Thursday, December 05, 2013

tanning 101 xx

disclaimer: this is going to be a very thorough post-- very long and picture heavy. i was not paid by any company, these are all items I purchased on my own based on my results. this post is for informational purposes only. please refrain from posting negative comments. thank you :)

Ladies & gents!! it is that time of year when indoor tanning salons make the big bucks!! We all want our natural Summer tan to last all throughout the cold harsh Winter, so in order to do that we can maintain it with indoor tanning. I want to let you all in on the knowledge I have gained from my own experiences and working in beauty salons as a tanning professional for 4+ years.

Here is a picture of most of my tanning items I use on a bi-weekly basis :

tanning background xx
ok, here is the boring but very necessary knowledge you should know prior to indoor tanning. first let us begin with how the beds work.

There is the vertical or 'stand up' beds. These are my favorite as I am a germaphobe and do not like to lay down on a bed millions of others were on unless I know the tanning girl who cleans the beds, and trust her cleaning. Stand Up beds also provide a 100% even tan, as opposed to the horizontal beds which cannot get your pressure points (parts of body you're putting most pressure on when laying down) such as your lower back, and under your butt cheeks ;] Also under your arms, and your feet! The horizontal beds are ideal for relaxing though.

Then there are low pressured beds with UVB rays and high pressured beds with UVA rays.
Okay, so there are level 1-6 tanning beds. Every salon has different beds, but usually the levels 1, 2 and 3 are UVB bulbs. Beds 4, 5, and 6 are UVA bulbs. The difference between the two is UVB bulbs penetrate the skin plateau way deeper giving you a base tan that lasts longer because it goes deeper. This is why it is pertinent you start with a level one bed if you are new to tanning, or if you are fair skinned. The UVA Bulbs only penetrate the top two layers of the skin which is beneficial for maintaining a tan. The higher the level, the more high pressured the bulbs are. So in short, UVB starts the tanning process by stimulating the tanning cells to produce pigment, and UVA rays darken the melanin that has been produced maintaining an overall tan.

tanning necessities & wants xx
okay, so now that we got the boring technical stuff out of the way -- onto the goodies! this involves shopping-- woo hoo ;) what do you need when you are going to tan? personally, I have my own purse for tanning LOL what that bag includes are: (I included pictures of my items below, read on to see!)

[-] hair tie to tie your hair up
[-] lip balm because your lips are very likely to burn or dry out quickly
[-] my jewelry holder case to store my jewelry in when I am in the tanning bed
[-] change of clothes-- usually sweats/gym clothes I don't care if they get stained, etc.
[-] my tanning lotions-- my body lotion, face lotion, accelerator,& post-tan extender. (picture below)
[-] my stickers, eye protectors, nail and toe protectors, hair net protector. (picture below of mine)
[-] mini towel to wipe myself off after tanning
[-] hair heat protectant spray-- yes I am a freak about it! my hair is past my butt, so I am very anal on keeping it healthy, and tanning beds are extreme damage.

well, by law, you absolutely need eye protection. Sunglasses do not cut it. These are eye protectors that all tanning salons sell, but they are universally the same thing. Little half egg couplets that rest on your eyes. I have a picture of mine, plus the convenient case they come in. I have two, one I keep in my car and the other in my tanning purse.

In addition to the tanning stickers to place any where on your skin to judge the depth of your tan after every session, there are many other cosmetics you can use while tanning. Check out the picture to the side, you can really see the difference in shading huh?? I just love this idea of tanning stickers! :)

Tanning salons have many different kinds of stickers including peace signs, thunder bolts, hearts, play boy bunnies, stars, palm trees, little guns, hello kitty, and many many more. the main three are hearts, thunder bolts, playboy bunnies, and palm trees. i love the hearts and stars, but switch it up in the summer time. it usually takes 2-4 sessions to notice a different in shade. the stomach is the best spot as our stomachs seem to tan the hardest.

One of my new cosmetics I am trying is the teeth whitening system. Below is a picture of the two products I bought at my local tanning salon. Both were very expensive, but I saw results after one use and am very pleased. As with any teeth whitener, use occasionally with caution.

The bleach bright is this little teeth whitening gel accelerator light you put this gel on it and then place your lips over the plastic lip, an turn the light on, and for 10 minutes you can do one session of whitening. This can be done any where, not just in a tanning bed.

