California Spray Tan at Sunset Tan

Categories: Tanning
Leave A Comment: Comments(19)

Sunset Tan 
For a weekend of fun, I drove from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, and when I noticed the Sunset Tan on Sunset Blvd (at Alta Loma), I thought it would be interesting to stop in for a spray tan! I’ve only done one spray tan before – a Mystic Tan – but it’s been a few years, so I couldn’t remember all the details about it. So the next day, I showered and exfoliated and moisturized a bit and then headed to Sunset Tan. As you know, I’m totally against tanning, but I have no problems with fake tans! When I went into Sunset Tan, I was surprised at how small it was! It looks much bigger on the tv show! Nick, the store manager, was there and he was busy telling a customer that tanning beds cannot short-circuit, catch on fire, and kill you, like the horrible scene in Final Destination 3. That was pretty funny. I didn’t catch her name, but it was a girl that actually helped me explain the different spray tanning options. They do Mystic Tans there, and also California Tans, which is what I opted for, since I hadn’t tried one before. The spray tan cost $35, which seemed like a lot to me, but I was already there and didn’t want to walk out! I know you can buy packages of cheaper spray tans, so I was pretty surprised the girl didn’t suggest the different pricing options, especially since a huge part of the Sunset Tan tv show focuses on sales.

 For the actual California Tan, I’m taken to a room which has the tanning machine in it. I remember Mystic Tans are done in a little booth, while the California Tan is a large machine in the room. I’m given Barrier Creme (a lotion), and am instructed to put it on areas that might pick up more color than wanted – hands, fingernails, tops and sides of feet. I put on the Barrier Creme, and also put on a hairnet (haha) to protect my hair. The girl punches in “level 2” on the machine and then leaves the room. You can customize the “darkness” of the tan to best fit your skintone. I get undressed and step on the spot where I’m supposed to stand, and then press the “go” button. The machine talks and tells me to close my eyes and hold my breath, and after a quick countdown, it sprays for about 3 seconds. I sort of hold my arms out to the sides and move around a bit to try to get even coverage. The spray was pretty cold, so I wasn’t expecting that! Then the machine tells me to turn around, and it sprays my back. Next the machine actually starts drying me and within a minute I’m done! I don’t think the Mystic Tan dries you, and I remember sort of dripping and having to rub in tanning solution quite a bit. With the California Tan, I see just a few uneven spots that I quickly rub, and then I get dressed and I’m done! You’re not supposed to take a shower for 6 hours after the tan.

When I look in the mirror, I am noticeably much darker, and the color appears really even. I apply some sunscreen, since a spray tan doesn’t give you any added sun protection, and I’m out the door! That’s me in the photo, right after the tan. A few hours later, I notice my feet and legs are a bit spreckled, and my feet are pretty orange! I obviously didn’t use enough Barrier Creme on them, so that’s a lesson for next time! And I should have put the creme on the bottoms of my feet! When I take a shower that night, I’m sort of alarmed when the tub turns orange for a minute! I knew there must have been a bronzer used to make me instantly dark, but I wasn’t expecting it to wash away like that (but it turns out that’s normal). After the shower, I am still dark (the spreckles went away, luckily), but definitely not as dark without the bronzer. Overall, I think the tan looks really even (no blotches) and pretty realistic. However, I definitely feel like I am more orange than I would look with a real tan. I honestly don’t know if people think I look orange, and my friends say I look fine. The spray tan dries your skin out a bit, so make sure to moisturize!

After this experience, I think spray tans are the way to go if you have a lot of money and can afford to get them done weekly (they last about 5-7 days), or they are great for special occasions, or for models that have photoshoots, etc. I personally won’t be doing one anytime soon since I don’t have a lot of money, and I’m not that concerned about whether or not I look tan. I definitely have not mastered self-tanning at home, and the spray tan gave me much more even coverage, but for now I’ll just stick with a self-tanning moisturizer, which is fast and easy, and hard to mess up! As a final note, there are reports that spray tans may not be safe, since they spray your eyes, nose, and mouth, which can lead you to injest dihydroxyacetone (DHA), the active ingredient that causes the skin to darken. I need to read more about this subject, and want to find out whether or not even using self-tanning lotions is safe.

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19 Responses to “California Spray Tan at Sunset Tan”

  1. Angela Says:

    I enjoyed reading your piece on spray tanning. Although, all spray tans are not created equally. They should never leave you the least bit “orange,” most spay tans leave the skin with an orangy hugh due to the fact that the raw materials used to make the product is very expensive. Even though the machines can be pretty impressive, I prefer to have it done by hand, some might not feel comfortable, so whatevery you choose to wear is completely up to you. There is no spotches, uneven tones, or white spots. If you are interested in trying it out, I would be happy to provide you with a free demo.

