Best Rated Organic Sunless Tanners

Wow! Trying to find the best rated organic sunless tanners is like pulling teeth. It is not an easy task! Many of the products out there claim to be organic but are they really? From what I’ve found, no. Sure, they might contain a few organic products in them but that does that necessarily deserve the title “organic” or “natural”? On top of that, trying to find self tanners that actually work and have a decent number of reviews, well, I think you see where I’m going with this.

The good news is that I’ve managed to find a self tanner that is USDA approved and received decent reviews. This means that all ingredients used are guaranteed to be organically produced. The bad news is that I’ve only found one product that meets both criteria. So to be completely honest, I don’t think it’s possible to find many true organic self tanners that actually work. With that being said, I’ve listed the top 5 self tanners that have decent number of reviews and, in my opinion, come the closest to being organic – some more than others. If you want to learn more about organic self tanners, this tanning website offers some great information.

True Natural Self Tanner: Anti-Aging Face & Body, Light-Medium Tan 3.4 fl.oz.

True Natural Self Tanner is the only organic product that I found to be a USDA certified biobased self tanner. It currently holds a 3.9 out of 5 stars rating. This lotion is certified vegan with zero chemicals and no harmful ingredients included. True Natural produces a natural looking, medium color tan in under 3 hours that can be used on your body and face. It does not have an overwhelming scent like most self tanners tend to have but instead smells of fresh lavender. This product aims for a streak free color with a smooth and creamy texture. Some of the ingredients infused within this tanner are organic green tea extract, organic jojoba oil, and organic aloe vera to keep your skin protected and feel feeling soft.

When using this lotion I would recommend exfoliating your skin before application. A lot of the reviews say that it looks better and lasts much longer if you do this beforehand. As far as organic self tanners go, I would say that this one fits in the truest sense of the word. :)

Best Organic Flawless Self Tanner – Tone Enhancer Face and Body Overnight Self Tanner

My Skins Friend Anti-Aging Organic Sunless Tanner is another great self tanner that includes all natural, certified organic ingredients. This product currently holds a 4.3 out of 5 stars rating. This tanner comes out as a fine, clear mist that quickly dries and leaves no funky scent behind. Within a few hours you will see a tan starting to develop and your skin will continue to darken up to 48 hours after the initial application. It gives you a nice, streak free, natural looking color that can last up to a week. Another great thing that I love about this self tanner is that is contains no chemicals that will stain clothing or bedding when dry. That’s a big deal to me! As an added bonus, you will also receive the My Skins Friend Sunless Tanning Secrets Guide when you order the lotion.

I am happy to say that I have read a lot of great reviews about this product. I was even happier to see a lot of praise about this self tanner from people who have fair skin. So if you’re feeling this stuff then check it out!

Caribbean Solutions Beach Colors Natural Self Tanner, 6 Ounce

Caribbean Solutions Beach Colors Natural Self Tanner is a popular product on the market currently holding a 4.4 out of 5 stars rating. This self tanner uses a natural DHA vegetable substitute that is extracted from sugar cane to energize the melanin in your skin and give you a natural, tanned appearance. It contains organic aloe leaf, mandarin oil, and shea butter to keep your skin soft and moisturized while giving you color. This product contains no chemicals or parabens and is all natural as well as biodegradable. Many self tanners are avoided when it comes to using them on your face but have no fear when it comes to this stuff. Many people have commented on how natural it looks on their face while not causing any nasty breakouts or rashes. You can rest easy if you still want to hit the beach for a while and soak up some rays. This self tanner is safe to use in the sun and can even help you in preparation to achieve a natural base tan!

Although this self tanner states that it contains no scent, I have found that many of the reviews are a hit or miss when it comes to the smell. This is lotion is also very cost friendly at under $10 a bottle. For the most part though, I’m impressed and would definitely recommend it!