This is unlike the little blue boxes titled "LA Teeth Whitening" which is a gel you paint on your teeth prior to your tanning session, and the tanning bed rays do the whitening.

Both products were $45+ but very worth it!!

 It is the bleach bright product, and the LA Teeth Whitening product-- I have four of them because I Love it so much! LOL Both products are about $45 each;
however you get a discount when you buy multiple at once like I did!
Ok, It is driving me nuts that this picture is uploading sideways.
It is right side up in my documents. I will just live with it -- lol

 Another product I absolutely love are the sprays my tanning salon carries. 


One is GLO Naked which is a body shimmering spray. It makes you skin silky smooth, and shimmers the right amount without overdoing it. I use it on my legs only unless I am going somewhere where I will be in water-- then I will do my entire body. 

The other product is Bare Shine Hair Spray. This spray is ideal for protecting it from heat, especially tanning bed heat which is why it is recommended to apply to hair prior to tanning.
I love the smell of both the sprays, and they were about $16 each.

Tan Extenders
 Below are three different lotions I love to use. White bottle is the HEMP NATION tan extender, middle blue bottle is Kardashian Glow Tan Extender, and far right is Aloe There tan Extender.
I have used HEMP NATION and Kardashian Glow, not the Aloe There yet. 

My favorite is the Kardashian Glow Tan Extender. There was a time I was on vacation and did not tan for over three weeks, and still maintained my sun kissed bronze and I believe it was due to this lotion.

 Next we have two products most tanning bed users do not know about. They are 'Nail Savers."
As you tan more and more, if you have acrylic nails on all the time like I do, you will notice your nails start turning green or yellow. it is disgusting, and I do not ever want to see it happen to my nails so I use prevention and use these babies on my nails! I do not have any thing but polish on my toes, so I do not use the toe savers, but some girls do! to each their own, right? =]

tanning basics  xx
Many people wonder what they should wear to the tanning salon. This is very much based on your own preference. I know many women who come right from work in their dressy work clothes and do not mind. I personally carry a change of clothes in my tanning tote bag for when i get out of the tanning bed, so what i wear TO the salon is irrelevant.

Now, when it comes to what you should wear IN the bed -- this is also personal preference. Some people are absolutely appalled at the mere thought of laying in a tanning bed naked, especially knowing that someone else laid in that tanning bed naked. Others could care less, and trust their tanning salon to properly sanitize the bed before they get into it. Their are a lot of different views on this particular question, and it all comes down to one very simply answer: wear whatever you are comfortable in, and remember that you will get tan lines. if you wear your bathing suit every time, you will have tan lines that reflect that. This is why I go 100% naked!!! ;]

tanning lotions xx
I will add a few basics here but I have a separate blog post on lotions which answers which lotions are my favorite and least favorite; why do we need lotions; what is inside the lotions; why are they so expensive; and what the different types of lotions are and which are beneficial to your skin type. Very informative post!! The link will be provided when i am finished with it. For now here are some of the basic lotions i use. Face lotion and a body lotion. Designer Skin is my favorite brand.

sunless tanning xx
Most salons do have a market for sunless tanning, as with the very well known tanning horror stories-- many people turn to sunless tanning to as a means to an end. lol Below are products that L.A. Tan has which is my go to tanning salon. VersaSpa Pro is the newest machine they have which provides an amazingly even sunless glow with four different levels to choose from. Below are pre tan exfoliants, moisturizers, and after tan extenders all used with sunless tanning for a better, richer, longer lasting glow.

I sunless tan when i want a dark bronze color in the shortest amount of time -- for instance a couple days before a wedding, etc. always sunless tan 48-72 hours prior to an event! You may have streaking, but more importantly the sunless tan takes that long for its truest color to develop!

very frequently asked questions xx
I hear these questions asked in the salon I go to the most. if you have any other questions, chances are I will more than likely know the answer. Please just leave it in the comment section below and depending on the question, I might even add it to my post, of course with your name and blog next to it for the great recommendation, and my best and most honest answer! thanks babes! xx

[x] why doesn't the entire body tan at the same rate? there are lotions specifically made for the face, for the legs, etc as those tend to not tan as fast/dark as the mid section of the body. my abs tan the hardest-- my stomach is SUPER dark. The fact, however, is an exposed area. With a mix of  the day's lotions, make-up, sweat, bacteria and other substances-- they all act as a barrier to a portion of the UV light.  Also, we all wash our face which  tends to rub off skin cells more so than on other parts of the body.

