Tanning salons are raising their prices up by 10 percent but business isn’t slowing down.
The new tax law went into effect July 1, 2010 for all 50 states in the US. All indoor tanning salons are being taxed ten percent as part of the health care bill set by President Obama’s administration. The tax was set to shy people away from indoor tanning beds because of the rise of melanoma cases.
“The serious tanners that come in all the time are not going to have a problem with it [the tax],” said Kelly Pearson, owner of Sun Your Bunz tanning salon in West Valley City, Utah. College-aged people make up 57 percent of Pearson’s clientele, the ages ranging from 18 to 24. Pearson opened the tanning salon in 2003 and has never heard of any of her customers having melanoma.
“If you start out slow but stay consistent [in tanning bed] you’re going to get a tan, it’s not going to cause skin cancer,” said Pearson. “But if you do have skin cancer running in your family then I probably wouldn’t go because you have a higher risk of getting skin cancer,” Pearson said.
The UVB rays in tanning beds are the same burning rays as the burning rays from the sun. The difference is the bulbs are a lot more condensed, which is why people tan quicker in a tanning bed than in the sun. Other tanning tips for indoor tanning are to always wear the eye goggles. The UVB rays from the bulbs can cause eye damage. Always use a tanning lotion before lying in a tanning bed and always use a moisturizer after tanning.
“People are so vain. That’s why women get their hair and nails done, they want to look and feel good,” said Pearson.
There are good features to indoor tanning. One is the confidence people feel when they accomplish a tan, which is why indoor and spray tanning have become so popular. The UVB rays from the tanning bed also provide the skin with vitamin D, the same vitamin D the sun provides.
“I love tanning. It makes me feel good and I think I look a lot better tan. The new tax law is not going to stop me from tanning,” said Yeruska Sanchez.
Sanchez is 25 years old and uses the indoor tanning beds about three times per week.
While some of Pearson’s clients have stopped coming into the salon because of the rise in prices due to the tax law, it will not be enough to have a drastic loss of profit on the tanning salon. On average, Sun Your Bunz tanning salon makes about $140,000 gross per year.
“It won’t make that much of a difference because we have enough customers that it [loss in customers that don’t want to pay the tax] won’t really matter, I think the new tax is stupid and if the government wants people to stop tanning they would need to ban it because people are still going to come,” said Pearson.