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A Guide To Tanning Bed Bulbs And Lamps

By Ciara McNamara

Tanning bed lamps are used in every tan bed or suntan lamp. When purchasing new or used tanning beds, look at the lamps. Make sure they are good for tanning and meet FDA guidelines for safety. Another consideration is access. Be sure the lamps are easy to change when needed. Being able to easily perform the maintenance yourself is important when you buy a home bed.

There are differences in lamps used in conventional and high pressure beds. Make sure you are buying the right tanning bed lamps for your bed. They aren't interchangeable. If purchasing replacement lighting bulbs on the internet, check the make and model of your bed carefully. Make sure the lamps you are buying are made for your bed.

High Pressure Tanning Bed Bulbs

High pressure beds use quartz lamps in a variety of sizes. The gases inside these bulbs or lamps have pressure that is slightly higher than atmospheric pressure. In these beds, the lamps are located in the top of the bed, so you tan from above only. When you have tanned on one side of your body for about 10-12 minutes, you turn over and tan the skin on the other side. The surface of these beds is much more comfortable than a conventional bed.

The biggest benefit of these lamps is the time you need to spend in the bed. Since you tan faster, you need to spend less time in the salon. You can achieve your tan in about 3 weeks of 3-5 sessions each week. With a conventional bed, it would take at least a month to achieve the same level of color. Maintaining your tan is easier too. You only need 2-3 sessions each month to maintain the color, compared with that many sessions each week in a conventional bed. These bulbs use UVA rays only, not UVB rays which are responsible for burning.

Conventional Tanning Bed Lamps

Conventional beds use long, tube like lamps that resemble fluorescent tubes. The lamps are located on the top and bottom of the bed. All areas are tanned at the same time, without the need to change positions during the session.

Conventional beds use UVA and UVB rays in varying levels. Some use both and others use mostly UVA with a bit of UVB rays. UVA rays are responsible for the aging effects on the skin and UVB rays are the burning rays that cause sunburn when you are outside in the sun. It's important to determine which type of rays your bed emits. You want to be sure to replace your existing bulbs with comparable newer lamps.

Another consideration in the type of bed you have at home or in the salon is the tanning bed lotion you will use. Different lotions are better for each type of bed. The owner of your tanning salon can help you choose a lotion that will work for the bed you are using as well as your skin type. Regardless of the bed you are using, you should always use a lotion. Lotions help you tan faster and nourish your skin.


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