Are Tanning Beds Really Safe?

Ever wonder if intentional tanning is safe? Can you get skin cancer if you’ve built up a base tan?  Below are some myth busters about intentional tanning:

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Myth 1: As long as you don’t burn, tanning is safe: No! A tan is skin damage, and repeated exposure will leave you at risk of developing both skin cancer as well as leathery looking skin (Campbell, 2019).

Myth 2: Tanning is needed for Vitamin D: Vitamin D levels can be replenished through a good diet and proper supplements, without the need for the damage through tanning or the added risk of skin cancer (Campbell, 2019).

Myth 3: Indoor tanning beds aren’t as bad as the sun: Indoor tanning beds emit UV rays just like the sun, so the harms are equally present (Campbell, 2019).

Myth 4: Darker skin tones don’t need sunscreen: Your skin type is a major factor for skin cancer (Campbell, 2019)! Lighter skin is more likely to develop skin cancer, but it’s often quicker to detect. Darker skin on the other hand may be at a lower risk of developing skin cancer, but have higher death rates as skin cancer on darker skin is often detected much later (Campbell, 2019). All skin tones need sun protection!

Tanning bed FACTS!

FACT 1:  Ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun and from tanning beds can cause skin cancer. Some kinds of skin cancer—like melanoma—can kill you, even if you’re in your teens or 20s.  The more UV exposure you get, the more dangerous it is. (BC Cancer Agency)

FACT 2: Avoid sunlamps and tanning salons. All tanning beds use UV light and no tanning bed or sunlamp can give you a safe tan. (BC Cancer Agency)

FACT 3:  There is no such thing as a healthy tan. A tan will not protect you from sunburns and it will not make you healthier. (BC Cancer Agency)

FACT 4:  A tan means your skin’s DNA has been damaged.  UV light from tanning beds and from the sun makes you look older faster. (BC Cancer Agency)

FACT 5: Tanning beds can increase your chances of getting skin cancer by  75% (BC Cancer Agency)

“Our life is shaped by our mind, for we become what we think”

~ Buddha


Campbell, L. (2019, March 13). 7 Common Tanning Myths, Busted. Retrieved from

BC Cancer Agency (2020) Will your wrinkles look as cute as his?  Retrieved from

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