Tanning Q&A

How Does Tanning Work?

Tanning beds use ultraviolet (UV) light to tan people. There are three types of UV; UVA, UVB, and UVC. Tanning beds are designed to concentrate optimal levels of UVA in conjunction with very low percentages of UVB, on the outermost layers of skin so as to stimulate the production of Melanin pigment, which is slightly pink in it’s dormant state, and cause it to turn brown after excretion. The more melanin cells that are present in the skin determine the amount of pigment that will be excreted and distributed, and therefore the extent of the tan. Tanning beds are designed to filter out this UVC, as this is a harmful type of UV.

I Have Reached A Point That I Just Can’t Get Any Darker. What Can I Do?

Your skin actually becomes thicker as your tanning progresses and makes it difficult for UV light to penetrate the upper layers of skin. This is commonly referred to as a tanning “Plateau”. Moisturizer is extremely important at this point. Your skin cells are standing up as much as 45°, and are actually reflecting UV rays. Using a lot of moisturizing lotion will help these cells lay down and become more translucent, there- fore more receptive to UV rays. Our recommendation is to use salon quality tanning lotions with accelerators and switching up your tanning routine with high definition tanning beds like the Eclipse, Cayenne, Icon and Chi to get over your tanning Plateau.

My Face And Legs Don’t Tan Very Well. What Should I Do?

Our face is the only part of our body that does not produce it’s own moisture. Our legs become a little dryer because of clothing, hosiery etc. Fact is that moist skin tans much better that dry skin. Use a moisturizer at least twice daily. This is not only applicable to the face and legs but all parts of your body.Ask our staff about our specialty face lotions designed just for tanning! Did you know Tropical Tan offers an option for tanning only your legs? It’s called the Legacy!

Is Indoor Tanning The Same As Tanning Outdoors In The Sun?

Yes and no. The process of tanning is the same-skin is tanning by ultraviolet (UV) light. The main difference, however, is that a person can not control the amount of UV light they are exposed to while outside due to changes in the earth’s atmosphere. Also, the sun emits what is called UVC light, which is the most harmful of all ultraviolet rays. Tanning beds filter this UVC light out.

Do I Really Need To Wear Goggles While Tanning?

ABSOLUTELY! It is of utmost importance! Your skin can tan-your eyes can’t. Federal law requires all tanning salons to supply customers with proper eye protection. This eyewear must meet federal government standards by blocking 99% of UVA and UVB rays. Closing the eyelids, wearing sunglasses, or using cotton balls over your eyes is not adequate protection as the UV rays will easily penetrate these things and continue into the eyes. OUR SMART TAN CERTIFIED STAFF IS REQUIRED TO SEE YOUR FDA APPROVED EYEWEAR

Should I Shower After A Tanning Session?

Taking a shower after tanning will not wash your tan away. A natural tan takes 24-48 hours to develop. The tanning process occurs within the epidermis when melanocyte cells are stimulated by ultraviolet light that causes them to produce the pigment melanin. Melanin production results in the tanned appearance of the skin and is the skin’s natural defense against the sun and over-exposure, i.e. sun burning. Melanin travels to the surface, where it eventually flakes off. This process allows us to develop new skin every four to eight weeks. Keeping your skin hydrated and exfoliated will help maintain a more radiant and healthy-looking tan.

What Causes The Scent That I Smell After Tanning?

In a word, “melanin” is the cause. Ultraviolet light in the UVA range causes melanin to enlarge and turn brown. During the process, dermatologists say a chemical reaction takes place. A natural side effect of the reaction is the aroma. This occurrence is normal whether you’ve been tanning inside or outside. Some tanning lotions have been designed to minimize or prevent the odor from occurring, but ultimately a shower will remove the odor.

How Do I Protect A Fresh Tattoo when tanning?

It is important not to expose a fresh tattoo to sunlight or indoor tanning equipment, while the tattoo is still healing, since chemicals sensitive to UV exposure have been injected into the skin. Cover the tattooed area completely or don’t tan until the skin has healed. After the skin has healed the chemicals have lost their sensitivity to UV, but continue to take moderate protective measures. Tattoos will continue to lose their brilliancy with exposure to UV light, whether it comes from indoors or from outdoors.

What Causes White Spots?

