There are many things to consider for a great cosmetic tan indoors. Not all tanning salons are equal, so here are some tips to think about.

Staff members at the Image Center have completed the Sun is Life Certification, to keep informed about the latest information on tanning. This tanning salon certification covers a lot about understanding the business and serving you in the best way possible.

We’ve learned extensively about:

  • Understanding ultraviolet light
  • The skin’s reaction to UV light
  • Photosensitivity
  • Skin Cancer
  • Skin Typing
  • Federal & State regulations
  • Eye protection
  • Lamps
  • Salon cleaning and sanitization
  • Indoor tanning lotions and sunless products
  • Equipment operation and maintenance
  • Salon operations

Indoor tanning creates a controlled environment for a cosmetic tan. Unlike tanning outdoors, UV light exposures are delivered according to individual skin type and regulated by a precise timing system.

The following areas cover some helpful information when deciding about indoor tanning.

How Genetic History Affects Tanning

If you have a family history of skin cancer, you may have a sensitivity to tanning, whether it is indoors or outdoors, which may affect your decision on whether tanning is right for you.

Fair-haired or red-haired people are often sensitive to UV rays. Those with moles or freckles should also be careful about their amount of exposure.

One of our first steps is to help you analyze your skin type and sensitivity before starting indoor tanning. While a three-minute tan is minimal exposure for one person, it may be too much for another.

By understanding your sensitivity level to indoor tanning, you avoid risks that may not exist for other people. You don’t want to overdo it or find yourself in a situation where the risk of UV exposure is too high for your skin type.

How Medications Affect Photosensitivity

Photosensitivity is also called sun sensitivity. Some diseases or illnesses can affect how sensitive your skin is when exposed to the sun. In some cases, a rash, itching or burning may result from UV exposure. Lyme disease, lupus, and chronic inflammation are common illnesses that bring a sensitivity to light.

Some prescriptions, medications, cosmetic products, and essential oils can also affect your photosensitivity. Many antibiotics help treat illnesses, but they may also make you more susceptible to burning.

If you have an illness or are on a prescription medication, make sure to discuss indoor tanning with your doctor before beginning a tanning program.

Eye protection during indoor tanning

When unprotected, your eyes can be permanently damaged from UV rays, whether they are from the outdoor sun or indoor tanning. That’s why it’s important to use good eye protection when using a tanning bed or booth. Simply closing your eyes does not provide enough protection, as the skin on your eyelid is thin and the UV light will penetrate it easily.

Make sure that your eyelid is completely covered with your eye protection and that you pick a type that is rated for indoor tanning.

Tanning goggles fit snugly over your eyelids, with a thin elastic strap to hold them on your head. They come in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes, and can be reused if cared for properly.

Tanning stickers are a popular alternative to goggles but are a one-time use product. They are designed to fold as a cone to cover your eyelid, sticking in place. Since they stick directly on your eyelid, these don’t cause “raccoon tan lines” that common goggles do.

Moisturize your skin when tanning indoors

UV rays can dry out the surface of your skin and lead to wrinkles, age spots, and even possibly skin cancer. Moisturizing is a crucial step in indoor tanning because it helps keep your skin hydrated.

It also works to help provide you with an even tan. A complete application of tanning lotion over the entire body reduces the chance of developing blotches, patches, or uneven lines. 

Moisturizing also helps make your indoor tanning session as comfortable as possible.

Tanning Salon Staff Consultation

If you’re new to tanning indoors, take advantage of a consultation with the certified staff members before you begin.

They can offer suggestions to make your tanning experience more pleasant and answer any questions you may have about indoor tanning.