After the winter we've had, my skin hasn't seen sunlight in months, so I was dreading wearing a swimming suit and blinding everyone around me with my white-white legs! So I googled "spray tans in Bloomington, IL" and I found "Spray Tan Lady" on Facebook. Jessica seemed legit and had good comments from other followers on Facebook so I gave her a call. I booked it for the day before we left for vacation, per her suggestion.
Now, I had never had a spray tan before (well I did one of the automatic ones about 8 years ago and I was NOT a fan), so I had LOTS of questions. I called her at least 3 times before she came. Jessica was so nice and friendly, which made getting naked in front of her a lot less awkward.
So just in case you're a newbie like me, here's what I found out.
1. She's a mobile spray tanner, so she comes to you! She has a fabulous pop-up tent that she can set up anywhere in your house.
2. You want to exfoliate beforehand, but not within 24 hours of getting your spray tan. That includes shaving!
3. If you plan to wear a swimming suit at some point afterwards, you'll need to be in the buff for the spray tan. Don't worry, she assured me she's seen it all, ha! The most awkward part is that little line under your butt cheek, so you have to stick your butt out for about 3 seconds while she sprays it.
4. The spray does not get anywhere in your house because you're inside a tent.
5. She can go as natural or as dark as you'd like. AND she can contour your body to make your waistline appear smaller and your boobies bigger!
6. It doesn't matter if you've just had a manicure or pedicure :) It won't ruin it or discolor it.
7. It takes about 45 minutes from the time she gets to your house, set up, spray, tear down.
8. It costs $40 and if you have a spray party and invite 4 of your friends, yours is free!
9. For an added $5 you can get any of these add ins: slimming, anti-aging, fragrance, opalescent or bronzing shimmer.
10. You want to wait as long as possible before showering and when you do, don't use a loofa, just hand wash and pat yourself dry. Also if you don't take a hot shower it will extend the life of your tan. This doesn't mean you have to take a cold shower, just not a steaming hot one.
11. You should moisturize your skin at least 2 times a day to increase the longevity of the tan.
UPDATE: Now that I've returned from vacation, I can add a couple comments on how the tan wore on. I was most happy with how my legs looked. Legs just look so much better when they are tan! My only complaint is that you could tell where I crossed my legs because the tan wore off in 2 little circles where they touched. It's a habit and don't even realize I'm doing it! No one else noticed until I pointed it out, so I wasn't really worried about it. But something to pay attention to in the future.
I was well aware that getting a spray tan before going on vacation where I knew I'd be swimming would decrease the life of my tan but I was happy with how long it actually lasted. I'd say I got 5-6 days out of it. Obviously it would have lasted longer had I not been in a pool everyday!
I'm sure you're wondering about the smell... When I've used self tanning lotions, one of my biggest complaints is that I smell like self tanner all day! The spray tan wasn't anything like self tanners. I could still smell it a little the next day, but it wasn't as strong as self tanners. My husband couldn't smell it, so it might have been my heightened sense of smell :)
All-in-all, I would definitely do it again. It's a great value for what you get and you really do look naturally tan afterwards.
Here's a before and after picture (the after picture was taken the next morning). I can't believe I'm showing a picture of my stomach, but I wanted you to see how the contouring looked.
Melissa Ash - mom of 2 energetic boys, wife, and business woman. Just trying to "do it all".