[x] why doesn't the tan last? well some of you may not know this but, the skin's repair mechanism consists of the top skin layer (epidermis) replacing all it's skin cells every 28 to 30 days. A tan can only be maintained by repeated exposure to the UV light in the beds.

[x] should I shower before or after tanning?
It would be better if you showered first, exfoliate and MOISTURIZE ---then used the bronzer. The easiest way to make a distinction is to think of bronzers as a form of make-up. Self-tanners can last up to a few days, even with showering, because they produce a chemical reaction in the skin. If you’re after a longer lasting effect, exfoliate your skin prior to using a self-tanner. If you don’t exfoliate first, it’s like using car polish on a paint job that is oxidized. For a longer lasting effect you would first use a compound to get rid of the oxidized paint, and then use a polish! get it!? also, you do not want to be streaky because you showered prior to the recommended 4-6 hours. However, there are now types of tanning lotions such as natural bronzers which allow you to shower immediately after you tan for situations such as you going out that night, etc.

Last but not least -- stay hydrated!!! your skin needs to regenerate, and stay moisturized!! keeping hydrated it very important in developing a great, but safe tan!! 

that's all i can think of right now, but as stated above if you have any questions let me know and I will add them into my post with your name and blog next to it thanking you for the recommendation! :)

Wow, am I finally done!? Seems like it took forever!! Thank you all so much for reading, I truly love each and every one of my readers. Remember I am no longer a tanning professional, but was one for 4 years. All the information in this post is based on those years of experience. things may have changed in the past 6 months that I have no longer been a tanning professional; so forgive me if I provided information that is no longer correct. Always do your research!!!

thank you my lovelies <3

Rica x0x


  1. Wow, you know a lot about tanning! I used to go to sun beds when I was younger. I don't anymore. When you are in your thirties you start thinking about the wrinkles the sun exposure causes, so I use sun cream instead. LOL
    Brilliant very informative post!

    1. Hey girlie! thanks for your comment, and being a follower of mine. I, too, have thought about the tanning risks about when I am in my 30s-- I still have quite a few years to go but do not think I would be tanning at all when I am that age. Not to say it's an 'old age' but you are absolutely correct when you say premature wrinkling can occur -- this is especially so for those with dryer skin-- which I have!

  2. Wow... great post, full of good tips!!!!!
    Tnx for your lovely comment on my blog!!!! <3!!!
    Happy friday doll!

  3. You gave amazing tips for tanning I did not know to add lip balm to lips see I learn something new today and thanks to you no wonder my lips get so dry. I usually tan for one session when I plan to go away for I wont get burn. I also never use home products but after reading this review I will consider it. Have a great weekend.

    1. Hey Jackie! thanks for your lovely comment. Yes I instantly went for my chap stick the first few moments I was in the booth because my lips were getting sooo hot. However I naturally have chapstick on my lips 24/7, so for me chapstick was a natural reaction LOL Then when speaking to one of the workers there, she said its a definite must have because it can really dry out your lips! Glad I helped you out there babe!!

  4. Thank you so much for following me, just started to follow you on GFC
    Kisses, Ana

    1. of course love, I love your comments on my other posts and your blog is too cute! so I just had to :)

  5. Lovely blog, I'm your new follower! :)


    1. awesome chica! I will check your page out and follow you back <3

  6. wow . this is a really nice post and I love how detailed it is! I have never gone tanning in a bed before, but I really enjoyed this because I know what to do if I ever do choose to go! I didn't know that tanning was so damaging to your lips and hair so it is good to know now! I have pretty sensitive skin so I will probably not be tanning that much!
    However, I really love those tanning stickers. they are such a cute idea ! I have always wanted a shape like that so once I tried doing it by not putting sunscren on a part of my body... though it didn't quite work out. I tend to burn a lot before I tan!
    If I really do need to tan, I will use the sunless tanning hehe!

    I was wondering though how the teeth brightening product is going for you? I really would like to whiten my teeth before graduation! I just can't afford a 100 dollar kit right now lol!

    1. Yes in deed!! I am not a tanning addict by any means-- I know girls that are a little too much into it. I tan twice a month, and haven't for the past couple months although I have been meaning to !! LOl However when I need to get color, I can tan every other day for a couple weeks until I get my shade to a decent glow as opposed to being pasty. I am very worried about skin cancer, and premature wrinkling, etc however I do not think at the rate of exposure I am at-- I have any worries to be concerned about. You never know though!!