Thermalabs Natural Self Tanner – The Golden Standard

Thermalabs Natural Self Tanner – The Golden Standard aims at creating the most natural self tanner while keeping it as organic as possible with many natural ingredients such as organic avocado oil, organic olive oil, organic shea butter, organic cocoa seed butter, and many more. It currently holds a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating. This self tanner has tons of reviews to check out and holds the highest rating out of the top 5 spots. There are many great perks to this lotion. The best thing I have found is that it works fantastically on all types of skin tones and creates a deep, streak free tan that looks completely natural on you. Many customers have also raved about how well it works at tanning your legs! This is a common problem a lot of people know only too well whether it be sunless tanning or not. To get the most out of this sunless tanner it is recommended to exfoliate your skin beforehand and apply this lotion with a good tanning mitt. Put it on before bedtime and let it work its magic overnight! It quickly absorbs to your skin and does not leave stains on your bed sheets which is a major plus.

Out of all of the organic sunless tanners, this one is probably my favorite when it comes to the quality of the tan combined with the amount of natural ingredients.

Lavera Self Tanning Lotion

Last but not least we have Lavera Self Tanning Lotion. This currently holds a 4.6 out of 5 stars rating with many awards to show for such as Gorgeously Green Best Sunless Tan 2008, Miss Eco Glam Award 2010 Best Fake Tan, and more. This product is vegan, cruelty free, gluten free, and infused with certified natural ingredients such as organic aloe vera leaf juice, organic sunflower seed oil, organic shea butter, organic calendula flower extract and more. Just apply this lotion and have a bronzed, sun kissed tone in 3 hours time. Many people have commented that there is a certain scent to this lotion but it is not overwhelming and it doesn’t smell bad. The color is supposed to last up to a week but depending on your daily activity, you may need to apply twice a week to keep your desired results.

When it comes to organic self tanners, this product is one of the best out there. As far as natural ingredients and good tanning results go, I would highly recommend Lavera Self Tanning Lotion!

Best Sunless Tanning Solutions

Sunless tanning products are the fastest and as far as we know, safest way to go. Just put some on and in a short time you have a nice tan that could take weeks to achieve in the sun. Not to mention sunless tanners vastly reduce the chances of wrinkles, premature aging, skin cancer and age spots due to the sun. Another great thing is that you can have a tan all year round and beat those winter blues!

Finding a good self tanning lotion can be difficult though as many have been known to give you that orange look, create streaks, stain clothing, melt off, smell, etc.  There are tons of different products out on the market but who wants to spend money on something unless they know it works? Not me! So hopefully this guide will help you find a good sunless tanner that meets your expectations! This guide contains the best sunless tanning solutions with at least 4 out of 5 stars as well as plenty of reviews to read.

Reviews of the Top 5 Sunless Tanners

#1 Bestseller 75% Sale! 20 Tan Towels [Self Tanner Sunless Tanning Half Body Application Towelettes] Premium Wipes in a Super-saver Box. 100% Money Back Guarantee.

Thermalabs Self Tanning Towelettes GLOW2GO received a 4.7 out of 5 stars rating. This is a brand new product that just made it’s debut in 2015 and I’ve got to say, I’m impressed. Many products have been out on the market for some time and to already be on the top this quickly says a lot. This product comes with 20 towelettes that are guaranteed to be streak free and waterproof. It is made with 70% organic body cream and works for all skin types no matter how fair or dark your complexion may be. Once you apply this self tanner it takes about 4 hours for a natural looking tan to appear. It also has a nice storage system so you can pull one towelette out at a time with a ‘press to open’ area so you don’t have to open the entire box.

I also like the fact that you can easily transport these. Unlike lotions that occasionally leak or crack, this product is completely sealed in a packet. The reviews on this product are fantastic and there are plenty of before and after photos to prove these towelettes work. So go and check it out! :)

America’s Best Organic Self Tanner with Free Guide! Indoor Tanning Lotion for Body and and Face [Overnight Sunless Tanning] Streak Free and Waterproof

Another product made by the same company as the previous review is Thermalabs Natural Self Tanner The Golden Standard. Seriously, this company must know what they are doing to hold the top two rated self tanners. This lotion received a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating. This moisturizing, organic self tanner gives you a streak free, natural looking tan within 4 hours that is also waterproof. As an added bonus you will receive a free guide – “Self Tan Secrets”. I’ll take it!

