Not all airbrush tans are created equal. Some might leave you feeling icky, like you’ve just rolled around in maple syrup and dirt. Others could make you look like a Jim Henson Muppet. But if they’re done right, like the custom airbrush tanning services from Bronzeology, you’ll leave looking and feeling like your skin has been kissed by the sun.
Bronzeology owner and airbrush artist Brenna Benson moved to the Valley of the Sun from Chicago in search of clear skies and a more laid-back lifestyle. Having owned a tanning salon in the Windy City, Benson now offers custom airbrush tanning exclusively at Steven Paul Salon in Scottsdale.
Steven Paul Salon is actually made up of smaller salon and beauty studios. That, coupled with décor that reminds me of a coastal Mediterranean town, gives the impression that you’re walking through some bustling Italian town square that just so happens to be lined with fantastic salon services. Besides the beauty studios, there’s also a café where you can grab a quick bite.
After checking in, Benson leads me through the bustle of beauty stations and up a flight of stairs, passed several individual studios (this is a huge place!) and into her tanning room. She explains to me today’s process – typical of other airbrush experiences: undress to your comfort level, take off all jewelry, put on the cap – and a little bit about the product line she uses.
Fantasy Tan is her solution and equipment line of choice.
“It’s a highly customizable line,” she says. “I have five different colors that I can blend to match anyone’s skin perfectly. So, not only can I control how light or dark the solution will be, but I can also work with specific pigmentation.”
What does that mean, exactly?
“It means that no matter what your skin tone, whether you’re fair-skinned with red undertones or have an olive complexion, we can create the perfect tan that is completely customized for you.”
I’m standing in Benson’s designated tanning area in all my glory when she powers on the machine. No matter which salon I visit, the actual airbrush portion of the tan is always cold. Benson flips on a space heater for my comfort and we get down to business.
Even as she’s spraying, I can feel how light the solution is. I know right away that there won’t be any “caked-on” sensation once we’re done. And another thing – there’s actually a pleasant scent to the solution! Was it floral? Citrus? It definitely wasn’t gross chemical like so many others I experienced before my initiation as a Spa Girl.
Once she’s sure she’s covered all of my nooks and crannies, taking extra precaution around my knees, elbows and other tricky spots, Benson applies a small dose of shiny powder to certain areas. This, she says, will prevent any smudging or weird coloring that can sometimes show up on the creases behind your elbows, for example.
When we’re completely done, she hands me a brochure with information on how to make your tan last at home. I appreciate the small touches Benson adds to her airbrush service. They make a big difference.
With daily moisturizing and careful attention to Benson’s post-tan tips, I made my airbrush tan last a solid 7 days. There was no fake-bake look to my tan and no thick yucky feeling to my skin after the service. Benson’s experience and attention to detail is obvious. She’s an airbrush pro!
Call 630.669.2225 to book your next custom airbrush tan with Bronzeology.
*Editor’s note: Bronzeology has relocated to a new Phoenix studio. See address above for new location and happy bronzing!