More than 9 out of 10 tanning facilities say they have clients who — prior to coming to their salons — could not get a suntan outdoors without sunburning, according to a SmartTan.com poll conducted in March.
According to the poll, 92 percent of salons say they have Skin Type II clients who can tan without burning while tanning under professional direction in the salon, but who were unable to tan outdoors without burning prior to visiting the salon.
“The gradual process of building a tan the right way in a tanning salon, for fair-skinned Type II tanners, works,” Smart Tan Vice President Joseph Levy said. “For those of us who have seen it first hand and who understand how it can take weeks for some people to slowly work up to a tan, the dermatology industry’s denial of this just seems like so-called experts in the 1400s insisting the world was flat. It’s just beyond dispute.”
Professional indoor tanning — with the operator gradually increasing exposure times based on the Fitzpatrick Skin Type of the tanner and using the guidelines of an exposure schedule — allows the fairest Skin Type II tanners to build melanin slowly over the course of several weeks before that melanin will start to oxidize and turn brown. Done correctly in a professional salon, this process works without inducing any sunburn in the tanner.
“It’s virtually impossible to regulate exposure outdoors for a fair-skinned tanner — that’s why so many sunburn outdoors but are able to build a tan indoors in a salon without burning,” Levy said. “And once they have melanin in their skin and have a tan, it multiplies the effectiveness of the sunscreen they wear when they do go outside. That’s why we have so many clients who, after they build a tan in our salons, are able to enjoy outdoor activities without sunburning when they could not do so before, even if they wore sunscreen outdoors.”