Spa Treatments That Work – And Others That Don’t

Want to enjoy a relaxing day at the spa? Who doesn’t? Spas are luxurious treats that help us rejuvenate and feel better about ourselves. They’re also expensive. You can be prepared to shell out a lot of cash on your next spa day. There are so many different packages and treatments at spas. There’s something for everyone, and they all promise some kind of amazing result. But before you spend, you should make sure that what you’re buying is actually going to work, because not all spa treatments deliver what they promise. Here are some spa treatments that work, and others that don’t.

Spa

 What Works

 Massage

Rest assured, a massage is always a good choice at the spa. There are lots of different kinds, from Swedish to hot stone to Shiatsu. Go ahead and choose whatever type is most appealing to you. As long as a massage is done by a professional with expertise, it is sure to relax you and work out your kinks.

 Mud and Clay Facials

Some spa treatments advocate getting dirty as a way of improving your skin. You’ll get slathered in mud, and your skin will improve. It sounds counter-intuitive, but it actually works. Mud, clay and other dirty earth treatments absorb oil from your skin and exfoliate it at the same time.

Acupuncture

This one is up for debate, but many people find that acupuncture totally works. Some people are skeptical that tiny needles in your skin could have such positive health results. But if you’re open to it, acupuncture is a legitimate spa treatment to try. It can help with almost anything, from relieving symptoms of arthritis to giving you a boost of energy.

 What Doesn’t

 Food-Based Facials

There are spas that offer food-based facial treatments, such as masks and products that contain healthy ingredients like carrots and blueberries. Fruits and vegetables are good to eat, so they must be good for your skin, too, right? Wrong. Your skin isn’t able to absorb the nutrients from these foods. They have to be eaten to benefit you, so skip the food-based treatments.

Detox Skin Treatments

Another promise of many spa treatments is that they’ll detoxify your skin, and remove toxins and impurities that are keeping you from looking your best. They might apply special creams, masks, or wraps, but they won’t work. Toxins cannot be drawn out from your skin, so avoid these claims.

Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Spa Experience

No matter what treatment you decide on, it’s a good idea to do a little research beforehand. Check out your spa of choice and read reviews from other patrons. When you call the spa, inquire about their most popular treatments. Ultimately, choose something that you believe you’ll enjoy, and that will have the greatest benefit to you. If you have dry skin, try a moisturizing facial. If you have a sore back, get a massage. Oftentimes the more simple a treatment is, the better it works. Be skeptical of treatments that sound totally bizarre. And remember, the most expensive treatments aren’t always the best ones.

Natalia Smith is a Spa professional currently living in Hawaii. She uses and recommends Alicia Silverstone Ecotools, particularly the Ecotools Blush Brush.

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Homemade Facial Scrub Recipes

Previously we looked at Homemade Lip Balm, and How to Make Facial Masks. Now it is time for homemade scrub!

Although there are many excellent commercial facial scrubs, they can also be quite expensive. Anyone can create a homemade facial scrub, usually from household items or those that are easily obtained, that works just as well to sooth and exfoliate the skin. The most important thing to know about facial scrubs, of any kind, is that they should not be applied more than every two weeks. Overuse can result in dry, red, irritated skin.

face scrub

DIY Facial Scrub

Honey Egg Facial Scrub

Start with two egg whites. Separate the eggs, just as you would for cooking, retaining the egg whites. Beat the egg whites until they are foamy. Fold in a fourth cup each of olive oil, whole milk and honey. Add chickpea flour, a little at a time, until you reach a paste consistency. The mixture can be scented with essential oils, but it is not necessary. Lavender or rose scents are appealing.

Spread the honey egg facial scrub over your face, while rubbing it into the forehead, nose, cheeks and chin. Let the facial scrub remain on the face for approximately 5 minutes. Saturate a soft washcloth with warm water. Use the washcloth to remove the facial mask. Give a final rinse to the face to remove any remaining scrub.

