Skip to content

Sharing is caring!

Learn how to make a DIY tanning oil with bronzer so you can soak up the vitamin D, naturally! This recipe is simple, has only natural ingredients and smells amazing! Plus, as an added bonus, it will give your skin a subtle shimmery tan that looks amazing!

DIY Suntan Oil with bronzer

Summertime and the livin’ is easy…  That sums me up about now.  The older I get, the less I deal well with winter.  It’s like I’m part bear and need to hibernate.  School lets out, heat rushes in and I’m awake again.  One activity I love in the summer is soaking up the sun.  I’m absolutely not one of those women that slather SPF 478 all over and avoid the sun as if it could zap me dead on exposure.  

The sun gives life.  Anyone who deals with depression in the winter months knows this.  Vitamin D is vital for the body to not just thrive but to survive. It is a good idea to revisit the topic of vitamin D from the actual sun in order to obtain good health. It’s very appropriate that I post a homemade tanning oil recipe with bronzer for those of us that love to soak up the vitamin D!

I’ll admit I have a tendency to overdo my sun exposure.  I end up with dry, sun damaged skin so this year I’d like to put a few practices in place that will help support my skin.  My first plan of action is a DIY tanning oil with a built in bronzer!  It’s easy to make and will replenish what the summer heat will take away.

What is Tanning Oil?

Tanning oil is used to accelerate the tanning process. Using a tanning oil attracts more UV rays to your skin also allowing for an increase in UV absorption. People that use a tanning oil can achieve a deeper tan more quickly.

Tanning oil also gives the skin an oily sheen which can enhance it’s appearance.

Tanning oils are not recommended for fair skin since it can accelerate a sun burn if you are prone to that. 

Why Make DIY Tanning Oil?

Most regular tanning oils contain ingredients. Let’s take Hawaiian Tropic Tanning Oil for example. Below is the mile long list of ingredients:

Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Paraffinum Liquidum, Diisopropyl Adipate, Isopropyl Myristate, Silica, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Octocrylene, Benzophenone-3, Cocos Nucifera Oil, Parfum, Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter, Amyl Acetate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, PEG-8 Dimethicone, Carica Papaya Fruit Extract, Colocasia Antiquorum Root Extract, Mangifera Indica Fruit Extract, Passiflora Incarnata Fruit Extract, Plumeria Acutifolia Flower Extract, Psidium Guajava Fruit Extract, Octyldodecanol, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Propoxyhydroxypropyl Thiosulfate Silica, Benzyl Alcohol

Need I go any further? LOL. That’s a lot and not all of them are harmful but paraffinum liquidum is another name for mineral oil and it’s the second ingredients meaning, it’s quite prominent in the formulation. A couple other harmful ingredients are benzophenone-3 (dangerous type of SPF to be avoided) and parfum (hormone disrupting fragrance). 

Mineral oil is derived from petroleum and is known for clogging pores. Plus, it is not considered environmentally friendly. Mineral oil, the key ingredient in baby oil and most tanning oils is about the last thing I want to slather on my skin especially when laying in the sun. 

Making a DIY body oil is one of the easiest natural products you can make. It’s as simple as mixing oils together! Natural plant based carrier oils can combine to make an extremely nourishing oil your skin will appreciate when in the bright sun! I personally think that the best tanning oils are DIYs. 

Related Post: Super Easy DIY Tanning Oil

My Opinion on SPF: 

I’d like to first address SPF.  I do not have a DIY SPF recipe on this blog.  Unless you are wanting to make an SPF with a physical blocker like zinc oxide, we have no way to measure SPF. I believe it’s best if you leave your sun protection to the professionals.  

Getting a sunburn is never good for the skin and I personally don’t want you coming after me if you do while using my DIY!!  I’ll list several sun care companies I love that are natural, affordable and effective at the bottom of this post.  

Using Oils for Gorgeous Skin!

While I am using oils that have an SPF, there is much controversy over whether these oils actually provide any protection at all.  However, I added them because they are great for other reasons and if they add some protection then that’s just a bonus!  

I will say, oils with a high antioxidant profile tend to protect the skin from the inside out.  I’ve had several customers of my Etsy shop tell me they survived the summer with no burns and no sun damage and the only difference is their skin care routine.  

My Anti Wrinkle Eye Stick is HIGH in antioxidants and I believe is the most effective in protecting the skin from the sun.  To be clear, I don’t mean wearing it in the sun.  I mean using it at least once a day as part of your beauty routine.

So why not make an oil that is antioxidant rich that you can slather on while laying in the sun?  The heat will help the oil penetrate deeply, helping the skin not only soak in the vitamin D but also combat sun damage and moisture loss.  Lets face it, the sun giveth and it taketh away!  

