In the 90s, I, like many others, enjoyed the use of indoor tanning beds and booths. Always very fair skinned, my body would hold a warm glow when I tanned. Living in Michigan, I found it extremely relaxing to walk into a warm tanning salon on a cold and rainy Midwest night. And of course, I enjoyed the golden colored skin. I can almost remember the smell of the accelerating lotions and scents of the salon that I inhaled as I entered the front door. But that is not the final memory that I have of indoor tanning.
About nine years ago was the very last time I used a tanning bed. I was getting ready for my wedding and wanted everything to be perfect, especially for me to have a tan to show off my dream dress. I decided to tan at the health club that I belonged to and bought an unlimited pass. I was happy and excited as an employee behind the front desk handed me a towel and a small packet of Hemp Accelerator lotion. I moved into my room, undressed, applied the lotion all over my skin and proceeded to lie on the tanning bed. Within minutes of the bulbs heating up, I felt like my skin was on fire. I quickly got up and looked in the full length mirror. My skin seemed to be transforming to burnt shade of pink. I immediately got dressed and tried to figure out what happened.
It didn’t make any sense to me. I had been tanning many times before and never had a reaction like this. I hadn’t even been in there that long. Even out of the bed, my skin still felt like it was burning. I walked back up to the front desk and told them that there was a problem. The staff seemed confused and as I explained, I began to feel very light headed. I asked for some water and somewhere that I could sit down. Before anyone could answer me, I passed out and dropped to the floor. When I awoke, I found health club staff crowding around me.
Passing out is a frightening thing and it is worse to have happen in public. I was brought a cold, wet towel for my forehead and a glass of water to drink. My hand shook uncontrollably as I lifted the plastic cup to my mouth. The club staff helped me move to their cozy back office and insisted that I stay for a bit.