Sunless Tanning Information for Professional Members

Spray Tanning Tips


For the most flawless spray tan results, proper exfoliation, proper spray tan application, and application of a moisturizer or Prep Spray are essential.

  • Exfoliation removes excess oils and dead skin cells to prepare the skin to accept a sunless tan.
  • Moisturizing prolongs the skin renewal cycle, resulting in a longer-lasting sunless tan.
  • Prep spray lowers the PH level of the skin thus resulting in an even and lasting application.
  • Follow the spray tanning tips below for the most flawless, longest-lasting than ever.

Before Spray Tanning

  • Deodorants, make-up, perfumes and lotions should be avoided as these can act as a barrier and inhibit the development of your tan.
  • Thoroughly exfoliate with an exfoliating scrub or a loofa towel or mitt the night before.
  • Any hair removal should be done 24 hours prior to your tanning session.
  • Wear dark, loose-fitting clothing to your appointment as tight clothing can rub the tan off in some areas.

After Spray Tanning

  • Do not shower or exercise for 8-10 hours after your tan. Shower with a body wash or shower gel (preferably SLS-free). Bar soaps are not recommended. When you shower for the first time, you will see a brown residue wash off. This is the temporary bronzer or colour guide that was applied.
  • When showering, use your hand instead of a washcloth or loofa or mitt. Pat dry with a towel instead of rubbing. Do not shave with a dull razor.
  • Moisturize, moisturize and moisturize twice a day for maximum colour retention. Starting about the third day, alternate with a tan extender. Hydrated skin makes your tan last longer and slows down the process of natural skin exfoliation. Alcohol-based products are drying to the skin and can cause the tan to fade quicker and unevenly.
  • Avoid anything that can exfoliate your skin such as long, hot baths, soaking in hot tubs, exposure to chlorinated water, hair removal products, acne products, masks and scrubs, skin renewing products or exfoliating gloves and sponges.
  • When swimming or soaking in a hot tub, use a thick waterproof sunscreen to help seal the tan in. This will slow down the fading process.
  • Do not sit directly on leather or light-coluored seats or furniture after your tanning session. A towel is recommended.

Training Solution Ingredients & Benefits 


Our unique cocktail blend of 3 precious plant oils, combined with botanical plant extracts, will leave your skin soft and nourished while giving it a luminous healthy sun-kissed glow. Our formula will conceal imperfections such as stretch marks, and is totally safe for pregnant women or for people who have an aversion to gluten.

  1. The DHA used in our products is synthesized based on the use of renewable plant substrates for fermentation and Bio Conversion
  2. Evening Primrose Oil: Source of Omega 6 essential fatty acid, promotes moisture and hydration.
  3. Squalene: Helps restore suppleness and smoothness to the outer skin layer. Reduces transepidermal water loss.
  4. Hyaluronic Acid: Active HA plays an important role in tissue hydration and lubrication due to its ability to hold water, its hydrating properties help to plump up the appearance of the skin.
  5. White and Green tea extract: a powerful anti-oxidant boost, helps to minimize the look of orange peel to problem areas.
  6. Dimethicone: An anti-aging ingredient to impart soft velvety youthful-looking skin.
  7. Panthenol: Form of Vitamin B derived from plants. Plumps and moisturizes.
  8. Algae Extract: (from sea plants) mineral-rich, nourishes, softens, helps skin retain moisture
  9. Jojoba seed oil: it helps promote the growth of new skin cells. It even has some anti-bacterial qualities too.
  10. Grape seed oil: Plant-derived. Rich in antioxidants including proanthocyanidins, which are 20 times more potent than vitamin C and 50 times more potent than vitamin E. Helps minimize sun damage.
  11. Vitamin E: Naturally occurring fat-soluble antioxidant that protects the skin against sun damage. Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and helps prevent the appearance of age spots.
  12. Vegetable Glycerine: An emulsifier and skin softener derived from vegetable oil. Helps to retain the skin’s moisture.
  13. Aloe Leaf Juice: from leaves of the aloe plant) moisturizes, conditions, softens, soothes …
  14. Sorbic Acid: Derived from Vitamin C and triglycerides and capryl glycol, a soothing emollient and thickening agent derived from coconut.

