How Much Does a Spray Tan Cost?

  Posted on 7/22/2012
How Much Does a Spray Tan Cost?

Spray tanning is a great alternative to exposing the skin to the sun’s UV rays. It involves the spraying of special formula on the top layer of skin to give a tanned appearance. They solution acts like makeup and can last for a few days to a few weeks. It is a quick and easy way to get an attractive glow to your skin without exposing to damage. If you are considering this option, you are probably interested in the price of spray tan. 

Spray Tanning Methods

There are two general spray tanning methods offered by salons, which have varying costs.

  1. Automatic Spray Tanning Booth: this is the most common method offered by salons and is done quickly from a private room. Clients receive a shower cap and special cream to block the solution from tanning their palms, fingernails, soles of feet, and toenails. Many booths have a speaker that allows the technician to provide instruction on when to switch positions. The process typically takes about a minute and the whole session usually takes around 15 minutes. These 
  2. Hand Spraying: this method involves a spray tanning technician applying the tanning solution to the skin. Many salons provide paper undergarments to avoid staining and clients stand up in a special booth while the technician applies the solution using a hand held device or airbrush gun. This method commonly offers finer details and the ability to fill in tan lines. The application typically takes 10 to 15 minutes and then time to stand in front of a dryer or fan. The whole session usually lasts an hour. 

Costs of Spray Tanning

In general, the starting price of spray tan is more than a tanning bed session. One session in a spray tanning booth commonly costs $25 to $60, and by hand application costs around $25 to $50. Some high-end salons charge up to $70 for one session. The spray tan cost often depends on the spray tanning method and the experience of the technician. Often times, customers may have the ability to purchase packages of multiple visits to lower the price of individual sessions. Many salons offer discounts for referrals. 

Regular Spray Tanning

The more you expose your skill to spray tanning, the more your skin will get used to the chemicals in the solution and the longer your tan will last. If you are just starting, you will need approximately three sessions with five days in between each session to get your skin used to spray tanning. After you have established a good base tan, you will be able to complement your tan with tan extending products and then only need one spray tan session every other week. 

Example Scenario 

The initial spray tan cost will be much higher than the monthly cost to maintain your spray tan. For example, during the first month you will need about four sessions, three to get your skin accustomed to the solution and one to maintain your new tan. If the cost of each visit is $25, you will pay $100 for the first month and then only $50 a month to maintain your tan. Additionally, you will need to buy the tan extending products, which commonly come as a lotion with the average cost of $35 per month. So, the total per month would be around $85. 

Comparison to Tanning Bed Costs

The price of spray tan initially costs more than tanning beds, but the cost over time is typically lower and you avoid irreversible skin damage. For example, the average cost for one tanning bed session is $15. To build a decent tan, you need about five sessions with one day in between each session. For the first three days, you may not see a tan, but your skin will gradually look darker. To maintain the desired level of tan, you will need two or three sessions a week. Additionally, you will need to use numerous products to protect your skin and increase the tanning process. For example, for the first month you need five tans to establish your tan and then six additional sessions to maintain it. At $15 a session, that equals $165. The various products cost on average $35 per month. The total for your first month would be $200. For the following months, you would need about eight sessions a month at $120 plus the $35 for products, equaling $155 a month. In the end, the spray tan cost is less expensive and requires less sessions to maintain your tan.