Are all UV Tanning beds created equal?
While touring Beaches you will notice the vast variety in our UV beds. You may have wondered to yourself, why so many? What’s the purpose? Isn’t all “sun” the same? And is that a bed or a pod from some alien spacecraft?! The quick answer? No. Not all UV beds are created equal. There are three main factors to consider when choosing the right UV tanning bed for you; skin type, tanning goals, and time.
Skin Type/UVA vs UVB rays
UV stands for Ultra Violet. There are two types of Ultraviolet rays that come naturally from the sun. UVB and UVA. Let’s talk about UVB first. These are often referred to as “burning rays.” These rays reach only the surface or outermost layer of the skin providing quick color. Quick results are awesome but just as quickly as they come will fade as skin is constantly repairing and shedding itself. UVB rays are also the rays that provide vitamin D. UVA rays are the longest rays, penetrating to the deepest layers of the dermis (skin). These are what we like to refer to as “bronzing rays.” Because they go deeper, they create a longer-lasting golden glow and are less likely to burn you.
So why does any of this matter? Our beds are ranked on 4 levels: Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond. While all UV beds provide a mixture of both rays the higher the bed the more UVA the lower the bed more UVB. This is important to keep in mind when evaluating your skin type and tanning goals. For example, if you’re in a rush to get a base, a diamond tan will build a base in just two sessions and once a week to maintain, where a silver level takes around 5-7 sessions to build and two a week to maintain. If you burn easily, a higher dose of UVA will be better for you. If you’re coming in for seasonal depression and you’re looking for the vitamin D, a lower level bed will do the trick!
Fun fact: If you’re a frequent tanner and start to plateau, switching up your levels will kick start new melanin production.
Hand in hand with UVA/UVB rays are tanning times. Since lower beds don’t go as deep, tan times are typically longer while higher is shorter. Our Silver beds max out at 15 minutes, where most Diamond models only go 10 minutes. Depending on the day, you may want to tune out the world and cozy up in warmth as long as possible. Or maybe you’re in a hurry for that last-minute date and a quick session in our gold stand up for 9 minutes is all the time you have!