And while you’re out soaking up the sun, don’t forget your hair! Try out this DIY conditioning balm I love to put in my hair, tie it up in a bun and let the sun heat it up and replenish my hair!

Related Post: Skin Essentials for Summer + How to Protect Your Skin From the Inside Out

DIY Sun Tan Oil with Bronzer

Benefits of Using a DIY Tanning Oil​

  • By making your own tanning oil, you can avoid all the nasty ingredients that tend to be in commercial tanning oils. 
  • No matter how healthy soaking up vitamin D can be for your skin, a little sun can go a long way and using natural oils can help replenish the skin, leaving it not only tan but supple and soft. 
  • Applying a tanning oil will accelerate the tanning process as well as give you a more even, dark tan. 

Natural Oils and SPF:

This diy recipe contains a mixture of olive oil, raspberry seed oil, carrot seed oil and lavender oil all which contain a natural SPF of their own. However, I added in avocado oil and hemp seed oil for added moisture. A few comparable substitutes for these 2 oils are sesame oil, grapeseed oil, wheat germ oil, walnut oil, jojoba oil, sunflower oil and hazelnut oil. 

What You’ll Need to Make DIY Tanning Oil with Bronzer 

Hands holding a glass pump of DIY tanning oil with bronzer.

DIY Tanning Oil with Bronzer

Yield: 16 ounces
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Learn how to make a DIY tanning oil with bronzer so you can soak up the vitamin D, naturally! This recipe is simple, has only natural ingredients and smells amazing! Plus, as an added bonus, it will give your skin a subtle shimmery tan that looks amazing!


  • 4 tbsp. Raspberry Leaf Oil
  • 2 tbsp. Vitamin E Skin Oil 
  • 2 tbsp. Hemp Seed Oil 
  • 4 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil 
  • 4 tbsp. Avocado Oil 
  • 5 drops Carrot Seed Essential Oil 
  • 25 drops Lavender Essential Oil 
  • 1-2 tsp. Mica Bronzing Powder 


  • 16 ounce glass pump bottle
  • Funnel


  1. Using a funnel, add all ingredients into a 16 ounce glass pump bottle.
  2. Shake thoroughly.


  • I used 1 tsp. of mica powder and there was a nice subtle bronze to my skin.  If you want more of a shimmer, use 2 teaspoons.

Did you make this product?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Facebook

SPF Products I Approve Of:

You might be wondering about my SPF routine.  I don’t use SPF when I’m laying in the sun because SPF blocks vitamin D.  If I’m going to be out for more then and hour or so, I will wear sunblock.  Honestly, 20 minutes of SPF free sun time a day is sufficient for optimal vitamin D levels.  

I’ve used this DIY tanning oil several times and haven’t burned and am well on my way to a golden tan!  Plus, this recipe is so nourishing that my skin didn’t need an oil or lotion after a shower.  If you’re like me and enjoy laying in the sun, this DIY is a must to keep your vitamin D levels up and your skin supported.  

Related Post: DIY Sunburn Relief Spray Recipe

Gone are the days of using baby oil as a tanning oil! Using my suggested tanning oil ingredients, you are able to get a good tan when managing your sun exposure by limiting your time in the high UV radiation hours of the day to a bare minimum. 

Since I haven’t used this DIY tanning oil for more than a few times, I can’t speak to whether it fades or prevents sun spots but that is my hope.  I will be posting my new after sun oil DIY in the next few posts as well as a few skin protecting essentials to further help support the skin and prevent sun damage and burning!  

Since there is a bronzer in this tanning oil, it would work well as an everyday body moisturizer that gives a hint of tan!  

xx, Jenni

DISCLAIMERI did not formulate this DIY to prevent burning.  While the oils I chose have an SPF, I don’t recommend using this oil if you burn easily or plan to stay in the sun for prolonged amounts of time.  


DIY Suntan Oil with bronzer

Sharing is caring!

Jennifer Phillips

Jennifer Phillips

Jennifer Phillips worked as a licensed aesthetician for over 8 years before creating the green beauty blog, Jenni Raincloud and her natural skin care line, J. Raincloud Organics. Jennifer has been blogging full time for 9 years and loves to gain and share knowledge on how to achieve beautiful skin the natural way.

6 thoughts on “DIY Tanning Oil with Bronzer”

  1. Hi Jenni, I can’t wait to try your suntan oil with bronzer recipe. Can I use Rasberry Seed Oil in place of the Rasberry Leaf Oil. It’s what I have on hand. Thank you.

  2. Hello, Jenni! I’d like to give this one a try, but need a replacement for the Hemp Oil. What would you suggest? Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to Instructions