Tanning Spray Gun Care – How to care for your spray gun


Keeping your gun clean will prolong the life span of the needle


At the end of the day:

  • Unscrew the lid from the cup. Pour all leftover solution back into the gallon.
  • Fill the container with warm water – ¾ filled.  Screw the lid (gun attachment) back on the cup.
  • Open the screw all the way, turning counterclockwise.
  • Aim your gun either in a pail or outside and depress the gun to empty all the water from the container. (Flushing)


  • Unscrew the gun attachment from the cup.
  • You will see the feed tube, pull the feed tube out gently, and the seal should come with it.
  • If the seal doesn’t come loose, gently pry the seal off.
  • Rinse the tube well with warm water, then rinse the seal.
  • The seal must be rinsed on both sides, make sure that all solution is rinsed off. Put these 2 items aside.


  • Turn your gun upside down ( gun attachment) and let warm water run through the tube insert until you see the water running clear.


  • Insert back the seal, and make sure that the seal is well adjusted. Insert the feed tube. Screw back the gun attachment to the spray container.


Remember to re-adjust the silver knob on the back of the gun, to the closing position. It is easier to re-adjust the gun from the closing position to calibrate the spray output. Always remember to open it 1 ½ times, while spraying you can re-calibrate your output to the desired spray.


  • Repeat steps 1 to 5
  • Unscrew the front of the gun (needle nose) you will find a white washer, remove the washer and rinse both sides.
  • You can also rinse the cone (needle housing) and replace the white washer. Make sure you don’t lose this washer, this piece is crucial for spray adjustment.

PS: It is always better to spray light coats (calibration) should be set on minimum. This will give you 2 light coats, and prevent fading issues from over-spraying the client.

How to Calibrate the Gun

  • Turn the silver screw on the back of the gun towards the right (closing position) and turn approximately 4 half turns towards the left (open position) this will adjust the amount of solution output.
  • It is always best to have the gun at a minimum spray output to avoid over-saturation of the product.
  • You can do a practice run on one of the legs or behind you on a paper affixed to the wall. If the flow is too little or too light, adjust by turning a half turn until the desired amount of output.
  • A good way to see if you’re gun is calibrated at the right setting, the solution should not be too wet on the skin, this will allow for fast drying.

Clean the gun after each use.

Easy Application Techniques

  • If you make a mistake with the gun setting and too much solution or over-saturation is on the skin, use the applicator puff and tap gently until even. Make sure you tap evenly to avoid any streaking; this method is a sure way of avoiding an uneven application.
  • ONLY DO FEET AND HANDS ONCE. For hands and feet use the round buffer sponge, slip the hand into the handle, and gently pat the feet and hands. If you use the glove method, you can do the arms and legs area. This should be done on the first coat only. The second coat can be applied with the gun, the second coat always guarantees any uneven spots.

System Set Up

  • Press the (POWER) switch and then press (FAN) switch select speed (MEDIUM).
  • After spraying 2 light coats press (HEAT) button to dry the client. If you use the glove method the client will be dried quicker, because of rubbing movements.

Hose Connection

Either end of the hose will fit into the system or gun. Align the 2 notches with holes in the feminine connector on the end of the system and turn gently left until a click is heard. The other end of the hose also has 2 connecting notches that you align with the hose. Align into notches and turn gently until locked in place.

The hose is not part of the warranty so be gentle when removing or inserting. However, we have replacement parts available.


Selecting a DHA Percentage


The rule of thumb is to select a colour based on skin type. Fair skin tones, using a higher percentage will look unnatural and unrealistic, especially with the Canadian winters and often cast an “orange hue” as the end result. Using a low DHA  such as an 8% will give the skin a luminous and natural glow.  With medium skin tones, use a  10% DHA. For Mediterranean or darker skin tones use a  12% DHA. I recommend using no more than 8% for fair skin in the winter months, this formula is also known as a winter formula. For medium and darker skins using 10% in the winter months, is sufficient.

If your client books for a session prior to an event especially brides and bridal parties. I recommend future brides come in for a trial session. If she loves the end results, most likely she will book again with you. You can offer a discount for the bridal party. It’s always best for the bride to come in following her waxing, (24 hours) manicures, pedicures and hair colour. Clients who have had laser treatments, and semi-permanent make up should have a 7-day grace period before their sunless session.


