Dancers Anonymous > Tanning bed advice

Discussion in 'Dancers Anonymous' started by tanya_the_dancer, Jul 17, 2010.

  1. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    I want to go to a tanning place to fix some uneven tan, which doesn't match my dress cutouts. I figured that would be one way to do it, since that would be the only place where I can tan without a swimsuit. And I know from experience that tanning lotion or even spray tan does not fix uneven natural tan.

    The tanning place I want to use has 5 levels of tanning beds, apparently the most basic one is closest to the natural sun (so you can potentially burn), and some progressively more expensive levels which (according to their receptionist) are less likely to burn and give you darker tan faster. I haven't used a tanning bed before. So I need advice - would it make sense to use the most expensive bed, or I would be OK with mid-level one?
  2. wooh

    wooh Well-Known Member

    My advice (as a tanning bed user and not any sort of medical professional!) would be to understand my "tanning beds for dummies" lecture that puts together all I learned when deciding I don't care what dermatologists say, I'm getting a freaking tan!
    UVA- The "better" beds put out a higher percentage of UVA to UVB. UVA will make the melanin brown. It's less likely to burn you, but it's always possible.
    UVB- The "lower" beds put out a higher percentage of UVB to UVA. UVB is more likely to burn you. But it is UVB that encourages your skin to make melanin. If you haven't made any melanin, there's none for the UVA to brown.
    Personally, I never ever use the lowest beds. They seem cheaper, but I think in the long run, because you have to use them more often, it's better to go with the higher end beds.
    That said, don't go immediately to the highest beds. Start with upper middle. That way you can create lots of melanin that won't immediately turn brown, but you'll be making lots of it. THEN go in the higher level occasionally to turn all that wonderful melanin you've been making brown.
    Don't go everyday. It's kind of like building muscles. Your body needs a day to "recover." It's not necessarily going to slow things down, but it won't speed things up if you go daily, and well, that's just a waste of money and time.
    Every 2-3 days is good. When I'm trying to get a base, I go every other day or so. And then since I use REALLY good beds, I can go once per week or even every other week to maintain whatever color I'm at (which for those that know me, is VERY pale this year, because I haven't been as much as I want, but it's still much darker than natural me.)
    And use lotion. If you don't, your skin will dry out and the rays will just bounce off. But make sure you get some AT the tanning bed place, because most lotion isn't safe for the tanning bed acrylics (what you're laying on, and personally, I want to keep that stuff nice and intact so I don't crash through onto the bulbs,) and it just doesn't work as well for getting you a good tan. And make sure you don't get a "tingle" lotion until you've been tanning so long that you resemble a member of the Jersey Shore cast. :)
    Most important, DO NOT GO THE FULL TIME. If you're pale like me, start with just a few minutes. I started with 3 the very first time I went. It seems like a waste to not get your full time. But if you burn, you're going to have to wait for that to heal, not to mention, damage your skin more than necessary. If you turn pink at all and stay pink for any portion of the day, that's burn, stay out for a few days. You may turn pink from the heat when you first get out. That's ok. Staying pink is not. It's always better to go less time than to go too much. Progress your time slowly. If you go in sporting fake dancer tan, make sure to start slowly. You don't want to trick the girl behind the counter into thinking you can handle more time. My rule of thumb, as pale as I am, is to always subtract a minute from what they recommend. If you aren't super pale, and are at a good location (rather than a video rental or behind a hair salon) then go with what they recommend. And get OUT of the bed if you feel like you're burning. Like I said, less is always better than too much.

    Oh, and remember, if you're going nekkid (which I assume you are to even things out) the normally covered bits WILL burn if you go as long as your arms can handle. :)
  3. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    Thanks! I think I'll start with the mid-level bed and work my way up from there. They have weekly passes, so for about $25 a week, if I do level 3 bed every 2-3 days, I can do it 3 times a week.
  4. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I use the cheap beds...and I get an excellent tan but I don't burn..imo...if you tend to burn the key is more about not staying in too long at first...and getting a good tan is about good lotion IMV
  5. flashdance

    flashdance Active Member

    George Foreman :cool:
  6. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    I'm getting some weird results with this. The parts I didn't really care about getting tan (like the baby bulge) got darkest but it doesn't matter fortunately, since they stay hidden from the view. Stretch marks want to stay white, no matter what. And my shoulders and chest, which got most exposure to our normal everyday sunlight before I tried the bed, are not getting much darker.
  7. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    a) people tend to put more lotion, plus it pools, on thier mid-driff
    b) often there is a more protected area around the face and neck of a tanning bed

    you can a) scoot down and b) use more lotion on the upper area
  8. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    Officially don't like the tanning beds. Something about being under all that light just makes me feel weird. Like some people used to city air feel weird when they're somewhere where the air is much fresher.
  9. nucat78

    nucat78 Active Member

  10. freeageless

    freeageless Active Member

    Nucat, thanks, very good information. I don't know if this is on point are not. Every 6 months or so, I get red bumps on my face. I go to a dermatologist and he removes them by freezing them off. He told me that that was caused some 50 years ago by my mother taking me to the beach where I would be out in the sun. I would recommend that everyone consult a dermatologist before using any kind of tanning machines or tanning beds-but hey to each his own.
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    sorry to hear that nucat
  12. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    The gym I recently joined offers free unlimited tanning as part of the membership. As I've switched over to Latin, I'm considering this as one of my tanning options. My question is.....which is the best lotion to use?
  13. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    do they sell the tanning bed lotion there?...if so, most of the stuff from swedish beauty is what I would opt for...depends on whether you can stand "tingle" or not....and, if you aren't accustomed to tanning you would want to do that in a very small amount to see how your skin reacts...bottom line is that anything you buy in a regular store is a waste of the lotion at a tanning place....more expensive but way more bang for your buck in terms of minutes in the bed
    dancelvr likes this.
  14. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    I will see if they sell tanning lotion at the gym. Thanks for the info! :)
  15. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    if not, you can probably walk into any other tanning salon and buy it....
    dancelvr likes this.
  16. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    I'll definitely look for the good stuff. I have very fair skin, so I want to do this right.

    Normally, I wouldn't really consider this option, but's free!

  17. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    Just my opinion.... dancelvr....

    Having seen you in person, I find your skin to be extremely lovely and healthy. And while maybe you can stand to be a little darker for latin/rhythm I do hate to see you lose the lovely smooth fine skin to sun spots, wrinkles, and overall damage. Perhaps reconsider the self-tanners?
  18. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I would certainly concur if you have very nice fair skin....and you would definately have to go with a non-tingle lotion for a very short time even if you did go...but the instructions on beds note that if you aren't particularly prone to tanning you will not likely tan well....for me, my skin isn't especially good to begin with and I tan very easily...andI sweat more than the average the beds work for me...and I accept the risk...your circumstances seem different...but you asked :)
  19. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    Wow. I wasn't expecting this. You are very kind. Thank you, Larinda! I'm kind of thinking that maybe I just did a really good job with my foundation that day..... ;) But, thanks! I WILL take that into consideration.
  20. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    I DID ask, and I appreciate the information! My concern was not so much a darkening of my face (I have a self tanner that rocks the house), but my arms and legs. It's so much harder to get smooth bronzing on hands, elbows, and knees.
    fascination likes this.

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