Q: Is indoor tanning the same as tanning outside in the sun?
A: When you tan at an indoor tanning facility, your skin produces a tan the same way it does when you lay out in the sun-- through ultraviolet (UV) light. When you are out in the sun, you cannot control the amount of UV light you are exposed to. With indoor tanning you can regulate the amount of UV light you are exposed to, because it is a controlled environment. You can gradually increase your exposure time to make sure you don't get a sunburn.
Q: How do the beds and booths work?
A: Tanning beds and booths basically imitate the sun. The sun emits UV-C light, but then it's absorbed by the ozone layer and pollution. Tanning lamps filter out this type of UV light. UV-B, the middle wavelength, starts the tanning process, but overexposure can cause sunburn. UV-A has the longest wavelength, and it completes the tanning process. Tanning lamps use the best ratio of UV-B and UV-A light to provide optimal tanning results, with a lowered risk of overexposure.
Q: What should I wear to tan?
A: Many people choose to wear a swimsuit. Because of the privacy of indoor tanning, others tan in the nude to avoid tan lines. Any skin that has never been exposed to ultraviolet light before, will be more sensitive. These parts must acquire a tan slowly. Cut down the exposure time for these areas to 1/3 or less of the total time recommended by your tanning professional. When you can't see any tan lines on your body at all, it's safe to expose that skin the same length of time as the rest of your body.
Q: Do I need to wear lotion when tanning indoors?
A: You don't need to wear SPF lotion when tanning indoors because these lotions are designed to allow you to spend a longer amount of time in the sun. When you tan indoors with a controlled exposure time you don't need SPF. You should avoid using outdoor lotions and oils when you tan indoors. These products will make the acrylic dirty and actually hinder your tanning. Using indoor tanning lotions are not a necessity, but they can dramatically increase your results. These products are specifically designed for indoor tanning, they help moisturize your skin while helping you to tan faster.
Q: How long does it take to get a tan?
A: Usually, you will begin to notice results after a few tanning sessions, but it may take a few weeks of regular tanning (at least three times a week) to get to the color you are looking for. If you are developing a base tan before going on a trip, you would want to start tanning about three or four weeks before you go.
Q: If I have a good base tan, is it still possible to burn outdoors?
A: Yes, having a good base tan does provide a defense mechanism, but if you overexpose, whether indoors are out, the chance of burning is possible.
Q: Will tanning lighten my hair?
A: If your hair lightens when you tan outdoors, the same is likely to happen in a tanning bed. By covering your hair with a towel while tanning, you can avoid the hair-lightening process.
Q: How do I prevent "raccoon eyes?"
A: Adjusting the protective eyewear occasionally during a tanning session will help to minimize this condition. You should never lift the eyewear off of your eyes to adjust their position
Q: Can I wear my contact lenses while tanning?
A: Because tanning naturally draws moisture from the body, eyes can lose moisture, too. Even with protective eyewear, eyes can dry out a little. If somebody is going to tan with their contacts in, it is recommended that they use moisturizing drops prior to or just after the tanning session to prevent any temporary discomfort.