We Are Sunshine

Why Canada Needs the JCTA

Wednesday, September 27th, 2023

Faced with unprecedented challenges throughout the pandemic, the Canadian indoor tanning industry came together like never before. Ever since Covid struck, the Joint Canadian Tanning Association has experienced continued salon memberships growth, making it clear that tanning businesses are getting back on track and now understand more than ever how vital the JCTA’s position as a voice for the industry really is.

The tanning industry, as always, proved to be remarkably resilient. We had to be. We know that tanners rely on professional tanning facilities for access to moderate UV light exposure in a controlled environment. And, as business owners, our livelihoods depend on being able to provide our communities with access to our services.

In the face of lockdowns, the JCTA stood up and demanded to be seen as essential. As the situation continued to evolve, JCTA resources for industry members were more important than ever, giving salon owners access to daily updates on a federal and province-to-province level. When salons were reopened, JCTA marketing pivoted to focus on ensuring cautious consumers that professional tanning businesses were following the strictest health and safety protocol. As the entire country continues to recover, member salons have also been aided financially by reduced costs for insurance with the JCTA Insurance Program.

And, if there was one silver lining of the pandemic, it’s that the benefits of UV exposure became a focal point of Covid coverage in mainstream media. That’s helped shift perceptions of the services we provide, and the JCTA continues to do its part to educate Canadians about the many benefits of UV light and other light therapies, like red and blue light, near infrared and infrared. The evolution of equipment that emits different light spectrums has helped transform today’s salon into a spa experience, where clients come to utilize multiple services.

As our industry continues to become more professionalized and diversified, the “strength in numbers” created by burgeoning JCTA salon membership will help ensure that progress is sustained.


The JCTA (Joint Canadian Tanning Association) is a national non-profit organization created to increase understanding of the professional tanning industry’s scientifically supported position that regular moderate ultra-violet exposure from sunshine or sunbed in a non-burning fashion is part of a responsible lifestyle that recognizes both the inherent benefits and the manageable risks associated with too much or too little ultraviolet light exposure. Sun exposure, like air, water and food, is natural and necessary to human life. The Joint Canadian Tanning Association’s vision is that all Canadians learn to correctly embrace ultraviolet and sunshine as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Accomplishing these goals requires the JCTA’s involvement in all levels, connecting the dots between our industry, government, media and consumers.


Members of the Joint Canadian Tanning Association (JCTA) pride themselves on being the very best of our Nation’s indoor sunbathing community. Our membership follows the highest level of professional and operational standards currently in existence. We are committed to providing salon clients a moderate and controlled sunbathing experience.

The JCTA has its own Professional Standards which far exceed the current Health Canada standards. These elevated standards help ensure positive client experiences and deter government from getting further involved.

  1. Follow all government regulations.
  2. Skin Type every client correctly using the JCTA Skin Typing Form
  3. Banning the Use of equipment for a Skin Type 1 person – defined by Dr. Fitzpatrick as “always burn, never tan”.
  4. Persons under the age of 18 (some provinces 19) are not permitted to UV tan without a prescription or follow government regulations for teen tanning where regulations exist.
  5. Every staff that controls the equipment is trained and industry certified.
  6. Keep complete client records.
  7. No use of self-serve (client controlled/coin-op/swipe card) equipment. Only a trained and industry certified operator may set the time.
  8. Every client must wear protective eyewear.
  9. JCTA warning sign of the risk of UV Light will be a placed in every UV Tanning Room and one in the front lobby.


The JCTA’s primary role is to defend your rights as a salon operator and your client’s rights. The JCTA speaks for all of us. Through regular communication with government, we are able to become a part of the conversation and avoid unnecessary government involvement. Governments are now hearing us. We are now considered a Federal Industry Stakeholder, and relationships with provincial governments have been strengthened since the pandemic.

Because the professional tanning community is committed to fostering a responsible, moderate approach to UV exposure, we are supportive to constructive, genuine efforts to work with government to further this mutual goal. Canadian citizens are best served when a genuine partnership between government and industry is formed to cooperate on achieving goals that effectively foster the best interests of Canadian public health.

Media is also hearing us, and this is why we’re now not seeing a lot of negative media about tanning. Positive messages about UV light and tanning are becoming more common, and we’re driving the positive narrative by supporting research and making sure media hears about it.


Through our strength in numbers, the JCTA is able to negotiate more favorable rates and coverage for comprehensive insurance.

The new JCTA insurance program with BrokerLink in Calgary offers one policy for both property and professional liability that is cost effective with minimal restrictions. Replacement cost of equipment is covered, whether it’s UV or sunless (booth or handheld), no matter how old equipment is. Cancer coverage is not excluded and teeth whitening and spa services are also covered. If you have a sunbed or standup in your beauty salon, spa or gym, you can get insurance through the JCTA program. Do you have laser equipment? The JCTA insurance program will cover that as well.

Based on a survey done with 30 salons, the average cost savings was 26.65%.


At, salon owners will find a host of information including JCTA Member Resources, which keep you updated on the latest news about government, media and science that affects your business. Member Resources are updated every week, with the latest updates sent out in a weekly email newsletter.

The JCTA continues to be updated with government press releases every day. These are shared with members so they know what’s coming and what benefits they may be entitled to. This was especially helpful during the pandemic but continues to benefit the sunbed community. 


Along with keeping member businesses apprised of the latest development related to the industry, the JCTA has taken an active role with consumer education. Our primary goals in this respect are to promote responsible tanning practices, remind people why tanning can be beneficial for their lifestyles, and direct customers to JCTA member salons, where trained operators

On the JCTA consumer website,, Canadians will find positive information about tanning and learn why they should choose JCTA Member Salons for UV tanning, spray tanning, and spa services. JCTA membership gains you placement on the JCTA Salon Finder, which is viewed by thousands of Canadian consumers per month, due to our paid advertising on Facebook and Google. From October 2022 through May 2023, almost 50,000 Canadians visited All of them were presented with the name, phone number and address for the three closest Member Salons, and users clicked to a Member Salon profile more than 10,000 times.

JCTA’s Google and Facebook advertising program is also making millions of impressions with consumers around Canada every year. Ongoing social media and Google advertising campaigns drives Canadian consumers to telling consumers about the benefits of the services JCTA Member salons provide. Campaigns focusing on pre-tanning, sunburn prevention, spray tanning, making tanning a part of your lifestyle, and more provide timely reminders of why people should visit professional salons.

Since Covid began, sunlight has been shown to be very beneficial, and this goes beyond vitamin D. The JCTA, with its relationship with like-minded organizations, is promoting all of these benefits to help grow awareness of the many benefits of sun and sunbeds, and that supplements can never replace UV light.


Salon owners – it’s time to join forces and make a mark in the tanning industry; to maintain and develop a prosperous indoor tanning industry in Canada by educating Canadians on how to maximize the benefits while minimizing the manageable risks of responsible UV exposure. We will pursue continuous improvement of the perception of tanning amongst Canadians through scientific facts and research that support indoor tanning as an intelligent, controlled choice for UV exposure.

JCTA membership is not only about protecting and enriching your industry, but also improving and promoting your business. For about 57 cents a day or $1.33 with Smart Tan Membership included, you receive valuable resources, training for your staff and yourself, and help the JCTA do more for the entire industry. There’s so much more we can accomplish when we work together!

Click here to watch a video with additional details on the benefits of JCTA membership.