      Yes, sunless tanning is absolutely able to work just as good as UV tanning as far as the stickers are concerned-- any thing to just show that contrast in skin shading really. I hope it works for you because yes they are veryyyy cute!!

      The teeth whitening thing I have put on hiatus as teeth whitening of any sort is never good for your teeth and I am currently in the midst of getting teeth work done so when I start it back up I will let you know for sure what my decision is as I am still undecided. lol

      thanks for your comment chickadee!! <33

  7. Thanks for dropping by RM and for your lovely comment.
    I am based out of Mumbai in India. And though officiall we don't celebrate Thanksgiving, Mumbai celebrates everything. Thanks a ton for our follow.. Following you back.
    I did a review on the cream blushes... here is the link -

    And will be doing a review on the nail polish today.
    See you around.

    1. thank you love! I would love to follow you and am lookingforward to your nail polish review!

  8. And oh the post is simply lovely for anyone looking for tans... However in Mumbai we are always looking to get rid of our tans... Am your very newest follower.

    1. LOL your last comment totally reminded me of a video on youtube by famous "SuperWoman' of whom is indian descent. She titled it the 'differences between brown girls and white girls" and one of her main comedic approaches was how white girls are always like "lets go be in the sun!" and indian girls are always like "no way, the first place we see that has shade!" haha it is so true though.

      I think middle eastern/east Asian women have gorgeous complexions. your guys' skin is silky smooth caramel! LOL I wish I can have a tan that natural!

      thanks for your comments love!

    2. plan a trip... come over. will show you our lovely country. Will give me an opportunity to travel as well. And we'd have some super girly fun. :)

  9. Hi doll, you are such a sweetheart, thanks for your wonderful comments, they made my day. I have never tried tanning before because I never needed to but I can tell you are expertly informed about it. This is a great bit of advice and knowledge on the subject. Very thorough!

    1. Of course! I think your blog Is one of my alltime favorites. Your posts are so thorough and detailed, and offer such amazing ideas. I find myself wanting to comment and comment but don't want to seem like a creeper so stop myself! LOL

      thank you for also commenting!

  10. Thank you for following my blog! I'm following you now :)

    This post is just amazing, you are informed about tanning!

  11. Thank you for your comment on my blog.
    I looked around at yours and love it ;)
    the jacket I'm wearing is from H&M :)!

    Keep up the good work, like your blog ;)

    1. thank you gorgeous! I loooove your page!

  12. Wow dear, you know a lot about it! Thanks for sharing!! :)
    NL. <3

    1. LOL yes -- all from working as a tanning professional before starting to tan myself for a few years! thanks for commenting!

  13. Hello, you have an awesome blog here and it is my great pleasure to invite you to my international giveaway on my blog,where you can win shopping spree of $50. dont forget to stop by here.

    1. thank you so much -- id love to follow you back. ill go do it now :)

  14. AnonymousMay 31, 2014

    The air-Storm vacuum cleaner casing is made out of a near indestructible resin material that will never warp when heated.
    First, we will assume that you have already decided which features and options you would like to have
    in a new vacuum cleaner, and you have narrowed your list of possibilities to a reasonable
    number models, or brands, you would like to research.
    After a few weeks my wife made me bring it home because
    it is better than what we have at the house.

    Here is my blog post; pet vacuum reviews

  15. AnonymousJune 05, 2014

    However, without employing SEO, the task is half done.
    The Zoologic program has also been expanded to incorporate each
    its European and Hong Kong applications. Sites with this kind of web designs will be banned for a
    period of time until they shape up their site.

    Also visit my webpage ... people per hour

  16. AnonymousJune 05, 2014

    Hi there! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I really enjoy reading through your blog posts.

    Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the
    same subjects? Thank you so much!

    Here is my page :: Playstation Plus Gratuitement

  17. Wow, fantastic blog layout! How long have you been blogging for?

    you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your website
    is great, let alone the content!

    Review my weblog ... quest bars

  18. Hey very nice blog!

    Here is my blog post: quest bars


I appreciate every one who takes the time to read my blog! Because of this, I promise to comment and subscribe to all who comment and subscribe to me!!


. javascript:void(0)