Sun Tattoos and Tanning Stickers

Shell Legs
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When you go for a tan, whether it be at home with your favorite tanning lotion, from a spray tan at the salon, the tanning bed, or out in the glorious sunlight, you aim to have the most even tan possible.

Tan lines are a big no. 

But, what if you can create a design out of those tan lines? No, I’m not talking about crisscrossing the tan lines. What I am referring to is a sun tattoo! These can be made through a variety of methods, but the most common are Tanning Stickers.

You can get some really cool looks by getting creative using stickers throughout your tanning process.


What Are Sun Tattoos?

Tanning Stickers and Sun Tattoos

Using tanning stickers is a fun way to add a cute little mark or design on your body while getting a tan. Since your tan fades, especially fast when you make use of tanning lotions, you can take that opportunity to create a temporary design on your body. 

Tanning stickers, like the name implies, are stickers that you can place on any part of your body during tanning to create a design. It covers a specific part of your skin to prevent it from being tanned by the lotion or spray you are going to use. It is similar to a decal and it preserves the natural color of your skin before the tanning products are applied. 

Aside from using a tanning sticker as a decorative tool, many use it functionally as a way to compare their skin before and after tanning. This serves as a way to determine if the tanning agents work and if you developed a tan. 

Also, it can help identify how dark you want to go. Some people may not be contented with their tan because it isn’t noticeable for them until they see what’s under the sticker. The tanning sticker helps them clearly see the contrast and can help determine if they need to tan further or not. 

How To Use A Tanning Sticker

Using a tanning sticker is very easy and simple to do and it involves just a few steps that are as follows:

  1. Prep your skin for tanning. This would usually involve exfoliating the skin in order to remove all the dead skin cells at the topmost layer. Through this step, your tan will last longer and so will the cute mark you created.
  2. Select where to place the tanning sticker. You are likely to want to show off your sticker design and that’s the reason why you need to find an area that’s usually exposed. It can be an arm, neck, nape, ankles or legs. If you love wearing crop tops or if you plan to go to the beach, you can also place them in your waist, back, thigh, or other areas that won’t get covered due to your bikini. However, some people use tanning stickers, not for design but for functionality. In this case, you can select an area in the body that is less likely for you to expose. 
  3. Get your tan. Whether you choose tanning in the sun, spray tan, tanning beds (which you shouldn’t), or a self-tanner like Mystic Tan, the process is essentially the same. Make sure that the sticker stays in place throughout your application. Don’t move it or rub too vigorously because you might accidentally remove the stickers, although manufacturers make them sticky enough to withstand the tanning session. 
  4. Remove the tanning sticker only after you’ve developed a tan. The sticker will be sticking on your skin for several hours. If you want to make sure the design is well made, don’t move the area a lot to prevent possible dislodging of the sticker. It will only be removed once your tan has developed to prevent the skin underneath from reacting with the surrounding tanning agents.

Where To Buy Tanning Bed Stickers?

Now that you know about tanning stickers and sun tattoos, it’s no surprise that you would want to try them! But where to get them?

If you want to go with a natural look, like the shells shown above, you can just pick them up on the beach and use them. You can also simply draw designs on the body using sunscreen, and use that to create your impression. But this creates sun protection issues, so be careful.

If you simply want to go with stickers, Amazon has lots of them. They come in different shapes and sizes. Some even come in bulk as some tanning salons also use them for their clients. Here are a few.

Heart Tanning Stickers

Heart Tanning Stickers

Have a look at the 3-Way Heart Tanning Stickers. These come in a roll of 50 stickers. What’s great about it is that you can use the small heart, the big heart or the heart outline for your tanning design. 

3-Way Heart Tanning Stickers 50 Count
3-Way Heart Tanning Stickers 50 Count
Makes 3 Heart stickers. Large, small or the outline.; This is for a 50 Count; Great for tanning with.

Lips Tanning Stickers

Kissmark Tanning Stickers

Not really fond of hearts? Maybe these Kissmark Tanning Stickers are better for you. These are self-adhesive stickers so you just peel and place them. Each roll comes with 1000 pieces so it’ll be a very long time before you run out. 

Sunmns Lips Stickers, Perforated Self Adhesive Kisses Stickers, Total 1000 Pieces Per Roll, Rose Red
Sunmns Lips Stickers, Perforated Self Adhesive Kisses Stickers, Total 1000 Pieces Per Roll, Rose Red
Package included: a roll of lip stickers, 1000 piece stickers each roll
$8.99 Amazon Prime

Variety Pack

Tanning Bed Stickers Variety Pack

If hearts and kiss marks still don’t tickle your fancy and you want more choices then the Variety Pack should do it for you. This variety pack comes with 100 stickers in 10 different designs. Now you can use different tanning stickers for every tanning session you have. 

Variety Pack of 100 Stickers by Nova
Variety Pack of 100 Stickers by Nova
Tanning Stickers; 10 each of 10 assorted stickers; Craft stickers; Scrap booking stickers

Tanning Sticker Alternatives

In case you don’t have tanning stickers on hand and your due for a tan, you might wonder if a regular sticker or temporary tattoo will do the trick. Well, it depends on the sticker or temp tattoo you use.

Tanning stickers really stick to the skin so that it can prevent tanning agents from getting to the covered part. Regular stickers and temporary tattoos aren’t really designed for this situation, and may not leave a great looking impression on the body.

Usually, regular stickers will fall off the skin naturally and aren’t as sticky. If you are sure that the stickers will stay on the skin until after the tan has developed, then you can go ahead and use the sticker of your choice. 

Temporary Tattoos often use clear fillers (negative space) to hold the tattoo shape together. Depending on the design of the tattoo, these areas may not tan. Consequently, you may get a weird-looking impression from a temporary tattoo.

One tip to help make sure that the sticker sticks to your skin are to not put any moisturizer or oil on the area. Make sure that the area is also clean because dirt and dust may affect the stickiness.


Tanning stickers and sun tattoos can bring a little bit of cheeky style and fun to your look. Just remember to be careful when tanning, and don’t needlessly expose yourself to excessive sun in order to get a tattoo. Avoid getting a sunburn, and be safe!

Happy tanning!

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).