Tanning FAQs How old do I have to be to tan? You must be 12+ to use any UV bed. Michigan law requires all minors require a signature in person from a parent or guardian once a year. What should I wear to tan? Some people choose to wear a swimsuit, just as they would at the beach. But, because of the privacy of indoor tanning, most 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 okay to expose that skin the same length of time as the rest of your body. Why should I use indoor tanning lotions? Indoor tanning lotions also known as “accelerators” add nutrients your body needs to produce melanin. Our line of quality accelerators contain vitamin A, C, E, and botanicals that moisturize and increase blood flow, thus increasing oxygenation of melanin cells to help speed up the tanning process. UV rays reflect off of dry skin, the moisturizers in tanning accelerators help you absorb UV rays for better results. You will tan about twice as fast and keep your tan twice as long.. How long will it take to see results? To build an awesome tan, tan regularly. Allowing too much time between visits will cause your tan to fade. Most people will see a skin color change after the first few sessions. Normally, you will have a good base tan in 6-10 sessions. Then one or two sessions a week thereafter will maintain your tan year round. How does the tanning process work? There are special cells in the skin called melanocytes. Ultraviolet B rays stimulate these cells and cause them to produce melanin. As these cells migrate to the surface of the skin, ultraviolet A rays oxidize them; thus creating a tan. Each of us has a different amount of melanin. Fair-skinned, fair-haired people generally have less than dark-haired, dark-skinned people. This determines, for the most part, how quickly and how dark your skin will tan. How do I keep my tan? Moisturize! Moisturize! Healthy skin tans faster, darker, and retains a tan longer. Drink plenty of water and make sure to keep your skin moisturized with a high quality lotion especially formulated-for-tanning. Your skin is constantly renewing itself. The dryer your skin is, the faster it wants to shed its top layers and bring new skin to the surface. You loose the top layers, you loose your tan. Dry layers on the surface of your skin will block the UV rays from getting to the other layers to tan them. Even with moisturizing you will still need to maintain a tanning schedule of every 4 to 5 days, or at least once a week, to keep your tan, because your skin is reproducing new cells all the time. How much time should I let pass between tanning sessions? There is no Michigan law restricting the amount of time in between session, but we recommend 24-48 hours between each session. Is it okay to shower right away after tanning? Depends! The tanning is a process that can take up to 24 hours to develop, but you can not “wash” away your tan. However, many lotions contain bronzers that require you to wait 2-4 hours to shower after your UV tanning session. Should I use SPF on my lips? Yes! You should use an SPF on your lips because your lips can’t tan. Can I save money if I become a VIP Member? Our monthly VIP Memberships are the most economical way for regular tanners to tan. For as low as $24.95 per month (plus tax), VIP members receive unlimited tanning in our beds and stand-ups units, discounts on upgrades, and a 35% discount on all lotion bottles. Talk to one of our trained Tanning Consultants to see if being a VIP member could save you money! What is the difference between low pressure units & high pressure units? Low pressure units emit both UVA & UVB at a low energy level. Low pressure units will give more of a red tone tan, and you’ll need to maintain more often. High pressure units generate UVC, UVB, & UVA, but by means of a sophisticated filtering system, only UVA is emitted during a tanning session. It will take fewer sessions with a high pressure unit it to build a golden tan and to keep it. At Totally Tan all of our beds use a higher pressure bronzing type body bulb with high pressure facials, giving you a desired bronze tan. Our level 5 units are completely all high pressure. Do I really have to wear eye wear? Yes! It is very important! Your skin can tan – your eyes can’t! Federal law requires all tanning salons to ensure clients have proper eye protection every session. This eye wear must meet federal government standards by blocking 99% of UVA and UVB rays. Closing the eyelids or using sunglasses is not adequate protection as the UV rays will easily penetrate these things and continue into the eyes. Can I tan if I’m pregnant? Please consult your physician, you must have a doctors note on file before tanning if pregnant. We know that there is no danger from UV rays since they cannot penetrate deeper than the dermis (skin layer). Pregnant women are advised to be cautious with saunas, hot tubs and other things that can cause excessive heat to build up in the uterus. When shouldn’t I tan? When you are taking photosensitizing medication it is not recommended to tan outdoors or indoors. If you aren’t sure, ask your doctor, or ask our tanning consultant to see a list of medications, which can greatly increase the risk of overexposure. What causes white spots? Tinea Versicolor, a skin condition, caused by a microscopic fungus from the scalp, falls onto arms, shoulders, and other body parts and leaves bleached-looking areas on the skin, which can spread. It is treatable with topical aids such as leaving the active ingredient in Selsum Blue dandruff shampoo on for 10 minutes along with applying Tea Tree oil twice daily for mild cases. For more resistant conditions, your doctor may prescribe pills for treatment. Since tinea versicolor covers skin cells and acts as a sun screen with high SPF factor, the effected areas will not tan and should be protected from further ultraviolet light exposure until those bleached areas have begun developing melanin again. Can indoor tanning cure acne? Phototherapy (use of UV light) has been used in treating the skin problems of this condition. Tanning dries the skin and this can help keep acne outbreaks to a minimum in acute cases and can help eliminate outbreaks in mild cases. There are also many drugs, including tetracycline and Retin-A, which are also used for the treatment of acne and because these drugs can render the skin photosensitive, one must take extreme care with UV exposure when medicated. Does tanning help treat depression or Seasonal Affective Disorder? A growing body of scientific evidence exists that shows some people require more light exposure in order to function properly. Bright light exposure, such as the mid-day summer sun, causes the brain to suppress the release of the hormone melatonin which acts as a depressant in the body if generated during the daytime. Effected people, exposed to longer hours of bright light, feel happier and more able to enjoy life. Bright light sources emitting only visible light are now frequently used to successfully treat Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and Sub-syndrome Seasonal Affective Disorder (SSAD).