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6 Steps To Safe Tanning

Jan 24, 2008
One of the easiest ways to keep that sexy bronze glow all year is to use tanning beds. These beds, which are readily accessible in many salons and spas, use fluorescent bulbs to generate UV rays that tan the skin. But tanning beds can affect your skin differently than traditional tanning in sunlight, so you need to know how to protect your body. Follow these 6 guidelines:

* Know your limit. Every tanning bed is different, varying in shape, size, and intensity, so you need to make sure you know how much time you can safely spend in each type. (This should be easy to do, because beds are required by law to display the amount of exposure.) A good rule to follow is never to spend more than 20 minutes at a time in a bed, and never more than 2 consecutive days.

* Protect yourself. This is especially important in terms of your eyes, which are particularly susceptible to UV radiation. Don't just close your eyes - wear goggles! If your tanning salon doesn't provide them, bring your own. You should also wear lip balm to protect your lips, and nose plugs to protect the delicate mucous membranes of your nostrils.

* Think gradually. You need to give your body time to adjust to tanning beds, so you should use increments to build up your exposure limit. Start out at 4-5 minutes per session, and over a period of 3-4 weeks, increase your time. This way, you will safely work up to being able to tolerate the tanning bed's maximum exposure.

* Use lotion. Just like sunlight, tanning beds expose your skin to potentially dangerous UV rays. To protect your skin from skin cancer and UV radiation, use protective lotions, which are probably available at your salon. To get a natural-looking tan, choose lotions that contain vitamin A and beta-carotene.

* Kill germs. Certain diseases and lice can be transmitted when many people share a tanning bed, so if you're tanning at a salon, make sure the management cleans the bed in between uses. You can usually ask for a complimentary hygienic wipe to do your own quick cleaning, too. Even if you're using a personal tanning bed, make sure to use an antibacterial cleanser before and after every session.

* Circulate air. Fans are critically important when you're using a tanning bed, because they help prevent overheating - a serious problem that should not be taken lightly. If your bed doesn't have an internal fan, set one up outside the bed that will blow air on it during your session.

Tanning beds aren't for everyone. For example, if you are prone to sunburns or have skin that is sensitive to UV rays, you might want to consider using a self-tanner or visiting a spray tanning booth. But with responsible use and careful planning, tanning beds are a safe way to keep your "just got back from the beach" look all year long!
About the Author
TanningBedsPro is a site fully invested in providing you the very best information regarding tanning beds. Once there, you can read our exclusive article detailing many tips for using tanning beds .
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