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It’s been a rough year for all of us … we’d like it behind us. And let’s put raccoon eyes behind us and move into 2021 with everyone wearing eye protection when they tan! Research shows that about HALF of indoor tanners don’t wear protective eyewear during a UV session. These tanners understand that they may be damaging their vision, but they still don’t wear eye protection. When asked why they don’t, they answer, “I don’t want to get raccoon eyes!” Tanners are concerned about developing unsightly tan lines around their eyes – as a responsible salon operator, what can you tell them?
“Wash your face!” Yes, the No. 1 cause of dreaded “raccoon eye” tan lines is SPF, NOT goggles! Most facial moisturizers contain SPF; by the time you’ve applied moisturizer, eye cream, dark circle cover-up, foundation and eye shadow, you’re (potentially) wearing six layers of SPF! This also applies to the guys, as most men’s facial care products also contain SPF. To develop a much more even tan, wash your face before your UV session.
“Carefully apply your bronzing lotions.” A lot of tanning lotions contain bronzers; if you don’t apply that product around your eyes carefully, you’re painting giant raccoon eyes on yourself!
“Adjust your eye protection.” Adjusting the position of your eyewear just a bit during your tanning session will minimize tan lines.
“Switch eye protection types.” Many tanners like to alternate between a couple of different eyewear types. This is just like changing your swimsuit to minimize tan lines.
“Find the style that works for you.” People’s eyes have different shapes and sizes, so find a product that fits you best. Lots of new eye protection products have come to market in the last couple of years – check out all the options. Make sure your staff wear all different types when they tan, so they can discuss them intelligently with your guests.
“Try adjustable eye protection.” Disposable eye protection allows custom fitting; you simply shape the cone to fit your eye. Adjustable eye protection is perfect for people with long eyelashes or those wanting to minimize tan lines, as there is no nose bridge or elastic string involved.
“Have you been wearing sunglasses?” If you’ve been wearing sunglasses outside (which we HIGHLY recommend), you’ve created your own large raccoon eye tan lines. The skin around your eyes is going to be paler – your sunglasses were also blocking your tan.
“Eyelids don’t tan well, even unprotected.” The eyelid skin is one of the areas that don’t contain much melanin, just like the palms of our hands, the tops of our feet and the inside of the wrist; thus, eyelids often don’t tan well.
“Try a touch-up product.” If you do have a bit of a raccoon eye tan line, or a white crease on your throat, shoulder blade pressure points that won’t tan or the dreaded, white “smiley lines” at the bottom of your bottom, there are many sunless products designed to touch up these areas and blend everything nicely.
“All FDA-compliant eye protection is a complete UV block, so you may develop tan lines.” If you wear eye protection, your tan lines will improve with time … and you’ll save your vision!
Let’s enter 2021 with all of our tanners protecting their vision and showing off their great tans – with no raccoon eyes!
Tanning industry veteran Brenda Fishbaugh is president of Eye Pro, Inc., makers of disposable eyewear. She travels extensively training salons on the effects of UV light on vision.
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