A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas—its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries—Planet Beach is a futuristic relaxation station where state-of-the-art machines administer all the spa and tanning services. These friendly automatons sometimes replace familiar treatments, as in the Luminous facial, a light-based service that delivers blemish-busting results similar to those of a conventional facial. But other equipment maps out new spa territory entirely: the Hydro-Derma Fusion chamber moisturizes the whole body with nutrient-rich steam in order to offset the effects of a dry climate or a rear-end collision with a salt truck. Other machines whiten teeth, spray tan skin, and massage muscles.
Planet Beach operates on a gym-style membership system, meaning that members purchase packages or pay flat monthly rates. As members spend more time at the spa, they get to know the helpful assistants who are always on hand to demonstrate how to use the equipment without activating its ability to cry.
Convenience comes first at Celebrity Tanning, where a plethora of metro locations, extended hours, and a large lineup of tanning equipment ensure clients can achieve a sun-kissed glow with minimum fuss. Four tiers of UV beds offer escalating amenities that add to the comfort and efficacy of tanning sessions, incorporating extra facial tanners, aromatherapy, MP3 hookups, and inspirational posters of famous suns from other galaxies. For more immediate results, the salon’s automated Mystic Tan booth sends sweeping jets of misted bronzer over bodies to create a streak-free tan that lasts 7–10 days after one 60-second session. The staff of tanning specialists can help customers choose the right type of session for their skin or budget, answering any questions that may come up. Tan-prolonging lotions from brands such as Australian Gold and California Tan are also available to enhance the depth and duration of a tan without equipping clothes with UVA bulbs.
Staff members at Just Glow Tanning and Boutique take care to recommend tanning products from their onsite salon best suited to enhance sessions in their collection of beds made by California Tan, UWE, and Montego Bay. The boutique also sells bathing suits and trendy clothing to show off skin’s new golden hues.
Inside Tan Utopia’s salon, brightly colored bikinis hang from the wall next to other trendy clothing styles for sale, each reminding guests of the warm-weather places they’ll flaunt their new tans. But these tan-complementing clothes and accessories are just a bonus for clients after completing sessions in tanning beds or with UV-free applications. For guests who prefer formula-based tanning, the salon offers hand-painted sunless bronzing. Several brands of lotion and bronzer are also available to help ensure skin holds on to its new golden hue as long as it can.
Nationally certified tanning artist Nina Brown gives skin a natural-looking glow using organic, FDA-approved tanning potions. She learned to wield these hypoallergenic, paraben-free solutions under the tutelage of an airbrush artist who perfected her craft on the skin and patent-leather handbags of the cast of The Real Housewives of Orange County. Brown applies these professional techniques while bronzing clients in her studio or on location.