Defeat the enemies of your airbrush tan!

Your brand new airbrush tan is so lovable, it’s hard to imagine it would have enemies, but it does. There are things that want to fade it into oblivion, but we’re here to give you the tools to fight for your tan!

The first thing you can do to protect your tan begins before your appointment! Be sure to shave and exfoliate your skin the night before your tan. You want to be sure that top layer of flaky dead skin that we all have is sloughed off to reveal the fresh skin underneath. There are plenty of products available to help you exfoliate, but beware of sugar scrubs or other scrubs on the market which have an oily base. That oil might feel great, but before an airbrush tan, it can coat the skin and make it hard for your tanning solution to permeate. You want to walk into your tanning appointment with clean, DRY skin. Don’t apply any lotions, perfumes, or sprays to your skin before you tan because it can block the tanning solution and you could end up with an uneven or weak tan.

The next enemy your tan will encounter is tight clothing. While airbrush tans dry fairly quickly and don’t stain the way some self-tanning lotions do, you still want to give your tanning solution time to soak into your skin evenly. Skip the skinny jeans and opt for loose clothes on the day of your appointment.

Once you’ve gotten your tan, stay clear of water. For the first 6-8 hours, water is your tan’s enemy. Swimming, showering, even sweating can wash off the solution before it has a chance to properly set. After those first few hours, water lightens up and your tan and water can be friends again. But don’t spend hours in the hot tub if you can help it. Chlorine will be still try to sabotage your tan in large quantities, too. Chlorine dries your skin out and can have a bleaching effect with prolonged contact. So it’s best to avoid chlorine altogether if possible, but if not – be sure to shower it off as soon as you can when you get out of the pool and pat yourself dry.

Dry skin is enemy number one. Once the tan skin on your body starts dying and flaking off, it takes your tan with it. Keep your skin moisturized, but avoid over-saturating it. Opt for a light moisturizer over a thick body butter, and use it whenever you start feeling dried out.

With these tips, you’ll be a super hero to your tan!

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The Safety of Spray Tans

By now, I’m sure you’ve seen the research showing how dangerous sun exposure can be. We’ve learned that the UV rays in the sun that damage our skin are also found in tanning beds. This might lead you to wondering about the safety of airbrush tanning as well.

Let’s start with the basics – What is an airbrush tan? How does it work?

When you get an airbrush tan, a technician uses as specialized tool to evenly spray a solution on your skin. This solution soaks into your skin and leaves you with a natural tan for approximately 7-10 days.  The solution we’re referring to contains Dihydroxyacetone or “DHA” – I know it sounds kind of scary, but DHA isn’t some sort of toxic chemical! In fact, it’s a completely NON-toxic, organic compound and it creates a reaction with the amino acids in the stratum corneum, which is the very outermost layer of your skin. This reaction is completely natural, it’s similar to the one that makes an apple turn brown when you cut into it. When you tan outdoors or in a tanning bed, the color change happens in the deepest layer of your skin, called the basal layer. UV Rays from the sun or the bed penetrate deeply into your body to initiate the color change, but it can also cause serious skin damage and even cancer. Your sun tan might be temporary, but the sun has broken down the DNA in your skin cells permanently. With DHA, nothing penetrates that deeply. The DHA stays on the surface of the skin and the reaction doesn’t affect anything below that first outer layer of skin. We are always shedding and re-growing skin. When that top skin flakes off, the color from your airbrush tan leaves with it. Nothing is permanent with an airbrush tan.

But is DHA safe?

The FDA has done extensive research and deemed DHA safe to use. You should not ingest the solution and you should not get it into your eyes, nose, or mouth. So, when you get an airbrush tan, keep your eyes and mouth closed, and don’t inhale the solution. Some people prefer to use nose clips as well, just to be safe. There are some people who have been known to have an allergic reaction to spray tans, but that’s usually due to other ingredients in the solutions used. If you’re sensitive and have many skin allergies, you might want to test a small area to see how it reacts before you do your whole body. Airbrush tanning does NOT carry the risk of skin cancer or photo-aging that the sun or tanning beds do.

There have been issues reported with other tanning products that are sometimes called tan enhancers, accelerators, promoters, or amplifiers. Many of these products interact with the sun to create an even deeper color, so they are actually accentuating the damage done to the skin by the sun itself. There are also oral pills, which are banned commercially in the U.S. and for good reason. They contain the carotenoid chemical (the same pigment found in carrots), and have been associated with a variety or disorders including hepatitis and hives.  Airbrush tanning contains NONE of these risks either. It won’t protect you from the dangers of the sun, though. So when you leave the house, you’re always encouraged to wear sunscreen with an appropriate SPF number to minimize your risk of damage from the sun.

