|Owner||Edgewell Personal Care|
|Registered as a trademark in||U.S., Canada|
The company was founded by Ron Rice in 1969. With a $500 loan from his father, he mixed the first batch in a metal trash can and bottled it from his home garage in Murray, Kentucky. After rapid success, he became the largest private manufacturer of sun care products in the United States until being acquired in May 2007 by Playtex Products, Inc. When combined with Playtex's other brand of sun care, Banana Boat, Playtex is the largest manufacturer of sun care products in the Western Hemisphere. Shortly after purchasing Hawaiian Tropic, Playtex Products was purchased by Energizer Holdings Inc. in a deal valued at $1.9 billion.
The company sponsored bikini competitions to seek women to serve as spokesmodels for their products. Many winners appeared later in advertising campaigns, swimwear, erotic magazines, and lingerie catalogs.
In late 2006, a company opened a theme restaurant called Hawaiian Tropic Zone in New York City near Times Square, advertised as the "Hottest Place on Earth" and using the Hawaiian Tropic Zone name under license. The restaurant featured waitresses in bikinis designed by Nicole Miller and a menu by chef David Burke. Later that year, four former employees sued the restaurant, alleging chronic groping by managers and a rape. Restaurateur Dennis Riese and nightclub owner Adam Hock have ownership interests in the restaurant. The restaurant closed in mid-2010.
In May 2008, the Hawaiian Tropic Brand celebrated the 25th annual Miss Hawaiian Tropic International model search finals at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
Since late 2008, the Miss Hawaiian Tropic International model search has ceased to exist in the United States where the former state directors have transitioned to Swimsuit USA, which is now the official successor. Although Ron Rice sold Hawaiian Tropic, a non-compete clause which was part of the sale expired in 2015 where he got back into the suntan lotion business, establishing Havana Sun which launched in March 2016.
Miss Hawaiian Tropic International
|1985||Karen Frances McGrillen||Belfast||UK|
|1989||Jennifer Lynn Campbell||Michigan||USA|
|1990||Sandi Da Silva||Florida||USA|
|2003||Erica Reams||Cockburn Town||Turks & Caicos|
|2005||Charmain Espinosa||Panamá City||Panama|
|2010||Amanda Hinchcliffe||Gold Coast||Australia|
Notable former Miss Hawaiian Tropic winners
Miss Hawaiian Tropic USA
- Rebecca DiPietro 2005: Former WWE backstage interviewer on ECW and Playboy model; finalist in Hawaiian Tropic International 2005 pageant 
- Shana Hiatt 1995: Hostess for the World Poker Tour and Playboy model
- Ashley Massaro 2002: Former WWE Diva and Playboy cover girl
- Crista Nicole 2001: Playboy Playmate of the Month for May 2001
- Brooke Richards 1998: Playboy Playmate of the Month for December 1999
- Suzanne Stokes 1999: Playboy Playmate of the Month for February 2000
Miss Hawaiian Tropic Canada
- Ashley Massaro 2004: Former WWE Diva and Playboy cover girl
- Maryse Ouellet 2003: WWE Diva and Playboy model
- Crystal Geoffré 2005
Miss Hawaiian Tropic International
- Cecilia Hörberg 1984: Top 10 at Miss World 1988, representing Sweden.
- Jennifer Campbell 1989: actress and model.
- XiXi Yang Miss China 2008: international spokesmodel, U.S. media personality/TV host; appeared in MTV, VH1, and NBC.
Hawaiian Tropic Teen Miss
- Casey Reinhardt 2003: former castmember of the second season of Laguna Beach and frequent beauty pageant contestant
Other contestants and winners
- Gia Allemand: reality television contestant and actress who also appeared in Maxim
- Anna Anka, (née Åberg) Sweden, Top 10 1993: model, actress, author. Married to the musician Paul Anka
- Marea Lambert-Barker Australia: actress, TV host, radio announcer, model
- XiXi Yang: international spokesmodel, American media personality, TV host, appeared in MTV, VH1 and NBC
- Brooke Adams, former ECW performer
- Martina Andrews, Miss Hooters International 2004
- Michelle Banzer: Miss Kentucky USA 2007
- Laura Morgan Porter: Miss Tennessee Hawaiian Tropic 2006, 2003 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Cover finalist, one of the three official NASCAR Pit Crew girls from 2009–2011
- Jillian Beyor: Playboy Cyber Girl, Cyber Girl of Month May 2007, Cyber Girl of Week January 1, 2007, and Coed of Month October 2006
- Barbara Blank: 2005 model; WWE diva under the ring name Kelly Kelly
- Angel Boris: actress and Playboy Playmate of the Month for July 1996
- Jennifer Cole: actress and model
- Bonnie Conte was Miss Miami Beach Hawaiian Tropic
- Louise Glover: former Playboy Special Editions "Model of the Year"
- Sandra Hubby: Playboy Playmate of the Month for March 2004
- Dalene Kurtis: Playboy Playmate of the Month for September 2001 and one of People magazine's 50 most beautiful people in 2004
- Sung Hi Lee: actress and very popular Playboy Special Editions model, featured in Playboy magazine's "Girls of Hawaiian Tropic" issue in 1995 and the companion video
- Rochelle Loewen: former WWE diva and Playboy model; made cameo appearances on The Girls Next Door
- Tilsa Lozano: Miss Playboy TV Latinoamerica & Iberia 2008, Playboy TV actress
- Cassandra Lynn: Playboy Playmate of the Month for February 2006
- Holly Madison: Playboy model and Hugh Hefner's former #1 girlfriend
- Marla Maples
- Yael Markovich: Miss International Israel 2012 and Miss Supranational Israel
- Kalin Olson: Playboy Playmate of the Month for August 1997
- Jocelyn Oxlade: model, singer, host, FHM Babe (Philippines); turned down a Playboy magazine offer worth $25,000 due to some personal reasons.
- Kirsten Price: nude model, contestant of the reality program My Bare Lady, porn star
- Tiffany Selby: model and member of the USA National Bikini Team
- Andrea Stelzer
- Tiffany Taylor: Playboy Playmate of the Month for November 1998
- Jennifer Thomas: Washington's finalist in the Miss Hawaiian Tropic USA competition in 2000; professional wrestler
- Jamie Westenhiser: Playboy Playmate of the Month for May 2005
- Forbes Energizer buys Platex
- Fox News Women sue for sexual harassment
- "2005 Miss Hawaiian Tropic press release". Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved March 22, 2007.
- "Gia Allemand sounded 'stuffy' from crying before she died, says friend". NY Daily News. Retrieved 2016-12-22.
- "Brooke Tessmacher Talks WWE Diva Search, DeMott, Her Time in TNA, Relationships in the Business, More | Daily Wrestling News". www.dailywrestlingnews.com. Retrieved 2017-02-13.
- "Bikini Models of Hawaiian Tropic > Barbie Blank". Archived from the original on April 29, 2007. Retrieved April 7, 2007.
- "Jennifer Thomas' official website".