I have had to defend my tanning to people who will generally lay out in the sun get red and think they are doing good and getting a tan. BTW you should never "burn to tan" gradual exposure is best.
Well let me tell ya people if you are getting red or burning that is doing damage to your skin. your skin is designed to tan as a natural protection from the sun but you are not supposed to burn. Burning is overexposure which is skin damage and skin damage leads to problems.
Tanning in a tanning bed you should not be burning (you have to start slow so you do not burn and build a tolerance to the UV exposure do NOT do a full session in a bed u've never used b4 unless you have a base tan) you are in a controlled environment and u only get so much UV exposure.
At the salon i go to the base beds have virtually no burning rays so you can tan in those for the full time with no base tan and you should be fine, i've never ever burned in those beds. You start in those then work your way up to the other beds with more UVB.
You should always use lotion too, a good tanning lotion AND a moisturizer. See those old people who look like leather from tanning WELL they didn't take care of their skin and probably used baby oil which is the worst thing you can put on your skin cus it does not allow your skin to absorb moisture esp if it's already dry. (lotions with petrolatum are the same as mineral oil or baby oil not good for your skin CHECK LABELS)
I personally am a skincare nut, i have more moisturizers for my face and body than most people i know. If you tan you SHOULD be a skincare nut and SHOULD be moisturizing and caring for your skin properly.
You should only tan 3 times a week (2 or 1 if you are only trying to mantain your color) 3 is for building color. The tanning process can continue for 72 hrs. You get better color if you wait for the process to complete to expose again.
Always use eye protection, people don't understand how important it is. Your eyes are only covered by a thin lid that UV can penetrate and closing your eyes does not cut it. If you value your vision you will use eye protection.
If you tan outside always always always use SPF. Those high spf's are really no better than using a 30 so don't waste your money. SPF factor is based on your exposure time without burning so if you burn in 10 mins and are using an spf of 10 you are only getting 10X that 10 min protection. So you have to know your body and how much exposure you can take to know when to reapply. BTW you NEED to reapply even if you have a spf 50 on (which really is no better than a 30) do not have this false sense of security that you do not need to reapply.
I hope that most people realize that most information put out there about skin cancer and the "dangers of the sun" are planted by sunscreen companies to scare the hell out of people to sell more product. Please do your own research on the subject instead of listening to cosmo which is paid a whole bunch of money to place these ads and articles by sunscreen companies to scare the shit out of you. These companies tell people to apply sunscreen while indoors if they want to sit by a window.
Ok i started out just wanting to post links about some vitamin d articles i found since most the population is vitamin d deficient since they don't get it from their diet and with the sun-phobia they aren't getting it from the sun either. Elderly people need the most since osteoporosis is prevalent in older people and it IS reversible!!!!
There is a book called the UV advantage that tells all about how blown out of proportion this sun-phobia has gotten it's by Dr. Holick. He's been on news reports and his book has been quoted in different places defending sun exposure. http://www.uvadvantage.org/
I've had to deal with all kinds of crap by people who tell me i am going to die because i tan, well it's because of them that i did learn so much about how tanning works and what if any the dangers were (ie sunburns).
this is actually pretty good to check out for some fast info http://health.howstuffworks.com/sunscreen.htm
while these are a bit biased still have some good info http://health.howstuffworks.com/spf.htm
Ok i have gone on much longer than i wanted to lol but remember moderation is the key to everything, and not just tanning.