Should you be adding anti-aging and other similar serums to your AYU sunless tanning solutions?

In our experience, if you are exploring these anti-aging serum additives it signals that your ideal client is looking for health conscious beauty products. It also means that as a sunless tanning professional, you want to maximize the healthy skin benefits you can provide your clients. As additional results (along with a gorgeous tan) such as anti-aging and skin nourishment are becoming the new norms in the sunless tanning industry, AYU has been in the forefront of creating products already integrated with the latest healthy skin technology by using a micro emulsion base along with various extracts, vitamins, lipids, peptides, and liposomes that provide important skin benefits with each and every session which includes worry free efficiency and consistency.

The only time you should consider using additional serums in your sunless tanning solutions are when the products you are using do not contain any anti-aging or skin beneficial ingredients. You may think of using serums as a way of up-selling or customizing your service but you’re limiting your claims by what additive you use. Serums normally aim to target one healthy skin concept, while leaving others completely unaddressed, and adding multiple serums is not cost effective. However, when using AYU sunless tanning solution, our clients can claim multiple methods of skin benefits found in all of our products and highlight certain aspects of different product lines such as the hydrating, rejuvenating and rich antioxidant ingredients of our “Vino Bronzing” line or the amazing skin firming, restoring, and replenishing properties of our “Tanvee Advanced” solutions.

Serum additives can also create consistency, efficacy and concentration problems when you’re spraying throughout the day. For example, you add 4 drops of serum into your spray gun cup for your first appointment. After that appointment, you will most likely have extra solution left in your cup but you’ll need to refill your cup for your next appointment. How much more serum should you add? You still have some solution with serum leftover, so should you refill your cup and add a few drops of serum or throw the leftover solution out and refill your cup with new solution? With each choice you are either reducing your consistency and efficacy of your following session or you’re wasting solution.

All of the effective skin ingredients which are responsible for providing healthy skin benefits are supposed to be used at certain concentration in formulas to spark change. Using as few drops per treatment dilutes the results. We formulate our products with the concentrations of our beneficial ingredients already calculated and added at the time of the batch processing so the complete product has equal distribution and concentration so it’s ready for you to use without worrying about if the end result will vary from session to session.

Additive serums are a good and effective way of boosting the healthy skin effects of your sunless tanning solutions in theory, but in reality they are not well rounded, they create consistency problems, and concentrations of healthy skin ingredients are not guaranteed to be high enough to make a change. We do not recommend adding additive serums to our AYU sunless tanning products because we have already pre-formulated our products to provide the best healthy skin benefits for you and your clients’ skin!

What are spray tan bronzers (color guide)?

Bronzer or color guide are mix of FD&C colors or D&C colors that give an instant temporary tanned appearance to a client’s skin before the DHA in the solution has a chance to start mallard reaction and begin tanning their skin.

Bronzers in the spray tan solution are temporary and last only until first shower after spray tan session. When spraying your clients you should always let them know that the instant tan they see now are bronzers and will wash off when they take their initial shower. This is very important so they don’t panic when they see some color washing down their drain! Always remember to reassure them that it’s not their final tan.

Why is it necessary to have bronzer in a spray tan solution?

In addition to providing that instantly-tanned appearance to your clients skin during a spray tanning session, the bronzer also works as a “coloring guide” on the client’s skin: It helps spray tan artist to see where they are spraying ensuring an even application and prevents them from spraying too much or too little product on any one part of the body.

At AYU we offer spray tan solutions with bronzer and without. We also offer only bronzer only solution for clients who do not want to commit for long term tan and needs a tan look for an event.

Also, our formulation are designed such way that would not rub off or transfer bronzers but it is always a good idea to recommend that client wear loose-fitting, darker clothes after spray session to minimize any temporary bronzer rub-off, this is very rare when using AYU spray tanning solutions

Fix tan lines with self tanner or spray tanner ( DIY and Pro Method)

Spending time in the garden or enjoying walks around the neighborhood or playing at the beach. That’s what summer is all about!  You remembered to put on sunscreen but still it happens. Some parts of your body are a bit more tan than the rest!  Now you have to go out for the next few days sporting an uneven tan line, which can ruin that beautiful open back dress you were going to wear and wondering how you can fix this issue and even out that ta line.