  • 8% is the lightest of the three densities and provides a natural-looking tan for individuals with fair skin, or those just looking for a subtle change. A perfect winter formula.
  • 10% is our medium density and can be used on almost all skin types. It is approximately 20% darker than the 8%.
  • 12% is the darkest of the three densities and is approximately 20% darker than 10%. It will provide the deepest, most luxurious tan.
  • Results may vary depending on skin type. If the client has very white to fair skin, the tan could last up to 7 days. Medium skin tones or skin tan tans easily or for people that use UV beds prior to their sunless session will have longer lasting results.

Vitesse Express

Although referred to as 2 hours, the processing time of this formula will hinge on the client’s skin condition and skin tone. The benefits of this formula cut half the time of a traditional formula to 2-6 hours before showering. It is best to advise the client to shower between that period or when she sees her ideal colour achieved. Rinsing without using soap after the initial spray will prolong the colour.

Preparing & Spraying a Client


ALWAYS ensure that the general area is clean and that your next client has a clean towel on the floor before they arrive for their appointment.

Let clients undress alone in the tanning room, calling out to you when they are ready; or you can gently knock on the door after a few minutes. You can provide a spa robe for your client to wear after they disrobe before their spray tan session.


  • Prior to spraying your client, reconfirm that their body is free of any moisturizers, oils, deodorant, and make-up.
  • Make sure your client has removed all their jewelry and that their hair is up in a cap. Ensure the cap is pulled up into the client’s hairline and keep ears and back of neck uncovered.
  • If the client has not exfoliated and/or has moisturizer, oil, deodorant or make-up on, you can have the client use an exfoliating Sluff Wipe or the client can be sprayed with an exfoliating Pre-Tan Prep Spray.
  • It’s nice to offer clients a disposable panty and/or bra. Be mindful of what clients will be wearing post-tan, especially if they will be wearing a bathing suit or a strapless dress. You’ll want to make sure clients will not have unwanted tan lines.
  • Provide clients with a cotton swab to put a tiny bit of lip balm or Vaseline on their lips. You can provide nose plugs to your client or use a cotton swab very lightly dipped in Vaseline or a barrier cream, for clients to carefully turn inside of their nostrils. The nostrils should not be clogged. Ensure the product is not outside the lip or nostril area as it can create a barrier when spray tanning.
  • Have clients stand on a white hand towel or sticky feet to ensure the tanning solution doesn’t adhere to the bottom of their feet.


  • Before spraying the client’s face, hold the spray gun up to the client’s face and tell them to close their eyes so they can feel the air pressure. Explain to your client that it’s important for them to keep their eyes closed, relax their face, and hold their breath while spraying their face.
  • After spraying hands and feet, pat with a soft cloth or disposable towel and wipe fingernails and toenails with a baby wipe or disposable towel. Another option would be to use the barrier cream on fingernails and toenails before they’re sprayed. The barrier cream could be used on any dry areas.
  • Give your clients your full attention and do not rush the spray tan – check to make sure the client has a flawless application.
  • Educate clients about post-tan maintenance and recommend our retail product range. The best time to discuss the after-care products is while they’re in the spray tan room.
  • Do not rush clients. Allow them to dress when they feel dry.
  • Tell your client to call you if they have any questions or concerns after their spray tan.
  • Although the likelihood of an allergic reaction is very small, a patch test is recommended for clients who have a known sensitivity to sunless products or the ingredients in them, including fragrances.

Spray Tan Troubleshooting


Everyone’s skin is different, so it’s important to know exactly how and what to do if things go wrong, which is possible as everyone’s skin is different.  Dry skin, poor exfoliating/moisturizing habits and lifestyle can all make a difference to the way the tan lasts/fades.  Below is a guide which may help.

Colour Not Lasting

As with anything, proper care and maintenance is the key to longevity.  It is important that clients are given the proper preparation procedures, either over the phone when the appointment is made or provided a prep sheet if they’re in the salon when making their appointment.

Prior to tanning, skin must be well exfoliated.  No deodorants, perfumes or moisturizers should be on the skin.  To maintain the colour, soap-free body washes are to be used and moisturizer must be applied a couple of times a day.  Exposure to chlorine and extended hot baths may affect the tan also.  A client with oilier skin will find the tan will last better and longer than someone who has dry skin.  Your face and hands will typically fade faster.

