Indoor Tanning Not Necessarily an Unsafe Alternative - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/26/04

Indoor Tanning Not Necessarily an Unsafe Alternative

As the heat turns up outside, more people are turning up the heat indoors for what most feel is a safer tan. The artificial bronzed look can be the safer alternative if you take precaution.

"Make sure your going to a salon that offers the proper equipment to start your tanning off safely or safer and give you the best color you can without risking any burning to your skin." Rick Austin, Owner of Always Tan monitors the tanning beds for hundreds of tanners every day. "In the bed you are in a controlled environment. The health department makes sure you are in the right temperature, the proper lamps in the bed, that you get the appropriate time in the bed for your skin type; versus outside where there's no control whatsoever. You are in a drying element, there's no time element to keep you from over exposure, it's much better to tan indoors than outdoors."

If you're still concerned about possible dangers, there are other ways to get that summer glow. A popular alternative to traditional tanning is the Mystic Tan. No ultraviolet rays here just a spray on tan of colored solution. "Mystic Tan is awesome. It’s a 30 second tan, SUV ray free, it’s a self tanning solution that applies to your body very quickly and evenly and you get brown. It sprays on and you wake up tomorrow and your tan," says Brad Salley, Owner of Super Tan.

Brad says the biggest problem with Mystic Tan is human error. "They are great if you do everything they tell you to prevent the streaking, it works," says Tracy Farley, a Mystic Tanner.

For Krissy Hendon and her mom Jeanne Smith, Mystic Tan left a spotty mess. "It turned out horrible. We had streaks all over our arms and legs, it looked like we were wearing shorts, it was bad," Krissy said.

Tanners must find the right option for them. Before tanning, ask questions so you can match your tanning style to your skin type.

There are many myths about the safety of tanning, but Rick Austin at Always Tan say some doctors actually prescribe tanning for certain patients. He says tanning lights give off Vitamin C, D and Serotonin; something that has been prescribed for pregnant women, people with arthritis and from dermatologists.

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