    St. Tropez is a brand recognized and brand identified product in the UK, and is very popular with Posh and hubby Beckham, as they have it done weekly by one of our top trainers.

    Take care,

    Angela Kalish
    Senior Trainer
    St. Tropez Tan

  2. Elaine Says:

    I tried the Mystic Tan once. When I realized that I had to remain in that little booth with the mister going I became very concerned that even though they say to hold your breath, you cannot for the entire time you are in that booth. I believe that these ingrediants could be potentially very harmful to your lungs and the skin itself-as we know the skin absorbs the product. I will never do it again and have made peace with my pale skin.

  3. Minutestar Says:

    Thanks for sharing your tan experience! I’ve always wanted to try it out, but I’m not sure the how to, the plusses, and the minuses. This helps a lot!

  4. Tara Says:

    Thanks for telling us about this, i am going to L.A on holiday soon and was thinking of going to sunset tan after watching the show, however this is the only place i could find a price (and i dont want to go in and then walk out!)

  5. Sonja Says:

    Just wondering if you can recommend any face self tanners that will not cause breakouts.

  6. Jeni - Savvy Skin Says:

    I use L’Oreal Sublime Glow for face, and it doesn’t really have any pore-cloggers, and I haven’t had a problem with it. Neutrogena Build-a-tan Face is good too, if they still make that one.

  7. Pamm Says:

    I went to get a Mystic Tan Spray For All Over. The Spray is cold, & smells bad. It does turn you dark. However is it worth it for the price you pay putting these chemicals into your skin? Here is my story.. When you go get a tanning spray the employees give you goggles & tell you to hold your breath. But what they don’t tell you is to put a nose plug on. Protect your Nose! This spray went up my nose, & it was so nasty smelling, & felt horrible. I got very nauseated from the smell up to 3 days after I still was smelling it. It made my sinuse passages swell shut. It made me so sick I couldn’t get off the couch for 2 days afterwards. The chemical going into my nose, & possibly my lungs caused a bad reaction. Its been 4 weeks since I did this & I have had nothing but problems. I have been extremely fatigued, extremely not myself. I started not sleeping, & have had bad allergies that I have never had before I am now allergic to everything. I cannot get the swelling to go down inside my nose. Swollen shut still. The mystic spray dried my sinuses out like you wouldn’t believe. I am worried that these chemicals from the spray has caused something horrible inside my nasal cavities. I have taking alot of medicines & nose sprays & rinses & nothing has helped. I have been on antibiotics & steroids nothing is helping. My Ent saw nothing on Cat Scan, he is sending me to a neurologist for more test. So be very careful when getting a Spray Tan or this can happen to you. It can cause problems & I do not want anyone to go through what I am going through.. Good Luck

  8. jodie Says:

    i dont wont to offend you and i hope u r ok,but i can assure you that NO ONE HAS EVER DIED FROM A SPRAY TAN,but an awfull lot of people HAVE DIED FROM SKIN CANCER ! while im sure your nostril problem MUST BE UNPLEASANT what makes you think ONE SPRAY TAN could do this to you. (easy money perhaps if you tried to sue) ACTIVE INGREDIENTS IN ANY SPRAY TAN ORIGINATE FROM SUGERBEETS/ROOTS AND ARE APPROVED BY THE FDA.THEY HAVE BEEN USED SAFLEY IN MOST COSMETICS FOR OVER 30 please get your facts correct before trying to scare people.

  9. Amanda Says:

    I love my spray tan results but I’m wondering if it made me sick or it’s just an odd coincidence. I’ve done it 3 times over a two year period, 2 of the three times I got flu like symptoms for about 12 hours. After getting a spray tan this past week, I actually vomited all day Saturday. I’m really hoping it was just a bug but it seems odd that it has happened two out of the three times I’ve been sprayed. I’ve been to a different place each time I’ve sprayed. The time I did not get sick I noticed the spray was less smelly, less chemicals perhaps? Is it possible to have an allergic reaction to the DHA that is in the spray? It is supposed to be safe and it is FDA approved but maybe in the small % of people that should not do it?? I’m hoping I’m wrong but it’s not worth being tan at a wedding or any other time if it makes you physically ill. I’m happy to report that I haven’t found any research to link spray tans or DHA to flu like symptoms so I’m hoping this isn’t the end of my golden brown trick. If anyone can point me in the direction of a good website that reviews side effects or has any personal input, that would be great.