Tan Too Light

If an adequate amount of product is not applied, the tan will not appear dark enough.  The recommended application amount for spray tanning is about 2 ounces of solution per client to ensure the skin receives enough DHA to produce the tan.  Also, if a client has very fair skin, they will not come up as dark  as someone of a darker skin type.  You can safely say the colour should be at least 3 shades darker than their natural or base colour.  If one area is lighter than the rest, then not enough solution has been applied to that area.

Tan Too Dark

This appears to only affect those with fairer skin, as they do not normally tan and may find the colour too dark.  Use a solution with a lower DHA percentage or apply the product in a thinner coat.


Generally, this is caused by excessive friction from clothing or can be caused if the tan is not allowed to dry sufficiently before dressing or insufficient moisturizing.

Scaly/Lizard Skin Appearance

This is almost always attributed to dry skin.  If the skin is not well hydrated, it exfoliates away unevenly, thus causing the lizard skin look.  This can also be caused if the previous tan has not been totally removed, or proper exfoliation has not been performed prior to a new tan; it affects the colour by having underlying colour left and the dead skin has not been removed to expose fresh new cells.

Be careful not to apply a tanning solution with too high of a DHA percentage on a fair-skinned client – especially if they are susceptible to dry skin.  Poor fading will be accentuated by a very dark tan on a fair-skinned client.

Again, proper maintenance and preparation are key.

Orange Cast to Skin

The most likely cause of an orange cast to the skin is over-application.  (Improper exfoliation may also play a role.)  The recommended amount for spray tanning is about 2 ounces per client.  One more cause could be when the solution contains too high of a DHA percentage for the client’s skin type.  A client with a darker skin type may tolerate a higher percentage, while a fair-skinned client may need a much lower DHA percentage.

Removing a Sunless Tan

For larger areas, soak in warm water with lemon juice and baking soda.  Follow with exfoliation.  For smaller areas, hydrogen peroxide, body hair bleach remover or lemon juice and baking soda may be used.

Skin Conditions & Sunless Tanning


A Sunless Tan will only look as good as the health of the skin it is being applied to.  Following is a brief list of some of the more common skin problems, and tips on how to best treat/tan the skin.



Dry skin tends to absorb the tanning solution quickly.  The skin also exfoliates faster, so the tan may fade faster and more unevenly.  DHA can also cause more dryness, so the skin can feel tight and itchy if the skin is dry to begin with.  Instruct the client to moisturize twice daily after showering.


The excess oils on the skin surface create a barrier to the DHA, which may cause the tan to develop lighter.  Clients should be freshly washed and exfoliated before their appointment so that excess oils are removed from the skin prior to spraying.  The client may also use a Sluff Wipe to remove any excess oils from the skin.


Clients may have larger facial/back pores due to age or oily skin.  This may cause the excess solution to pool in the pores and look like blackheads.  If the client has large pores, it’s helpful to gently pat with a soft cloth or disposable towel as this will blend the solution into the skin.


These are caused by UV exposure and may darken slightly when spray-tanned.  A barrier cream can be applied to larger freckles or age spots with a cotton swab before being sprayed.


The solution may not absorb through scars.  The spray tan may disguise the appearance of scars and stretch marks.  Do not apply the solution on fresh scars.


Acne prone skin is very similar to sensitive skin. Bronzers, fragrances and natural plant products can all cause an acne breakout or irritation to sensitive skin.


Eczema is an inflammation of the skin, characterized by redness, itching, and the outbreak of lesions that may discharge fluid and become crusty and scaly.  There are many variations of the condition, some not as bad – possibly just dry patches.  It’s a quite common condition.  If extreme, clients should get their doctor’s approval.  The client should exfoliate their skin prior to being tanned, however, should not do so on Eczema-prone areas.  Some dry areas may appear lighter than other tanned areas.


Rosacea is a form of adult acne causing redness, inflammation, sensitivity, and broken capillaries.  Spray tanning will work well on the body, but facially the DHA can cause irritation and flare-ups.  Rosacea patients should always consult their Dermatologist before being sprayed.  If they are given approval, it’s advisable to first do a patch test on the face to check for any reactions.


