At more than 30 locations in the Houston area, clients check in at marble-fronted reception desks to meet with a member of Darque Tan's International Smart Tan Network—staff trained to determine the best path to their bronzing goals. Sessions take place in private rooms that line a column-flanked hallway, where five different levels of UV beds give skin the perfect level of tanning. Mystic Tan and VersaSpa sunless-tanning systems imbue clients with a hydrating, natural-looking glow, which can be customized according to skin tone, desired shade, and spirit animal. A full-time cleaning staff keeps each center in pristine conditions by referencing a 50-point inspection system. Most locations have books, televisions, and kids’ play areas to keep children entertained while adults are bronzing.
A 2012 pick for The Knot’s Best of Weddings, Fashion Face beautifies brides, bridesmaids, or wedding crashers for their big day with hairstyling and professional makeup services that include 16-hour foundations and tattoo cover-ups. Branching out beyond weddings, the salon also enhances everyday beauty with cuts and colors from experienced stylists and deep-cleansing facials that exfoliate and moisturize the skin. Custom airbrush tanning provides a natural-looking bronze without harsh chemicals or exposure to UV rays. Technicians apply the botanical solution by hand, adding darker hues to specific areas to create the look of a more toned physique.
It’s all about personal comforts at Sempre-Bella, a boutique salon specializing in spray tans and teeth whitening. This emphasis is experienced in several ways, including the organic spray-tan solution that is customized to suit each client’s skin tone and smell preference. In addition, clients watch the flat-screen TVs as they lounge during 15–30 minute teeth-whitening sessions. The staff also aims to ease minds with the help of an RDA-certified dental assistant who is on hand to answer any whitening questions. To help clients maintain new looks at home, Sempre-Bella’s crew recommends products from Bella Terra’s collection of tanning lotions, Bella Terra mineral lip-glosses, and Caspah skincare.
A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas—its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries—Planet Beach Contempo Spa 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 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.
As 2009 Miss Houston USA Angy Torres knows, it doesn’t take a discriminating judge to spot the streaks of an imperfect spray tan. That’s why she counts herself among the many clients who trust Body Brushed, an airbrush-tanning studio whose trained professionals could fool even the sun with their golden, UV-free tans.
Body Brushed’s specialists carefully coat their clients' skin with a DHA-infused solution formulated to create a golden tan that can last for up to 10 days with regular moisturizing and proper maintenance. The studio’s in-office and mobile services aren’t limited to sunless tans; they can also customize bodies with airbrushed makeup, tattoos, and full tuxedos.
Glo Sun Spa keeps a slew of modern bronzing, polishing, and hydrating technologies in peak condition. With a variety of tanning beds, Glo Sun Spa provides a wide range of sun-kissed glows. Alternatively, sunless VersaSpa and Pura Sunless systems provide a tan away from the sun's rays. The hydration station combines Hydrofusion with steam and LED technology to moisturize and tan epidermises, and the Lumiere Excel system features a series of repairing, clearing, and firming regimens. Glo Sun Spa also stocks a full line of lavish skincare products from brands such as Devoted Creations.