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You’ve heard from me before with my ideas for getting tanners to protect their eyes, but let’s go to salon owners around the country and ask them how they present a convincing eye protection case to their salon guests. So many operators shared their tips, this will be a multi-part series!
Kristin Lee Smithers, owner of Sunny Shores Tanning & Treasures in North East, PA, starts with a personal connection. “I was dumb when I was younger and didn’t use eye protection. Now, I barely have night vision,” she explains. “Most of us understand that we should wear sunglasses outside, but it’s even more critical to wear eye protection in a sunbed.” Kristin tells them that it’s a state and federal law, as well as a requirement of her insurance coverage, but she wants them to know how she damaged her eyes before becoming a salon owner.
Longtime salon owner, Rhonda Culligan, relocated to a new state and started all over with Sunsational Spray Tan Spa in Chattanooga, TN. She echoes Kristin’s approach. “I burned my retinas and corneas, so I am emphatic about tanners using eyewear!” she exclaims. She starts with, “Eyewear is required
by law. What’s your favorite color?” [Author’s Note: I love how Rhonda asks ‘What’s your favorite color?’ because many don’t know that UV overexposure, whether indoor or outdoor, will quickly affect your ability to perceive differences in color. There isn’t a drug or surgery to return your ability to discern shades of colors, and color perception is so important if you own a hair salon, do makeup or are a designer, work on the web, social media or print, as well as working in retail and graphic arts.]
Do you have an eye protection tip to share with other operators? Email Brenda@WinkEase.com and it may be featured in my column. More owners share expertise next month in Part Two.
“We start educating our tanners BEFORE they walk in the door,” jokes Dana Bryan Sanders of her Danville, IL tanning studio. “We have a colorful window cling on our front window that reads, ‘Eye Protection is Required’ which gives the first hint that eyewear is important at Sunburst Tans,” she continues. “We build from there. When we show new guests how to operate the sunbed, we ask them to wear the sanitized goggles we provide because not wearing them can cause eye burns, loss of night vision or a whole slew of other eye issues,” Dana emphasizes. And she doesn’t stop there! If a tanner comments AFTER a session that they did NOT use eye protection, the staff hands them a pamphlet she created that details the dangers of not wearing eye protection.
Would you like to see the Sunburst Tans’ educational brochure and receive the eye protection window cling Dana uses? Email your name, salon name and salon address to Brenda@WinkEase.com and I’ll send them to you!
President of Eye Pro, Brenda has spent more than two decades in the industry building Eye Pro, Inc., maker of the world-leading Wink-Ease disposable eyewear. Her background includes everything from a marketing & management degree from Indiana University, to a commercial pilot’s license, scuba diving and studying healing and massage. In addition to ensuring every indoor tanner wears eye protection, her passions include protecting endangered animals.
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