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back to basics: about the skin

back to basics: about the skin


The skin consists of three layers.

The epidermis forms the outermost protective covering of the body.

The dermis lies beneath the epidermis and contains all the main material which supports, all the other structures.

The subcutis (subcutaneous) layer lies beneath the dermis and is made up of fatty tissue which cushions the internal organs against shocks and acts as an insulator and source of energy when required. This fatty layer separates the skin from underlying muscles.


where the magic happens

The Epidermis

The epidermis is the upper layer of the skin; the most superficial layer. The epidermis is made up of layered scales. An organised rotational production line converts living cells at the base of the epidermis into dead, hardened, compacted layers of protein (keratin) on the outer surface, taking approximately 200 days for a cell to mature in the epidermis. The life time of a mature cell is between 7-20 days and the replacement time for the stratum corneum (top layer) between 32-36 days.

Every day millions of dead skin cells are sloughed off or worn away from the surface of the skin. This is why tans from self-tanning lotions will gradually fade; as the dead cells are worn away, so is your tan. For this reason, most of these products suggest that you reapply the tanning product approximately every three days to maintain your tan.



The epidermis consists of 5 layers:


Also known as surface/horny layer. Outer most layer consisting of flattened dead skin cells. It is this layer that is affected by self-tanning products.


Also known as translucent layer. Lies directly underneath the corneum, but not present all the time. Tends to be a translucent layer found in areas that require more thickness or suffer more friction.


Also known as granular layer. Lies underneath the Lucidum. Skin cells breakdown in this layer and keratin is impregnated into the cells. There is a process known as keratinisation whereby cells begin to lose their structure and eventually die.


Also known as prickle cell layer. Lies under the Granulosum and is a living layer of the epidermis which is made up of nucleated cells from the stratum germinativum. This layer rapidly divides as keratin is pushed into them making their cells tough and waterproof.


Also known as the basal layer. This is a living layer that receives its blood supply from the dermis.


spray tan & dha: how does it work?

how does it work?

Spray tanning involves applying an active ingredient, DHA or dihydroxyacetone, to your skin using a specialist low pressure spraying machine.

DHA is a sunless tanning agent and is the most popular way of achieving a natural looking tan without being exposed to the harmful UV rays of the Sun and is approved by the FDA for sunless tanning. DHA is a simple carbohydrate which is often derived from plant sources such as sugar cane, also known as fructose, which is then taken through a series of untraceable synthetic processing. It causes a non-toxic chemical reaction with the amino acid groups, which are part of the keratin protein present in the outer most layers of the skin.

Various amino acids react differently to DHA, producing different tones of colouration from yellow to brown. The resulting pigments are called melanoids. These are similar in colouration to melanin, the natural brown substance found in the deeper skin layers after UV exposure, which leads to a delayed development of a natural tan.

The depth of the tan will depend on the % strength of the DHA contained within the product. Overall depth and intensity of tan achieved will also depend on the consumers own natural melanin content and thickness of the skins stratum corneum. Where the stratum corneum is thicker, elbows, knees for example the reaction and tan is more intense, where the layer is thin, the face for example the tan is less intense. In order to achieve a uniform result you must remove loose scales from the skin before applying DHA.

The artificial tan immediately appears on the skin surface and will continue to darken over 24 hours depending on the formulation. Once the darkening effect has occurred, the tan becomes waterproof and will not wash away with soap or water. It will fade gradually over 5 to 10 days, in conjunction with the skins normal exfoliation process. Exfoliation, prolonged water submersion, or heavy perspiration can lighten the tan, as these all contribute to rapid dead skin cell exfoliation.

Another important factor in achieving a fake tan is the pH levels of the skin and formulation. An alkaline pH causes the tan to look orange, whereas a slightly acidic pH reduces this colour problem. A surplus of water in any formulation can hinder the tanning reaction; there is optimum water content for each of the formulation and skin required to achieve best results. A balanced formulation understands the importance of maintaining moisture in the skin, the correct pH balance and the odour reaction of protein and DHA. Every Mine product is scientifically proven to work with all of the above mentioned factors, developing a deeper, longer lasting and odourless tanning result.

Refer to each Mine Product for developing and washing times. Some people expect a spray tan to provide UV protection. However, unlike the melanin pigments, the DHA-derived polymers do not absorb significant amount of UV light, and therefore, cannot protect against UVB radiation.


the choice of natural & organic ingredients

the choice of natural & organic ingredients

MineTan professional solutions are a 99% naturally derived formula, using naturally derived and organic ingredients making it great for clients with sensitive skin or the conscious healthy consumer

The combination of organic ingredients and natural botanicals in MineTan professional solutions provide multiple benefits for the skin including vitamins and antioxidants to boost the skins glow.

