Every salon claims that their tanning formula is one-of-a-kind. But at Unique Tan, it's actually true—owner Sherrie Lee Meredith developed it herself. Her signature spray-tanning blend, Unique Excellence, tints skin with a paraben-free solution of organic aloe vera, berry essences, and a firming serum to stave off the signs of aging. The formula also contains erythrulose, which can produce a longer-lasting bronze glow, and, because it's alcohol-free, helps keep skin moisturized and streak-free. The salon's Smart Tan–certified staff uses this in both automated booths and custom airbrushing sessions, which harness the steady hand of a tanning artist to ensure tans completely cover skin and finally even the score with haughty bronze statues.
The salon also offers traditional UV-tanning beds, which contain comfort-adding amenities such as air conditioning, aromatherapy, adjustable facial bulbs, and easy-to-follow voice instructions. Clients can enhance their tans with the salon's line of tan-accelerating products, which extend the life of each tan by keeping skin moisturized and healthy.
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.
The fearless tendril tamers at The Sculpture Salon are passionate about teaching manners to mischievous manes. Properly frame the paint-covered work of art that is your face with a basic haircut ($25+ for men, $35+ for women), or recast its natural hue with a dramatic coloring treatment ($60+ for single process, $110+ for double). Perms ($75+) lock locks into dizzying, springy coils, weaves ($90+) supplement natural fur growth, and updos ($55+) render mops ready to be whisked off for an elegant preprom taco feast.
Sun Starr Tanning offers a handful of ways to bronze bodies. Three levels of tanning beds darken skin in as little as 12 minutes and include extras such as facial or neck tanners. For those seeking UV-free color, a standup Magic Tan booth blasts its bronzing formula onto clients during 45-second sessions. Clients can also receive a custom color application during a personal airbrush tanning session with a spray-tan specialist. Once clients' skin is bronzed and glowing, an on-staff aesthetician is ready to prettify visages with facials or eyelash extensions long enough to braid into pigtails.
Although she knew the risks of tanning, Tara Hale-Mies was a regular user of UV tanning beds. But when she saw how natural airbrush tans looked, she finally made the switch. Now she promotes the long-term beauty benefits of sunless tanning and shows clients how to stay bronzed without exposing themselves to premature aging and health issues. Tara only uses Body Bronze products, selected for the rich colors they're able to produce, even without Crayola's permission. Each airbrush tan lasts 7–10 days.