Shower After Tanning? 5 Must-Know Tips!

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Should I shower after tanning? Many people can’t give a confident and certain answer when asked. Taking a shower right after your tanning session and giving your skin a break in between is drastically different. Whether you get a nice tan or not, depends on this decision. Let’s see what the experts think!

Shower After Tanning? 5 Must-Know Tips!

Why Do You Need Shower After Tanning?

First of all, all experts would recommend you to take a shower after finishing a tanning session, but not right away. How long your skin gets to rest will have a big impact on the result.

No matter what method of tanning you choose, it will leave your skin dry and dehydrated. Besides drinking water and applying a moisturizer, a shower will solve this problem for you.

There are differences among the methods, and we will walk you through each and every solution below!

When Should You Shower After Getting Tans?

So yes, you definitely need to shower, yet there should be a wait of 4 – 8 hours before you get that relaxing session. While rinsing your body, you will most likely see brown water rushing down the drain. It is only the remnants of tanning lotions being washed off, thus no need to worry about it!

During the wait, you also have to keep all sorts of moisture away, including moisturizers and even sweats. Absolutely no wetness on your skin – it is the first rule to comply if you still want to develop a nice skin tone. Give the tanning lotions enough time to interact with the skin instead of trying to remove them!

Indoor Tanning & Tanning Beds

If you didn’t use tanning oils or bronzers, the wait can be shorter, because there is nothing to wash off. However, they are essential for tanning beds and indoor tanning in general. These cosmetics are available in a variety thus the waiting time might also change depending on the product you choose.

In general, the lotions used for enhancing your tans will continue doing their job for the next 3 – 4 hours after you finish the session. It is all our loss if we take an early shower and waste the chemicals.

Spray Tanning

As mentioned above, you need to give the chemicals some time to absorb and darken the skin tone as you wish. Different areas on your body have different sensitivity, who can guarantee your whole body will tan evenly? Unlike a chemical-free tanning process, the wait is essential here.


The same goes for sunbathing, how long you should wait after sunbathing depends on whether you have used a tanning product or not. If you use no accelerator, only sunscreen, you can get that shower right away.

Furthermore, if you choose to sunbathe for a healthy tan, the morning will be the best time. Aside from giving your skin the desired shade, the sun can also lighten the mood and prepare yourself for an energetic day ahead.


Although it is another form of sunless tanning, self-tanner is drastically different from tanning beds. They don’t need anything other than a few hours on your body, no UV light is required. Therefore, rushing to shower after tanning will leave uneven pigments that we should avoid at all costs.

5 Things to Keep in Mind

Shower After Tanning? 5 Must-Know Tips!

No bath

We are having a discussion about a shower after tanning because taking a bath is simply a big NO. The reason is simple: submerging yourself in water will have the natural tans and the lotions worn off. You would want to rinse yourself clean quickly, not spending another hour soaked in water.

No soap

You usually use soap to get rid of oils and grease, but it does the same thing to your tanning oils. If you rub soap over your newly tanned skin, it will wash away the oils before your skin receives any effect.

Pat Yourself Dry

We can’t stress it enough: your skin will always be dehydrated after tanning, hence it is extremely sensitive. If you pat your body dry by rubbing the towel aggressively, it will only irritate the dermis and take away the moisturizer.


As soon as you finish showering, apply a moisturizer right away and prevent the skin from turning dry. We would always the best products you can afford when it comes to moisturizers. Besides protecting your skin, they will also enhance the tans for you.

Tips for Skincare After Tanning

Regardless of the tanning methods, there are many tips you can utilize for a better result in only a couple of weeks:

  • If you love beauty services such as manicuring, waxing, or massaging, have the sessions before you tan.
  • For waxing, it should be done a day in advance. It can either remain on your skin or render it super sensitive.
  • Exfoliation and shaving are great for tanning if you do it at least 4 hours before the tanning session so your pores can return to their original state. The exfoliator also should be oil-free.
  • Remove all cosmetics including makeups and lotions prior to tanning.
  • Preserving the tans by avoiding steam rooms, baths, saunas, and anything that is overly wet on your skin.
  • Moisturizer at least twice a day after getting tans, preferably in the morning and at night.
  • Only exfoliate again when you are ready to bid the tans goodbye.


Should you shower before tanning?

Shower before tanning is very important if you want to maximize the results of your tanning session. A nice shower, especially with warm water, will open up the pores and prepare them for the upcoming stimulation.

An important notice is to apply moisturizer and sunscreen after this prep shower so your skin won’t feel dry during the wait of 4 hours later.

Can I use shower oil after tanning?

The shower oil is an easy step you can do during showering! It can cleanse and keep your skin hydrated, enhancing and deepening the tans. You won’t have a hard time searching for the perfect product from the prosperous market out there!

Why is there brown water when I shower?

It looks eerie, but we can assure you there is no need to worry about it! It is only the bronze pigment being rinsed off your body, and getting rid of the coloration will free your pores from possible clogs. You are doing your skin a favor removing the gross brown, not the other way around.

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A shower after tanning is absolutely alright if you wait for a couple of hours! It helps soothing the tension your skin had to endure and washing the sicky chemicals off, but you would want to give the bronzers and the lotions enough time to take effect! Feel free to leave any questions you have here!

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