All MineTan products contain no Parabens, mineral oils, artificial fragrances, harmful glycols, sulphates and petrochemicals such as DEA or TEA.


ingredients in MINE Spray Tan

Dihydroxyacetone (DHA)*^ MineTan professional solutions uses natually derived DHA in all tanning products. Derived from sugar cane, DHA is a colourless sugar. It interacts with the proteins and amino acids in the outer layer of your skin to produce a golden brown colour (To better understand this – it’s similar process to when sliced apples go brown when exposed to air).

Certified Organic Aloe Barbadensis or Aloe Vera*^ Extracted from the Aloe Vera plant, this natural ingredient helps to oxygenate the skin, aiding with cellular renewal. It is also used in solutions due to its soothing and moisturising properties, having a similar pH balance to the skin. Aloe Vera contains many vitamins including A, C, E, folic acid, choline, B1, B2, B3 (niacin), B6. Aloe Vera is also one of the few plants that contains vitamin B12.

Phenethly Alcohol^ An organic compound that is a natural aromatic alcohol with a floral odour. In nature, it is commonly found in fruits & flowers, such as roses, bananas, apples, oranges, lilies & hyacinths. It is used in cosmetics as a fragrance & deodorant.

Alcohol derived from Sugar Cane^ The organic alcohol we use comes from sugarcane that’s organically grown. Ripe sugarcane is cut by hand, and then fed through a grinder to extract the juice. The juice is left to ferment for 24 hours and then heated over a fire to distil the alcohol.

Multi-Vitamins & Rich Botanicals *^ All MineTan products contain naturally derived multi-vitamins A, C & E and rich botanicals . These include Witch-hazel, Rosemary, Sea Kelp, Liquorice and a wide variety of fruit extracts. Ingredients like Caramel, Mulberries and Black Walnuts are used to give a natural colour base to the Solution.

Rich Lavish Oils*^ MineTan professional solutions contain a complex blend of Rich Lavish oils including Argan oil, Rosehip oil, Manuka oil and Avocado Oil to moisturise and restore hydration to keep skin soft and supple.

Food Colour (FD&C) Good enough to eat, good enough for the skin. This is what gives MineTan products the boost in bronzer colour. Although it’s man made, it is used in food and across most cosmetics – and not to mention all spray tans. Food colour is what gives spray tan its brown liquid colour – helping you spray more even and a great instant cosmetic bronzer. Blending a combination of food colours and natural ingredients like caramel, gives MINE a unique deep bronze cosmetic bronzers.

Aqua^ Around 80% of MineTan professional solutions is Water. Water is obviously one the most natural ingredients in the world.



history of ‘fake’ tan

history of fake tan

Fashion and tanning have a long rich history and heritage. Coco Chanel was a fashion innovator with the iconic Chanel suit and little black dress but also gave birth to a new trend in the form of tanning. In 1923, when Coco arrived back from Paris from a cruise in Cannes with a deep tan it become a new symbol, which signified health, wealth and decadent subversive style.


Time passed, and in the fifties saw the very first bikinis, and the “all over” tan became even more popular. Women all over the world ‘baked’ in the sun to get the all over bronzed look.

In 1957, the tanning properties of DHA were discovered in a children’s hospital. DHA was first used as an active ingredient during research on the treatment of diabetics, some of whom tolerated DHA better than glucose. DHA was also administered orally as a treatment of a childhood glycogen-storage disease. When doctors noticed that when children spilt the DHA mixture on their skin, brown coloured spots would appear. One of the female doctors experimented by rubbing the mixture on her skin, and discovered ‘the browning action’ of fake tan.

The 1960’s brought the introduction of the first ‘Fake Tan’. Used with or without the sun, when it was introduced to the market, the ‘orange’ effect caused by the first products left a negative effect on the market. Since then, DHA’s physiochemical properties, tanning mechanics and skin tolerance have been explored, resulting in an improved method of application, a more natural looking tan, making orange body’s generally a thing of the past. Present day production of DHA still relies on fermentation, as it did in the late 1800’s.

Recent years where the effects of the sun have proven to be damaging to the skin, Sunless, Fake Tan, Self Tan and Spray Tanning products have exploded as the safest alternative to achieve an all over bronze tan.


In recent media news, several questions have been asked by the media with the over-all safety concerns with spray tanning and the use of DHA.

The most current and informative scientific study available to the tanning industry on spray tanning was performed by the European Commission’s Safety Commission on Consumer Safety (EC SCCS). This concluded that Spray Tan was indeed safe – although should not be heavily inhaled or ingested.

The FDA has also set out recommendations, not mandates, that Mine fully supports and endorses. When spraying DHA tanning solutions, either by handheld system or through automatic spray booths, the following precautions are suggested:

  • Use of Protective Undergarments
  • Use of Nose Filters
  • Use of Protective Eye Shields
  • Use of Lip Balm

Additionally, although not required by the FDA, as with exposure to all airborne particulates (mist), Mine recommends the use of disposable filtering masks for all sunless technicians during spray sessions, along with their standard over spray filtering equipment.




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