Vitiligo is a chronic disorder that causes de-pigmentation in patches in the skin.  The cells that produce melanin have died in some areas of the skin, causing areas of the skin to be white or paler in comparison. As DHA works on the protein in the dead layer of the skin and not the melanin, sunless tanning is suitable for this client.  The un-pigmented skin will still appear lighter but the contrast should be reduced depending on the amount of initial contrast.

Recommendation: Spray the un-pigmented areas only, buffing to blend contrast edges as you go, and then finish with an all-over body spray.

Sun Exposure, Skin Cancer & Sunscreen


There is no question most skin cancers are related to sun exposure, yet even with sunscreen sales approaching $1 billion a year, skin cancer rates continue to climb. Melanoma diagnoses have risen nearly 2 percent a year since 2000 and are increasing even more among young white women.


Some experts blame the inappropriate use of sunscreen, saying that people do not apply enough lotion (a golfball-size dollop) or do not reapply it every two hours as instructed. But there’s another major concern: Until recently, many sunscreens with a high sun protection factor, or SPF, were designed primarily to protect people from ultraviolet B rays, the main cause of sunburn. These sunscreens may have enabled users to stay out longer but did not necessarily protect them from ultraviolet A rays. These are associated with aging and skin damage, but some experts believe they may also be implicated in skin cancer.

Experts are urging people to limit their time in the sun, especially at midday, and protect their skin with hats, shirts and cover-ups instead of relying exclusively on sunscreen.

“Sunscreen is not a magic bullet,” said Dr. Steven Q. Wang, director of dermatologic surgery and dermatology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in Basking Ridge, N.J., and a spokesman for the Skin Cancer Foundation, which receives funding from sunscreen manufacturers. “It’s just one of the defences against the harmful effect of UV radiation, and that message gets lost.”

This summer, most of the sunscreen on store shelves must conform to new Food and Drug Administration labelling rules that may help remedy consumer misperceptions. Still, concerns remain about ingredients in some sunscreens.

Use of the label “broad spectrum protection” now means the sunscreen has been proven to protect against both UVA and UVB rays, although the UVA protection may be comparatively weaker. Any product with an SPF lower than 15 must carry a label warning that it will not protect against skin cancer. Products cannot claim to be waterproof, only water-resistant, and labels must note a time limit of either 40 or 80 minutes before the sunscreen is ineffective. Manufacturers can still sell sunscreens with SPFs that exceed 50, though F.D.A. officials are evaluating whether they should remain on the market, said Reynold Tan, a scientist in the agency’s Division of Nonprescription Regulation Development. It’s not clear that sunscreens with higher SPFs actually are more effective, and consumers may not apply them as frequently.

Advocates like Sonya Lunder, a senior analyst for the Environmental Working Group and an author of its report on sunscreen, have criticized the F.D.A. for backing away from some of its own proposals, like putting in place a star system that would give consumers more information about UVA and UVB protection, capping the SPF values allowed on the market at 50, and banning sunscreen sprays, which may not work as well to prevent sunburn.

Europe and Canada have tougher standards, Ms. Lunder said. “In the U.S., you can make a bad sunscreen and just not call it ‘broad spectrum,’ but still sell it,” she said. “In Europe, the pass-fail test is stronger, and it must protect against both UVA and UVB.”

Here is some advice to bear in mind when selecting sunscreen:

  • Look for products with an SPF of 15 to 50, and that are labelled “broad spectrum protection,” meaning they protect against both UVA and UVB rays. Higher SPF values are misleading. “It’s like the gas mileage sticker on a car. It’s based on test conditions that you’ll never achieve in the real world,” said Ms. Lunder.
  • Keep babies younger than 6 months out of the sun, as their skin is especially sensitive. Sunscreen should not be used on infants. If they are outdoors, keep them completely covered and in the shade.
  • Try to keep older children inside when the sun is harshest, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. A bad sunburn in childhood or adolescence doubles the risk of melanoma later in life, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.
  • Avoid sunscreen sprays. The F.D.A. has banned sunscreen powders (though some products may still be available) and has asked for more data on sprays. The concern is twofold: that not enough sunscreen makes it onto the skin, and that the spray may be inhaled into the lungs.
  • Avoid products with vitamin A, retinol or its derivatives, such as retinyl palmitate and retinyl acetate. At the moment, the F.D.A. says there isn’t enough evidence to suggest these are harmful, but the Canadian health authorities appear to be concerned that the additives increase sun sensitivity. They have proposed requiring that sunscreens with retinyl palmitate carry a warning saying they can increase the possibility of sunburn for up to a week.
  • The Environmental Working Group recommends avoiding products with oxybenzone, a chemical that may disrupt hormones. Though research has found this effect, many scientists say the effect is so weak as to be insignificant. The advocacy group, however, recommends products that use zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as active ingredients. (These products may leave a milky white film on the skin.)
  • Look for fragrance-free products. Scents bring more unnecessary chemicals and potential allergens to the mix.
  • Take endorsements and seals of approval with a grain of salt. The Skin Cancer Foundation gives a “seal of recommendation” to sunscreens, but only if their manufacturer has donated $10,000 to become a member of the organization.