Just like their previous product, there are many outstanding reviews and a few before and after photos to look at. The only real difference between this and the towelettes are that most people prefer to apply this before bed time and let it work its magic over night. Of course there’s always personal preference between the lotion and towelettes as well!

Darksyde Ultra Bronze Self Tanning Lotion 8.5oz

Darksyde Ultra Bronze Self Tanning Lotion is gaining popularity especially among those with fairer skin. So if you have a light complexion then you’ll definitely want to give this a try. This product received a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating. This lotion is sulfate free and infused with botanical oils as well as aloe vera to keep your skin soft and hydrated. It is great for achieving a perfect, streak free tan as the bronzed tint allows you to see where it has already been applied. Upon initial application, the lotion appears to have a green color but turns into a deep, natural looking tan within 1-4 hours. The fragrance is light and does not give off that generic and offensive self tanner smell.

I also love the fact that the lotion is quickly absorbed into your skin and dries very fast so you don’t have to worry about it ruining your clothes. If any does get on your clothing, all you have to do is wash it and it comes right out! Sounds like a keeper to me!

Tanwise Dark Bronzing Sunless Mousse,7 fl. oz.

Tanwise Dark Bronzing Sunless Mousse is another great self tanning product that received a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating. This product is a mousse and has a different texture than the standard sunless tanning lotions. It has a watery consistency and doesn’t give off a nasty odor which is nice. If too much is applied it can feel very sticky so a little goes a long way with this stuff. This lotion is very dark in color right out of the bottle but don’t panic. It develops into a really nice deep, rich, and natural looking tan which lasts anywhere from 3-7 days. It is also easy to avoid streaking as you can clearly see where you have applied the mousse. When you apply this product I would definitely recommend using gloves so you don’t stain your hands.

I will say that this product received a lot of reviews regarding how beautiful the color was. :)

Fake Bake Flawless, 6-Ounce

Fake Bake Flawless is one of the most popular self tanners on the market. This product has a 4.4 out of 5 stars rating with almost 2,000 reviews. I’d say that’s pretty darn good. This liquid sunless tanner is not meant to be sprayed directly on the skin but instead uses a professional mitt for application. This mitt is great for even application, buffing the product in, and preventing streaks. I would recommend washing the mitt after every application as it helps keep it soft and in great shape. Fake Bake Flawless is also another one that is very popular among people with lighter complexions. It is also one of the best smelling self tanners out there, hands down. It dries quickly after putting it on and gives you a great, natural looking tan.

Additionally, the price is already low for a self tanner but getting the mitt is an added bonus. So if you think you’d like this stuff then check it out! :)

Types of Sunless Tanners and How They Work

There are different types of sunless tanners such as sprays, lotions, towelettes, mousses, gels, foams, etc. All of them essentially work the same way and it really depends on your personal preference. The majority of these products contain DHA or dihydroxyacetone which is not to be confused with a dye. This causes a chemical with the amino acids on the surface of your skin to replicate a tan. This process is different from UV exposure in that it works similar to the browning of food such as fruits. The effects of self tanners do not last very long and fade in about a week or so. Continuous applications are required to maintain a tanned appearance. If you would like to read a more in depth explanation, you can check that out here.

 Are Sunless Tanners Safe?

This question is really up to debate so it’s hard to say. There hasn’t been many studies regarding the effects of DHA and other products included in sunless tanners. Concerning risks include inhalation of DHA, effects on amino acids, effects on nucleic acids, free radicals, mutations and more. Although there is not a whole lot known, precautions should always be taken. Here is a recommended list of safety tips when applying sunless tanners.

