Tanning 101 by//Rhiannon Tackett

The sun’s out, and it’s starting to get warm outside. You know what that means – it’s tanning season. There are a few different types of tanning methods, and they all have there pros and cons, so use this guide to help pick out which option is better for you.  


Outdoor tanning Many people who enjoy tanning say that sunbathing results in the most natural-looking tan because it comes from the rays of the sun, and not an artificial source. And not to mention it takes pretty much nothing out of your pocket, unless you buy tanning enhancers.


  • You can tan outdoors almost anywhere
  • Tanning outdoors is more sanitary. When you tan outdoors on your own blanket or chair, you know whether they’re dirty or not.
  • When done safely, tanning outdoors can actually improve your health.


  • Because of the sun’s powerful UV rays, you increase your chances of getting a bad sunburn.
  • Unless you live in an area that sees many sunny days a year, the weather can affect your tanning schedule and even how your body absorbs UV rays.
  • Building up a tan by sunbathing takes weeks, from building the base tan to making your skin darker with hours of moisturizing and using outdoor tanning accelerator.

Tanning beds There are a couple tanning bed facilities in the area, including Sun Tan City and California Tanning and Nails. Most people who use tanning beds are looking for a quick, all over tan in a short amount of time.


  • A tanning salon offers more convenience than traditional tanning because you are not limited to only daylight hours. This also allows you to get a tan year round.
  • You can get a nice tan from a tanning bed much faster than you could from the sun. Most tanning beds only require 10-20 minutes a few times a week to get a dark bronze tan.



  • More than 35% of American adults report ever using a tanning bed, along with 59% of college students and 17% of teens, according to USA Today. Since that many people using tanning beds, there’s alarming rise in skin cancer, whose rates have been rising for decades, especially among young women.
  • The cumulative damage caused by UV radiation can lead to premature skin aging (wrinkles, lax skin, brown spots, and more), as well as skin cancer.


Sunless tanning Sunless tanning comes in a variety of different ways, including spray tans, lotion, mousse, cream, etc. A lot of people like sunless tanning because none of the sunless tanning methods above require any UV exposure.


  • These products require no exposure to the sun, which saves you from worrying about the negative side effects of traditional sun tanning such as wrinkled, leathery skin in old age, or skin cancer.
  • Getting a spray tan is much faster than sitting in the sun for hours and having to do it religiously.


  • Spray tans can cost anywhere from $25 – $50 (or more) per session. That’s a much higher cost per tan than for the other options.
  • Most spray tans last anywhere from three to seven days, or however long it takes your body to shed dead skin cells, which is a major bummer when you think about the pricing.

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