Woman says she was charged extra by a spray tan business because of her size

Woman says she was charged extra by a spray tan business because of her size

An Australian woman's post about the alleged body shaming she endured at the hands of a spray tan company has gone viral on social media this week, with the subject sparking some strong opinions from commenters.

The trouble began when an anonymous woman took to Instagram to ask a business about the cost of fake tans, and was told that she'd be charged extra because she wasn't an AUS size eight (US size four) or smaller.

The woman, who shared her experience on a private Facebook group, claims that the professional tanner questioned her size after looking through her Instagram photos, and demanded more money because of her larger frame. The reasoning behind it was that she should pay more because there was more "surface area" to cover.

A woman getting a spray tan. Credit: Getty

The customer told her that she was a dress size 10-12, which is smaller than the size of the average Australian woman (size 14-16) according to figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

However, the tanner's response to this left her outraged, and when she shared the reply to a Facebook group which is dedicated to providing women with advice, many group members decried the policy as a form of body-shaming.

The spray-tanner wrote: "Hey hun, its $35 for a one hour express. I just had a look at your Instagram and I'm wondering what size you are? My regular clients are a max size eight. It'll be an extra $20 as there is more surface area if you know what I mean. I saw your post in advice, and I just wanted to say if you don't want to pay a $20 surcharge maybe you should lose a little. Not trying to be mean, it is just the industry."

Annika Thompson, owner of the business Glow Up Spray Tans wrote: 'This is disgraceful. I have my own tanning business and would never in a million years discriminate like this."

Meanwhile, another person wrote "I have owned my own tanning business for nearly 4 years and I would never. Never has this thought even crossed my mind," while someone else added: "Just so everyone knows, NO it isn't 'just the industry'. It's just this greedy self-absorbed person claiming to be a professional."

However, not all commenters have been quite so sympathetic. For example, one person commented: "The business owner was asked about her prices, she gave a clear answer. If you don't like it, then go somewhere else. If enough people don't like it she goes out of business. Find someone who suits you better. Why does anyone need the entire net to give advice on simple questions?"

So what do you think? Is this justified? Or yet another case of prejudice against the overweight?