What is the Real Truth About Tanning Bronzers

Why I'm Qualified To Answer

For over 20 years I have worked with SunFX Cosmetic Scientists around the world developing our extensive range of Sunless Tanning Products.

Oh boy! Have we learnt a thing or two from where bronzer ingredients are ethically sourced, to color variations, types, oxidation, outcomes, compatibility etc.

In this article I clarify the reasons for including a bronzer in a spray tanning product. I hope it brings value to you and your business.

Do You Know What Bronzers Do?

Bronzers are the colored ingredients that provide a client with an instant tan before the DHA (dihydroxyacetone), in the tanning solution, starts the Maillard Reaction and their skin begins to change color (tan). The Maillard Reaction is the process that occurs when the DHA reacts with the skins amino acids contained in the proteins in the top layer of the skin. This brown effect is very similar to the browning in a loaf of bread!

Bronzers are also a color guide for the Spray Technician to enable them to know how much solution they have applied and that the client has an even application of the spray tan solution.

What Are Bronzers Made Of?

Bronzers should be designed to resemble the tan color that you will get from the DHA tan.

Most Bronzers are:

A blended mix of FD&C colors such as our Original Tan, Rapid Tan and Showtime. This style of bronzer comes in a powder form that dissolves in water and when used in a spray solution is dry to touch immediately post spray.

However, SunFX has formulated our Organic Caramel bronzer for use in the Caribbean Chocolat, Caribbean Rapid & ShowDown Spray Tan Solutions.

This liquid organic bronzer is a wonderful alternative for clients hesitant in using FD&C. It wears exceptionally well and is very true in color to the long-term tan whilst also being a non-irritant.

For some clients it can feel a touch tacky if over applied, however, drying with warm air from our SunFX Equipment and a quick dusting of SunFX Finishing Powder eliminates this. An easy fix considering the wonderful benefits using this bronzer.


How Do We Formulate Our Bronzers?

SunFX chemists have always formulated and blended our bronzers in-house.

We pay careful attention to avoid colors that have raised concerns such as Red 40 & Yellow 6 and those that oxidize quickly (turn green)

We formulate our bronzers so that they match the client’s end tan as close as possible. Our aim is for a realistic representation of color.

Our Bronzers are designed to be compatible with all skin tones. This means you can use either the Original or Caribbean Chocolat regardless if you have cool or warm tones or our newly formulated Violet Royal perfect for yellow based skin tones.

Our Original Tan Range is best described as “Classic Sunkissed” and the Caribbean Range “Straight Off The Beach Warm Glow

The key to the perfect outcome is the correct level (percentage of DHA) of solution for the client’s skin tone. Want to know more about Spray Tan Solution Strengths? 

Common Bronzer Questions

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Are Bronzers Temporary?

Yes, they are designed to only last for the first couple of showers post the spray tan.

Therefore, it is important that your client knows they will wash off when they take their initial shower. This way they don’t panic when they see some color washing off.  Remember to reassure them that it’s not their final tan. Their spray tan can take 24 hours to fully mature

Can You Use A Tanning Solution Without Bronzers?

Yes, a competent spray tan technician can use our ClearCoat Tanning Solution. This is a great solution for those bronzer hesitant or not wanting a “white one moment tan the next” look. You can also use ClearCoat and add a dash of a solution with a Bronzer. This allows some color guide and just a touch of bronzer.

Do Bronzers Stain?

The longer a tanning solution is left on for before the first shower as well as how heavy an application the more “staining’ may occur. Remember, color from the bronzers isn’t the real tan, and will be removed within a couple of days. It is not a true statement that bronzers only stain if made with oils or aloe. All FD&C can stain. It is the strength and the time left on the skin that will determine this.

Can You Blend Different Bronzers?

Yes, you can blend and mix SunFX solutions. For instance, you can mix our Original and Caribbean Chocolat. The importance is to know the strengths you are mixing, but our bronzers will blend nicely to create different tones should this be something you wish to do. You can read more about customizing solutions here

Do Violet Based Bronzers Work?

This color tone lends itself to yellow based skin tones as well as hiding orange tones from a badly applied spray tan where too strong a product was used for the client’s skin tone. It will like all bronzers wash off after the first couple of showers. In our Violet Royal what really makes the difference is the addition of potent Australian actives.

Has This Article Got You Wanting To Read More?

Take a look at our other sunless tanning educational articles.