Indoor tanning involves more than just lying in a bed and soaking up UV rays. Understanding the different types of tanning beds is crucial to ensure a safe and effective tanning experience. Here’s a detailed guide to help you choose the right tanning bed.

Understanding Low-Pressure Tanning Beds

Low-pressure tanning beds are the more traditional and common option in most tanning salons.

Key Features

  • Lamps: Equipped with fluorescent lamps, typically a mix of UVA and UVB.
  • Intensity: Emit lower UVB rays, providing a slower tanning process.
  • Tan Development: Ideal for building a gradual, natural-looking tan.
  • Skin Type Suitability: Suited for individuals with lighter to medium skin tones.
  • Experience Level: Suitable for both beginners and experienced planners.


  • Tanning Time: Longer exposure times are common compared to high-pressure beds.
  • Maintenance: Lamps may need more frequent replacement.

Exploring High-Pressure Tanning Beds

High-pressure tanning beds are known for providing a quicker and deeper tan.

Key Features

  • Lamps: Use high-pressure quartz lamps, emitting mostly UVA rays.
  • Intensity: Higher intensity and shorter sessions for faster results.
  • Tan Development: Produces a more immediate and deeper tan.
  • Skin Type Suitability: Best for individuals with darker skin tones or those who have already built a base tan.
  • Experience Level: Recommended for experienced tanners accustomed to shorter exposure times.


  • Tanning Time: Sessions are shorter compared to low-pressure beds.
  • Maintenance: High-pressure lamps usually last longer but may be more expensive to replace.

the most suitable tanning bed

Matching Beds to Skin Types and Goals

Fair Skin (Types I and II)

  • Start with low-pressure beds to minimize the risk of sunburn. Gradually progress to high-pressure beds as your skin builds tolerance.

Moderate Skin (Types III and IV)

  • Both low-pressure and high-pressure beds are suitable. Start with low pressure for a gradual tan and consider high pressure for quicker results.

Dark Skin (Types V and VI)

  • High-pressure beds are often more effective for individuals with dark skin tones. Consider shorter sessions for maintenance rather than building a base tan.

Tanning Goals

  • If you’re looking for a subtle and natural tan, low-pressure beds may be preferable. High-pressure beds could be a better choice for a quicker, deeper tan, especially for special occasions.

Experience Level

  • Beginners may feel more comfortable starting with low-pressure beds due to longer exposure times. Experienced tanners can explore both options based on their preferences.

Always consult with a knowledgeable tanning salon professional before making a decision. They can assess your skin type, understand your goals, and recommend the most suitable tanning bed. Additionally, prioritize safety by using protective eyewear and following recommended exposure times.