Spray tan Courses, Certifications
& Trainings

2021 Ultimate guide
to choosing the right certification program for you!

Spray tanning has exploded in the past decade and is quickly becoming one of the most popular beauty services offered. You can quickly do a Google search and find that there are a number of people offering spray tanning services; either in a salon setting, mobile or home studio. Learn more about the different types of spray tanning businesses in our Ultimate Business Guide.

With that, we have seen equal growth with the number of companies and individuals that are offering spray tan certification and training.  Not to mention the fact that you can now take online spray tan certification courses.

Before we jump into more details about training & certification, I want to be upfront with you. There are no regulations for spray tanning in the United States at a Federal level. Meaning, there is no governing body that requires an actual “certification” for you to spray tan. Some states (currently Oregon & AZ) require an estheticians license in order to spray tan.

Unlike cosmetology and esthetician licenses, spray tanning is not yet regulated. I want to mention this because the training that you choose should be based on the background and knowledge that the company or individual can share with you.

Not all training is created equal, but be sure that you do your own due diligence and find a training program that fits your needs.

Alright, let's jump into it!

Deciding which spray tan certification & training course is for you:

  • 1 What to look for in spray tan training
  • 2 In-person vs. online
  • 3 Techniques
  • 4 Advanced training
  • 5 On-going support

In-person vs. online training

There are basically two training options for people looking to get started; online or in-person. In-person is obviously the preferred choice, but sometimes your time & budget won’t allow this to happen. That is why online can be very appealing to people and you can get trained in the comfort of your own home and on your own schedule.

In person

It makes sense that being trained in person is the ideal situation because spray tanning is a very hands-on service and learning experience. Being able to watch the trainer and see how they handle the spray gun can be very helpful for someone that is learning the process.

Most courses offer the option to meet in person and learn the spray tanning process. One thing to consider is the cost of travel & the course itself. Most trainings charge a premium if you want live training.

The usual scenario for live training is that you meet with your trainer and they will cover the spray tanning process with you and then teach you, on live models, how to apply the solution. This gives you a great opportunity to watch how they apply the solution so you can try your best to replicate the process.

In addition to teaching you how to spray tan, they should also teach you more about the history of spray tanning, the ingredients, pre and post tan care, and more. We will go into more details about these items later in the article.

1 on 1 training

This is considered the cream of the crop. The premium and most intimate training option offered. Learning from a spray tan artist 1 on 1 would be the ideal situation for anyone that is wanting to learn how to tan.

The attention is all on you and you get to learn from an expert and pick their brain on anything spray tanning. In addition, their sole focus is on helping you learn how to spray tan clients. You should be able to ask as many questions as you want, and they should cater to the entire learning experience to

1 on a few

Similar to 1 on 1 training, but in this case the trainer will place you with a couple of other trainees. It can be advantageous for you to be with a group because the other trainees may ask questions that you would never think of and you get to see how they handle the spray tan process as a whole.

Each person will adapt the technique to their liking and to something that is comfortable for them. And this is perfectly fine.

In an ideal situation, the trainer will still provide each trainee with their own model to spray and you will still get the hands-on experience necessary to learn.

Group training

Out of all of the options mentioned so far, this is the least ideal. This usually involves a trainer at the front of the room teaching a group of people how to spray tan. In this situation, the trainer will spray a model or two and you will watch, along with the others in the group.

Sometimes these trainings can be as many as 30-40 people in a single classroom trying to learn from afar. Although this isn’t ideal, I’ve found that this is used for a lot of beginner training classes, simply to teach people and to provide a chance to “certify” a large group of people in one sitting.

Again, there are a couple of benefits in this scenario. You will be able to hear the questions that others are asking in the group and they may be questions that you hadn’t thought of yet. Additionally, and probably not directly related, you may be able to connect with others who are new to the industry and in similar situations.

As the world has changed to a digital world, so too has education as a whole. Most universities and courses are now offered in two formats: online or in-person. Spray tan training and certification is no different.

Online training

If you do a quick Google search for “online spray tan training OR certification”, you will come across a number of courses that are offered in a digital format.

Most of these trainings combine written explanations with accompanying videos to help teach you visually. There are obviously some drawbacks to that, but it is also a great way to get a feel for spray tanning techniques in general, and it is also extremely affordable compared to most in-person training.

What to look for in online training

If you are forced to do online training due to other factors, it’s important to know what you need to look for in that training so you can make the best decision possible when choosing the right spray tan certification course for you.


The way the training is delivered is extremely important. I’ve found that there are a variety of ways for the trainers to deliver the information, some are better than others.

I would recommend looking for training that offers written explanations of everything included in the training, along with videos to accompany the text and to show the techniques in a “live” format.

Ideally, the videos would be produced to educate you and show you the techniques and methods in a learning format, instead of just showing the process of a normal spray tan. If someone is trying to teach you how to spray tan, it is better if they walk through it slower than normal so that you can grasp the concepts and understanding of it all.

In addition, if they truly want to educate you on spray tanning, they should provide multiple models and body types to show you the differences in technique based on these factors. It can be difficult to show ALL of the body types, however, the more example they can show, the better.

Did you know we offer an online training course?

Spray Tan Techniques

The technique and methods that are taught during your spray tan certification course help to "shape" you for your career as a spray tan artist.  Making sure that the methods your trainer uses align with your expectations is important.

Techniques Vary

For those of you that have never spray tanned before, this may be something you have never considered.  However, the methods you learn can have a monumental impact on your technique and your career.

It can be challenging to find much information about the technique your spray tan trainer will use until you are actually there at the training and this means you have more than likely already paid for your training.

The best thing that you can do during your research is to find out how long your trainer has been spraying and what certifications they have gone through themselves.  What I am seeing a lot around the internet is that a lot of people are finding the potential to make some quick money by offering "spray tan certifications" that aren't backed by any knowledge or understanding.

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