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Do Indoor Tanning Lotions Work Outside?

author image Andrea Cespedes
Andrea Cespedes is a professionally trained chef who has focused studies in nutrition. With more than 20 years of experience in the fitness industry, she coaches cycling and running and teaches Pilates and yoga. She is an American Council on Exercise-certified personal trainer, RYT-200 and has degrees from Princeton and Columbia University.
Do Indoor Tanning Lotions Work Outside?
A couple is lying on the beach in the sun. Photo Credit: Getty Images/Photodisc/Getty Images

Indoor tanning lotions provide a safe way to get that desired summertime glow. The lotions contain an ingredient called DHA, or dihydroxyacetone, which reacts with your skin and triggers a change in skin color. This reaction occurs whether you are indoors or outdoors.

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Precautions for Outdoor Use

Although using a sunless tanner will bronze your skin when you apply it outside, it won't protect you from the sun's UV rays unless it also contains sunscreen. Most indoor tanning lotions with sunscreen are not water or sweat resistant, so you need to apply water-resistant sunscreen after the indoor lotion has fully dried.

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