Talking Body Positivity: The Tanning Expert Who's Seen Thousands of People Naked



Jules Von Hep has been spray-tanning people for years. He has seen thousands of people naked in his tanning booth save for a pair of paper pants. "I have been staring at naked bodies for a living for 10 years," he tells me. The thing is that I know that whenever I go for a spray tan, I'm very quick to make excuses for the things I feel insecure about. Something like "Oh, sorry, I forgot to shave, I've been so busy!" or "I'm a bit bloated—must have been the sandwich I had at lunch!" Well, apparently, I'm not alone. "I have spray-tanned skin, bronzed complexions and seen—as well as listened to—every single body hang-up out there. You name it, I've seen it. And I've heard it." His advice? Stop apologising about your body and start celebrating it instead.

Von Hep is a celebrity tanner and founder of tanning brand Isle of Paradise. He also has a podcast with Sarah Powell called the Jules and Sarah Podcast, which they describe as "fun, lighthearted and predominately nonsense-driven podcasts to uplift, soothe and, essentially, amuse one's ears." They also launched a spinoff podcast called Wobble to explore both our mental and physical wobbles. You can listen to the series now (the episode recorded at Byrdie HQ is pretty fun), and there will be a new series out on 1 August. In short, Von Hep is an expert on helping people feel happier and more confident—both mentally and physically. It's time to read and reflect.