Artificial Tan


The artificial tan is a practice that allows you to tan the skin through the use of equipment equipped with UV lamps, or through the use of those that are commonly referred to as "tanning lamps".

Anyone who does not want to give up the coveted bronze color during the winter months, therefore, can resort "quietly" to artificial lamps.

Today, public awareness of the dangers of sun exposure has increased considerably, and many know that tanning lamps, like ultraviolet rays, have negative repercussions on our body.

Tanning Lamps

The first tanning equipment appeared in the States around the 1960s. Most of these were devices for domestic use that were much less effective and safer than current technologies.

Born from cultural and economic presuppositions, they were actually presented as a safe or even beneficial product, as opposed to a sun which, given the continuous decrease in the ozone layer, became increasingly dangerous.

High pressure UVA lamps have become very popular in recent years. Their filters should minimize exposure to UVB radiation which is more dangerous than the previous ones in determining skin erythema. Just the filters are the most important element of these equipments and manufacturing defects or lack of maintenance can cause serious damages to the skin.

UVA radiations, if on the one hand cause less skin redness, on the other hand have a lower tanning power.

We have therefore tried to maximize the radiation intensity, up to values ​​10 times higher than natural radiation.

Currently, there is a very precise regulation regarding tanning lamps which foresees the division into four different groups:

  • Type 1 UV lamps that emit mainly UVA radiation and a very small and non-significant amount of UVB radiation.
  • Type 2 UV lamps that emit UVA radiation and a limited amount of UVB radiation.
  • Type 3 UV lamps that emit low-pressure radiation of both type A and type B.
  • Type 4 UV lamps that emit a much higher amount of UVB radiation than UVA radiation.


Type A ultraviolet radiation reaches the skin in depth, at the level of the dermo-epidermal junction, stimulating the production of melanin by the melanocytes.

Type B ultraviolet radiations, on the other hand, do not penetrate as deeply as UVAs, but remain at the level of the epidermis. For this reason, they are responsible for the first phase of irradiation which, in many cases, causes redness, inflammation and sunburn.

Side effects

For the moment, the techniques used for artificial tanning seem to be free of negative effects, even if their unnatural concern is for scholars and consumers.

Furthermore, although less dangerous than UVB, class A ultraviolet radiation is not entirely harmless. In particular, some studies have shown that if on the one hand they have poor short-term negative effects, on the other they can cause serious alterations after many years (skin cancers). In addition to this, UVA radiation is believed to be the main cause of the well-known and feared photo-aging. It is well known, in fact, that those who expose themselves excessively to UV rays - be they of natural origin or artificial origin - undergo premature skin aging, characterized by the appearance of blemishes such as skin spots and wrinkles.

Among the other side effects that can be faced by resorting to artificial tanning, we recall:

  • rashes;
  • Burns;
  • Solar dermatitis;
  • Fotocheratiti;
  • Damage to the eyes (if they are not protected with the special glasses);
  • Skin tumors, such as basal cell carcinoma, melanoma and squamous cell carcinoma.


Although widespread, practiced by many people and - apparently - well tolerated, artificial tanning is an aesthetic technique that has some contraindications.

Generally, the use of artificial tanning is contraindicated - or in any case strongly discouraged - to individuals who:

  • They have a large number of snows on their body and / or face;
  • They are particularly sensitive to sunlight and / or are prone to sunburn;
  • They suffer or have suffered from skin cancers (in these cases, the contraindication is absolute);
  • They are under the age of 18, therefore, children must NEVER be subjected to this type of aesthetic technique;
  • I am on therapy with anti-inflammatory drugs, antibiotics or photosensitising drugs.

Useful tips

If you really can't give up having a perfect tan all the time and, for this reason, artificial tanning is used, in order to prevent side effects and complications, it is useful to take some precautions.

In this regard, since - in general - the damages caused by the solar lamps are very similar to the solar ones, it can be useful to follow these few and simple tips:

  • Expose yourself to artificial light gradually: the first day is the one with the highest risk because the skin is unprepared for intense and prolonged exposure.
  • Use appropriate cosmetic products: choose the sun filter that is most suitable for your skin type.
  • Always protect the eyes: always use protective goggles, the damage to the eye can be considerable and the simple closure of the eyelids is not sufficient protection.
  • Avoid exposing yourself more than necessary: ​​the ultraviolet radiations emitted by the lamps add up to the solar radiation to which you normally expose yourself. For a cumulative effect therefore increases the danger of skin diseases.