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Spray Tanning vs. UV Tanning

There is truly no greater feeling than having glowing confidence from a natural tan! You can achieve this look in one of three ways: Sun Tanning, UV Tanning, or Sunless/Self-Tanning. There are many benefits as well as drawbacks to maintaining a tan with any approach you take. In light of recent years, the public has been persistently assailed with notion of exactly how harmful indoor tanning beds (UV tanning) can be to your body and skin. This inevitably leaves us with the decision to either stay pale in the colder months, take the risk and damage our skin in UV beds, or attempt to maintain spray tan year-round. Each approach to maintaining a tan can be a challenge. Let's take a deeper dive into how spray tans could be your new healthy addiction!

Over the past few years spray tanning and self-tan application have become extremely popular, as a healthy way to have a stunning glow! After speaking with Parker Hagler, a local mobile spray tan artist and owner of Truly Sunless, we have all the answers to your most asked questions about Sunless Tanning!

What is a spray tan?

Spray tanning is a form of self-tanning that is quick, easy, and creates natural looking results instantly! The process includes your skin being sprayed with a fine mist known as a solution which contains chemicals (DHA) that react with your skin to produce an artificial suntan. Dihydroxyacetone (DHA) is a clear, active ingredient in sunless tanning products. DHA works by creating a chemical reaction with dead cells on the skin’s surface layer to temporarily darken the skin and simulate a tan. Cosmetic bronzers are included in the solution to give you those immediate results. Commonly a spray tan takes an average of 6 to 8 hours to develop, leaving you with a flawless glow!

What are the benefits of spray tanning?

Sunless tanning has many benefits that your body will thank you for later! With sunless tanning, there is absolutely no UV exposure. With UV exposure comes the risk of premature aging, wrinkles, visible sunspots, and even cancer. Spray tans are completely customizable from a variety of colors to skin enhancing ingredients! Sunless tanning offers endless amount of color options customizable to your skin! The best part is, there are even solutions that are gluten, sulfate, cruelty, and paraben free. This gives you a healthy option to achieve your instant glow!

UV Tanning breakdown

With UV tanning there are two types of Ultraviolet rays that are used in tanning beds – UVA & UVB. Different indoor tanning units will commonly use a combination of both; however, exposure times are regulated by the federal government and are meant to minimize the risk of overexposure to UV rays or sunburn. Although consistent use of UV rays to maintain your tan can come with consequences involving skin damage. Specifically, creating burns/sunspots, causing eye damage, dry/dull skin results, potentially risking allergic reaction, and again cancer. Although UV tanning has low weekly/monthly rates it will cost you in the long run when it comes to the health of your body and skin.

Questions to ask your spray tan artist

It pays to be knowledgeable when trying something new! To help you find the best spray tan artist to fit your needs here are a few questions to reflect on when considering a spray tan!

  • What products do they use? Are they sulfate, gluten, and paraben free?

  • What are their cleanliness standards? How often do they clean their equipment? (Between every client is the correct answer!)

  • Are they willing to create a custom solution to fit your skins needs?

  • Pricing can vary depending on geographical location. Make sure you are getting a quality tan for a fair price! Keep in mind that you get what you pay for.

Keeping up with a tan is not for the weak! Whether it be Sun Tanning, UV Tanning, or Sunless/Self-Tanning each comes with short term results and are unfortunately temporary. Spay tans last on average from 5 to 7 days and can be costly if properly maintained year-round. With that being said, the harmful effects of UV damage to skin can last a lifetime. It is extremely important to be properly educated on the benefits and drawbacks to any form of tanning.

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