How To Lay In a Tanning Bed?

Most of the beginners get confused about how to lay in a tanning bed. If you aren’t prepared beforehand, the process can be a little confusing.

Most people don’t care about the perfect tanning bed postures. They just reach the salon, get tanning done, and leave.

In truth, a tanning bed can be a serious thing since it’s operated by the harmful UV ray and comes in direct contact with our skin.

So, getting into the perfect tanning bed position not only gives you perfect tanning but also is healthy for your skin.

Also, you should have complete ideas on how to protect your eyes and other body parts that don’t require tanning.

If you are one of those confused first-timers then you have reached the perfect place to get rid of all the doubts.

Read the whole article to know about the perfect tanning bed position and get some extra tanning bed tips for beginners.

Why you need proper tanning bed positions?

You probably must have guessed by now that it’s quite an important thing to lay in a good position in a tanning bed.

Let me discuss the facts more thoroughly so that you don’t have any doubts left.

A tanning bed can be the best way of getting the perfect golden glowing tan. But you have to use it properly.

You should be in the correct position before exposing your skin to the UV ray.

Now, an incorrect laying position will not only cause an uneven tan but also might damage your skin.

Not to mention raccoon eyes. So, you better be prepared before going into the tanning bed.

How to lay in a tanning bed?

In this article, I am going to talk about the positions of laying in a tan bed step by step.

Also, will share some laying positions you can try. So, stick until the end of the article to be fully prepared before entering the tanning session.

Step 1: Know about the tanning process

While it will be a good thing if you have already studied the tanning process before going to your appointment, it won’t hurt to ask one of the staff members to discuss the tanning procedure once again.

Also, tanning beds have some switches to turn on and off the fan and lights. You should know how to operate them before going inside.

Step 2: Keep an eye on the Timer

Most tanning beds have a timer so that you don’t forget to turn in time. Also, in some salons, stuff members come to remind you of the time.

But you can’t just depend on them to tell you everything.

So, it’s better if you locate the timer yourself and keep an eye on it. You can also find a tanning bedtime chart right outside to keep track of time.

Step 3: Get rid of the pillow

Most salons provide you a pillow so that you can lay down comfortably on the tanning bed. However, it’s recommended to get rid of that pillow.

When you keep your head placed on the pillow for 20 minutes, it’s quite obvious that your neck will bend causing the tan to miss the spot.

As a result, you might get white stains on your neck.

So, get rid of that pillow. It’s just a matter of 20 minutes!

Step 4: Pick your legs up

While lying on the tanning bed, you should pick your leg up to prevent butt moons. White streaks on the creases of your thighs and butts are called butt moons.

Butt moons make it hard from the UV ray to reach through and they occur when your butt’s skin overlap your thigh to form a crease.

If you pick your leg up during the tanning session, your skin will stretch and there will be no butt moon.

Step 5: Use the Goggles

You should be careful about your eyes during the tanning session. It’s recommended that you wear goggles all the time inside.

Put on your goggles after you have applied the indoor tanning bed lotion.

In that way, you can keep your eyes safe from the harmful UV radiation. Now, you might go with closing your eyes.

But in truth, UV rays can damage both your internal and external eye structures. So, you better wear goggles all the time.

Also, if you want to avoid raccoon eyes, make sure you adjust your goggles from time to time so that they don’t stay in a position all the time.

Step 6: Stretch Out

Stretching out is recommended during a tanning session s that you can get an even tan.

Keeping your arm next to your body for a long time might cause you an uneven tan.

Stretching makes then UV ray absorption easier for your skin.

Also, in that way, the UV ray will penetrate in less time than usual. It’s kind of like, the more space you give, the tan gets darker and darker.

So, you should switch positions once in a while and stretch your arms above your heads so that your legs and arms are exposed properly to the UV ray.

Step 7: Flip on Your Stomach

Turning to lay on your stomach is very important if you want to get an even tan on all of your skin.

Now, you might feel a little uncomfortable to lie on your stomach, but laying on your back all the time will not give you the tan you want.

To make it a little comfortable, you can spread your arms on the side by keeping your palms down while lying on your stomach.

If it helps, you can bend your arms to support your chin over the hands and expose the sides of your arms to the UV light.

Step 8: Switch Sides

Don’t forget to tan your sides while worrying about your hands and legs.

You should flip to your sides once in a while so that they get tanned too. You should spend equal time on both sides.

Staying on one side for a long time might cause uneven tan.

Step 9: Tan your neck

I mentioned earlier that keeping the pillow can prevent your neck from getting tanning.

It’s better if you got rid of it earlier. If not, then remember to expose your neck to the UV ray to get it tanned before the tanning session finishes.

Step 10: Moisturize

Since it uses UV rays, a tanning bed can change your skin’s condition by soaking all the moisture.

So, you better remember to apply a moisturizing lotion after the tanning session.

A moisturizing lotion helps your skin to get back to the condition it was.

It’s recommended that you use a lotion that contains additional vitamins and other natural ingredients like coconut oil.

Read also:


Ensuring that different parts of your body get an even tan

When you spend money on something, it’s obvious that you want to get the best results.

While being in a tanning session, getting a perfectly even tan is everything you can hope for.

Uneven tans are a very common problem of the tanning beds.

To avoid an uneven tan, you have to know how to ensure that all the body parts get an even tan.

Don’t you worry? I am going to discuss what you can do to get an even tan on all parts.


The face is the last thing you should worry about. Generally, you start tanning by laying on your back.

So, that pretty much ensures your face getting a proper tan. However, you should not forget about wearing goggles.

Also, adjust the goggles after a while to avoid raccoon eyes.

