The Faux Tan Industry
It has been a remarkable transformation for an industry that was once a joke. When it was introduced in 1998, Mystic Tan, which is widely credited as the first mainstream spray tan, often resulted in a bathed-in-Cheetos look. Yet in recent years, spray tan manufacturers perfected their recipes, decreasing the amount of dihydroxyacetone—the ingredient that darkens the skin—from 25 percent to just under 10 percent. Now spray tan “artists” have gone from maligned outsiders to wealthy specialists.