Getting a spray tan for a wedding

Many people want to get a spray tan before their wedding. Some do it well and others…well…there’s no kind way to say it – they look like an oompa loompa. While I personally don’t agree that you need to get a tan for your wedding, I know many people want them. If you insist on getting one, I suggest going to a spa that creates custom spray tans. A spa that matches your natural coloring and makes it just a shade or two darker.

Going to a spa that color matches will help you look natural and that will result in more natural-looking photographs.

Getting a custom spray tan for a wedding at GoGlow
Photos provided by GoGlow | Photography by Nicole Castonguay

Getting a custom spray tan for a wedding

As a fine art photographer, there’s nothing I hate more than trying to fix an orange bride or bridesmaid. I know they’re not orange in real life, but that’s how a bad spray tan registers in a digital file. It’s especially challenging when a bride with an orange spray tan is next to someone who hasn’t tanned at all. That’s because digital cameras register skin tones as one to three different colors – red, orange, and/or yellow. In order to fix an orange bride, the solution could make the porcelain bridesmaid next to her end up looking like a ghost. Why? Because I had to pull down the orange saturation in Lightroom to make the bride look more natural.

If this kind of editing talk is confusing, I don’t blame you. It is. Basically, what I’m saying is you should choose your tanning salon carefully. If you don’t, you could end up looking unnatural in your wedding photos.

So, what do you do if you want to be tan on your wedding day? You go to a spa, such as GoGlow, that customizes their spray tan colors to their clients.

Getting a spray tan for a wedding

Because I’ve never gone to a tanning or spray tanning salon, I had to ask someone who knows far more about the subject than I. So, I sat down with Margo, the Corporate Marketing Manager of GoGlow, and Megan, a longtime GoGlow client, to ask them why custom spray tanning is the way to go.

Getting a custom GoGlow spray tan for a wedding
Photos provided by GoGlow | Photography by Nicole Castonguay

Q&A with Margo, Corporate Marketing Manager of GoGlow, and Megan, a longtime client of GoGlow.

Lauren : What is GoGlow and how does it differ from your run-of-the-mill spray tanning salon?

Margo: GoGLOW is a customized sunless tan. It focuses on skin health and proper education so that clients have the tools to take care of their skin and feel confident. Most other spray tan companies have been rooted in a history of traditional tanning salons and have pivoted to a sunless concept because that is what the market wants. At goGLOW, we differ because we focused on a sunless concept and the market began to follow. Our client base has grown tremendously once they realized how a proper ‘spray tan’ is done! 

Lauren: From a client’s perspective, why do you choose to do a custom spray tan? Are there any advantages of going to a custom spray tanning salon vs a big box chain spray tanning salon?

Megan: There’s something about a bronze glow that makes me feel more radiant. My first spray tan was in 2011 and it was god awful – I remember being orange from head to toe! I’ve tried countless lotions and other products; I think I still have PTSD from the hundreds of products I tried that didn’t work. When you use tanning products, you don’t know what you are going to end up with until the process is finished. With custom, it’s customized for you! At GoGlow, you get a natural glow because extra time is set aside to choose the perfect shade fit for you. Booking a custom spray tan is a no-brainer.

Lauren: So custom spray tanning doesn’t look orange at all?

Megan: Not at all! I have found that having a custom formula for your skin tone creates the perfect natural glow. A custom spray tans also allows even application – nobody wants a streaky, uneven tan. I would suggest starting on the lighter side and working to build in color as you continue.

Lauren: What is the GoGlow spray tanning consultation like? What happens during the consultation.

Margo: In a goGLOW consultation, your specialist will ask you a few questions regarding how you prepared your skin and the depth of color you are looking to receive. On our website we go through detailed preparation guidelines so that your service goes flawlessly. The health and moisture levels of your skin before and after your service play a huge role in the color development and longevity of the color so we cater to all things around hydrated skin. Your specialist will also go through everything you need to know about taking care of your tan as well as your skin to keep you healthy and glowing. 

