NTTI Updates Training
To Match Sunless’ Growth
by Amy Thorlin
Over the past five years sunless has seen tremendous growth. More and more salons are realizing the potential benefits to adding sunless as a complement to traditional UV tanning. Forty percent of U.S. tanning salons offer at least one form of sunless services, and 22 percent offer sunless airbrush or turbine tanning. According to LOOKING FIT® research, salons that have added sunless services report an increase in traditional UV tanning sessions by as much as 30 percent after introducing sunless services.
Sunless can be a complementary service for existing clients who wish to enhance their traditional tanning sessions by boosting a tan between UV sessions, evening pressure points and uneven patches, and touching up hard-to-tan areas. It also can expand a salon’s client base by bringing in new clients who cannot or choose not to use traditional UV tanning.
Since 2003, the National Tanning Training Institute (NTTI) has offered the Sunless Airbrush Technician Course to provide a competitive edge to salons offering airbrushing services. Based on research and testing conducted by some of the leading manufacturers of sunless spray systems, this course takes the technician from setup to application while discussing technique, safety, pricing and more.
Recently, due the popularity of high-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) and turbine-powered tanning systems, NTTI updated its online course to include information valuable to technicians using HVLP systems. In addition to these updates, more recent information on solution and consumer safety have been added.
There are two types of technician-operated sunless spray systems: the traditional airbrush system and, emerging from the airbrush concept, the turbine-powered tanning system, also known as HVLP (high volume, low pressure). HVLP is vastly different from the airbrush units on the market. It is not an airbrush at all. The machine is driven by a turbine motor rather than a compressor unit seen in airbrush systems. The turbine motor delivers a high volume of low-pressure “soft” airflow instead of a concentrated high-pressure blast found in compressor-based airbrush systems.
The soft air deposits solution more efficiently on skin, reducing waste and overspray. The high volume and low pressure results in faster application time due to the larger fan pattern that puts out more solution at one time. HVLP allows for total body application in less than five minutes.
Because of the reduced application time, HVLP systems decrease operator fatigue, and more clients can be sprayed in a given time frame, allowing for the possibility of increased profits. On the other hand, traditional airbrush units may be easier to learn to use and allow for ease in detailed work.
To determine which type of equipment will suit the salon, operators should speak with their distributors or manufacturers.
Due to an increase in spray-on tanning, DHA solutions also have experienced tremendous growth in the past few years. Typically, there are three types of bronzers that are used in the sunless spray solution. A cosmetic bronzer is visible on skin immediately after spraying but will wash off after the client showers. A DHA bronzer that initially has no visible effect will begin to develop color in two to four hours as it reacts with skin. Erythrulose, more recently added, is a slower-reacting bronzer and is similar to DHA.
Erythrulose is very similar chemically to DHA and works synergistically with it to give a more natural-looking tan. Although it is four to five times the cost of DHA, experts say it enhances a sunless tan’s finish and reduces the dry-out associated with DHA products.
While DHA changes the color of skin within four to 24 hours, erythrulose needs about two to three days for skin to show a color change. In addition to providing a more luxurious color, it may help to lengthen a sunless tan by a day or two.
There are more sunless options to choose from now than ever before. When determining what equipment and solutions work best for a salon, an owner must think about his or her clients, investment and staff. It is a good idea for owners to talk with their distributors or manufacturers to select which equipment and solution best fits their needs.
To view the Sunless Airbrush/HVLP Technician Course, visit www.tanningtraining.com.