Sunless Tanning: Spray Tanning vs. Self-Tanning


Ahhh, sunless tanning! Odds are, how you define it won’t be the same as the next person. Since we’ve done over 50+ million tans, we can give you the real meaning of sunless tanning and clear up the differences between spray tanning and self-tanning.

Sunless Tanning 101

Sunless tanning consists of spray tanning and self-tanning. Both are easy. It’s just a matter of which you prefer.

With spray tanning, a light mist is sprayed onto your body in a private, automated booth or with a technician’s hand-held sprayer. Spray tanning solutions range from clear to different bronzer tones. They can even include skincare benefits!

Self-tanning involves applying tanning products in the comfort of your own home. The range of self-tanning products includes sprays, lotions and mousse.

Learn about sunless tanning with a spray tanning booth or sprays and lotions you apply at home


Spray Tanning: Booths vs. Handheld

The private, automated booth has nozzles that spray your entire body (front and back) with a tanning solution. Typically, you’ll strip down and jump in the booth in a tanning or beauty salon. But don’t worry, no one is watching. Booths provide voice-guided instructions on what to do and how to stand to achieve the best tan. With options, you can tan in a clear solution or with a bronzer.

With the handheld airbrush, the technician sprays the tanning solution on you. The technician will apply the tanning solution on your entire body and guide you on how to stand and where to place your arms, etc. You can strip down (which most people do) or leave your undergarments on – whatever makes you feel the most comfortable. The technician is also trained to be sensitive to your preferences. If you leave your undergarments on, make sure they are old and dark colored. For this tan, you can head over to a tanning or beauty salon, but you can also schedule an appointment for a technician to come to your house.

Learn about the differences between a spray tanning booth and handheld airbrush


Spray Tanning vs. Self-Tanning

The biggest difference between spray tanning and self-tanning is that spray tanning relies on equipment and self-tanning involves products you can apply on your own at home.

You can use sprays that would emulate the light mist you’d get in a booth or with the handheld unit. Sunless tanning lotions can be compared to your typical lotions and moisturizers. Both sprays and lotions give a full-body, even tan. Lotion is great option for tanners who want more control over the depth of their tan. With lotion, you can easily apply less or more. It does take longer to apply the lotion vs. the spray. Spray is ideal for people who want a quick, easy and even full-body tan. However, there will be over-spray, so we recommend applying in the bathroom, or shower, where surfaces can easily be washed down. It’s best to apply sprays and lotions with an applicator mitt. If you don’t have this readily available, be sure to wash your hands immediately after applying.

Learn about the differences between a spray tanning booth and handheld airbrush

Overall, sunless tanning makes you look good, and more importantly, feel good. Whether you spray tan or self-tan, you can get the perfect glow in a matter of minutes. It really comes down to what you have time for based on your lifestyle. Enjoy that sunless tan, no matter what way you get it.

Get the perfect glow with a spray tan or self-tan