So airbrush tanning is basically the safest way we’ve found to get a tan! It’s also the fastest. You can get a full body tan in about 15 minutes as opposed to laying in the sun for hours!  I bet you’ll be surprised to learn that it’s also quite affordable. Some salons, like Shine in Denver, even offer an option to do a mobile tanning session, where they bring the equipment to your house for you and tan you in the comfort of your own home! Give it a try and see for yourself. It’s fast, cheap, and SAFE! Why not?

Spring Tanning Options

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Spring is around the corner and you want to start preparing for all your warmer-weather activities and outfits. Looking pale as a ghost doesn’t go well with your spring wardrobe! So what are your options to get that healthy glowing tan that will look great with everything?

Sun Bathing

You can always go outside and soak in the sun. While it might cost less than other options, it’s definitely less safe and takes a longer time to get results. UV Radiation is what creates a tan and this radiation can be very dangerous. Sun burn is the risk we most often think of. Sun burn is not fun at all. It’s painful, ugly, and lasts longer than anyone would like. But there are other dangers, too…  UV Rays are known to cause skin cancer, cataracts, premature skin aging, and suppression of the immune system. UVA rays in particular have been shown to increase the chance of getting melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer! As great as getting a perfect tan can be, it’s certainly not worth dying for.

Tanning Beds

Tanning beds work by emitting ultraviolet radiation, or UV Rays, which work deep inside your skin to change pigment and create a tan. There are two types of UV rays – UVA and UVB. Most tanning beds primarily emit UVA rays, although some “high pressure” tanning beds emit a more concentrated mixture of the two. UV Radiation is that dangerous radiation we just talked about. There are plenty of side effects to watch out for.

The FDA has banned the use of tanning beds by minors and strongly discourages people from using tanning beds for cosmetic purposes. There are simply too many risks involved. Besides skin cancer, you risk getting a sunburn, and without using goggles, you put yourself at risk of getting a condition called arc eye, or snow blindness – which is basically like a sunburn on your eyes! Talk about painful! Many tanning booths limit your exposure to 20 minutes, but depending on your skin type, 20 minutes can be enough time to cause serious damage, especially when you go often.

Why spend time and money for something so dangerous? There’s a safer alternative…

Airbrush Tanning

Spray tanning has come a LONG way since the days where it was an obvious, streaky, orange mess.  We’ve mastered the formula and the application, creating the modern airbrush tan. It’s a work of art. The artists hardly get credit though, since their work looks so natural that you’d never even know!

Airbrush tanning doesn’t create color using a dye or stain, it uses a compound called Dihydroxyacetone, or DHA, which is an all-natural, simple carbohydrate with formula C3H6O3. This skin browning effect is non-toxic and similar to the Maillard reaction. Different amino acids react to DHA in different ways, producing different tones of coloration from yellow to brown. The resulting pigments are similar in coloration to melanin, the natural substance which browns or “tans” from exposure to UV rays. But all of this takes place in the outermost layer of the skin, not deep in the lower layers like a sun tan. It’s a natural, organic reaction, not one caused by radiation. The result is a natural looking tan without the harmful side effects.

We no longer have to stand in a booth that sprays you and turn around hoping to get every inch of skin evenly either! Airbrush tans are applied using a special spray “gun” by trained professionals. You won’t miss a spot or have some areas darker than others. Airbrush tanning technicians can even apply the formula in such a way that you can add slimming contours and cover problem areas specifically.

When properly cared for, an airbrush tan can last up to 10 days. It’s a natural, organic, safe option for getting some color all year long. And best of all? It’s quick! Instead of lying around all day getting a tan, you can be in and out in 15 minutes with a full body tan, and technicians can even come to your home with a mobile station and do it for you there!

Give us a call for an appointment and see what all the fuss is about.

Tips to extend the life of your airbrush tan.

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Nothing lasts forever. Unfortunately that’s true about spray tans. But there are some tricks for keeping that tan as long as you can!

Some of the most important things to help with you tan are done at home before you step foot in the tanning salon. That begins with exfoliating!  Spray tans only work on the top, outermost layer of your skin. This makes them much safer than tanning beds or laying out in the sun, but it also means that the tan won’t last quite as long. We are always losing skin. The top layer of skin dies and falls off or gets rubbed away by clothes, showers, etc. To make sure you’re not applying your tanning solution to a layer of dead skin that is just about the fall off, you should exfoliate the day before your tanning session so that the fresh skin underneath is the skin that gets tanned. There are tons of exfoliating scrubs, sponges, and gloves on the market that can help you with this task. You can even make your own natural sugar scrub if you’re handy like that! There are tons of great recipes out there. Whatever you choose to use, make sure you do it the day before your appointment.