A version of this article appeared in print on 05/28/2013, on page D4 of the New York edition with the headline: The New Rules for Sunscreen.

Vertical Spray Tan Essentials


Welcome to the world of spray tanning!  The following instructions are designed to be a starting point.  You will soon develop your own style and technique.  Remember no one sprays perfectly the first time; practice your technique on several people before you begin spraying paying clients.

Adjust the solution control knob so the right amount of product is sprayed out – not too much as the application will be too wet, and not too light as there won’t be enough product coverage.  Practice speed of spraying – when you go slow product builds up and appears too wet, when you go too fast, not enough product is applied.  It should appear as an even mist, providing even coverage on the skin.

A few points to remember when spraying:

  • Keep the gun the same distance away from the body the entire time (about 6-8 inches away.)  Keep the gun straight.
  • Keep a steady, consistent speed over the entire body and ensure the gun is moving before you depress the trigger.
  • Your wrist should be kept in one position; all movements must be done from the shoulder.  Move your body in line with the area you are spraying and follow the contours.
  • The skin should look damp, NOT WET, from the product as it’s applied to the body.  A good guide is to measure solutions to make sure you’re using approx. 1 ½ to 2 oz. of solution per application.
  • Feet, hands and face should be sprayed from slightly farther away and with a quicker movement.  The hands and feet tend to be drier, so will absorb and hold colour more easily.  A soft, disposable towel patted lightly in these areas will help to blend.

After clients have prepped, you can have them stand on a white hand towel or sticky feet to protect the solution from adhering to the bottom of their feet.  Position your client in front of you, standing with their feet firmly on the ground, and with their legs apart approximately hip width.

Back of Body

Spray lightly down the back of the neck.  Working from the shoulder to the hip, cover the entire back.  If need be, spray down the back of the triceps also, as this is sometimes missed from the front.

Spraying from the hip, have your client slightly bend at the waist to remove the crease under the buttocks, and continue down the leg to just above the ankle.  Make sure to dry the crease area before the client stands up.  Swipe very lightly and quickly down the back of the foot.  Ensure the entire back leg is sprayed, and if need be, have your client turn their foot inwards so that you can spray the inner thigh from the rear.

Repeat on the Other Leg

Sides of Body and Arms

Have the client look straight forward and tilt their head to the side.  Swipe quickly down the side of the neck (making sure you get into the hairline) and down the top of the shoulder.

Holding your client’s wrist, spray from shoulder to wrist on top of the arms.  Turn the arm and spray the inside of the arm from shoulder to wrist.  Turn the opposite way and spray the outside of the arm (forearm) stopping at the wrist (letting go of the trigger when getting close and backing away).  Have your client hold their arm up in the air with their wrist back and spray the underside of the arm, flicking the colour into the underarm area very lightly, then down the side of the torso and breast.  Hold the arm out until dry.

Working from the hip, spray down the sides of the leg to colour the area.  Flick the spray into the ankle only once as feet tend to take the colour if over sprayed.

Repeat on the Other Side

Front of Body

With the client lifting their head back, swipe very quickly and lightly down the front of the neck.  Working from the top of the shoulder and collarbone to the hips, make steady passes to colour the chest and midriff.  If the client is large-breasted, have them raise their arms or cup the breasts up and spray underneath first.  Hold until dry.  Follow the contours of the body and spray down and slightly over underwear (if worn).