  • It is highly recommended to avoid sunlight for at least 24 hours after applying a self tanner. Your skin is highly susceptible to UV exposure within this time frame. Studies have shown that high amounts of free radicals have formed on skin using self tanners that contain DHA and similar products.
  • Prolonged sun exposure should be avoided when using self tanners. These products do not protect the skin from UV radiation whatsoever. Some self tanners do contain sunscreen but this shortly wears off and applying additional is recommended.
  • Using an antioxidant cream might be a good idea when going outside as this could lessen radical production.
  • Be aware that some self tanners contain fragrances that could cause adverse reactions to your skin.
  • When applying self tanners be sure to protect your eyes and be careful not to inhale or ingest the product. The effects of this are not well known and should be avoided.

If you want to read some more information on self tanning and safety, you can find it here.

Best Indoor Tanning Lotions

If you are new to indoor tanning or currently going to an indoor tanning salon I would definitely invest in a good indoor tanning lotion. These greatly enhance your tanning efforts as well as moisturize your skin. Here is a review of the best lotions out there. This guide is based on lotions with the best reviews of at least 4.0 and up with plenty of reviews to read (at least 100 and up). I only included lotions that met this guideline since I wouldn’t want to drop money on a product unless I know it works!

Reviews of the Top 5 Indoor Tanning Lotions

Designer Skin New Adore Black Label Bronzer Lotion, 13.5 Fluid Ounce

The Designer Skin New Adore Black Label Bronzer Lotion aims at breaking through the maximum tanning potential barrier. Holding a 4.6 out of 5 star rating, this lotion is on top when it comes to indoor tanning. It is infused with dopa, a melanin precursor, which triggers the natural tanning process in skin while keeping the skin hydrated with a silicone cream. This tanning lotion also has a powerful bronzing agent called melanin bronzer which is a natural form to give you an instant tan while also promoting a dark, rich color. It smells of sweet vanilla musk and leaves your skin feeling very soft and luxurious.

Additionally, this product does not include DHA (dihydroxyacetone) which is mainly found in sunless tanners. So if you are having problems tanning, feel like you’ve reached a color barrier, or are just looking for a deep rich tan, you should check this lotion out.

Australian Gold Accelerator Lotion 8.5 Oz

Australian Gold Accelerator Lotion is one of the most popular tanning lotions on the market. This product currently holds a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating. If you are looking to quickly reach a base tan then this is the perfect lotion for you. This tanning lotion is a good blend of Vitamins E and A which aids in protecting cellular damage caused by ultraviolet exposure. Infused with natural oils from plants native to Australia, this lotion is great for all skin types looking for a golden tan. You can also use this product indoors and outdoors.

Another attractive thing about this tanning lotion is the price. Let’s be honest, the tanning market is not always known for the most cost effective products. This one stands out however because it is affordable and more importantly, it works!

Designer Skin Phoenician, 13.5-Ounce Bottle

Designer Skin Phoenician is known for being one of the most moisturizing, skin friendly tanning lotions out there. This product currently holds a 4.4 out of 5 stars rating. The silicone emulsion leaves your skin feeling hydrated, smooth, and soft. Another thing that makes this lotion stand out is that there is no bronzing agents or DHA included yet it produces a deep, natural looking color with mega melamax optimizing complex. Also included is immortelle extract which helps to renew your skin cells while fighting off free radicals and and stimulating collagen. This tanning lotion can be for indoor and outdoor use.

This tanning lotion does not leave your skin feeling oily or greasy like most products do and smells like exotic fresh fig. Additionally, this product works great for fairer skinned people as well! Check it out! :)

Designer Skin Obsidian 30x Bronzing Matrix Tanning Lotion, 13.5-Ounce

Designer Skin Obsidian 30x Bronzing Matrix Tanning Lotion is fantastic for creating a long lasting golden color. It currently holds a 4.4 out of 5 stars rating. This indoor tanning product is unique in that it not a tingle lotion but is it thermogenic. It creates a warming sensation throughout your body with just enough heat to keep you comfortable and relaxed. It is also great for breaking through tanning plateau’s with the enriched 30x long wear bronzing matrix while keeping your skin hydrated at the same time. You can use this product indoors and outdoors.

