It’s my favorite time of year. Prom season! Yes, I’m a senior in college, but I still love seeing and hearing about all the high school girls getting primped for their big day. Is it weird I still look at dresses online and in boutiques? I hope not.
Ah the memories…
Getting ready for prom is a major process. Between buying the perfect dress, deciding where you will take your photos, renting a party bus or limo, booking a hair appointment, and, of course, finding your dream date, every detail, no matter how small, is important.
However, there is another detail many girls want for their prom pictures. They want to be tan, so they buy an indoor tanning package the month leading up to prom. I see it a lot in my job around this time of year. A girl, under 18, walks in with her mom interested in buying a tanning package, but needs her mother’s permission, so her mom signs her off and sits in the waiting room as her daughter lies in a bed for ten minutes.
It’s not my place to say anything to the mothers or daughters, but I can’t help but think this is totally wrong.
I’m not the only who agrees. President Obama and several states are enacting laws to restrict minors from using indoor tanning facilities.
According to an FDA report, about 35% of teenagers, specifically 17-year-olds, use tanning beds. It’s a scary thought when people under the age of 30 have a higher risk of being exposed to skin cancer. A National Cancer Institute study shows the melanoma rate in young women has tripled over the past four decades.
State governments are looking to lower the risk of skin cancer in minors. Louisiana Representative Helena Moreno proposed a bill after hearing about the dangers related with indoor tanning equipment and minors, “It was absolutely clear to me then that Louisiana needs legislation like this so we can prevent cancer cases.”
States such as California, Illinois, Nevada, Texas and Vermont have already passed laws banning the use of indoor tanning facilities for teenagers under 18. Louisiana and Washington are also in the process of outlawing minors from using tanning bulbs.
I’m not going to lie I have used tanning beds in the past. My old apartment complex had a tanning bed in the club house for crying out loud! Working at a tanning salon, people assume I like using indoor tanning beds. But it’s really not for me anymore. I will swear by a spray tan until I’m old and wrinkled. If prom season is coming up for you or your daughter consider an alternative. There are other, cheaper, safer ways.