How Often Should You Tan in a Tanning Bed?

tanning bed schedule

If you are wanting to build up a tan using a tanning bed you might have been thinking how often should I tan in a tanning bed?

You can tan for up to 3-4 sessions per week using a tanning bed but typically we recommend 2-3 times per week. Before following this you should know there are multiple factors that also are important to consider. Such as if you are just starting tanning, your own skin tone and time spent in the tanning bed to name a few.

Below we will explain this in more detail to answer all these important details, so you know exactly what to do.

How Often Can You Use a Tanning Bed

Before we talk about our recommendations it’s first important we cover some of the things that make a difference when choosing how often to use a tanning bed.

As we briefly mentioned above a broad answer is 2-3 sessions per week though there a quite a few important factors that must be considered when deciding how often you should tan using a tanning bed that we will explain in more detail below.

If You Are a Beginner

If you are someone who is new to using tanning beds it’s important that you start slowly. This is because you and your skin are not familiar to using a tanning bed.

Therefore, it’s best to start with shorter sessions, less often and build your way up over a period of weeks and months. More information on this can be found in our article – tanning bed time chart.

Skin Tone

An important thing with knowing how often you can use a tanning bed is your skin tone. If you have more fair skin it’s better to opt for less regular sessions when compared with someone who has a darker complexion.

Tanning Session Length

Another important factor to consider is your tanning bed session time. If you are opting for shorter sessions then it will be possible for you to have more sessions as your exposure is lower. Also, the more fair your skin the shorter the sessions you should opt for typically.

How Long to Use a Tanning Bed and How Often

As we covered above there are a few different factors that should be considered before choosing how often you want to tan in a tanning bed.

As we mentioned 2-3 sessions per week is a good tanning bed frequency. Each of those sessions can last up to 30 minutes time (though we recommend keeping sessions under 20 minutes at a maximum even for someone with more tanned skin).

Keep in mind your sessions should be shorter if you are a beginner to ease into the process and be on the safe side of things to make sure if your skin can tolerate it. For more on this check our article – tanning bed tips for beginners.

The second part of this is if you have more fair or pale skin you should opt for a shorter session when starting out and build it up over time.

Also, regardless of your skin type you should only opt for 1 session per week for the first 2-3 weeks if you are new to tanning beds.

These weeks are used to make sure you skin can deal with the UV rays produced by the tanning beds. For these sessions you shouldn’t really be expecting to build a deep tan due to the time between the sessions but instead to make sure your body and skin adapts well to the tanning beds.

After these initial 2-3 weeks without any adverse effects, you can look to increase the sessions to 2 times per week and so on. For all the important details on this check our article – tanning bed time chart.

The time between sessions should be spread out as evening as possible. So, for example if you have 2 sessions per week opt for 3-4 days between sessions. It’s worth mentioning the FDA has a 24-hour tanning rule that recommends that you do not going for 2 tanning bed sessions within a period of 24 hours.

If you are not a beginner 3 sessions per week is a great amount for building up a base tan. And 2 sessions per week is ideal for maintaining a tan too.

If you can get away with doing it less often, do it. See what works for you and your skin, certain people may need to tan more regularly to maintain their tan whereas for others 1 session per week might be enough.

When it comes to tanning bed session length you should opt for shorter sessions to start out, such as 1-4 minutes. Over a period of weeks, you can look to increase these to 5-15 minutes depending on your skin tone.

Related Questions

How Often Can You Tan in a Tanning Bed Safely?

Keeping your tanning bed sessions lower and for shorter amounts of time will be more safe. 1-2 sessions per week should be much safer than 3-4 sessions per week in the long run.

Can I Tan Everyday in a Tanning Bed?

It’s not recommended that you tan everyday in a tanning bed. It’s better to space out tanning bed sessions as much as possible. This gives the skin time to recover as sometimes tanning beds can dry out your skin so doing it every day would increase chances of burning, rashes etc.

How Long Does 10 Minutes in a Tanning Bed Equal?

10 minutes in a tanning bed equates to about 2 hours spent tanning in the sun. This is generally why it’s recommended to start with shorter tanning bed sessions if you are a beginner. For more on this check our article – how long does it take to tan in the sun.

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