I’ve been spray tanning before, but never air-brushed, which is a spray tan applied by an actual person with skill, not just a machine (Hello, Ross Geller?!). I’d seen the results of a couple friends who had done it before weddings or vacations and whatnot. I admit, it looked very natural, but after hearing about how you have to bare it all (well, 95%), I quickly decided maybe it just wasn’t for me. Note: I’ve never been one of those girls to walk around naked in the locker room, or even topless for that matter. I know many are fine with it, but I’ve always been a bit, well, more reserved in that area.
Needless to say, after running into Angela Alney, owner of Air-Tan in Broad Ripple, I changed my mind. Angela was completely down-to-earth and she explained she knew exactly how I felt – um, totally insecure about getting in the buff in front of a stranger. She also stated they’ve pretty much seen everything. Taking that to mind, I decided, what the heck, I’ll give it a try and tackle my fear…all while getting a nice tan for NYE in the process.
I made my appointment for Monday evening so I could sleep right through the eight hours you have to wait before showering. I arrived to be greeted by Emily, the general manager who Angela assured me would be the perfect person to apply my first tan. Emily, sweet as can be, immediately made me feel welcome and comfortable. She could probably sense my nervousness as I explained how I had just been over-indulging all weekend on holiday food (Me: “Please excuse my bloatedness…I’ve been eating all weekend” Lol.).
At the front desk, I filled out some quick paper work and Emily explained how the process worked. Most people went topless and wore a thong (which I was prepared for, you must wear bottoms – thank God!). She took me back to the room so I could get undressed. I could choose from a tiny makeshift thong or I had option to wear my own. I wore my own after quickly trying on the tiny piece of cloth that was offered as a thong – which looked very similar in size to the surgical-looking face mask that was also provided for my face if I chose. Next, with the flip of a switch, she came back in the room and we began the process in the spray room. I quickly covered by chest with my arms and laughed as she walked in the spray room…it just felt like the natural to do. Ha! Emily was quick to jump in and began her job, explaining each step as she worked and air-brushed me. She was so professional and efficient. She has done this a million times I kept telling myself.
In just a few minutes, after some quick arms raises and turns, she was done. It was over. I could see results right away and literally immediately felt better about myself. I threw on my dark sweatpants and top, took a deep breathe and headed out. I had just conquered a fear and it was well…No. Big. Deal.
I slept in that same clothing that night and woke ready to shower. The tan was not orange at all, in fact, it looked as though I’d been in Florida for a week. I actually felt I’d been on the beach for a week – without the harmful sun exposure and the super uncomfortable sunburn, of coure. It’s day three and I love the color I chose (3 on a 1-5 scale). I have already received many compliments and questions about whether I’ve been on vacation. Even the skeptics (my coffee barista being one) who thought I’d come back looking like an oompa-loompa, greeted me with smiles and oohs and aahs…”Wow! It looks great! Like you just got back from vacation!”…
My new dilemma? I do not want to go back to my winter whiteness. I feel more confident and my skin has such a nice-looking, natural glow.
My name is Kelly. I am a soon-to-be Air-Tan addict.