There are several reasons why white spots become noticeable on the body once the tanning process begins: Patches of skin, which do not tan, could be the result of genetic determination. White spots could also appear due to the presence of a fungus, which lives on the skin’s surface. While the fungus is harmless, it doesn’t absorb UV light, which would normally penetrate the skin. This fungus did not appear as a result of tanning; it merely becomes noticeable once tanning occurs. It can be remedied through the use of prescription drugs or topical lotions. White patches of skin, which are often prominent on the shoulder blades and just above the buttocks, can be caused by pressure from the body as it reclines on a hard tanning bed surface. This pressure inhibits the flow of blood through that area of skin. Since blood carries oxygen, which is essential to the tanning process, this area does not tan. Periodic body shifting during tanning will make these patches disappear. We recommend using a stand up like the 7 minute Eclipse every third tanning session.

Do I Have To Sunburn First To Obtain A Good Tan?

Like most activities in life, indoor and outdoor tanning must be done in moderation. A beautiful tan is achievable without overexposure. Reddening is a body’s warning that the skin has been overexposed to ultraviolet light. Do not ignore this warning. If you continue to expose red skin to ultraviolet rays, the skin’s natural repair mechanism becomes overloaded. This may lead to chronic light-induced skin damage in which the resilient fibers of the lower skin layers are harmed, causing them to sag.

What is Smart Tanned Certified?

All our employees are very knowledgeable about the equipment, products, and the science of indoor tanning. Our staff is required to be Smart Tan Certified. International Smart Tan Network Basic Operator Certification has been the benchmark for professional indoor tanning training since 1991 with the highest qualification standards in the industry. Recognized nationwide, and approved throughout Canada and the US that require training, the Smart Tan Certification program is updated annually, and is internationally identified as an excellent resource. The knowledge of our Smart Tan Certified staff includes: Tanning History, The Science Of Tanning, Ultraviolet Light & Health, Minimizing The Health Risks Of Tanning, Indoor Tanning Equipment, Tanning Laws, Salon Professionalism & Sanitation Protocol.

Why Is It Important To Develop A Base Tan?

Moderate exposure to UVB helps develop a natural barrier in the skin to protect the body from excessive UV light. UVB stimulates the production of melanin, which then surrounds the core of cells to protect DNA. This melanin substance absorbs and/or scatters radiation. In addition UVB thickens the epidermis (the top layer of skin), there by limiting the amount of UV light, which could penetrate the lower skin layers. If this photo protection (base tan) is not developed or a sunscreen is not used, sunburn can occur and the DNA of the skin cells may become damaged. Repeated sunburn can result in damaged cells, which then reproduce themselves.

What are UVB rays?

UVB rays are known as the “building rays”. This specific type of short wave ray builds melanin in your skin. Melanin is what produces the natural base tan and color in humans. In short, the more melanin you have, the tanner you can become after developing a strong base tan. This base tan protects your skin from burning when you’re outside under the hot summer sun. While UVB rays can help build your tan, UVB rays, also known as the “burn ray”, can also cause you to burn if you take on too much too soon. It is important to be patient and use those UVB rays to build up a great base tan over time. Building up the right amount of melanin can take time, depending on your skin type and genetics, so don’t rush. Just think, while you’re piling up your melanin inventory, you’re also taking care of your vitamin D levels at the same time. If you rush your tan, you’ll end up with a burn. The best tans take time.

What are UVA rays?

UVA Rays — Bronzing Rays Once you’ve built up your base tan, use UVA rays, also known as “bronzing rays”, to bronze the melanin. You’ve built up a substantial amount of melanin, and now it is time to use it to achieve the bronze tan you’ve longed for. The UVA rays help emit pigment (color) out of the melanin you’ve generated. UVA long wave rays are strong and penetrate the skin deeper, so you’ll only need to be exposed to the rays for a short amount of time to produce a beautiful, long-lasting golden brown tan. We recommend trying our High Pressure Magic or Sunsport which are 99% UVA once your base tan Is developed.

Why should I use both UVA & UVB rays for best results?

Use Both UVB and UVA Tanning Beds for the Best Results In order to achieve your desired tanning results effectively, use a combination of UVA and UVB tanning beds once you’ve developed your base tan. By mixing it up, you’ll give your skin something to respond to. Think about it this way, if you go to the gym three times a week and complete the same cardio exercise every time, after a while your body will get used to the workout and you won’t see any results. The same goes for tanning. Using a smart combination of UVA and UVB tanning beds after completing your base tan will give you the tanning results you’ve been looking for. Ask your Smart Tan Certified specialist which tanning bed will help you achieve the darkest tan for your skin type.

