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Lose the Amenity: Tanning Beds Need to Go

A compelling story that may have been lost this week in the furor over the Horizon Realty mess was the WHO's study on the dangers of tanning beds. As an industry, we need to be aware of this and address it at our apartment buildings and communities.

The dangers of tanning have been known for several years. Sadly, my generation not only tanned religiously, we even added iodine to baby oil to 'darken' ourselves even more! (Yes, we really did that.) But finally, even more information on how dangerous it is to 'fake bake' has been made public.

The World Health Organization's analysis found that the use of tanning beds can raise the risk of skin cancer by up to 75%. This new classification makes tanning beds as dangerous as arsenic and mustard gas.

Get rid of the tanning beds. Do something healthy for your residents. Make a statement. Or not. The choice is up to you.

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  • I've always thought that advertising "Free Tanning" was a lot like advertising "Free Cancer". My grandmother's generation were also heavy tanners, and though she's been healthy well up in to her mid 80s (the woman lives on cottage cheese and fresh tomatoes, who wouldn't be healthy?), her skin does resemble some luggage my mom use to have back in the day...

    Of course, I'm coming off of a massive sunburn at the moment, so I might be a little biased :)

  • My father-in-law has always used dark Jamaican rum in his sun tanning concoction. I tried it once and wondered why I was extremely dizzy moments later.
    Great reminder Lisa on promoting healthy living. When the tanning beds became the next fad, it scared me just the concept of it! Perhaps healthier options for residents will be interesting to share with everyone. How about those water powered massage beds? Thanks for the post.- Jonathan

  • Thanks guys, for the comments. I've gotten some emails, asking about the relevance of this post and telling me that skin cancer and tanning beds is 'old news'. Not so! This study is brand new and raises it to a whole new level of danger for users. Additionally, if it were, indeed, 'old news', why would so many properties STILL have tanning beds in place?

    Think of the safety and long term health of your residents and remove them. It's just not a safe amenity any more.

  • One of our comparables has a free tanning bed listed as an amenity. That simply scares me as a proeprty Manager in general. I know people can choose if they want to tan and its their risk of getting cancer. But how are these beds surpervised on site? Isnt it more of an attractive nuisance? So risky on a property. I just imagine younger kids looking at all the pretty lights and folks burning to a crisp.

  • cancer... old news... that's awesome.
    saqw a listing the other day for a pittsburgh property that also advertised "tanning beds, self-pedicure areas and open yoga". When you look at the website picture, you see a random ceramic tile room about 15' x 20' with a tanning bed, 2 foot soakers (something like i bought my mom for xmas three years ago) and a lone yoga mat on the floor.
    talk about spin-doctoring and them falling short...

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