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A Tan With a Price Tag

Amanda Bar

In the past I’ve generally held tanning salons in disdain.  Most of the people that lauded the places were of the Jersey Shore-type (gross), and why would I bother spending money to be bombarded with UV rays when you live in the Sunshine State?  Well, after lying out in that aforementioned sun for an hour and a half with only a minimal tan to show for the effort, I finally decided (after much researching) to give a nearby tanning salon a try.

The price was low enough ($12 to $17 per session) and I was interested in comparing the results.  I was nervous walking into the place because I knew next to nothing about the tanning salon process – what do I wear? Am I naked? Is the attendant watching me while I soak in the radioactive glow? Do I need to bring tanning lotion? - but the attendant was both courteous and knowledgeable, and before long she had me signing up for a 3-session package for $45.  (And for the record, the answers to my previous questions were: 1) wear loose clothing, 2) you can go naked or wear a bathing suit, 3) you are given a private room, and 4) special indoor tanning lotion is recommended.)

The experience of being inside the tanning booth (I chose the stand-up option over the bed) was akin to a theme park ride – I felt like I was being beamed up by the Mothership.  The booth itself is about as roomy as a telephone booth, and you’re surrounded by bulbs.  A large fan sits on the top and bottom of the booth so you never feel the heat (I found it to be not uncomfortably warm), and there are two stirrups dangling near the top that you’re supposed to rope your hands through. The final touch is two tinfoil eye-covers that you stick over your eyes prior to entering the booth, and neatly enough you can see through them.  The entire experience was fascinating, and my eight-minute session was over before I had the time to get bored.

More importantly, I immediately noticed a difference after exiting the booth.  Later this weekend I’m supposed to return for another round, and I’m interested to see if my second session is as pleasant as my first.  If so, I might just be a tanning salon convert!  (And before you even start, yes, I know "Boo! HIss! Skin cancer!")

Posted by Amanda Conwell at 09:51 AM on April 23, 2010 in Impulsive spending | Permalink | Facebook | Digg | del.icio.us | AIM

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