A new 10 percent tax on tanning salons approved by the federal government kicked in last week and salon owners in Florida are angry. Florida Today reports that tanning salon owners say the federal tax will hurt their business in an economy that is already challenging. Until now, tanning salons had to tax products such as lotions sold in their shop, but they did not tax the use of the tanning beds.
The tanning tax will impact about 18,000 small businesses in the U.S. The ten percent tax could raise the cost of three months of unlimited tanning, which usually runs about $235, making it less affordable to young customers, who are primarily women.
Originally called a vanity tax, the tanning salon tax was debated in Congress before it was passed in December 2009. The vanity tax proposed a five percent tax on Botox injections and breast implants, but in the end, it was bumped to 10 percent tax on tanning and the Botox and cosmetic industry got off tax-free.