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Indoor tanning (e.g., using tanning beds) is not healthy. Tanning beds emit UVA and UVB radiation, in much higher amounts than the sun. Tanning beds commonly use UVA radiation, which penetrates deeper into the skin, for a quick darkening of the skin’s colour.

Like natural UV rays, exposure to a tanning bed’s UV radiation is harmful and has been linked to skin cancer. In 2009, the World Health Organization changed the classification of the use of UV-emitting tanning devices to “carcinogenic to humans”.

In Ontario, the use of tanning equipment is banned for people under the age of 18* in an effort to help prevent this exposure. Tanning salon staff are required to ask for legal identification for anyone who tries to use their tanning beds.

*This doesn’t apply to spray tan services, which many tanning salons now have on-site.

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