Tanning Basics!​

What is Indoor Tanning and How does it Work?

Indoor tanning equipment, like outdoor sunlight, emits UVA (ultraviolet A) and UVB (ultraviolet B) light. Of the UV light emitted by the sun at noon in the summer in the United States: 95 percent is UVA and 5 percent is UVB.

More than 90 percent of professional indoor tanning units emit about 95 percent UVA and 5 percent UVB in regulated dosages similar to summer sun. Recommended exposure schedules developed by the U.S. FDA in cooperation with the tanning industry allow trained indoor tanning operators to set incremental exposure times, based on the “skin type” of a patron, that deliver consistent non-burning dosages of UV light to allow a tanner to gradually build a tan.

The statement that “indoor tanning units are more intense than sunlight” is misleading and inaccurate because the total output of a tanning unit is measured the following way: Total UV Output = UV Intensity x Duration of Exposure While tanning units may be 2-3 times as intense as summer sun, the duration of exposure is controlled, and thus the total UV output is controlled, to minimize the risk of sunburn. Exposure times in the more intense tanning units are calculated in similar fashion.

A typical indoor tanning exposure schedule (below) allows a professional indoor tanning operator to gradually increase the exposure times of a tanner over the course of the tanner’s regimen based on the individual’s skin type.

Indoor Tanning = SUN

Why choose Indoor Tanning?

Indoor tanning is Smart Tanning…The golden rule is “NEVER SUNBURN.” That’s why the controlled exposure times recommended for you in a Smart Tan salon are a great way to get a beautiful tan without burning.

Plus, indoor tanners have known for years that a “base tan” offers natural sunscreen protection. And that protection multiplies the effectiveness of the sunscreen while you’re enjoying sunshine outdoors.

In addition, exposure to the Sun or Indoor Tanning is the most abundant way to receive the benefits of Vitamin D. Check out for more information.

What is a Smart Tan Salon?

Not all tanning salons are created equally. Smart Tan Member Salons adhere to the highest industry standards to ensure the best indoor tanning experience possible:

Smart Tan Salon operators are fully trained in UV light administration

Professional staff properly teaches sunburn prevention indoors and out

Professional operators insist clients wear FDA approved protective eyewear

Smart Tan Salons meet the highest sanitation standards


Whether you want that “just off the boat or beach” look or a light sun-kissed glow, you can ask The Tanning Experts at Carolina Tanning to help you find your perfect shade!

We have a full range of the latest state-of-the-art indoor tanning systems ranging from our relaxing 15-minute sunbeds to our advanced bronzing beds that include luxury features like face and shoulder tanners, air-conditioning, and more. 


Never try to rush a tan, and always consult your salon’s tanning professional.

Never tan more than once a day.
Retain your desired color by tanning 1–3 times a week, depending on the level of the bed.
Try a Cocktail Tan as an alternative to your weekly regimen.  


Use lotions before and after tanning to keep an attractive tan looking better longer.

Use an indoor tanning lotion to accelerate and maximize the appearance of your tan.

Choose from an array of tanning skin care products that are designed to work with any skin type and tanning level.