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The world of indoor tanning lotions may seem confusing at first. With words like maximizer, hot action, and tingler being thrown around, it’s no wonder tanning newbies are quickly overwhelmed. 

Don’t worry if these terms are going over your head.  Here at Tan Unique we believe it’s important that you understand how the different types of tanning lotions work so that you can have the best tanning experience possible! To help get you up to speed, here is a quick guide to help you pick the right tanning lotion for your skin type. 

Choosing the right tanning lotion for your situation

It’s important to pick the right lotion for your skin type. Just like sunscreen or sunblock, indoor tanning lotions have different levels of SPF. Tanning lotion SPF levels range from 2-14, anything higher and it is considered a sunblock.  

Types of tanning lotions.

Accelerator and Maximizer 

Best for beginners looking to achieve a base tan quickly. These specialty lotions contain large amounts of moisturizers and little, if any, bronzers. The extra moisturizers help your skin tan a bit faster and retain color longer. Once you have achieved a base tan, you can move to a lotion with a higher bronzer content to achieve a deeper color.  

Bronzer Lotions 

This gets a bit confusing at times. Indoor tanning lotions and self-tanning products both use the term bronzer. Both products contain dihydroxyacetone (DHA). This chemical reacts with your skin cells to develop an artificial tan. The difference is that indoor tanning bronzing lotions are designed to be used with tanning beds. The best part about bronzing lotions is that they can get that sun-kissed look instantly! The DHA in the lotion will continue to react with your skin, developing a deeper color long after you are out of the tanning booth!

Tingle and Hot action 

This stuff is not for tanning rookies. These lotions have active ingredients like benzyl or methyl nicotinate. Basically, they work to increase blood flow to your skin. The extra oxygen your skin receives will improve your tanning results. When you use this type of lotion you will feel a mild tingling, reddening, and warming sensation- hence the name tingle and hot action. It’s always a good idea to spot test this type of lotion on a small area. The reaction may be a bit too much for tanners with delicate or highly sensitive skin. 

After Tanning Lotion

Never make the mistake of neglecting your skin after tanning. After tanning lotions are a great way to replenish moisture that is lost during the tanning process. If you're new to tanning be sure to choose a lotion that contains aloe. The aloe vera plant produces a gel-like substance that has natural cooling and healing properties. It is especially useful for treating minor burns, like sunburn

Added goodness!

Some lotions have few extra ingredients to help improve your tanning experience. Here is a short list of extras that you may find in our lotions. 

  • Hemp seed oil: Nourishes and moisturizes 
  • Body Blush: Adds a tingling effect for those with sensitive skin
  • Anti-aging: Contains extra vitamins to help protect against premature signs of aging
  • Shimmer: Reflective additive that gives your skin an extra glow
  • Caffeine: Added to reduce puffiness and energize the skin. Avoid if-if you are sensitive to caffeine or have eliminated it from your diet.  
  • Silicon: A mineral with moisturizing benefits also used to condition the skin.  
  • Beta-carotene: Also known as Vitamin A. Enhances pigment coloration in your skin. 
  • Vitamin E: Helps your skin feel softer and reduces the appearance of lines and wrinkles.

When in doubt just ask!

If one of your questions was not covered, don’t be afraid to simply ask. Our friendly staff will be more than delighted to help you with any of your tanning related questions. 

Do you have any tanning lotion tips? Share your wisdom or simply join the conversation on our Facebook or Google+ page. 

4516 Rogers Avenue Suite B1 & B2
Fort Smith, AR


Monday - Thursday: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm

Friday: 8:00 am - 7:00 pm

Saturday: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm

Sunday: CLOSED