The Ultimate Trio

so easy, anyone can do it

We've all heard the spray tan horror stories; Ross on Friends, the infamous Tan Mom, your best friend who against all advice tried a take home kit. Well, I'm here to tell you "if I can do it YOU can do it". I've been Sunless Spray Tanning for many years now and have never even once come close to one of these spray tan debacles. In fact, I love spray tanning. I love the convenience, I love the results and I love how I feel with when I'm tan. 

What it all boils down to is finding the right salon with the best equipment and most experienced staff. Nowadays the spray tan equipment is so far advanced that even my Great-Grandma (who we refer to as GG) who doesn't even own a cell phone, could walk into the machine and 60 seconds later come out a Golden Goddess (also who we refer to as GG).

 The Mission

Today my mission is to make all of you who have hesitations, feel a little more confident with my step by step guide on what I call "The Ultimate Trio" (insert echo sounds here). 

Before I head out to my favorite Desert Sun I have a few "at home" steps to complete. A beautiful spray tan always begins with the preparation phase. The night before my spray tan a make sure I've shaved and exfoliated. It's a good idea to put one day in between shaving and spraying. Have you ever seen a person with brown polka dot legs? That's what happens when you spray tan immediately after shaving. The bronzers from the solution tend to settle in your pores. It doesn't happen to everyone, but why risk it? Just plan ahead.

Shaving and exfoliating are important steps in extending the life of your tan. Your tan doesn't "fade", your skin sheds. Gross, I know, but this process is what keeps us looking young. Your skin naturally exfoliates every 12 days. So by using an exfoliating product, VersaSpa Exfoliator is my favorite, you reset your natural "Exfoliation Clock" and give yourself another 12 days before your newly bronzed skin sheds.

A day later I'm in the Queen Anne Desert Sun. I have many favorite Desert Sun locations, but this one happens to be the most convenient for me today. Now remember, I'm doing the ULTIMATE TRIO! So before I even think about jumping into the spray booth, I've got two more exciting services to treat myself to. 

For years, I've been tanning in a Sunbed for about 10 minutes before each sunless spray tan session I do, which is about 1 time every 5 days. Tanning in a sun bed compliments my spray tan session in few delightful ways. 1) It gives me a boost of color 2) There's nothing out there that gives me more instantaneous energy than a quick 10 minutes in the sunshine and 3) it helps my sunless spray tan last even longer. 


I know what you're thinking, a sun bed session before a sunless spray tan, that's a "combo" not a "trio”...., Well you'd be right, but I'm not done yet. 

About two months ago I was introduced to a new service called Red Light Therapy. It was first recommended to me by one of the salon associates. The associate told me that red light therapy is mostly used for its anti-aging benefits. Apparently, red light triggers your body to produce collagen. And even I know what that means, more collagen, less jiggle. That's right, I had read an article a few weeks before that explained how collagen can help strengthen your skin so your adipose tissue (aka fat) won't appear in the form of cellulite. At this point, I was already sold but there was MORE. Additional benefits of red light are its ability to increase your circulation and when you increased circulation, you increase your tanning results. Exposing my skin to Red Light before a sunless spray tan will help the solution absorb better. Again, SOLD. 

Introducing the Ultimate Trio

So this is how my Combo becomes a Trio. When I get to the salon my first step is to do a 12-minute session in the Red Light Therapy bed. I wear protective eyewear in the bed not because it's bad for my eye but because it's extremely bright. The session goes by quickly as I lay there listening to my favorite podcast. The session is warm, but not hot by any means. It kind of reminds me of what chicken eggs might feel like in an incubator. The next thing I know, the bed turns off and it's on to round two. The friendly associate was nice enough to offer me a bathrobe so I could walk from treatment room to treatment room without having to keep getting dress and then undressed. 

I walk across the hall and into room 5 to partake in some Seattle Sunshine. It's just a quick 10 minutes of fantasizing I'm on the deck of a cruise ship in the Caribbean with the wind (fans) blowing a gentle breeze in my direction while I'm listening to the live reggae band (Pandora Reggae station on my iPhone). But that quick 10 minutes felt great and now I'm finally ready to make my way over to the spray tan room. 

This next step goes extremely quick as well. The salon associate lets me know my room is ready to go and I can verify that because the spray tan booth actually has a screen on it that lists out exactly what type of spray tan I've ordered up. Today, I'm doing the Level Two Bronze. I grab the disposable hair cap sitting near the towel that was left in the room for me and I put it on to block the solution from my hair. There's also a large bottle of cream labeled "Blending Cream". I follow the directions I was given on how to apply the cream. Its purpose of this cream is to block the spray tan solution from tanning areas that don't naturally tan. It feels just like your typical body lotion. I put it on the palms of my hands, in between my fingers, my finger-nails, and my toe-nails. A quick check in the mirror and I'm ready to go. 

The booth itself reminds me of the TSA body scanners you go through at the airport. It's oval in shape with an open air design so it's not fully enclosed. There is a big green button that is lit up and blinking, silently screaming "push me, push me". There are also four markers on the floor of the machine. Each one labeled 1 thru 4. And as if this wouldn't be easy enough to understand, there's even a friendly female voice (think Siri on an iPhone) that speaks to you through the speakers in the booth guiding you through the four different positions. I start off facing forward. The booth sprays the first pass. The solution comes out in a fine mist at about room temperature. Each spray of the solution is then followed up by a warm breeze of air that dries the solution before the next pass. Once the first pass is complete, my Robot Spray Tan Guide tells me to turn to the right. Prior to my spray tan session, my Real Life Spray Tan Guide explained to me that when I turn to face right and left, I also need to stand with arms and wrist bent in an "Egyptian" like stance. Which is truly fitting since I plan on getting out of this thing looking like a sun-kissed Egyptian goddess. I continue following the voice guided instructions and when it tells me to, I turn to my left and do the same thing and then my final position is to face away from the nozzles for the final pass of spray tan solution and final drying session.

Voila, I'm done. The spray tan session takes roughly 2 minutes. I jump out, use the towel that was provided to wipe off the Barrier Cream and then get dressed. On a typical visit, I try to wear loose fitting clothes but on this particular visit I came straight from work and didn't bring a change of clothes with me. Like I said, I've been doing this for a couple years now and although loose fitting clothes are more comfortable, wearing pieces from my standard wardrobe has never affected the results of my spray tan.

Mission Complete

On my way out the associate who is busy helping another customer, takes the time to thank me for my visit and reminds me, "for best results to wait a minimum of four hours to shower". Yes, I know, what does she think I am, a Rookie? I thank her for all her help and away I go. 

At home, I wait the four hours before I finally shower and go to bed. The next day I wake up excited for the day because, today thanks to the way my spray tan evens out my skin tone, I get to wear less makeup. And today, again, thanks to my spray tan I can finally wear the new skirt I bought at the Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale without blinding everyone with pale legs.

The Ultimate Trio, it's that easy. The next time you're in the need of a little R&R and maybe looking for a way to boost your self-confidence and put a pep in your step, give the Ultimate Trio a try.