How to Tan for Men – The Complete Tanning for Men Guide

man tanning

While tanning has been popular among women for a long time, men are gradually opening up to the idea of flaunting a tanned look. Everyone from bodybuilders to beach lovers, men are opting for tanning methods to achieve the bronzed look.

Even though tanning is emerging as a trend among men these days, there is still a lack of proper knowledge and information. Some men are confused about the methods, costs, and precautions, often leading to undesirable results.

Do you wonder how tanning for men works? Are you searching for ways to get smooth and even tan? Read on to find your complete guide to tanning for men. 

How Can Men Get a Tan?

There are numerous options available for men when it comes to tanning, much like women. Given your preferences and the desired results, you can choose a suitable tanning method among the plenty.

Here are a few ways:

Outdoor Tanning:

The easiest and the most convenient way to achieve a tan is by sitting in direct sunlight. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight can trigger the cells known as melanocytes to produce melanin in your skin which make it darker. Since men love spending time outdoors, it proves to be a great way to tan.

While it is an effective method, it comes with a series of risks. Overexposure to sunlight can lead to adverse effects on your skin, causing signs of premature aging like wrinkles, crow feet, and even spots. 

You must prepare your skin by moisturizing and applying sunscreen with SPF to protect your skin from sunburns. Another tanning tip for guys is to keep changing your position after a few minutes to get an even tan and avoid burning your skin. 

Spray Tanning:

One of the most common methods of tanning is spray tan. It is easy, affordable, and can give desirable results in no time. You can schedule your spray tan appointment at a reputed tanning salon to get a solution sprayed on your body.

The spray tan solution contains an active ingredient called DHA that interacts with the dead skin cells present in the outer layer of your skin to give you a darker skin tone. Do not wash the tan off early and leave it for around 4 hours to ensure it gets enough time to react with your skin.

You can then wash it off and get a smooth tanned look. Ideally, spray tan for guys can last for 7-10 days, depending on your skin type and the shade you choose. You can prolong the time duration of how long the tan lasts by moisturizing your skin after the tan and avoiding exfoliating or shaving.   

Make sure you only wear a loose shirt and shorts in a dark color and flip-flops to the tanning session to avoid any crease lines. 

Tanning Bed:

Another great way to achieve an indoor tan is tanning beds. You can lie for around 10-20 minutes in a tanning bed and get excellent results in no time. Tanning beds give you complete control over how much time you want to spend in it to achieve the desired skin shade.

The bed has tanning bulbs that can offer similar effects as sunlight. A majority of men are now opting for tanning beds since they offer a more natural tan without stepping out in the sun’s harmful radiation.

You must exfoliate and shave your skin 24 hours prior to your appointment at the tanning salon. It can help prep your skin for the treatment and get better results. Using a tanning lotion and tan extended might also help you get a darker and smoother tan. 


Lastly, and also the most convenient method of tanning is using a self-tanner. There are various forms of self-tanners, like creams, lotions, gels, and even mousse.

You can evenly apply the self-tanner all over your skin using a tanning mitt. We recommend our very special tanning mitt here – blackout tanning mitt. In case you don’t have a mitt, you can use other alternatives (how to apply fake tan without a mitt) such as a sock or glove.    

If you’re someone who isn’t keen on going out for a male tanning appointment, you can use self-tanners to achieve the look at home. In case you’re using a self-tanner for the first time, do a patch test on a small part of your arm to know whether it suits your skin or not.

We Recommend: St. Tropez Classic Bronzing Mousse

Related Questions:

Is It Normal for Guys to Go Tanning?

Yes, it is quite common for guys to go tanning, contrary to popular belief. Plenty of men are opting for various tanning treatments to get a smooth and evenly tanned body. Young men are experimenting more with self-tanning products to look good. 

Does Tanning Increase Testosterone?

When your skin gets exposed to sunlight, it produces plenty of essential nutrients. Vitamin D is among the many such nutrients.  According to BBC News, the more the level of Vitamin D in a man, the higher the level of testosterone.

For men, getting a natural tan by lounging in the sun or even the tanning bed can help increase Vitamin D and also boost their testosterone and libido

Should Guys Get Spray Tans?

Men are more at risk of skin cancer, which is why lounging in the sun to develop a dark tan might not be ideal for them. Spray tan is emerging as a safer and popular alternative than tanning in the sun.

You can prep your skin well by exfoliating, shaving, and moisturizing for your spray tan appointment. It will ensure you get a smooth, even, and dark tan that you can flaunt.  

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