Should You Shower After Tanning – Should You Shower Before Or After Tanning In A Tanning Bed, Etc?

Published Categorized as Beauty Tips

If you love that beautifully bronzed skin you get after tanning, you likely want to do everything you can to maintain your gorgeous tan and keep it from fading away.  However, you also know how hot and sticky you can get after tanning, whether outdoors or in a tanning bed.  So, should you shower after tanning?  This is certainly a good question and one that deserves some unpacking.  Continue reading to find out if it is ok to shower after tanning or how long to wait after tanning to shower.

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Should You Shower After Tanning?

Is it OK to shower after tanning?  No, you should avoid showering right after tanning

While showering doesn’t wash away a tan, like some may think, it can still have a negative impact on maintaining your fresh golden glow.

Is it bad to shower right after tanning with a bronzer?

If you use a bronzer during your tanning appointment, it is even more essential to wait to shower

Bronzers and other tanning bed lotions are designed to increase melanin production to result in darker tans.  Washing away these bronzers and lotions immediately after tanning can reduce their effectiveness, and your tan may not turn out as dark as it would otherwise.

Does taking a shower ruin your tan?

No, taking a shower won’t ruin your tan, it just may prevent it from getting as dark as it could

In some cases, showering right after tanning may be OK, such as when you tan in a tanning bed without using any bronzers or tanning lotions. 

However, to play it safe if you are wondering, “do you have to wait to shower after tanning,” stick with waiting and your tan will thank you.

How Long After Tanning Should You Wait to Shower?

The specifics of your tanning session will dictate how long you should wait to shower.

Indoor Tanning and Tanning Beds

How long should you wait to shower after tanning bed? 

The answer to when to shower after tanning bed varies based on whether you used bronzers or tanning oils.  If you did not use any bronzers to boost your tan, showering shortly after your tanning session is done should be fine. 

However, if you used bronzers, you don’t want to wash them off right away as they can continue working after your tanning bed session has finished.  So, the answer to, “Can I shower after tanning bed with bronzer” is to wait at least three or four hours before hopping in the shower.

Spray Tanning

How long should you wait to shower after a spray tan? 

Sunless tanning products also use bronzers to darken the color of your skin.  If you shower too soon after applying a spray tan, it can wash off the bronzer and prevent it from getting fully absorbed by the skin to darken the color.  Showering too soon can also result in an uneven tan. 

Wait at least three or four hours to shower after spray tanning to prevent this from happening.


Should you shower after tanning in the sun? The rules for this are similar to showering after a tanning bed

If you don’t use bronzers or tanning lotions, a shower after sun tanning should be fine.  If you do use any tanning lotions or bronzers, however, be sure to wait at least three to four hours to get the best tan possible. 

Also, to get the most out of your tanning session, choose the best time to tan, which is typically between 10 am and 4 pm.

Best Tan Boosting Bronzers

Looking for the best self-tanning products to boost your tan?  Try one of these top choices:

Millennium Tanning Products: Solid Black Ultra Advanced Silicone Bronzer

Millennium Tanning Products: Dark Tanning Lotion, 100x, 13.5 Fl Oz
Buy on Amazon

This advanced silicone bronzer is formulated to help individuals achieve the darkest tan possible.  It features special auto-darkening tan technology with a pleasant orchid blush fragrance.

Tan Asz Luau Island Black Bronzer Tanning Lotion

Tan Asz U Luau Advanced 200X Island Black Bronzer Tanning Lotion

The Marula Goddess Glow Serum from Luau is a paraben- and DHA-free black bronzer that can yield extra dark skin.  It features a fragrant awapuhi peach smoothie scent.

Australian Gold Dark Tanning Accelerator Lotion

Australian Gold Dark Tanning Accelerator Lotion, 8.5 Fluid Ounce
Buy on Amazon

This tanning lotion from Australian Gold is formulated with tea tree oil, vitamin A, and vitamin E to cleanse and moisturize the skin.  The coconut, orange, and vanilla-scented formula can help accelerate the tanning process for impressive results in a fraction of the time.

Fiesta Sun Coconut Dream Ultra Dark Tanning with Clear Bronzers

Fiesta Sun Coconut Dream Ultra Dark Tanning with Clear Bronzers, 8 oz.
Buy on Amazon

Fiesta Sun’s tanning lotion with clear bronzers can help darken and moisturize the skin.  In addition to the bronzers, aloe vera, shea butter, golden coconut oil, and monoi de Tahiti oil are included in the formula to nourish and moisturize skin.

Should You Shower Before or After Tanning

Should you shower before tanning then? Yes, showering before tanning is likely your best bet if you’re looking to reap the full rewards of your tanning session.

When you shower, it opens up your body’s pores and leaves you with clean skin that will be ready to accept a nice time.  Some tanning booth before and after items to keep in mind include applying a moisturizer and sunscreen after a shower and before tanning and then staying away from the shower for at least three or four hours after your tanning session has concluded. 

So, now if a friend asks you whether to shower before tanning or after, tanning bed or otherwise, you’ll be able to share why they’ll want to fit that shower in before they head to the tanning salon, poolside, or sand.

What Should You Not Do After Tanning?

Avoid doing the following things immediately after tanning (whether it’s using tanning beds or not):

  • Showering
  • Let your body get dehydrated (instead, drink plenty of water)
  • Over exert yourself
  • Wear socks or shoes
  • Wear tight-fitting clothing (wait at least 5 hours)
  • Shave (wait at least 12 hours)
  • Tan again right away (wait at least 24 hours)

Should You Shower Before Or After Tanning In A Tanning Bed or Outside – Golden Fun without Worry

There are definitely a lot of things to consider if you want to achieve beautiful bronze skin from tanning.  Hopefully this article helped answer your questions about cleansing your skin after getting your tan on. 

Remember, it is key to wait at least three or four hours to shower, especially if you used any bronzers or tanning lotions.

Want to learn more about tanning and tanning products?  Check out these posts on our blog:

By Ellis James

We design luxuriously glamorous bags, organizers and life essentials for you. At Ellis James Designs, it’s all about YOU. Your bag, Your way. Our exclusive designs are timeless, indulgent and most importantly inspired by you. What will be your first Ellis James Design?


  1. This is the best review of best indoor tanning lotion.Is that one update of 2021? Well explained

  2. So interesting information about tanning, thanks a lot for sharing!!



  3. This is very informative! I haven’t used any of these tanning products, but they sound interesting!

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