No worries! Anyone can fix this with a good self or spray tanner, a proper application tool and technique. We will talk about both scenarios for at home DIY fixes  and how spray tan artist can fix clients with  similar issues.

First let’s talk about the DIY method

For this we recommend you use a good self tanner, make-up sponge and kabuki brush or tanning mitt.

Make sure to exfoliate right before you apply your self tanner to avoid any issues. Our variety of sugar scrubs removes dead skin cells while moisturizing the skin to leave a perfect canvas for a sunless tan. Make sure the area you have chosen to work in is cool because you don’t want to sweat while applying the self tanner.

Apply the self tanner (preferably choose a tanning solution or a mousse) to all the lighter areas of the skin. You will need to dab or “paint” self tanning solution with a cosmetic sponge or kabuki brush while blending at edges. Please note you might need multiple applications of self tanner to match the surrounding darker areas of the skin. After one or two applications you will notice that the lighter area is starting to look darker than rest of your body, but don’t worry! This is because your self tanner also has an instant color guide, also known as a bronzer. The bronzer will rinse off  with your first shower. Let the tan develop in the lighter pale areas for around 4 to 6 hours. At this point you can do a quick rinse to reveal the tan color on the lighter area and if you think the tan is relatively a similar tone, it’s time to apply self tanner to the full body, using the same self tanner and application tool. Start from your feet upward, covering all the areas of the body. Working quickly and making sure you have an even application. Let it develop for 6 to 8 hours and you are ready for your first shower, and remember to only rinse off with warm water, no soap, pat dry and to apply a daily moisturizer.

Plan to do this a day or two in advance before any event so your tan has time to fully develop and you can show off your beautiful tan!

Now, if you are a spray tan artist and you have a client who needs this situation fixed, the process will be similar, but will have to be done in a shorter amount of time. This will be reflected in the products used.

Make sure that the client is well prepped. Try and use a pre tan prep spray to make sure the surface of the skin is cleaned of any sweat or skin care products. Now choose two products with different DHA strengths while keeping in mind the client’s skin type. You can do this a few different ways. First choose a high DHA level product and apply that to the lighter skin area using a spray gun,  a make-up brush, or sponge while making sure to blend to the edge. Keep a hair dryer at the  cool setting or a spray gun blowing  air  handy to make sure you dry that area in-between coats. Before applying a second coat check to see if you are close to matching the tanned skin area, a  little darker is okay because that is just the bronzer looking dark. Once the last coat is dried, fill the cup with a product with a lower strength DHA solution and do a full body application, including all the earlier lighter areas in order to even out the skin tone.

As always, the same rules apply. Let your client know to stay out of water, not to exercise and to wait at least 8 hours before showering with warm shower without soap and to apply a light moisturizer afterwards.

Try to see the client again in 24 hours, via text, photos, or quick salon visit, after they have showered, to hear what they have to say and to do any touch-ups that may be needed.

A few things to keep in mind, this method is a solution to a problem and you can achieve an even skin tone with adequate practice and choosing the right products and applications.

The pale areas will often fade differently, and might look rusty or speckled after a few days. This is normal because of the lack of pigmentation in the skin.

To really take it to the next level for the perfect look you can choose a liquid bronzer or makeup product on top of the spray tan, to help further blend, and even out skin contrasts after a few days.

Hope this gets your creative juices flowing to keep your skin looking fresh and beautiful.

The Go-To Fruit for Healthy Skin and Hair

Who doesn’t secretly wish for more radiant, beautiful skin and hair? If you’re anything like me, you’re always on the hunt for simpler, more natural ways to be healthier.

As autumn transitions into winter, the cold outdoor air and the warm indoor air work together to strip your hair and skin of their natural moisture, leaving them dry, crinkly and unhealthy. Like thousands of others, I suffered from winter dryness. However, that all changed when I  came across an effective solution to a problem that I had been at the mercy of my entire life! So what’s the fix you ask? It’s as simple as an apple a day, and what better time to talk about apples than fall when the orchards are aplenty and ready for picking!

Whether in fruit, pie, sauce, cider or whatever form you can imagine, the humble and versatile apple can greatly nourish and improve the texture of your skin and hair. Apples are excellent sources of antioxidants and fiber which help to fight the signs of aging, maintain the elasticity of your skin and prevent skin diseases and ailments such as bags under eyes, pimples and acne. Being about 84 percent water, apples also help to keep your skin and locks hydrated throughout the day.

