Tanning Lotion


Looking Fit Magazine
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A Unique Product Line, A Unique Approach
by Rhonda Glover

Out in the northwestern city of Portland, in the mid-`80s our story begins. A man by the name of Dale Hansen was waiting to lasso the tanning world with his new plan. He'd frequented tanning salons one after the other, but never was pleased with the lotions he used.

Determined to manufacture and market a product that would be effective and appealing to the diverse tanning population, he launched Hoss Sauce--and has been the Marshal of Tan Town ever since.

Performance Posse
It was Hansen's disappointment with the caliber of products on the indoor tanning market in the '80s that prompted him to round up a pair of chemist buddies and look into launching a lotion brand of their own. After more than one year of organizing, testing and tanning, Hansen and his cohorts (one of whom is still on the Hoss Sauce roster) had a product they felt confident would benefit salon owners and patrons alike.

"Our objective is to help people develop a good tan using ingredients that are skin-healthy, rehydrating and moisturizing," says CEO Hansen, who's known by his staff and much of the tanning world as "The Marshal." "Today's tanner is more aware of skin damage, free-radical damage and early aging, so our line is all about skincare--and tanning results."

It's this motto that has helped Hansen create a line of 22 products that are effective under a tanning lamp or under the sun. The Hoss Sauce collection includes tingle and non-tingle products, all-over moisturizers, SPFs and sunless lotions, many of which bear clever, Hoss-style names.

"We try to cover all the bases with our line, which is totally necessary in this industry," says Hansen, whose products include a hot ultimate tanner called Rangefire®, an intense tanner called Texas Heat® and an explosive-strength lotion called Firestar®. "If people start believing in a product line, be it ours or anyone else's, the lotion company has to offer the whole gamut of products--outdoor tanners, indoor tanners and sunless tanners."

Swell Sellers
According to Hansen, one of Hoss Sauce's premier products, Ultra Dark®, is the company's leading seller by volume. Formulated as a "facial-strength lotion for the whole body," Ultra Dark helps tanners reach a beautiful dark tan while keeping their skin soft, smooth and moisturized.

"Ultra Dark came out our first year and has been on top ever since," says Hansen, whose product line entered the market in 1991 and has been growing every year since. "It's by far our most popular product--and I think that's because the price-point's right, it smells good, it feels good and it does a good job. It was designed to be very intense, but it's not a tingle product."

In fact, only four products in Hoss Sauce's line fall into the tingle category: Outlaw®, Outlaw 5X®, Outlaw 6X® and Texas Crude®. But Hansen is quick to point out that, even though they tingle, these intense products are still very much designed with skincare in mind.

"Other products that use a strong tingle notoriously don't focus on skincare the way we do because the manufacturers primarily are striving for the tingle," says Hansen, whose company manufactures all its products in its 28,000-square-foot Portland location. "We tried to offer a tingle line that still focused on skin health and moisturization and it has done very well. Outlaw 6X, which we launched late last year, has been our leading seller this year."

Helping Hands
With an extensive line of products and a devotion to the industry it serves, Hoss Sauce spends a good deal of time and energy assuring that its salon owner clients get the education and assistance they need to market lotions--and increase revenue.

"We try to get plenty of information to each salon owner who requests our help," he says. "When they place an order with one of our distributors but need more information, our Web site is available and we are only a toll-free call away. We want to help."

In an additional effort to assist the salon owner in marketing their location (and his lotions), Hansen also devised a co-op advertising program. This program assists salon owners in advertising on a local level and many of his clients appreciate and take advantage of this unique offer.

And speaking of help--Hansen is proud to say his Hoss Sauce posse is available to help with advice and information, regardless of whether the questions are coming from a current client, a possible client or simply an owner with a query.

"We want people to feel comfortable calling in with questions, even if they aren't buying anything," says Hansen. "We don't care if they're a client; we'll talk to them, give them advice. We're glad to do it.


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