banana, and carrot extracts.
12. Maui Babe Browning Lotion
Maui Babe’s Browning Lotion also comes in another formula with the mineral oil you can’t enjoy in a tanning bed. Of course, it has the rest of the original dark bronzing components like Kona Coffee, Kukui nut oil, and Vitamins A, C, and E. And you can combine it with the Maui Babe sunscreen for more time in the sunshine.
13. Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil Original
Riding on the wave of reef-safe formulas is this option from Hawaiian Tropic. If you swim in natural bodies of water like oceans and rivers, it only makes sense to protect the natural beauty there.
This rich oil conditions your skin while you soak up the sunshine. It contains essential antioxidant vitamins E, C, and A plus aloe, cocoa seed butter, and fruit extracts. Moreover, the classic coconut scent prevents that common smell we talked about earlier.
14. Panama Jack Amplifier Oil
Panama Jack’s Amplifier Oil relies on aloe, nut and fruit extracts, and natural oils to soften and hydrate while you tan. Many people don’t realize how important it is to moisturize before your tan. That’s because the sun dehydrates the skin and dry skin won’t bronze well.
The Amplifier Oil is best for those with a dark complexion already, or those who don’t burn easily. It has a scrumptious tropical fragrance, too.
15. Australian Gold Bronzing Dry Oil Spray Intensifier
Fans of the Gold Bronzing Dry Oil from Australian Gold say that it leaves them feeling soft and smooth and looking sun-kissed. It isn’t greasy but sinks in fast. And it gently deepens color with black walnut shell extract, melanin, and tyrosine.
16. Australian Gold JWOWW One and Done Intensifier
The JWOWW One and Done lotion utilizes the amino acid tyrosine to increase melanin production and darken skin pigmentation. Users say they see a difference in color after only one session in the salon.
The formula has antioxidants and vitamins to protect tattoos from fading. Also, the lotion conditions dry skin with raspberry, beeswax, shea butter, and yogurt.
17. Australian Gold Sinfully Black 15x Deep Dark Bronzing Tanning Lotion
Australian Gold’s Sinfully Black Lotion disguises your fair skin with natural bronzers like caramel and walnut shell extract. Then it protects it against dehydration with hemp seed and Kukui Nut oils. Customers love it for more than the instant bronzers. They also say it helped them develop a base tan with minimal effort.
18. Supre Snooki Ultra Dark Leg Bronzer W/ Hair Growth Inhibitors
Why is it so hard to tan legs? And it’s worse if you need to remove hair, too. But the Ultra Dark Leg Bronzer from Supre Snooki slows down hair growth and adds automatic color to your skin. It contains both bronzers and skin-firming and moisturizing ingredients.
19. Designer Skin Picture Perfect Facial Tanning Lotion (Best for Fair Skin)
One of the most vital parts of your skin to protect while tanning is your face. It’s sensitive to UV damage and dehydration. That’s why the Designer Skin Picture Perfect Lotion is a smart choice. It avoids pore-clogging irritants like oils and fragrances in favor of moisteners and antioxidants. Plus, it has a little bronzer just like a BB cream.
20. New Sunshine Swedish Beauty Bronzer, Shea You Want Me
Get dark in a flash with the Shea You Want Me Bronzer. It contains natural henna and black walnut extract to deepen your color without harsh chemicals. And it’s hypoallergenic and free of artificial fragrances, so it’s gentle to the skin.
21. Millenium Tanning New Solid Black Bronzer Tanning Bed Lotion
The sunless tanning ingredients in the New Solid Black Bronzer lotion gives you a sun-kissed appearance that deepens over the first few hours you wear it. Furthermore, it soothes with chamomile and willow bark plus moisturizing hemp and sunflower oil.
22. Sun Bum Moisturizing Sunscreen Lotion
The Sum Bum sunscreen evens out the playing field by protecting you from UVA and UVB rays. This is the radiation that can age your skin rapidly and lead to cancer in the future.
Sun Bum’s lotion is water-resistant up to 80 minutes so that you can enjoy time in the pool or the sea. Plus, it’s free of gluten, parabens, and PABA and never tested on animals.
23. Maui Babe SPF 30 Sunscreen Lotion
Protect yourself with the SPF 30 sunscreen from Maui Babe while you use the Browning Lotion. The sunscreen has a nutty scent like roasted coffee and absorbs quickly.
24. Bain de Soleil Orange Gelee Sunscreen and Tanning Lotion, SPF 4
Customers who love the Gelee Sunscreen from Bain de Soleil use it for tanning without burning. It offers the same level of protection you’d expect from a natural base tan. And it moisturizes your skin with a delectable fragrance.
How to use a tan accelerator
Since each product is different, read the label to see how to use a tan accelerator. In general, you’ll see instructions about when to apply and re-apply the lotion. Plus, you’ll find out how long to wait after your session before you shower. This allows the ingredients in the accelerator to deepen your bronze before you wash them off your skin.
Are tan accelerators safe?
It’s smart to ask if tan accelerators are safe. There are a few things to consider. The first is whether tanning is a wise choice for your skin. Some very pale people burn and won’t tan. And tanning ups the risk of skin cancer, too.
Most indoor tanning lotions and some outdoor lotions contain ingredients that darken your skin quickly. These might be components like the amino acid L-Tyrosine which increases melanin production or bronzers like DHA. And you’ll also find plenty of ingredients like aloe and coconut oil plus anti-aging additives like Vitamin E.
Next, if you have allergies to nuts or other components in tanning lotions, choose the product with care. If there’s any doubt, test it on a small patch of skin and wait a day to see how you react.
Finally, it’s possible to tan while using sunscreen. Try a tanning accelerator with sunblock to protect your skin if necessary. Moreover, no matter where you tan, do it in brief sessions to gradually darken your skin without burning it.
How to suntan as fast as possible
Tanning accelerators are only a piece of the puzzle. Try these tips to suntan as fast as possible.
First, your natural skin pigmentation will affect how fast and how deeply you tan. While some people with very fair skin may never tan well, mostly everyone else can. While you may only achieve a golden suntan, some will become caramel and mocha goddesses.
If you visit a tanning salon, the staff should help you determine the best schedule to help you tan safely and successfully. They can also give you a realistic outlook on what to expect.
Otherwise, if you tan in the sun, start slowly to avoid burning. If you’re fair-skinned, try twenty minutes or less at a time, and avoid the noon to 2pm period in the beginning.
Tanning fair skin is tricky to do without burning. But if you take it slow and use the best products, you’re sure to get good results. Tan accelerators for fair skin often contain bronzers that offer instant color while your natural pigmentation catches up.
Next, exfoliate dead dry skin the day before you tan. And be sure to apply generous amounts of the tan accelerator (or sunscreen) that you’ve chosen.
After that, don’t shower for a few hours after a session or time out in the sun while wearing an accelerator. You want to give the formula time to darken your color. Also, don’t shave or exfoliate until the next day at the earliest.
Your best bet for retaining the color you achieved is to use moisturizing lotions or tan extenders. But every tan fades within two weeks without more time in the sun.
Finally, many tan accelerators contain bronzers which are sunless tanning products. In a pinch, they will grant you a golden color without a huge time investment.
We hope you found the perfect tan accelerator to deepen your bronze. Be sure to apply a tan extender to keep the pigmentation as long as possible. And take it easy as you suntan. If you’re in a hurry to look fantastic, try a lotion with bronzer to get instant color.