In 2001, the first iTan Sun Spray Spa opened its doors. It had a simple goal—to make clients feel and look lovely with professional tanning services. Today, the spa has more than 20 branches around San Diego, each offering a slightly different assortment of tanning beds, spray-tanning booths, and mechanical spa services.
The Smart Tan–certified staff prioritizes keeping up with tanning technology by stocking state-of-the-art tanning beds such as the Sun Angel, which uses sensors to customize a blend of UVA and UVB rays, practically eliminating overexposure and the need to wear a beekeeper suit to detract from a burn. Many beds come equipped with stereo sound systems, misters, and fans. Just down the hall from these beauty gadgets, Mystic and airbrush machines bronze limbs without UV rays or tan crayons, and mechanical spa machines dispense relaxing red-light treatments, infrared-energy body wraps, and aqua massages.
Dubbed the “pale skin fighters,” Sunless Revolution’s tanning technicians bronze their clients through UV-free methods performed in their industrial-style salon or on the road. With top automated misting booths such as Mystic HD and VersaSpa, customers can stop in for quick self-service tans that offer perks such as a pH-balancing spray. Alternatively, airbrush tans applied by hand give human canvases a custom glow.
Although the team at Platinum Tan & Skin Bar has been refining hues for 15 years, only recently, following a move, have they been polishing complexions in their sleek skin bar. Tucked within a private treatment room, aestheticians wax away unwanted hair and nourish visages with Dermalogica products and peels. They also offer red-light therapy designed to boost collagen, reduce the appearance of fine lines, and ease relations between humans and traffic lights.
Of course, tanning services still abound—the same ones that earned a gold Readers' Choice award from San Diego Downtown News in 2012. Artificial-sun bathers relax in four levels of vertical and horizontal beds, including a Level 5 machine with 10 adjustable facial bulbs, air conditioning, and voice-guided controls. Patrons can also ditch UV rays altogether and opt instead for spray tans in a Mystic HD booth or at the hands of experienced, professional airbrush technicians who—according to their website—use an organic formula and have misted the skin of Hollywood stars.
In search of that perfect bronze glow, The Tan Banana’s owner Tiffany spent 10 years of her life laying out by pools and hopping between tanning beds. That all came to an end a year ago, however, when she was diagnosed with a treatable form of melanoma. Though the cancer was removed, the risk of it coming back remains ever present—and it compelled Tiffany to make the switch to sunless tanning.
Today, Tiffany and her fellow technicians help others achieve safe, natural looking tans with Infinity Sun equipment. They begin each 10-minute session by applying an aloe-based hydrating treatment that locks in moisture and ensures a streak-free finish. Next, they artfully spray on the all-natural, odor-free tanning solution, which deepens hues and flatters physiques for up to 10 days. For best results, The Tan Banana suggests waiting 6 to 10 hours after one's treatment before showering, swimming, or trying to hug a waterfall. Check out other helpful tips.
The tanning experts at Tan Line cut down on the tedium of waiting for skin to darken inside a bed. Instead, they expedite epidermal color with sessions inside three vertical tanning machines that never exceed 10 minutes. VersaSpa sunless tanning sessions dole UV-free glows with clear or dark bronzers that contrast sharply with the dazzling smiles gained from the studio’s 20-minute ShineWhite teeth whitening treatment.