An apple a day helps keep blood circulation flowing freely which assists in the rejuvenation and rebuilding of cells giving hair and skin a healthy glow.

If you’re always on the go and don’t have a minute to breathe between work, taking care of the kids, keeping up the house, and zipping from activity to activity, you owe it to yourself to take a quick five minute break and enjoy an apple. It’ll give you some time to relax and offer great benefits to your hair and skin.

Do you prefer sweet or sour apples? Stop by and let us know in the comments section, as well as leaving any great ways you include this wonderful fruit in your own diet.



A little relaxing never hurt anyone

It’s a go-go-go world out there. The number of hours spent on the job isn’t limited to time at work; technology means we’re always connected, and although that can be a good thing, it can also be a bad thing if there is no down time. As counterintuitive as it may sound to some, it is important to schedule some relaxation time into each day. Of course relaxation may mean different things to different people, but that time when the mind and the body can stop going is important. Some ways that people can de-stress are to:

Train yourself to take slow, deep breaths for a few minutes before bed and when you get up in the morning

Enjoy the present moment  

Draw up a nice bath, light a candle and have a relaxing soak

If you love to play or listen to music, sit back and become engrossed in the sounds

Take a few moments every day and make a list of things that you are grateful for  

Get lost in a good book

Any of these things can help you relax and relieve some of the stress, even if just for a few minutes each day.  What individuals do to relax is just as individual as all other aspects of their lives. The benefits of relaxation cannot really be overestimated. Truly relaxing improves your memory, reduces your risk of stroke, increases your ability to get a fulfilling night’s rest, and even improve productivity.

Something we all owe it to ourselves to do is to take some time to de-stress every day. You will get better at relaxing and once you build a habit of relaxing life will be more enjoyable. Whether through mediation, reading a book, or whatever else you love, removing stress for even a small period of time can improve your health.

What do you do to relax?

Protein Packed Snacks

You’ve heard me talk before about the need for high protein snacks to keep you going throughout the day. Protein helps your body to remained fulfilled for hours, while also providing your body with energy to get through the day. Keep in mind….protein snack can still be tastier than the afternoon donut, or chocolate bar (less of a guilty feeling too). Here are my four favorite protein packed snacks!

  • Edamame – One cup of edamame supplies your body with 17 grams of protein! I personally purchase the pre-cooked variety (which you can find in the frozen section of your grocery store) and microwave/defrost them for about 2 minutes before eating.
  • Chocolate milk – Chocolate milk isn’t just for kids. It’s actually a great source of protein and calcium. Just remember to drink in moderation and try to purchase one that is lower in sugar.
  • Yogurt Parfait – Try eating ½ cup greek yogurt and a handful of berries for a protein packed snack. Even better, add a palm sized amount of oats for added protein.
  • Hummus and veggies – One of my favorite quick afternoon snacks. Also, economical. A large batch of hummus can be preprepared and made from home for as little at $2.00.

Winter Weather Woes: Skincare

Winter can be a difficult season on your skin. We always find ourselves slathering on sunscreen and moisturizers during the Summer months, but the Winter season can cause serious damage to your skin. Without proper treatment, Winter skin can become dry and flaky, giving the appearance of prematurely aged skin. So what is one to do to properly protect their skin during the Winter months….?

1. Exfoliate – Rid your body of the dead cells that reside on the outer layer of your skin. Protect yourself by buying a body scrub with natural exfoliating properties such as oatmeal, coffee, or sugar.

2. Moisturize – Probably the most obvious but definitely the most important. Your skin needs added moisturizing protection in the Winter months. Purchase yourself an oil based moisturizer. Apply the moisturizer immediately after showering for best results.

3. Hands – There should be a whole article written about protecting your hands in the Winter months. My hands become horribly dry and itchy during the Winter. Apply hand cream multiple times a day. When you are planning to be out in the cold for long periods of time, wear gloves for added protection.

4. Hydrate – Water is your skins natural moisturizer, so remember to keep drinking plenty of it.

5. Face – Your face is the most exposed to the elements during the Winter months. Wind, cold, sun…It can cause some serious damage. Follow your normal skincare routine, however be sure you are applying sunscreen daily. Also, those lips can become dry and cracked in an instant, so apply a moisture rich lip balm multiple times a day.

