Probably the most common question asked by new tanning bed users (and yes, even experienced tanners) is how often should you tan? Iíve said it a thousand times before and Iíll say it again, tanning is a process and itís all about consistency when you use tanning beds. So, how often you should tan will depend on your skin type, the type of beds youíre using and your desired tan level.
Getting a Tan Started
It depends on your skin type, but getting a base tan started can take anywhere from eight sessions to fifteen sessions in a traditional tanning bed (3-5 sessions in a high-pressure bed) to develop a good tan. But, you have to do it slowly.
For example, if youíre fair-skinned, youíll want to start with a shorter amount of time in the tanning beds and then build your time up with each visit. This will avoid burns and keep you from overexposing your skin too fast too soon. If you feel a prickling, itching or stinging sensation after you tan, youíve been overdoing it. I recommend starting slow and then increasing in one to three minute increments.
Traditional Beds vs High Pressure Tanning Beds
Traditional tanning beds have a little more UV-B in them, meaning you do have to be more careful about watching your time to avoid burns. In a traditional tanning bed, youíll need to build up your tan over those 8 to 15 sessions. Once your base tan is achieved, you should come back anywhere from two to three times a week to maintain the tan.
High-pressure tanning beds let you come less and will actually tan you faster. These beds filter out the UV-B rays and deliver what are called UV-A rays. With high-pressure beds, you can usually build a good base tan is about 3-5 sessions.
Once that high-pressure tanning base has been built up, you should only have to repeat the process once every couple of weeks. This is because high-pressure beds donít tend to make the skin exfoliate as much as a traditional tanning bed, meaning youíll keep your tan longer.
Consistency is Key
The key to maintaining a good tan is consistent, regular tanning. Remember, tanning is a process that builds over time. So long as you maintain regular visits to the tanning beds; youíll keep up that ideal tan.