Anticipating the arrival of a client he knows both by name and music preference, Glow Tanning Center co-owner Brandon Kemp strides down to the client’s usual chamber and tunes its Pandora radio to her favorite tunes. Kemp also helps clients navigate the center's three levels of UV tanning by creating custom "game plans" and by unfurling a spool of thread to follow back to the front door. The plans combine the use of tanning lotions with a varying regime of visits to the center’s high-pressure UWE beds and speedy upright booths that clients use in 10-minute increments.
In an adjacent room, co-owner Meg Dewall loads a color cartridge into her airbrush. Dewall has airbrushed the toned abs of fitness models and bodybuilders and the rippling upper lips of Elvis impersonators for a decade. Through years of creating quick, custom tans, she has come to rely on a bronzer from Norvell, a formula that eschews dyes because they can cause skin to look orange. The equipment is minimal, so she can also bring her monochrome art kit and a special tent to hotel rooms and private residences for tanning parties and convenient touchups.