Natural Remedies: Cold Season

I hope everyone had a lovely Labor Day weekend! Can you believe it is already September 3rd? Which means cooler weather, oversized sweaters and pumpkin spice lattes are ahead. However, that also means it is almost time for cold season…dun, dun dun! So what can you do to remedy yourself from this nasty little rhinovirus…?

1. Sleep, sleep and more sleep! Probably the most important thing you can do for your body during and before an illness. Sleep is the bodies natural restorative process. In fact, sleep deprivation can cause your bodies immune system to break down, thus preventing your body from fighting off illness.

 2. Take Vitamin D3. In the Winter we spend less time outside, which can cause deficiencies in Vitamin D3. Studies have shown that children and adults who take Vitamin D3 are less likely to get sick with the common cold or flu. Also, spending 20 minutes outside daily can raise your Vitamin D levels immensely.

 3. Enjoy regular exercise. Research is not sure what it is about exercise that helps us during cold and flu season. Some believe exercise reduces stress, improves sleep habits and usually revolves around being outside. Remind you of anything already on this list…?

4. Limit your sugar intake. Sugar suppresses your immune system, which is your body’s natural way to fight off illness. Sugar can also prevent the absorption of vitamins and minerals into the body.

 5. Reduce stress in your everyday life. Stress can break down your immunities, making you vulnerable to the common cold. Feeling stressed…? Take a walk, exercise, take a long hot bath. Your body will thank you in the long run.

10 Natural Oils For The Skin

You have probably heard or seen a thing or two recently about adding natural oils to your beauty routine. There are so many oils out there that can be used on your skin and each one has a different use. Natural oils are a great choice for those who are plagued with sensitive skin because they seldom cause allergic reactions. The key to using oils is finding the one that is right for your skin. Some might find that natural oils are great for their skin and not their face. Others may find that they do not like the feeling of straight oil on their skin, but can find a lotion that contains natural oil extracts.

10 Natural Oils For The Skin:

  • Argan Oil – Also called Moroccan oil, it is rich in Vitamin E and essential fatty acids. This oil is known for its anti-aging properties.
  • Coconut Oil – Helps reduce bacteria on the skin surface and also great for moisturizing skin.
  • Avocado Oil – Rich in antioxidants, vitamins and fatty acids. A wonderful oil for moisturizing skin.
  • Tea Tree Oil – Its antiseptic properties can help fight acne.
  • Peppermint Oil – Filled with anti-inflammatory properties, peppermint oil can help reduce redness.
  • Chamomile Oil – Also filled with anti-inflammatory properties, as well as antiseptic properties. Chamomile oil can assist in fighting off infections.
  • Carrot Seed Oil – This oil is rich in Vitamin A and beta-carotene, which help soothe skin and aid in cell turnover.
  • Acai Oil – Full of antioxidants, which help protect the skin from free radicals and cell oxidation.
  • Grape Seed Oil- Helps brighten your skin and regulate oil.
  • Olive Oil – Loaded with Vitamin A and E, which helps repair dry/cracked skin.

And the list goes on…and on…and on…

***Please note that Peppermint, Chamomile and Tea Tree Oils are essential oils and should not be applied directly to the skin unless mixed with proper carrier oils.***

Let’s Talk Meal Planning

Everyone thinks there is this amazing secret to losing/sustaining weight. The truth is…there is no perfect secret. Staying healthy and losing weight is hard work and dedication. Last week we talked about portion control as a way of life. Meal planning is an extension of portion control. If you are planning out your meals weekly/bi-weekly, you are limiting your calorie intake daily by eating healthy portions loaded with nutrients that are low in calories. For the average woman, reducing portion sizes and focusing on healthy foods that are lean in protein, a serving of whole grains, and loaded with vegetables/fruit can help you to sustain/reach your weight loss goals. However, it is not best to eat the same exact meal daily. Your body needs you to change the types of nutrient rich foods you are putting into your mouth. And for those of us who simply skip meals daily, like breakfast (the WORST thing to do)…meal planning will help you stick to an eating schedule.

Here is a good rule of thumb to eat (live) by in your daily meal planning: 45 percent carbohydrates, 30 percent protein, 25 percent healthy fats (less than 7 percent from saturated fats). Overtime if you stick to this rule, you will find your body is now craving food likes beans, blueberries, spinach and nuts during snack time. Wouldn’t you love not to crave chips and candy every day….? I know I would.