Over the weekend I did something I haven’t done in years. I went and got a spray tan.
(This was so NOT my experience, it was very much my fear)
Why had it been years since I’d done this? Well possibly for exactly the reasons you’d think. Previously, I’d done the whole spray tan thing before a friends wedding. It was the first summer I had a full time job, and therefore the first summer I was not as tan as my skin could possibly be. I was a bridesmaid, and her dresses were a beautiful coral color that looked best against skin that had spent time at the beach/pool. I had not. Looking back at pictures from that wedding, it’s not that the tan looked bad, it’s just that it didn’t look…..natural? There was more than a hint of orange. Add to that seeing Snooki on TV not many years later, and it was simply not a part of my beauty routine.
So when VersaSpa reached out to me to see if it was something I’d like to try, I wont’ lie to you, I hesitated. I asked a bunch of questions, and was ensured that the technology had improved greatly in the almost 8 years since my last one, and I should probably give it a go. You know how they say timing is everything? Well they are right. I haven’t been on vacation yet this year, I’ve only been to the local “beach” once and the pool with friends twice. For a girl that spent 10 years living at the furthest, 30 min from the ocean (and 100 yrds at the closest) summer in the city is tough. I like a sun kissed glow and I most certainly didn’t have one. So VersaSpa, was answering my inner cries of “I just wanna be taaaaaaannnn.” They hooked me up with a giftcard to give it a try (and keep reading because they are hooking you up to.)
Brushing away thoughts of this, I called the local tanning salon. You know, to make an appointment…..and ask 10,000 (more) questions about the process to ensure that this wasn’t me. Come Saturday I did what I’d been told. I showered and shaved. I exfoliated. I didn’t moisturize. And I was on my way. The girls at the salon (local ladies, I went to Palm Beach Tan in Towson) recommended a primer. It basically helps balance you skin pH levels for even absorption. I’m pretty sure that (and my spray tan angel Amiee) were key in keeping me from totally freaking out. So after being walked through the process, prepping, and hitting that button…. how was it?
Honestly, I was really impressed. The entire process took about 30 min, but the actual tan took less than 5. It was not nearly the fear fest I’d built it up to be in my head. There were no doors to close (thank goodness!), and the machine actually talks you through what to do. I walked away feeling confident that I’d done it all right, and was ready to go out looking bronzed that evening. I was told not to shower for at least 4 hours, but that the color would develop for up to 12. I looked at myself after 5 hours and decided I was dark enough. It looked natural, but I definitely had more color than I had before.
I did, however, learn a few things.
1. When they say exfoliate, the really REALLY mean it.
My legs were super dry, and kind of peeling from one of those pool days where I forgot to reapply sunscreen (please reapply!) I thought I’d done a decent job, until I looked at my shin/calf on Sunday and saw that the color had really absorbed into the dry skin that was now flaking off. Not. Cute. Also, not the fault of the spray tan.
2. Baking Soda and Lemon juice work wonders.
My legs looked less than perfect for about 2 days, until I scrubbed them with an exfoliating baking soda and lemon juice combo. It helped not only remove the skin, but also helped even out the color of the tan. It shouldn’t be necessary if you really exfoliate before tanning, but it’s a really good fix if you have a problem.
3. They are serious about Barrier Cream.
Amiee told me to put the barrier cream on my palms, nail beds, between my fingers, and smooths a thin layer across the top of my hands. It keeps color from collecting in area with thinner skin that absorb it faster. My hands were perfect. My feet however? Well I didn’t apply as much, or do as through a job so they needed that baking soda/lemon juice combo as well.
You guys know I don’t lie to you, so I’m being honest when I say that I was impressed with the experience. The color was fantastic. The process was easy. Is it something I would do weekly? Probably not, but before a special occasion? Absolutely! I’m thinking I’ll be going back in October, before I’m a bridesmaid in another wedding. And I KNOW I won’t look the least bit orange. But do you want to know the very BEST thing about this? You have a chance to win a free spray tan yourself! Enter below!
**UPDATE** OOPS! This Giveaway is closed!
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by VersaSpa. VersaSpa provided me with a gift card to experience their spray tan. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the companies that support Charming City Style!