Starting from the hip, work down the front of the leg to the ankle.  If you find it a little difficult, to begin with, divide the leg into two halves – hip to knee, knee to ankle.  Spray very lightly over their knees with a much faster movement.  If it appears the client will have lines in their knees due to skin folds, have the client bend the knees, one at a time, and lightly spray, blending in the creases with a soft cloth.

Notice the colour being applied to the body.  At the point where the colour stops, make another pass down the leg.  Imagine you are painting with a paintbrush.  Do this until the entire front of the leg is sprayed.

Inside of Leg

Turn the foot outwards and spray down the inner thigh and calf.  Flick the spray into the inside of the ankle only once as feet tend to take the colour if over sprayed.

Tops of Feet

Spray feet, one foot at a time with two quick passes from ankle to toes.  Make one pass slightly to the left-hand side of the foot, and one to the right.  This should be a much faster movement than the rest of the body.  You do not want to overspray the feet. It’s a good idea to wipe toenails afterwards with a baby wipe or a soft cloth.  Another option would be to apply a barrier cream ahead of time.


With fingers spread apart and clawed as if they’re holding an apple, make two passes over the hands, one to the left-hand side, and one to the right-hand side.  It helps to pat the hand with a soft cloth to blend and then to wipe fingernails with a baby wipe or a soft cloth.  Another option would be to apply a barrier cream ahead of time.


Instruct the client to close their eyes..  If the client does not relax their face, it can make for some interesting tan lines.  Spray down the front of the face, then the right side of the face, then the left side, all working top to bottom, making sure you spray into the hairline.  These should be quick passes.  After the client takes a breath, repeat – after they take another breath in and hold their breath while relaxing their face – by spraying the face one more time.  After spraying the face, it helps to pat the face with a soft cloth so the solution doesn’t pool up into large pores.  Disposable towels are great for this.

Finishing Touches

  • Now apply a second coat of solution to your client exactly how you applied the first coat BUT much, much quicker and lighter.
  • Have your client slowly turn to make sure they have a nice even application and be certain you’ve applied enough solution.
  • Ensure your client is dry enough before they put their clothes on.

What is DHA?


DHA is a colourless sugar and is being used by cosmetic manufacturers since the 1960’s. The compositions of sunless tanning solutions are generally mixtures which produce a natural brown “Tan colour” to the outer layer of the skin. Sunless tanning solutions usually consist of two main active ingredients, Dihydroxyacetone and Erythrulose. They both work on the same principle, reacting with the free amino groups of the amino acid, peptides and proteins from the uppermost layer of the stratum corneum.

Bronzers act as a colour guide to assist with an even application; it also gives an instant colour.   Clients will notice their colour developing up to 2 shades darker following their treatment. It is recommended not to shower or exercise before 6-8 hours following a session.

Tips for Working with Your Client


To run a successful spray tan business, it takes more than the ability to spray on a tan – it takes exceptional customer care and service.

Some clients may have reservations about having this service done.  The best way to help your client relax is to explain to them what is involved with the spray tan application.  Clients will quickly and easily relax when they know you are well-educated and comprehensive in your knowledge of spray tan application.  Be sure to have your client complete a consent form and answer any questions they may have.

Before spraying, here are a few hints…

  • Inform your client about the process of sunless tanning and how DHA (dihydroxyacetone) works.
  • Discuss with them the reason a bronzer is used in a solution and reiterate to them that the bronzer will wash off and may rub off onto their clothes and sheets if they sleep with the bronzer on.
  • Ask clients what their plans are after their tanning session.  Make sure they’re aware that at least for the next 6-8 hours they can’t shower, get wet, or undertake any activities which cause them to perspire excessively (unless a rapid tan is used).
  • Explain to your clients that when they take their next shower, they will see the cosmetic bronzer wash off down the drain and the DHA would have had time to develop.
  • Maintain an informative conversation to help relax the client and ask them if they have any questions.

After spraying, here are a few hints…

  • Inform your clients about the important steps of maintaining their sunless tan.  Remind them to avoid wearing tight clothing immediately after their spray tan.
  • Stress to your clients that their sunless tan will not protect them from the sun’s UV rays.  So, if they’re planning to head outside, they’ll need to apply sunscreen.
  • Inform clients not to take long, hot showers.  They need to pat their body dry with a towel and moisturize twice daily.  This will help the tan last longer.

Sunless Tanning Information for Trade Members

Client History Sheet & Waiver (pdf)