Neck & shoulders

If you are a first-timer then getting your neck and shoulders properly tanned can be a little tricky.

Women’s hair tends to get on the neck hindering the neck from getting a proper tan.

So, to avoid that, you should tie your hair in a bun before staring the session.

To make sure that your shoulders are getting tanned, lie on your stomach, and get your chin up by using your hands.

Stomach and chest

These are some of the easiest parts to apply tanning bed lotion as well as getting tanned.

All you have to do is lie flat on your back and wait!


Being your largest part of the body, tanning the back isn’t a great problem.

Just lie flat on your stomach and expose your back to the UV ray.

Legs & thighs

Getting your legs and thighs tanned properly needs you to follow some steps.

Laying flat on your back all the time won’t help your thighs to get the tan. So, if you turn and toss a bit to ensure that.

You should raise your legs and bend your knees slightly making sure a small part of your heel is touching the bed while you are lying on your back.

When you are on your stomach, make sure that the legs and thighs don’t touch the tanning bed.


Getting the buttocks perfectly tanned might be the most complicated part of a tanning process.

You should already know about the butt moons that can give a serious uneven tan.

Also, getting butt circles are quite common when you are lying on your back for too long.

To avoid all that you should flip and lie flat on your stomach after a while and flex your hips.


To get your groin properly tanned, you will have to lay flat on your back while spreading your legs apart.

That should be approximately an acute angle between your legs.

Now, many people get afraid of getting their groin tanned. It’s absolutely okay and harmless to tan your groin.

However, you can avoid it if you don’t want to get your groin tanned.


You should place your feet upright while letting only the hind part of your feet touch the tanning bed.

Also, make sure you stretch and strain your feet occasionally.

Different Tanning bed laying positions

Tanning beds are one of the easiest ways of getting the perfect glowing tan.

But you can get an uneven and unexpected tan because of not following the proper tanning bed positions.

In this article, I am going to discuss different tanning bed laying positions that you can try.

On Your Back

Let’s start by talking about the easiest position. Laying on your back is not only the easiest but also the most comfortable position.

However, you should follow some rules in that position so that every part of your body gets properly tanned.

  • You should lie down being relaxed and as flat as possible. It will prevent your back from getting creases.
  • Bend your legs into an arch while raising your knees slightly higher than your body.
  • You should try to rest your feet on your heels exposing the soles of your feet. In this way, you can also avoid looking ugly if you are wearing a slip-on.
  • Fold your arms and keep them behind your head or by the body so that your neck feels comfortable. However, make sure that your hands don’t touch your body. In this way, you can assure that side of the body is not untanned due to your arms shadow.
  • Switch positions once in a while to either side in order to prevent butt moons.

On your stomach

Though most people feel really uncomfortable in that position, it’s important for you to lay on your stomach to get a proper tan all over your body. There are some steps you should follow to make it more comfortable.

  • Use your hands to make a pillow to rest your chin over it. In this way, your neck will be free to get a proper tan including wrists and other parts of the hand.
  • Raise your feet while ensuring that your toes maintain contact with the bed. This step helps your feet and knee to get a proper tan.
  • Avoid moving a lot. That can make you exhausted adding to the tiredness you already have from laying on your stomach.

How to lay when tanning outdoors?

Experts suggest tanning outside because that’s proven healthier for your skin.

So, you can certainly tan outside if you prefer doing that.

However, you have to follow some tips to get proper outdoor tanning.

Make sure to check the Sunburn map to get an idea of the UV index.

Also, you should check the area and environment before exposing your skin to the UV totally.

Always apply sunscreen before tanning outside. Also, don’t forget the tanning lotion and bronzers.

Try to keep your lips wet by applying lip balm.

There are no real rules to follow while you are trying to have tanning outside.

Just lay on a flat surface like you would do in a tanning bed and turn over once in a while to get an even tanning.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I lay on my stomach in a tanning bed?

Of course, you can! In fact, that’s a general rule of laying in a tanning bed. You should follow the rules mentioned above to lay comfortably on your stomach while getting a tan.

How to avoid bunny tail in a tanning bed?

A bunny tail occurs when your body weight cuts off the blood supply while you are laying on your back. To avoid a bunny tail in a tanning bed, you should flip over or rotate occasionally in order to get an even tan.

What to do after a tanning bed?

The first thing to do is to moisturize your skin. I mentioned earlier that the tanning bed can change your skin’s condition and make it super dry.

SO, you should try to moisturize and hydrate your skin as soon as possible after the tanning bed. You can use tanning lotion to darken your skin. But don’t get into the shower before 4-8 hours of waiting.

How long does it take to get a tan from a tanning bed?

If you are a first-timer, it might take regular tanning sessions to get the perfect tan you want from a tanning bed. Once you are regular, you will see the results coming in less than 48 hours.

Final Thoughts

Most first-timers complain about not getting a proper tan, uneven tan, butt moons, or raccoon eyes.

But believe me, you can avoid all of them by getting into proper tanning bed positions.

The primary purpose of this article was to help you guys with the answer on how to lay in a tanning bed.

If you read the whole article and follow it accordingly, I am pretty sure you won’t have any more confusion and can get a perfect tan.

Make sure to apply a good quality tanning lotion and prepare your skin before going inside the tanning bed.

I hope this article has helped you with everything you needed to know. Don’t forget to share your thoughts in the comment section!


Think of Well-Kept Beauty as your personal beauty professional – advising you on whether to switch up your beauty routine, re-up on a must-have product you are running low on, and even pinging you the best deals on the market. Now, let's take your beauty routine to the next level and keep your products doing what they promised!

Recent Posts