12th May 2021
Some tanning bed companies are renowned for advertising that they're “safe” because they filter out the UVB rays - so you won't get burnt.
Let me assure you this is complete and utter nonsense!
Firstly, filtering out the UVB rays leaves you with UVA - a deeper-penetrating ray that causes premature aging and increases your risk of developing skin cancer. So while you might not leave the salon looking like an overcooked lobster, you certainly haven't been tanning “safely”!
The other issue with these claims is that sun-lounge companies often like to define UVB differently to doctors and scientists. In medicine, for example, sun rays with a wavelength between 280-320nm are classified UVB, while 320-400nm are UVA. Whereas many tanning companies conveniently shift their definition of UVA to 315-400nm. Spot the difference?
Also, we know that UVA alone doesn't provide the desirable bronze colour that UVB does - it's more a greyish-brown. So if you're getting a great colour from sun-beds, chances are you've been exposed to some UVB in the mix.
Regardless of how much or how little UVB is in the mix, tanning beds are never safe. They are leading to premature aging and increasing your risk of skin cancer - they should be avoided like the pest, no matter how 'safe' they claim to be!