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.
Inside Vivaldi Salon Suites, all the coiffeurs are master stylists and master colorists, with an average of 10 years of experience. Along with the estheticians, make-up artists, and nail technicians, they are also their own bosses and set their own schedules and pamper guests from inside their own suites. The beauty entrepreneurs expertly dispense their mastery skills that include face-framing highlights, refreshing facials, permanent eyeliner applications, acrylic nails, and quickie tans without the need for the sun or a vat of melted pennies.
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.
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.
At Tan Factory, patrons slip from standup Saturn tanning beds or lie-down units, their skin warm and bronzed. The UVA-based high-pressure beds leave bodies with golden hues, and red-light-therapy beds hum as they generously spread a glow to stimulate collagen-producing fibroblasts during 15-minute sessions. As the light penetrates epidermal layers, it activates the body’s natural processes to reduce the appearance of fine lines, blemishes, and scars, restoring youthful sleekness and an ability to make convincing shadow puppets of dolphins. Those seeking to augment skin with sunless color step into a Mystic Tan or VersaSpa Spray booth and emerge 60 seconds later with fully toasted coats that last up to eight days.
At Salon Milano and Spa, plant-based Aveda products lend customized aromatherapy and natural nutrients to salon and spa services. The products' holistic focus matches the manner in which the staff conducts spa services: in addition to explaining the purpose of each step in the facial or massage, therapists also guide clients through stress-relieving visualization exercises to calm the mind. All treatments are customized, from the aromatherapy of a massage to the angle of the cut performed by senior or new-talent stylists in the salon. Tuscan Sanctuary is open late on weekdays to accommodate busy schedules and UV rays that, like Napoleon and his chef after saying they preferred English bread to baguettes, are exiled.