We Are Sunshine

We Are Sunshine: Expanding services and changing perceptions with Smart Sun Therapy

Wednesday, January 11th, 2023

By Matt Russell, Smart Tan CEO

Steve was a successful tanning salon owner for years and a dear friend. He started his stores when he was single and quickly grew them into a successful and respectable business operation. Over the years, he married the love of his life and had three wonderful children. Steve was living the dream as an entrepreneur, a loving husband and proud father. In the early years, Steve spoke openly and confidently about his tanning business as a proud father would about his children. His entire family wore jackets with his logo and his customers proudly brandished his T-shirts.

But all that changed after the “Sunscare” industry waged war against tanning, and accused indoor tanning business owners of being unethical, cancer-causing, profiteers. I remember Steve telling me how he would remove his jacket that had his tanning salon name on it before he went to his son’s soccer games. He told me he didn’t want his children looked down upon by families that had bought into the anti-tanning rhetoric.

Today, health care groups, doctors, and the media acknowledge that getting regular sunlight exposure is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, tanning beds are still frowned upon by these groups. For decades we’ve been trying to teach the world that our UV tanning devices are simply sunlight simulators emitting 95% UVA and 5% UVB just like mid-day summer sunlight. But the stigma associated with artificial UV light equipment marches on.

However, no one takes issue with the non-UV spectrum of sunlight and the therapeutic benefits associated with them. Red light, infrared light, and other spectrums are broadly accepted to be harmless yet provide many benefits. Is it possible that we can utilize non-UV devices to teach the masses that devices emitting various sunlight wavelengths can offer similar benefits as sunlight?

We’re not suggesting that we fool people into believing that exposure to UV light, regardless of the source, comes without risks. Responsible tanning salons have always educated consumers with equipment labels, consent forms, and disclaimer language clearly communicating the risks of UV exposure. But, when the multi-billion dollar “sunscare” industry, and the media that bows to them, convince the world that indoor tanning beds are akin to cigarette smoking, something needs to be done to put things into proper perspective.

Click here to read the entire article in the latest issue of Smart Tan Magazine online.