Pro Sunless Advice

How to clean your Spray Tan Gun

How to clean your spray tan gun

Keep your spray gun clean and efficient with the Sjolie Gun Cleaning Solution. Designed to breakdown leftover residue and build up, using the gun cleaning solution on a routine basis will leave your applicator sanitized, clean and will prolong the life of your equipment.

Now more than ever, sanitation and cleanliness is a top factor in the beauty industry. Technicians worldwide are striving to provide a clean and healthy atmosphere in their salons or mobile appointments. So while we are disinfecting our rooms and taking extra precautions for each spray tan appointment, how can we ensure that the essential tool we use every day is staying clean and sanitized?

Did you know that if you purchase an applicator with Sjolie, you have access to a complimentary deep cleaning for your spray gun? While this is an excellent tool to utilize, did you know that it is very straightforward to perform deep clean on your own? In addition to your daily applicator maintenance, perform a deep clean every 2-3 months based on your daily volume to have your applicator spraying in tip-top shape.

Daily Maintenance

You should perform daily maintenance between appointments and at the end of every business day. By thoroughly rinsing your applicator with warm tap water and letting air dry. You can do this by removing your solution cup and flipping your applicator upside down to allow running water through your solution straw while you hold the trigger until the water sprays clear. Be sure to avoid allowing any water through the air feed tube.

Next, you will want to rinse your solution cup out with water. Make sure to wipe down the threads on your cup to avoid any dried solution build-up. Allow the cup to dry on a clean paper napkin or towel.

At the end of the week, we recommend filling your solution cup with 100 ML of warm water and two caps of gun cleaning solution. Turn on your machine and spray the mixture into a towel. Once complete, you can use your damp towel to wipe down your tent or your machine!


Spray your warm water + Sjolie Gun Cleaning Solution mixture directly onto the windows of your pop-up tent to break up excess solution then wipe down with a clean towel to remove excess moisture. This will clean both your gun and your tent!

In-Depth Cleaning

As technicians, our equipment is our lifeline. We depend on our HVLP Systems to work properly every day to ensure we can perform our services to the best of our abilities. To do this, we need to make sure we are cleaning and maintaining correctly to get the most out of our equipment. While disassembling your applicator may seem intimidating, know that Sjolie is here to assist you every step of the way!

While simple warm water will suffice for your day to day maintenance, you will want to make sure you are cleaning your applicator with an HVLP designed formula. Sjolie Gun Cleaning Solution was specifically designed for spray tan applicators and 100% safe for your applicator. This formula is gentle on your equipment while tough on spray tan solution build-up.

A deep clean should be performed on your applicator every 2-3 months, depending on your spray tan volume.

Items Needed:

  • Sjolie Gun Cleaning Solution
  • Small to medium soak tub
  • Bristle brush included with your applicator
  • Clean paper or cloth towel
  • Small Wrench
  • Pipe cleaner (suggested but optional)
Spray Gun Cleaning Solution - Ingredients
  • Deionized water – Ultra purified water through the processes of deionization. Mineral ions such as sodium, calcium, iron, copper, chloride, and sulfate have been removed.
  • SDA 40B Alcohol – Ethyl alcohol, used as an astringent and solvent.
  • Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate Betaine – Non-toxic and biodegradable with an excellent toxicological profile. Derived from Coconut.
  • D&C Blue No.1 – FDA approved colorant used in cosmetics, used to give a slight blue tint to the gun cleaning solution.

Lets recap the best maintenance schedule!

  • Hold applicator under running water and allow water to run clear to rinse all solution out of the applicator
  • Rinse out solution cup and wipe threads with a clean towel to avoid the dried solution.
  • Let both parts air dry.
  • Fill the solution cup with warm water and Sjolie Gun Cleaning Solution. Allow mixture to spray through your applicator.
  • Use a damp towel to wipe down both applicator and turbine.

  • Disassemble applicator and soak all necessary parts.
  • Clear out any build-up and replace any damaged or rundown parts.
  • Allow parts to dry before reassembling. Be sure parts are reassembled correctly to avoid malfunctions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I clean my gun using any standard dish soap?

No, we do not advise using Dawn or other soaps to clean gun parts as these soaps can leave residue behind and cause clogging in your applicator.

Should I clean my gun after every spray tan?

It is not necessary to clean after every appointment. However, you do want to make sure you are cleaning the applicator at the end of your work-day.

Should I also clean my gun weekly?

Yes, in conjunction with your daily cleanings, you should also add 2 parts of Sjolie Gun Cleaner and 1 part warm water to your solution cup and spray out of your applicator on a weekly basis. This will decrease build-up and ensure you have a beautiful spray pattern with every appointment!

How often should I do a deep clean on my gun?

We recommend, based on your typical volume, performing a deep clean every 2-3 months. The higher volume you have, the more often we recommend cleaning.

Can I use any oil to lube up parts such as the needle?

No. You must use an oil designed for air tools. This oil can be found at any local hardware store.

How much Gun Cleaner should I be using?

When soaking the applicator parts, we recommend using 2 parts Sjolie Gun Cleaner and 1 part warm water. When running Sjolie Gun Cleaner through your applicator, you will use the same measurements.  Spray into a towel until the solution has emptied. Then remove the solution cup and store until you are ready to use.

How long do I need to let the parts soak in gun cleaner and water?

Depending on the amount of build up your gun has; we recommend soaking anywhere between 20 minutes to overnight.

How long should the parts dry for?

All applicator parts must be completely dry before putting back together. You can simply leave the parts out to dry overnight, or for a faster dry, you can use the air from your HVLP hose.

How should I store my gun correctly at the end of each day?

Once you have performed your daily cleaning, remove the solution cup and face upside down so the solution cup can completely dry. Then hang your applicator by the top hook on any handle or secure hanger.

Can I use Sjolie Multi-Surface Disinfectant as Gun Cleaner?

No, the Sjolie Multi-Surface Disinfectant is not intended to be used as a Gun Cleaner and should only be used to disinfect hard surfaces.

Problems with your spray tan gun?

We’ve got your back, babe! As mentioned, if you have purchased your Apollo or Fuji applicator with Sjolie, we offer troubleshooting services that include: diagnostic assessment, deep cleanings, and replacement of parts. Send your applicator into Sjolie for one of our master technicians to carefully work on your applicator!

The customer is responsible for all ship fees to and from the Sjolie facility. Repairs can take up to 30 days. An accurate lead time will be provided upon your applicator’s arrival. If any parts are needing replacement, Sjolie will contact you to consult any and all possible charges. Please ship the applicator without the solution cup – if sent with a cup, Sjolie cannot guarantee the cup will be returned. Sjolie is not held responsible if the applicator is lost by the shipping courier. Sjolie will do their best to avoid damage to equipment. However, cosmetic scratches or dents may occur during routine maintenance. In no way is Sjolie obligated to reimburse for costs.

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