Megan: As a new customer, I was impressed with the staff’s time to educate me about spray tans when I first arrived. They reviewed all the phases, from the preparation stage to aftercare. During the consultation, the spray tan professional and I discuss my lifestyle, reasoning for a spray tan, and what color I’d like to achieve. 

Lauren: How do you match clients’ skin tones?

Margo: We match the formula with the natural undertones and skin type of the client. We also match the depth of color they are looking for and take into consideration the time of year, the kind of event they have, and how a client’s skin naturally tans in the sun. We consider all of those so their result looks realistic. 

Lauren: What else should people know about custom spray tanning that I haven’t asked?

Margo: It might seem unnerving to stand naked (or semi-naked) in front of us to get the service done, but we promise that we are the least judgemental group of girls you’ll meet. We want to make our clients feel comfortable. We focus on their skin, not their body. All bodies are beautiful and they deserve to glow!

Megan: With spray tanning, you can bronze without the health risks. Spray tans also do not provide protection in the sun, so remember to SPF up if you are going outside. 

Getting a custom spray tan for a wedding

After talking with Melanie and Megan, I’m warming to the idea of spray tanning. I still would love to normalize our natural skin and get rid of the stigma of “being pale” or “ashy,” but I know better. People want to look healthy and glowy. And if a custom spray tan is how we achieve that, I’m all for it!

To learn more about GoGlow check out their website. And if you want to book your own GoGlow session, fill out their contact form on their website or email them at GoGlow has four locations: three in Twin Cities Metro and one in Chicago, IL.

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I'm a free-spirited love and adventure seeker who aims to inspire joy, compassion, and beauty. I hope to show each person I interact with how remarkable they are and that they have value.  


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How do we even start to say thank you for all the work and effort you put into our wedding day?

- Josie and Scott

Lauren played such a meaningful role in our wedding, capturing the day in photos that we'll look back on for the rest of our lives. She kept Scott and me calm and sane - Lauren is a miracle worker! She put in 100% effort and gave us her very best, and that means so much to me. Seeing our photographs makes me so excited and so happy that Lauren was with us on this journey.

Lauren made the process so easy and made us feel so comfortable!

- Amy and Luke

We just wanted to say thank you again so much for your amazing work. You were seriously incredible to work with and we loved the locations you suggested for both our engagement shoot and the spots in Stillwater. We were very worried about getting professional photos done since we had never done it before, but you made the process so easy and made us feel so comfortable. Thank you!

Working with Lauren was easy breezy and FUN! She gave us our most treasured photos ever!


There was a chunk of time in our wedding planning when we thought we'd go without a professional photographer to save on cost (terrible idea!) but once we met with Lauren, we knew we'd be in good hands. She checked in often and asked questions that got us thinking about other parts of the wedding that we probably would've missed. Lauren captured exactly who we are as a couple!

Lauren's enthusiasm and passion make the photo-taking process so fun – she made me feel like a star!

- Alisa AND Adam

Lauren and her team are so much fun to work with! She made us feel so comfortable on the day of our wedding, providing both silly and helpful cues to help us relax and be ourselves in our photos. Lauren’s background in dance is super helpful in recognizing simple posture changes that make a big difference, too. Oh, and the photos we got are just stunning!

Lauren was pivotal in making our wedding day perfect!

- Emma AND Erik

My husband and I looked FOR MONTHS to find the perfect photographer and after meeting Lauren we knew was the best fit for us. She made our day so much fun and easy. She found little opportunities to make the perfect photo all with a  calm ease that comes from someone who has an artistic eye along with experience in understanding the flow of a wedding.

Not only is Lauren an amazing human being, but she is an awesome photographer!

- Haley AND Erick

I've been in several weddings and have worked with a multitude of photographers and I never felt as confident as I did with Lauren. I love how professional she is. She helped with the timeline way in advance and we stuck to that timeline the day of. She was also able to professionally and firmly keep unruly family members settled and focused and navigated family drama beautifully!

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