Also be sure you shave (or wax) the day before your appointment. When you remove hair, you often remove a bit of skin as well. If you wait until after your airbrush tan, you’ll be removing a layer of the newly tanned skin with your hair, and that will reduce the time you get to spend with that glow. Plus, if you have hair on your body, the tanning solution will get on the hair and it can block the solution from getting to your skin and working it’s magic.

On the day of your appointment, don’t put on any creams, sprays, perfumes, or lotions. A layer of lotion on your skin can block the tanning solution from absorbing into your skin. Choose your outfit carefully before you leave the house, too.  Skinny jeans are great, but don’t wear them to your airbrush tanning appointment. The tanning solution dries pretty quickly, but it’s still a good idea to avoid tight-fitting clothes that will rub against your skin and potentially rub your solution off before it has a chance to fully penetrate and give you the best possible tan.

After you’ve gotten your treatment, avoid water for a few hours if you can. It takes about 6-8 hours for the solution to completely settle in and do it’s job. Until then, avoid showers, baths, saunas, and heavy work-outs since sweating opens pores and washes away the solution just as much as a shower can.

Once your tan has settled in (after that initial 6-8 hours) then be sure you keep your skin moist to lock that skin in. You know how your skin gets flakey when it’s dry? Those flakes are dead skin shedding off. Your hydrated skin will stay healthier longer. Once your skin is nice and tan, we want to keep it! Keeping your skin moisturized will ensure that you keep that tan as long as possible. We recommend moisturizing at least twice a day. If you can find a moisturizer that has SPF sun protection built-in, even better! It will help protect your skin from those damaging UV Rays we mentioned earlier!

When your skin is nice and tan, it’s best to limit your time in chlorinated pools. Chlorine dries your skin out and sometimes can even have a bleaching effect. So it’s best to avoid chlorine altogether if possible, but if not – be sure to shower it off as soon as you can when you get out of the pool and keep that moisturizer flowing!

Following these tips can ensure that your tan lasts as long as possible.

Self-Tan Vs. Airbrush Tan

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So you’re nervous about getting an airbrush tan? Maybe you think you can save a little money by getting the self-tanner from your local convenience store instead? Well, we’re here to warn you: it’s not the same thing!

Self-tanners come in many forms. It’s a huge business these days. There are plenty of sprays and lotions that you can choose from and they range in price from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars. The ingredients in these products vary, but far too many of them use dyes to stain your skin. Unless you’re familiar with the product and how it looks on your unique skin tone, it’s hard to tell what shade of “tan” you’ll end up with. This sometimes ends up leaving you with an unnatural, embarrassing orange color.

You also have to be very careful applying your self-tanners. If you miss a spot, you likely won’t notice until the skin around it is colored and it’s still pale! Trying to cover your missed spot with more lotion will only make the dark skin darker and still leave you with a light patch. You have to properly rub all the solution into your skin or you will end up with streaks or splotches of darker color, too. Sometimes this is hard to do on your back or in places that you can’t easily see or reach. There are also some areas of your body that you don’t want to be as dark as the rest of your skin, like the back of your knees or palms of your hands. Those areas rarely tan in real sunlight so having them match the rest of your tan looks unnatural. Certain self-tanning products can also stain your clothes or furniture as well as your skin, so you’ll have to be cautious around fabrics.

Getting an airbrush tan eliminates many of these concerns!

When you get an airbrush tan, your technician will be able to help you find the right shade for your skin tone. They’re experts at making sure your color won’t look too dark or too unnatural. Airbrush tanning solutions don’t use stains or dyes to create that color. There’s an all natural, organic compound called DHA in these solutions that reacts safely and naturally with the outermost layer of your skin to create a darker pigment naturally. This is added to a bronzing agent to create the perfect glow. All of our products are vegan and never tested on animals. The FDA has approved them and they don’t carry the same health risks associated with tanning beds or laying out in the sun to tan.

Having an expert technician apply the solution also ensures that there will be no missed spots, no streaks, and no unnatural looking tans on areas that you DON’T want! And it’s much quicker than trying to do it yourself.

All of this is much less expensive than you think, too! Check our website for prices and specials. You’ll be surprised at how reasonably priced it is to get a great airbrush tan. You won’t consider going for the self-tan option again…  Make your appointment and start looking and feeling amazing with an airbrush tan from Shine!