Broke Out from Sun Tan Lotion?

Updated on June 02, 2012
K.J. asks from Picayune, MS
8 answers

Ok. So I have a question.
We went to the beach Wednesday(my hubby,myself and our 3 children). I put spray suntan lotion on my 3 kids and myself.(Hubby don't like suntan lotion) Anyway, I spray the lotion on my arms and legs. I had a tank top shirt and shorts on. Later out there I started getting a headache.(figured was the heat). We stay out there for about 2 hours or so and left and headed the 2 hour drive back home.My chest got burn,my shoulders(where i didn't spray got burn and my back of my neck also got burn.) Yesterday(thursday) I notice my arms and legs have a faded light pink/light reddish bumps that is iching.Kinda hard to explain kinda like posion ivy? I spent 30-45 minutes last night google on what could it be. Can it be a allergic reaction to the spray(where i spray it at on my body?) Could it be sun posioning? The last time I used some tanning spray lotion and it did the same thing.(broke out in a rash) My arms and legs where i spray the lotion at is where its broke out at. Nothing else is.

Note: I'm fair tone skin. Kinda hard to get a I have allergies,and I have sensitive skin. So maybe it a reaction to the lotion??
I know i need to get a doctor to look at it but just wondering if anyone had anything similar to this?

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answers from Albuquerque on

One of my daughters and I get this anytime we use spray suntan lotion, and sometimes regular suntan lotion (like from Coppertone or Banana Boat). It's exactly what you explained - light pink/reddish bumps that itch. And they show up everywhere that the lotion is put on. I've had to switch us all over to the physical blocker type of sunscreen. That's the kind with zinc rather than chemicals. For me, the rash fades in two - three days; hope yours does too!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

The spray sun lotions are filled w/ nanoparticles that penetrate deeply into your skin and actually are harmful to your lungs (via breathing in). You can google it for more info. It definitely sounds like you've had a reaction to the product and I'd discontinue using it and definitely don't put any spray lotions on your kids for the reasons that I listed above. Have you checked out EWG's sunscreen recommendations? VERY helpful:

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Lakeland on

If they look like tiny blisters then it could be sun poisining. That can get very itchy. It could also be a reaction to the lotion.

You should have your doctor take a look.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

Could be either... or both. I am also fair - freckly - blond hair, and at least a few times a summer, I come home from a day out in the sun with "itchy bumps" or "blisters". I've had sun poisoning (diagnosed by a doctor) as well as "reactions" to different kinds of sun block & lotions.

If you're not feeling worse, I'd give it a day or two more to heal itself. If it's a SUN reaction, you'll probably peel, or get blistery. If it's a LOTION reaction, it should go away by itself (try taking an OTC antihistamine, like Benadryl, or use some calamine lotion - if it doesn't make it feel worse.)

Either way, do what I do. Wear as much clothing and as big a hat as possible next time. Minimize the amount of "stuff" you have to put directly on your skin. Get some UV-protective clothing. And stay out of the sun midday! Hope the itching is over soon.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Charlotte on

Coppertone did that to me. I don't use Coppertone anymore because of that.

There are lotions that are specifically for your face that you might use instead. However, if I were you, I'd go to a dermatologist instead of a regular doctor. They are VERY good at discerning what is really going on and giving you advice on what to use for your skin type.


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dothan on

I realize that to have a tanned body may look better to you than not, but what is happening to you is that you are getting, 'burned'!

In order to tan safely you need to wear sunscreen 1st & last, you don't need a high SPF & you need to spend time @ home outdoors & gradually tan!

These days we realize all the problems that occur to our skin by exposing it to the sun for long periods without protection. It IS possible that you could have a reaction to the product itself, but being, 'light skinned' & going to the beach without protection for two hours & asking the sun to, 'cook' you for two hours in conjunction with the lotion (like using butter in the pan to fry eggs) is simply FRYING your poor skin! :(

Take it easy & slow to get that, 'tanned' body, mama!



answers from Cleveland on

to me it sounds like an allergic reaction to the sun lotion. my guys sister is allergic to it and that is what she get on her skin



answers from Raleigh on

You have sun poisoning. Don't confuse it with severe burn- it's not always the same. I am photosensitive and allergic to UVB rays. If I am out in the sun for more than 10 minutes, I break out in bumps and hives. It doesn't matter whether I wear SPF 50 or 100- it's the rays that cause the problem.
If you are on birth control, it will be worse.
Anyway, I don't go out in the sun at all unless I am covered up. However, I got sun on the bottom half of my legs last weekend while fishing, and you guessed it... I am covered in itchy bumps. It will heal on it's own. But it's a real nuisance. Benadryl really helps with the itching, or a mild cortisone cream. Do NOT use lotions. They just irritate the rash.
Hope this helps.

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