  10. Sony Says:

    Spray tanning is NOT approved by the FDA. DHA is approved in lotions. And yes there are ALOT of chemicals in the solution that can and more likely will make some people sick. There have been adverse reactions reported to the FDA. If anyone does have a reaction to spray tanning it should be reported immediately.

  11. Sonya Says:

    Spray tanning is NOT approved by the FDA. Lotions are.

  12. Jessica Roche Says:

    I had a spray tan this week, I usually feel quite dirty and can’t wait to get it off, often having trouble sleeping. This time I felt quite sick after my tan and threw up into the night. I didn’t have anything much to eat that day so pretty sure it wasn’t the food. Has anyone else had this?, or I might just be quite sensitive to the chemicals.

  13. Maggie Says:

    I did at home spray tanning twice in 2 weeks, the fumes were pretty intense. It has made me very ill, going on the fifth day of heavy fatigue, dizziness, nasal congestion. Symptoms very similiar to mold allergy. I am sure it was from the neutrogena spray tan I used. Watery itchy eyes..the whole deal. Flu like yet no fever or body aches. If iam not considerably better by tomorrow I will see a doctor. Take every precaution not to inhale these fumes a AT all!! I’m scared to death as to what damage I may have caused.

  14. Michele Says:

    i just googled this as was thinking of having one done today. i usually use Clarins fake tan but someone is offering a spray tan. I was going on holiday with someone who went for a spray tan and an hour later they threw up for 24 hours! It was an extreme reaction and reading the other ones here I think I will stick to tanning cream but might have the skin test as if she does spray me it is by hand.

  15. Sheila Says:

    I have been spray tanning by a person many times before. I decided to try a mystic tan because they were being given away. Without any help at all from the girls at the front, I went into this booth to spray tan. I was not provided goggles, nose plugs or a mask. This was yesterday around 3pm. Currently, Its 9am the next day and I have a headache, a sore throat, and have been nauseous all night. I was getting up about every 30 minutes throwing up all night and I did this for a special event. Due to getting this done, I might not even be able to attend the special event I wanted to. Its NOT worth it. Have a person do it.

  16. chloe Says:

    I had a spray tan for a very special wedding this friday 21st may 2010. What a total mistake!! Never had one in my life, but people were teeling me to go ahead and have one. I started feeling bad 24 hours after the tan experiencing flu type symptoms, severe headache and diaorreah!! By the day of the wedding my throat was so painful i had to miss the entire meal and had to go home having got so upset at feeling so unwell and not being able to enjoy the wedding remotely!!! The tan was not even nice, it was patchy. I would warn anyone to think very carefully before having one, had I known there was any risk involved there is no way I would have risked it

  17. tessa Says:

    i had one at 7 yesterday and almost immediately got a fever… its 1am now and i have chills .

  18. Amy Says:

    I found this site because I used some Neutrogena spray tan today in preparation for a trip to Vegas (never used anything like it before) and within a few minutes of application got sick…I was having muscle/body aches and felt terrible. I took a nap, hoping it would get better and when I woke up I felt WORSE and my kidneys were actually hurting. I knew immediately I needed to get the chemicals off, so I took a hot bath with some dead sea salts and afterward immediately felt better. I will not be using spray tanning products again. Not everyone is like this, but I am somewhat chemically-sensitive and the chemicals in the spray tan product were too much for me.

  19. mariah Says:

    WOW….. what I am reading has been shocking news. I do not usually tan, but on the occasions that I have, I have noticed that I have become extremely sick. My entire xmas last year was ruined as a result of flu like symptoms, ( throwing up, body aches, and diarrhea) that came hours after I mystic tanned for a xmas party. I never thought that the mystic tan could have this affect on me, so I never mentioned it or looked into it. However, after my last session of mystic tanning I became SEVERELY SICK. Emergency room visits, cat scans for my stomach, and multiple dr. visits, have been a result of my flu like symptoms, ( especially feeling nauseated) for weeks now. It has almost been a month. I thought it would be a crazy assumption, but after reading posts by people who have experienced the same thing, I know something is wrong here. I WILL NEVER MYSTIC TAN AGAIN. I don’t know if the product is fda approved, but even if it is that does not guarantee that adverse reactions cannot happen to certain people who use it. Also, just because there is no direct proof by research to link mystic tan to reactions like this does not mean that it doesn’t happen. That just means that they have yet to establish a direct causal link but may next month or next year or the next ten years. EVERYONE BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU PUT IN YOUR BODIES.

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