Planet Fitness Tanning Review: A Guide to Everything You Need to Know 2024

Tanning Bed
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Planet Fitness, a renowned gym chain recognized for its vast array of exercise equipment and welcoming atmosphere, also offers a diverse range of wellness and beauty services to complement your fitness journey. Among these services, you’ll find tanning beds and booths that cater to those seeking that sun-kissed glow without visiting the beach.

In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the world of tanning at Planet Fitness, exploring the various tanning options, facilities, and benefits available to Black Card members. Discover how to achieve a luxurious tan at Planet Fitness and determine whether their tanning systems are the right choice for you. Keep reading to unlock the secrets to that coveted golden glow!


Planet Fitness Tanning Beds: Who Can Use Them, and Where?

Planet Fitness Tanning Bed Review

To enjoy the tanning beds and booths at Planet Fitness, you’ll need to be a PF Black Card member. This exclusive membership tier not only grants you access to the tanning facilities but also provides other premium spa amenities, such as Total Body Enhancement and Hydromassage.

However, note that not all Planet Fitness locations offer the same equipment and services. Tanning is available at every branch.

The tanning equipment at Planet Fitness operates on a first-come, first-served basis. When a tanning bed or booth is occupied, you’ll need to patiently wait for the current user to complete their session and for the staff to clean and sanitize the equipment. This ensures a hygienic tanning experience and helps prevent issues like Tanning Bed Rash.

How Do The Tanning Beds at Planet Fitness Work?

Tanning at Planet Fitness is to visiting a specialized tanning salon. As a Black Card membe, you have the freedom to use the tanning equipment during their operational hours and even access other PF locations at no extra cost.

Spray Tan booths, if available, will typically have designated usage times posted in the booth area. In contrast, tanning beds can be accessed anytime the branch is open, including 24-hour locations. Be mindful of the time limits set for using the tanning beds.

Before using Planet Fitness tanning equipment, familiarize yourself with the following rules and guidelines:

  1. Use tanning beds at your own risk: Be aware that indoor tanning may increase the risk of skin cancer. Monitor your time inside the bed, as tanning sessions are limited to 9 minutes, though often 5 minutes is sufficient.
  2. Self-regulation: Generally, there is no dedicated staff to guide members or manage the queue. Exercise courtesy while waiting in line.
  3. Check cleanliness: Ensure the tanning bed is clean before use. Cleaning solution and paper towels should be available nearby. Allow the bed to dry before using it. In some locations, staff may clean the beds, so you’ll need to wait for them to finish.
  4. Tanning system variety: Different branches offer various tanning systems, including tanning beds, booths, and spray tan areas.
  5. Dress code: Remember the Planet Fitness dress code and wear appropriate attire for tanning. Change in the locker rooms if needed.
  6. Age restriction: You must be at least 18 years old to use the tanning beds.
  7. Protective eyewear: Always wear proper protective eyewear, as sunglasses are insufficient.
  8. Seek assistance: Planet Fitness encourages self-sufficiency, but if you need help or have difficulty operating the equipment, don’t hesitate to ask the staff or a Planet Fitness Trainer for guidance.

How Often Can You Tan at Planet Fitness?

At Planet Fitness, you are allowed a maximum of one tanning session per 24-hour period for safety reasons. However, it’s generally recommended to wait 48 hours between tanning sessions to reduce potential health risks.

Back in 2015, Planet Fitness offered unlimited tanning to their Black Card membership holders. However, this policy changed when the company faced penalties for not adequately warning customers about the skin cancer risks associated with the ultraviolet light emitted by tanning beds.

As a result of the court ruling, Planet Fitness has made significant changes to its tanning policies:

  1. Employee training: Planet Fitness now ensures that all employees involved in providing tanning services receive proper training. In some branches, a designated staff member will advise you on the recommended session duration.
  2. Safety precautions: Trained staff members can guide you in using the tanning equipment safely and effectively.
  3. Warning signs and protective eyewear: Warning signs are now displayed near tanning devices, and protective eyewear is mandatory. Most branches offer eyewear for purchase to ensure compliance.

These changes ensure a safer and more informed tanning experience for Planet Fitness members.

What Are The Tanning Machines At Planet Fitness?

Planet Fitness offers various tanning machines to Black Card members, depending on the branch. You may encounter traditional lay-down tanning beds, upright tanning booths, or spray tan booths.

Each type has its unique features and benefits.

Lay-Down Tanning Beds

These tanning beds allow you to relax and lie down while you soak up the intense UV rays, giving your skin an artificial sun-kissed glow. However, the pressure points between your skin and the glass may cause awkward tanning creases. To avoid this, reposition your body regularly during your session.

Stand-Up Tanning Booths

Stand-up tanning booths are preferred by some for their spaciousness, which allows for easier movement during the tanning session. The radiation intensity is usually higher in these booths, resulting in a shorter time limit per session. Equipped with reflectors, these booths promote an even tan.

