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August 9, 2013
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Spray tans offered at Colfax Avenue business

Spray tanning has gained popularity through the years for those who want a golden glow without the damaging effects of UV rays.

Dena Yates recently opened Dena’s Personal Spray Tanning at VJ’s Salon and Day Spa at 250 Colfax Ave. in Grass Valley.

Yates formerly owned Dena’s on Main Street at 408 Colfax Ave., which was sold in May to Robin Claridge and renamed Robin’s on the Avenue. Yates came upon retail after she was displeased with the graveyard shifts she worked as a phlebotomist with Sierra Nevada Medical Group. She decided she needed a change and discovered Cheryl’s Clothes Closet was for sale, and purchased the business that week.

“I had never done retail and it was new and exciting,” said Yates, who kept up the business from 2005 until May of this year when she wanted to retire with her husband.

“We wanted to be together when he retires and I thought it was a good time to move on and sell my shop,” she said.

The idea to open a tanning business came in her sleep, she said.

“It was something I could do that’s interesting and it’s a moving tanning machine so I can go to people’s homes,” she said, though the business is situated at her friend Virginia Cayer’s business, VJ’s Salon and Day Spa.

“I just wanted to recreate something different for myself.”

Yates was also an aerobics instructor in the Bay Area for 18 years, and harkened back to that time in her life by gaining certification as a Silver Sneakers senior exercise program instructor.

“It’s more than just exercise,” Yates said of the program. “You’re getting endorphins to feel better and it’s a good group process to make friends and get out and moving.”

Yates is also certified for the spray tanning business by the National Spray Tanning Professional Association and Sjolie Tanning.

“In California you don’t have to be certified, but I wanted to have that background so I came into it feeling confident,” she said.

Before receiving a tan, customers should have clean skin without creams or lotions, Yates said. The skin is exfoliated and a barrier cream is applied around the palms, heels and toes. Then a pH-balance spray is applied to allow for even application, before the tanning spray is finally applied.

“It takes a short time to dry and you’re ready to go with an instant healthy tan,” Yates said. “It’s all organic, paraben-free and uses natural ingredients.”

The base of the tanning solution is DHA, dihydroxyacetone, which gives skin the brown pigment, as well as walnut and beet extract, Yates said.

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the use of DHA in tanning booths as an all-over spray has not been approved by the FDA, since safety data to support this use has not been submitted to the agency for review and evaluation.

“We do different colors according to skin tone and it can last seven to 10 days,” she said. “In this day and age, we don’t need to stay out in the sun.”

To contact Staff Writer Jennifer Terman, email or call 530-477-4230.

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The Union Updated Aug 9, 2013 11:56AM Published Aug 9, 2013 12:58AM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.