One of my favorite things about this lotion is that it helps to revitalize your skin with volcanic minerals. This product also has anti-aging properties that rejuvenate and keep your skin smooth. All in all, I’d say it’s a keeper!

Australian Gold Cheeky Brown Tanning Lotion Australian Gold Dark Tanning Accelerator Plus Bronze 8.5 oz

Australian Gold Cheeky Brown Tanning Lotion/ Australian Gold Dark Tanning Accelerator Plus Bronze (what a name!) is amazing and also one of my personal favorites! This is another that is known for being one of the best tanning products on the market. It currently holds a 4.3 out of 5 stars rating and is also the most affordable at under $10! This lotion is infused with native Australian oils along with vitamins A and E. The best thing about this product is that it’s great for all skin types, especially fair skinned people like myself. The bronzing agent creates a beautiful, natural color with no uneven tanning.

I loved this tanning lotion and highly recommend it. If you have fair skin like I do then this lotion would be a perfect fit. With the help of Australian Gold, you will have a base tan in no time! :)

Types of Indoor Tanning Lotions

There are 3 basic types of indoor tanning lotions: Bronzer, Tingle, and Accelerator. It’s hard to say which is the best because it really depends on your preference. These lotions can also be combined to include 2 types in a single bottle. There are also differing ingredients per bottle such as anti-aging, hemp, caffeine, etc. which also depends on what you’re looking for.  So let’s define the 3 basic types.

Accelerator aka Maximizer

Accelerator lotions are great for adding that extra boost to quickly achieve a base tan. Most people begin with accelerators and gradually move up. They also help to create deep, long lasting tans while keeping your skin fresh and moisturized. Essentially every tanning lotion is an accelerator except beginner accelerator lotions normally do not contain tinglers though some do contain bronzers. If you are new to indoor tanning or have fair skin, I would recommend starting off with an accelerator. Australian Gold Accelerator Lotion 8.5 Oz is a great example of an accelerator lotion to start off with.


Bronzers can be included in any type of tanning lotion and are currently the most popular type on the market. As soon as you put on an indoor tanning lotion that contains a bronzer, you will immediately notice a difference. These are meant to give you an instant glow that can last a few days up to a week or so after your tanning session. Some tanning salons recommend waiting a couple of hours after your tanning session to shower in order for the bronzer to reach it’s full potential. Be advised that it can stain materials very easily and be sure to wash your hands immediately after application. Also be sure to apply it as evenly as possible to avoid uneven tanning. Millenium Tanning New Solid Black Bronzer Tanning Bed Lotion, 100x, 13.5-Ounce is a great example of a bronzer lotion.


Tingle lotions are considered to be the advanced tanning lotions and only recommended once you have acquired a decent tan. If you have never tried a tingle lotion before then I would advise testing it out a small portion of skin first. These bad boys can cause quite a disturbance especially if you have fair or sensitive skin. It gives you a tingling feeling on your skin, hence the name, and causes reddening. Tingle lotions cause blood flow and oxygenation in the skin which improves tanning results. These lotions definitely work the best at giving you a deep and long lasting tan but are not for the faint of heart. The good news is that there are different tingle levels to chose from so you can decide the intensity. New Jwoww (MAD HOT TINGLE BRONZER) Tanning Lotion 2013 release – 13.5 Fl Oz is a great example of a tingle lotion.

Tips For Indoor Tanning

To be honest, I haven’t done much indoor tanning lately. It’s been a few years since I’ve even stepped into a tanning salon. However, with that being said, I used to do indoor tanning all the time. There are a lot of perks to it such as being able to go at anytime – rain or shine, quicker results, no tan lines (if you go nude), etc. So why did I stop going? Well there are a few reasons and a major one is because of the price. Let’s face it, the sun is free and I’m all about saving money! Another major reason was because tanning beds did not do much for me color wise. For some reason my skin tends to tan much better with the sun. I know this is not the case for some people though. I had a friend in high school who had the hardest time tanning outdoors yet just a few times in a tanning bed and BAM – tanned as a mofo. I don’t get it!