Why is it important to use salon quality tanning lotion?

It can be easy to assume that a tanning lotion is not necessary when using a tanning bed. You might even don’t want to bother lathering up, but it all comes down to keeping your skin protected and to the kind of results you want to achieve! Indoor tanning lotions protect and nourish your skin for a better and longer lasting tan. Not only will using them make you reach a radiant tan, but they will also improve your skin overall. Indoor tanning lotions contain lots of nutrients that are vital for the skin, plus hydrating particles that keep your skin tight, wrinkle-free and prevent it from becoming dry and itchy. Bear in mind that dry skin reflects UV light, so if you are not using an indoor tanning lotion, you can be wasting up to 60% of your tanning session!

How do I pick the right tanning lotion?

Decide if you want a bronzer component (DHA) in your lotion or not. A bronzer will enhance your tan and result in instant gratification when you step out of the bed. Check the scent of the lotion first! You wouldn’t want to invest your money on a professional indoor tanning lotion if you can’t stand the smell once it is on your skin! Check the ingredients! Do you want more moisture, more bronzers, more tingle factor? The higher on the list means more potency! Using a tanning lotion can help you see results 60% faster, and it will also help you keep a healthy skin. However, it is recommended always to choose a professional tanning lotion instead of a commercial, over-the-counter one, as those don’t have the same effectiveness and ingredients to maximize your tanning results and extend its life. LET US HELP YOU!

Do I need to clean my tanning bed before or after use?

Tropical Tan takes extreme cautions to make sure you have a great tanning experience. That starts with cleanliness. Our Smart Tan Certified staff takes time cleaning each room (not just the bed) thoroughly between each session. We use medical grade Lucasol to disinfect the entire tanning bed, pillow, chairs, door handles, radios etc. We use a clean towel every time to sanitize along with leaving a clean dry towel for your convenience. Even if you feel it necessary to clean your own bed after your session, we will clean it again to our standards.

What do I need to know before scheduling a Spray Tan?

Prepare Your Skin for a Spray Tan Exfoliating your skin before a spray tan session is a must. Focus on the driest areas: elbows, knees, hands, feet and the backs of your ankles. Also, you’ll want to avoid using moisturizers (unless they’ve been specifically formulated for sunless tanning), waxing or other spa treatments on spray day. What To Wear to a Spray Tan Wearing dark, loose-fitting clothes to your spray tan is best. If possible, wear nail polish—even if your nail polish is a clear coat, it’ll help protect your nails from discoloration. Avoid wearing perfumes, deodorant or makeup that can create a barrier for absorption. Tight-fitting clothing and shoes such as boots, socks or tights might rub off some of the spray tan and cause uneven results—it’s best to be safe and avoid these!

What do I need to know during my Spray Tan?

Nude is up to YOU! When you’ve been tucked away into your own private tanning room, feel free to get as naked as you like. If you decide not to spray tan nude, you’ll want to wear a swimsuit or undergarment that you don’t mind staining. Make sure to remove all your jewelry and remember to wear a protective hair cap. Barrier Cream Barrier cream is critical! Apply a light layer in areas where skin tends to be rougher: hands, fingers, feet, toes, the sides of your feet and your cuticles. These areas soak up more spray solution. Tropical Tan provides barrier cream for you.

What do I need to know After my Spray Tan?

Wash your Hands If you are worried about discoloring your nails or hands, we recommend doing a quick rinse after your session. Wait for it….. Avoid bathing, swimming or engaging in activities that work up a sweat for at least 6 hours. If the weather calls for rain, either postpone your spray or be able to complety stay dry when you leave the salon. Because chlorine can quickly break down a spray tan, we recommend avoiding it entirely if possible. The longer you wait to shower the better (next day is totally ok) Keep Your Glow Longer Moisturize daily with a post-sunless product. Just remember to use an oil-free lotion. Lotions with oils can seriously shorten the life of your spray tan. You’ll also want to avoid using pore strips, bandages or exfoliates, and any body washes that contain harsh soap or oils.