How to Start a Tanning Business

A tanning business is normally opened as a showroom. Although there are tanning beds operating in homes, it is not typical and is not recommended due to health regulations. There are certain responsibilities regarding customer safety, and it is best to operate where there is plenty of space and adequate staff to monitor tanning bed use. You need to purchase equipment and supplies that are safe and effective. Your living room should be both elegant and hygienic in appearance.

Requirements to start a tanning business

Tanning caters to those who want to tan as safely as possible. Most people are too busy to lie outside in lawn chairs, and many do not live in climates conducive to tanning most of the year. However, many people want suntan lotion all year round. This opportunity can be successful as long as you have enough starting capital to purchase the necessary equipment.

Skill set

  • Cleanliness is a must
  • Great People Skills
  • Knowledge of the UV tanning industry
  • Safe operation of all tanning equipment
  • List of common business skills

Approximate daily hours needed

Tanning salons are normally open seven days a week and after normal business hours.

Necessary equipment, supplies and services

  • Tanning beds
  • Timer system
  • Heat lamps
  • Castration tanning system
  • Disinfection equipment
  • Washer and dryer
  • Towels
  • Sunscreens
  • After tanning lotions
  • Safety glasses
  • Miscellaneous supplies like eye protectors
  • Stereo systems for every room
  • Hot and cold drinks
  • Sample of post-treatment tanning oils, creams and lotions
  • Essential office equipment
  • See our list of general retail equipment

Monthly expenses and operating costs to consider

  • Tanning bed lamps and heat lamps
  • Lotions
  • Tanning bed disinfectants
  • List of common business skills

Licenses and permits

You must have a business license and insurance and a health certificate. Also, look for any local or federal regulations governing the new tanning salons. Some states have specific regulations listed on their state websites. Chamber of Commerce or with local business information websites

Approximate minimum start-up cost

Essential base: It will take a considerable initial capital outlay to get started, with once the tanning bed is decent some inventory and operating costs its looking at around 50K. It is important to purchase high-quality commercial tanning beds.

Suggestions and considerations

  • Find out as much as you can about industry trends.
  • Get to know your competition: in particular, their strengths and weaknesses.
  • Visit many local tanning salons and take note of how they work. Write down the things you like or don’t like about the business. See what kind of competition you will face.
  • One good thing is that you can set up your tanning service anywhere, including your home or at your client’s place (mobile tanning service.)
  • The conventional idea of ​​a tanning salon is that of electric beds irradiating clients with ultraviolet light. It is not technically impossible to settle in your home. Tanning beds and stand-up tanning booths are sold for home use, after all.
  • The time that clients can stay in the tanning bed should be limited for safety reasons.
  • Finding clients will require ongoing advertising expenses. You can buy expensive advertising in the yellow pages if you can afford it. You can also try the cheapest advertising venues including classifieds, coupons, and brochures that inform people about your new services, while offering special offers to attract new customers.
  • You should post your flyers in places where typical clients can be found. These include beauty stores, beachwear stores, fitness clubs, and beauty supply stores.
  • There are many tanning salons already open, but as more and more people find that they do not have time to tan outside, there are still many opportunities available.


More than 12,000 spas across the United States generate total revenues of $ 11.2 billion. That number is about to grow as more people, especially men, discover the joys of pampering themselves and looking good.


A busy salon with eight tanning beds can expect to raise $ 200,000 per year. That can equal $ 60,000 to $ 65,000 net in your pocket.