Now I know I do not use tanning beds but a lot of people out there do so here is some useful tanning tips that will hopefully help you to achieve your tanning goals.

tips for indoor tanning

Tips For Indoor Tanning – Safety First Please!

  • Always wear eye goggles! This is extremely important and I can’t stress this enough. The exposure can cause severe damage to your eyes! Don’t worry, you won’t end up with raccoon eyes. Most tanning salons offer them for free but if not you can pick up a pair of indoor tanning goggle here.
  • Start off slowly and gradually build your tan. Burning won’t do you any good and will just damage your skin, increasing your chances of Cancer. It’s difficult to say where you should start off time wise considering there are many different skin types. I usually started off at no more than 5-6 minutes and slowly build on that. I would recommend asking a staff member if you are unsure.
  • Be aware that certain medications cause sensitivity to the sun. Always check the labels on medications before tanning and if you are unsure, consult your physician.
  • If you are pregnant I would advise against tanning. There is no conclusive evidence that proves tanning is dangerous for your pregnancy but overheating is can be. You can find out more information here.
  • Make sure the tanning bed is sterilized before you use it. If you go to a tanning salon then the employees should have done this for you. However, one time I used a tanning bed and the employee did not do a good job of cleaning it. The person before me had apparently used a strong tingling accelerator and I burned the crap out of my back and behind my legs. Some tanning salons will leave a bottle of disinfectant in the room for you and if I were you, I would take advantage of that. If not, I would ask an employee to use some. I wouldn’t worry about offending anyone. It is your health at risk and you don’t know for sure if the bed was cleaned, how well it was cleaned, or anything about the person who used the bed before you.
  • You might want to put on some lip balm with SPF before tanning. Lips are unable to tan but they can sure burn!

tips for indoor tanning

Tips For Indoor Tanning – Get Your Tan On!

  • Before going tanning it is recommended that you prepare your skin by exfoliating. This helps to get rid of dead cells and build-up on your skin.
  • To maximize your tanning efforts you should invest in a good indoor tanning lotion. This helps to enhance the tanning process as well as hydrate your skin. One thing you should know is indoor tanning lotion is only meant to be used in tanning beds and not outside unless it specifies otherwise. The same principle applies to outdoor tanning lotions. These are two different lotions and you can read more about them here. There are however some lotions that you can use for both indoor and outdoor tanning.
  • Know which bed you’d like to use as different beds offer different things. Most tanning salons offer tanning beds in levels 1-4. Lower levels like 1-2 allow you to tan for a longer period of time (usually 20 minutes) and they are the cheapest options. These beds have lower pressure bulbs that emit higher amounts of UVB rays (short wave) vs. UVA rays (long wave). The UVB rays are responsible for reddening and burning our skin while the UVA rays are the dominant rays responsible for a deeper, long lasting tan. The opposite applies for levels 3-4 beds and up. These beds allow you to tan much faster in a shorter amount of time and are more expensive. There are also standing beds as opposed to regular beds in which you lay down in. I usually started off in a lower level bed until I reached a base tan before switching over to the higher level beds. It’s really up to you and your preference but if you are unsure, ask a an employee.
  • Give your skin a little bit of a break in between tanning sessions. The minimum time is 24 hours but tanning professionals recommend 48 hours. This gives your skin some type to recover, reduces burning, and yields better, long lasting results.
  • Always remember to moisturize before and after you’ve finished tanning. Hydrated skin tans much better than flaky, dry skin. This is important in keeping and maintaining a long lasting tan!
  • If you have any tattoos make sure you cover them up as tanning can cause colors to fade.
  • If you want to see just how well your tan is developing, you can use a tanning sticker. Most tanning salons offer these for free! Just place it anywhere on your body before tanning and peel it off afterwards to see results.

If you have anymore useful tanning bed tips just leave a comment below! New information is always appreciated! :)