Stand-up tanning booths are considered more hygienic since you aren’t lying down on the same glass surface as other users. However, you won’t experience the same relaxation as with a lay-down tanning bed.

Spray Tan Booths

Spray tans provide a healthier alternative to tanning beds, offering an instant golden glow without the risk of skin damage. The results are quick and typically last for about a week. Despite their advantages, spray tans may result in uneven tanning in areas like fingers, knees, feet, elbows, and wrists, with possible streaks and cracks.

Tanning Bed Levels

Most tanning beds at Planet Fitness are level 2, providing a moderate tanning experience. Unlike level 6 high-power mixed bulb bronzing-tanning beds, these machines are less likely to cause burns and are suitable for those seeking a more gradual tan.

Tips For Using Planet Fitness Tanning Beds Safely

Indoor tanning allows you to achieve your desired tan, even during winter months. A glowing, radiant tan can boost confidence and enhance your overall appearance. However, it’s crucial to remember that both indoor and outdoor tanning can cause skin damage. The skin’s natural tanning response to UV damage is the production of melanin, which protects it from further harm. Tanning can accelerate the aging process and increase the risk of skin cancer.

Misusing tanning beds by staying inside too long can be particularly harmful. Indoor tanning machines emit extremely concentrated light, which can be up to 26 times more powerful than sunlight. A few minutes under this light is all you need, but many people are unaware of this and risk overexposure.

While most tanning salons have staff to guide clients through their sessions, Planet Fitness faced issues due to allowing members to use the machines unsupervised, neglecting to inform them of the associated risks.

Ultimately, every activity carries some risk, including everyday tasks like walking down the street or driving a car. Indoor tanning can provide you with a beautiful tan during the colder months, but it’s essential to be aware of the potential dangers.

If you choose to pursue indoor tanning, be smart and informed about the risks involved, and always prioritize your safety and well-being.

Benefits Of Planet Fitness Tanning Beds

Tanning at Planet Fitness requires a Black Card membership, which includes access to their tanning facilities. If you opt for a Black Card and decide to tan at Planet Fitness, you can enjoy the following benefits:

  1. Unlimited tanning with a Black Card membership: Keep in mind that “unlimited” does not mean you can use the tanning bed all day or multiple times per day. There are limits for safety purposes. Unlimited access allows you to use the tanning facilities whenever you want, provided you follow their policies.
  2. Convenience: Tanning at Planet Fitness is incredibly convenient because you can do it after your workout. There’s no need to visit separate locations for exercise and tanning.
  3. Easy-to-operate tanning beds and booths: The tanning equipment is user-friendly, and you can operate them independently. However, if you need assistance, the staff is available to help.
  4. No appointments necessary: You can use the tanning machines whenever you want, as long as they are available, without the need to schedule an appointment.
  5. Maintain your tan year-round: By tanning at Planet Fitness, you can keep your tan consistent throughout the year, regardless of the season.
  6. Access to multiple locations: With a Black Card membership, you have the flexibility to visit any Planet Fitness location that offers tanning services, providing even more convenience when you’re traveling or away from your local gym.
  7. Cost-effective: Combining your gym membership and tanning facilities under one membership fee can save you money compared to paying separately for a gym membership and a tanning salon membership.
  8. Consistent tanning experience: Tanning at Planet Fitness ensures a consistent experience, as the tanning equipment is well-maintained and of good quality, providing you with a reliable and even tan.
  9. A range of tanning options: Depending on the location, Planet Fitness may offer different tanning options, such as lay-down tanning beds, stand-up tanning booths, and spray tan booths, allowing you to choose the method that best suits your preferences.
  10. Part of a holistic wellness routine: Integrating tanning into your overall fitness routine at Planet Fitness allows you to focus on multiple aspects of your well-being in one place, including exercise, relaxation, and achieving your desired tan.

Understanding The Risks Of Planet Fitness Tanning Beds

While having access to tanning facilities at Planet Fitness can be appealing, it’s crucial to be aware of the potential risks associated with using these devices. Keep in mind the following concerns:

Skin Damage

Tanning beds at Planet Fitness produce UVA and possibly UVB rays to mimic the sun and induce tanning. Prolonged exposure to these rays can lead to skin damage. Ensure you don’t overuse the tanning equipment.

Risk of Contamination

Although disinfectant spray and paper towels are provided to clean the beds before and after use, you can’t guarantee that the beds are entirely germ-free. For thorough cleaning, the disinfectant needs to dry completely, but many users don’t wait long enough, leading to rashes, especially for those with sensitive skin. Always shower before your tanning session to minimize the risk of contamination.

Increased Risk of Skin Cancer

Tanning, whether in the sun or indoors, increases the risk of skin cancer. This risk is heightened with indoor tanning, as individuals may not fully understand the proper usage and spend excessive time under UV rays.

