Thinking of visiting a tanning salon before hitting the beach this season? Think again. Getting that golden glow could actually cost you your good health. While experts have long known that ultraviolet light B (UVB) rays—the kind that give us a sunburn—increase skin cancer risk, they are just finding out that ultraviolet A (UVA) rays—the kind that tan us—may increase the risk for melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.
As it happens, tanning beds deliver about 99 percent UVA light to the skin. That puts even casual users of tanning salons—those who visit the parlors just 10 times a year—in significant danger.