Amit Lubovsky
Amit Lubovsky

May 15, 2012

Indoor tanning: 32% of young white women risk it.

Heard the one about the bronzed New Jersey mom who was accused of taking her 5-year-old daughter into a tanning booth?

Despite the known skin cancer risks of indoor tanning - aka, exposing yourself to ultraviolet radiation to produce a cosmetic tan - 32% of young white women in the United States do it, according to a report published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As with other industries that exist to tickle our vices, the tanning industry markets aggressively  to this demographic, according to Daniel Siegel, president of the American Academy of Dermatology. In USA Today he says, "We are in the midst of a skin cancer epidemic right now, and young people are ignoring all the warnings about the dangers of tanning salons."

The stats are enlightening (and we don't mean in an artificial tanning lamp kind of way). Here are a few numbers from the United States:

  • 32% of white women, ages 18 to 21, said they've basked in the bed or booth at least once in the past year, making that the highest demographic to get into bed with artificial tanning.
  • Breaking it down further: 44% of Midwest white women, ages 18 to 21, reported indoor tanning at least once in the past year. Same went for 36% of Southern women ages 22-25.
  • Beyond beds: 30% of women ages 22-25 said they've used indoor tanning devices.
  • Overall, 5.6% of adults reported indoor tanning during the past 12 months, and of the surveyed white adults who did indoor tanning, 58% of women and 40% of men say they did it 10 or more times in the previous year.
  • When it comes to sunburn among adults ages 18-29, whites reported the most at 66%; blacks had the lowest at 11%.
  • Sunburn is less common in the black demographic than with whites, but they can get sun-burned.
Do you do indoor tanning? What would it take to stay away from the tanning salon?
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