Potential for Eye Damage

Tanning beds not only pose risks to the skin but also to the eyes. Exposure to the intense UV radiation emitted by tanning beds can lead to a range of eye-related issues. These risks should not be taken lightly, as they can potentially cause both short-term and long-term damage to your eyes.

Some of the eye-related risks associated with tanning bed use include:

  1. Photokeratitis: This condition, commonly known as “welder’s flash” or “snow blindness,” is caused by the inflammation of the cornea due to exposure to UV rays. Symptoms include redness, pain, light sensitivity, and a gritty sensation in the eyes.
  2. Cataracts: Prolonged exposure to UV radiation can increase the risk of developing cataracts, a condition where the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, leading to blurred vision and, in severe cases, blindness.
  3. Macular Degeneration: Exposure to UV light may also contribute to the development of age-related macular degeneration, a leading cause of vision loss in older adults. This condition affects the central part of the retina, impairing the ability to see fine details and colors.
  4. Cancer: Tanning beds can emit UVA and UVB rays, which may increase the risk of developing cancer in and around the eyes, such as ocular melanoma or skin cancer on the eyelids.

To protect your eyes while using tanning beds, it is crucial to wear appropriate UV-protective goggles specifically designed for indoor tanning. Make sure the goggles fit snugly and securely, covering your eyes completely to prevent UV rays from reaching them.

Pay Attention to the Signs!

Follow the warnings and instructions displayed around the tanning beds and adhere to the advice provided by staff members. Avoid skipping in line or breaking any rules to ensure a safer tanning experience.

It may seem exciting to have access to such devices, but there are major risks here.

Don’t ignore the warnings.

Are the Planet Fitness Tanning Beds Any Good?

Planet Fitness Tanning Review

Opinions on tanning at Planet Fitness vary among members. Some highly recommend the beds and enjoy the experience, while others have faced issues not necessarily with the beds and booths themselves but with the overall process of using the tanning beds.

Here are two main concerns that people express about Planet Fitness Tanning:


Many Planet Fitness locations expect members to clean the tanning beds before and after use. Due to the various indoor tanning lotions used by clients, oils can accumulate on the beds. Some members may not clean the beds thoroughly, leaving traces of grime behind. The level of staff involvement in cleaning the beds varies by location.

Bulb Maintenance

Some club members report instances where tanning beds have caused burns. Tanning bed bulbs should be regularly checked and replaced, but certain branches may neglect this maintenance. This lack of attention could contribute to users getting burned during their tanning sessions. Overstaying in the tanning beds, especially when ignoring the timing rules, can also increase the risk of burns. It’s essential to tan for the appropriate amount of time each day.

One reason people choose to use tanning beds at Planet Fitness is the Black Card membership, which offers access to various perks. Although the maintenance and cleanliness of Planet Fitness tanning beds may not always match the standards of dedicated tanning salons, they are generally decent and can save users money.

Safety Tips While Tanning At Planet Fitness

Regardless of whether you choose to use a tanning bed or a stand-up tanning booth, it’s essential to protect yourself against overexposure to UV light. Here are some tips for safer tanning:

Determine Your Skin Type

Fitzpatrick Scale Source: Wikipedia

Different skin types react differently to tanning beds. Some can tan for longer periods than others before burning. Determine your skin type using the Fitzpatrick Scale to better understand your tanning limits.

Protect Your Eyes

Always protect your eyes when using tanning machines. Wear UV protective goggles designed for use in both lay-down and stand-up tanning booths.

Time Your Sessions

Be mindful of your tanning duration. Use a timer to track how long you’ve been exposed to the UV light. Even with unlimited access, don’t attempt multiple sessions or break the rules.

Avoid Daily Tanning

Tanning every day can damage your skin. Maintain and build your tan without using tanning machines daily. Allow at least 36-48 hours between tanning sessions.

Use the Beauty Angel After Tanning

After your tanning session, consider using the Beauty Angel RVT30 Body Enhancement machine. This device employs red light therapy and vibration to rejuvenate and restore the skin.

Moisturize and Hydrate

Hydration and moisturization are vital before and after tanning to maintain healthy skin and a long-lasting tan. Drink plenty of water to support skin health and recovery from UV exposure. Apply a high-quality indoor tanning lotion before your session and a hydrating moisturizer afterward to replenish moisture levels and prolong your tan. Incorporating these steps helps achieve a radiant, even tan while minimizing the risks associated with indoor tanning.

Bring a Towel for Privacy

Though rare, there have been instances of privacy invasion during tanning sessions. To minimize risk, bring a towel for privacy and quick coverage if needed.

Final Words

Planet Fitness offers tanning services at many of their locations for Black Card members. They provide various types of tanning machines, but it’s crucial to prioritize safety when using them.

While indoor tanning might seem appealing, it carries risks that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Keep in mind that the Black Card membership at Planet Fitness includes more than just access to tanning beds. There are numerous other amenities and equipment available to you with this membership. Be sure to explore and utilize these additional benefits to make your Black Card membership truly worth the cost!

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).