Beach St is the beautiful new kid at school – the one who appears after the cliques have been established, ignoring enemy lines and managing to charm everyone. Because while they only opened their doors in July, Beach St is Paddington. It’s effortlessly chic, with a glamorous tropical vibe that makes you feel immediately comfortable. And let me tell you – I was totally spoilt by having my first salon spray tan with them, because I’m not sure anyone else will ever measure up!
The brains behind the brand are Lauren Capelin, co-founder of popular tanning brand Sunescape, and Giuliana Benedet, who has worked in the beauty industry for 11 years. They came together to create Beach St, offering precision airbrush tanning technology for an even glow and state-of-the-art fume extraction units for the best tan available. To complete the high end consumer experience, their staff all receive expert training in the craft of tanning and in customer service skills.
“We are only dedicated to doing spray tans, and being the very best at it. We strongly believe, and always have believed, that clients need to feel comfortable and looked after while getting their tans. That’s the philosophy behind Beach St. It’s a luxury experience without a ridiculous price tag.”
– Giuliana Benedit, co-founder
TV personality and interior design queen Shaynna Blaze created their whole aesthetic. She says, “It was important that the interior had a lively energy that reflects the sense of fun of the tanning experience and just enough glamour that allows the clients to know they will be treated to something very special on the day… The interior reflects a mix of two styles; the relaxed, beach lifestyle with references of palm trees, turquoise accents and rustic timber-look flooring as well as the sophisticated layer of gold and brass in the furniture and mirrors, wall treatments and tanning rooms, to match the red carpet and VIP aspect of the business.”
Everything has been considered, from the wallpaper and couches right down to the throw blankets and candles. And the high ceilings and giant windows brings a sense of drama to the space, flooding the salon with light.
Upstairs you’ll find the exclusive VIP lounge. Created for celebrities and groups celebrating hen’s days, birthday parties or simply a day of indulgence, this offers a truly five star experience for anyone looking to treat themselves.
And if you’re a celebrity not wanting to attract attention walking down Oxford Street? They have an exclusive back entrance to avoid anyone seeing you in your sweats 😉
The Beach St experience
On arrival, I was offered a drink from their gorgeous drinks cart. It was early so I went with orange juice, but they also had champagne on hand for that touch of luxe.
Giuliana then sat down with me to discuss my tanning expectations, and to perform a comprehensive colour match consultation. She suggested a shade that was sure to give me the perfect summer glow – and with my bridal shower the following day, it would also give me a good indication of what the tan would look like against a white dress!
I was then taken into the specialised tanning suite. It’s turquoise and golden, to go with the luxury tropical theme, complete with disposable shower caps and g-strings, plus step-by-step instructions on the wall for the newbies.
Once I’m ready, Giuliana joins me and quickly explains what’s going to happen. She preps me by applying a barrier cream to my palms, elbows and knees, and then the spraying begins. First is a preparation spray, getting my skin ready for even tan absorption. Then there’s the all-important airbrush spray tan – which wasn’t anywhere near as cold and uncomfortable as I thought it would be! Application is careful and precise, plus the extraction unit behind me sucks away the excess mist, so there’s no streaking. She finishes up with a Vitamin E spray, providing hydration and increasing the longevity of the spray tan. Plus, it smells delicious!
The whole process takes less than 20 minutes, and Giuliana keeps up a friendly chatter that makes me feel completely at ease. I then spend the rest of the day lounging around at home, as I’m not allowed to shower for 4 hours after tanning – so be sure to do this when you have the time.
There’s no residue after my first shower (no soap and under 3 minutes, as instructed!), and the colour is definitely more intense the next day. However, there is no streaking, and as my face was lightly sprayed as well, it all looks completely natural. I’m feeling incredibly vain as I continue staring at myself in the mirror!
Unfortunately for us busty ladies, there is always going to be tan lines under the boobs. If they’re not 100% perky, you’re definitely going to get some rubbing under there. And there was a noticeable edge around my underarms, which they avoid spraying. But those were the only places I noticed anything – and they’re not places anyone else is looking at! The rest of the tan was perfect, with no tell-tale streaky lines or oompa loompa orange in sight.
I received plenty of wonderful compliments the following day at my bridal shower, and the glow continued for most of the next week. I would say it was completely gone by about day 10, which is pretty impressive for the middle of winter.
(I purposely wore a g-string since this was my first salon tanning experience, and I needed to be able to see the before & after for myself. So excuse the slightly gratuitous underwear shot below – but it gives the best indication of colour the morning after, once it’s had time to develop overnight. The second shot is much better, if you want to scroll fast!)
If you’re in Sydney and looking for a first class spray tan experience, I highly recommend visiting Beach St. And make sure you’re not in a rush – those couches are surprisingly comfy!
378 Oxford Street
Paddington NSW 2021
(02) 9331 3999
*This spray tan was provided in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own.