Each individual ingredient benefits your skin in different ways. Olive oil adds nutrients, moisture and softness to the skin. Chickpea flour reduces puffiness. Honey adds nutrients and cleans out pores. Eggs firm the skin and milk acts as a moisturizer.

Sugar Facial Scrub

Almost everyone has white sugar in their kitchen cupboard. It is healthier to use on your skin, as an exfoliate, than to eat. The lovely oils smell delectable and leave your skin moisturized. This simple scrub is quick and easy to make. Choose between almond oil, olive oil or sesame oil, as desired.

Combine 1 cup of sugar with 1/2 cup oil. Mix the two ingredients until they are fully mingled together, yet still a bit grainy. This facial scrub is primarily for the face and neck areas, but can also be used in the shower on elbows and knees. Always avoid the eye area when using any facial scrub, not only can it irritate the eye, but also the delicate surrounding skin. After the sugar facial scrub has remained on your skin for 5 minutes, rinse it off completely.

Oatmeal Facial Scrub

Oatmeal has long been used as an exfoliate ingredient in commercial, as well as homemade, scrubs. It leaves the skin smooth and silky. Feel free to extend this oatmeal facial scrub into the shower to use on legs, arms or other areas that may need some tender repair.

Place a half pound of glycerin soap base, found at craft and hobby stores, into a sauce pan. Heat, but do not boil, the soap base on medium-low heat. When all the base is melted, let it cool before proceeding. Chop ¼ cup oatmeal in the blender, until fine. Add to the blender the soap base, 1 tablespoon honey, ½ teaspoon olive oil and ½ teaspoon sweet almond oil. Blend the ingredients until a paste is formed. Spread the mixture over the face and gently rub around the forehead, cheeks, nose, chin and neck. Let the oatmeal scrub remain on the face for about 5 minutes. Rinse with clear water, until all the scrub is removed.

Tips

Place any remaining scrub into an airtight container and put it into the refrigerator. Before the next use, place the bottom of the container in a sink of hot water. This will soften it, as well as warm it up so it is more comfortable on your skin. Remember to apply and rub the facial scrub into the skin gently. Never over work it. Let the scrub ingredients do most of the work. After all, when the job is finished the skin should exhibit a healthy glow, not damaged, red splotches.

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6 Top Footcare Tips

Our feet have to handle abuse on a daily basis. There’s very little respite until the end of the day when we can, with relief, kick our shoes off.

It’s important to look after our feet. As a piece of advice that might seem obvious, but it’s easy to ignore, which we do all the time! Our body has a way of telling us if there’s something wrong, and you can usually tell when your feet require some much needed TLC. Here are a few tips that might help with the care of your feet.

footcare

1. Wash your feet every day. Scrubbing in the shower doesn’t count here, as your feet don’t get the sufficient soaking that they need. Wash your feet in warm, salt water for 10 minutes or more, and it serves to ease away stress while cleansing and deodorising. Be wary not to soak your feet daily, as this can dry out the foot’s natural oils.

2. Dry skin. Many people will experience dry skin on their feet most of their lives. At best, it can be a mild irritation, but at worst it can lead to physical pain, especially if the hardened skin cracks. Use a pumice stone to remove the hardened skin before it becomes too severe, while giving your feet a good soak.

3. Trimming toenails. There is a correct way to cut your toenails that will help to avert such ailments as in-growing nails. Cut straight across the nail, as cutting down into the corners will lead to in-grown toenails.

4. The right shoes. Buying the right shoes for your feet is essential for their wellbeing. Choose your footwear based on how they would fit after being worn for long periods. Of course, there are shoes that don’t take comfort as a priority, and worn occasionally there should be few problems. A great tip is to buy shoes later in the afternoon after your feet have swollen a little, which is normal – don’t panic!

5. Sun block. When enjoying the day out in sunny weather, particularly on the beach or spending a lot of time in flip flops, your feet are at risk from sun damage. Your feet need as much protection as the rest of your body, so be sure to apply sunscreen and keep it topped up throughout the day.

6. Professional help. If you find that you are struggling with any foot complaint, such as infections or pain, do consult your doctor or chiropodist. Even the odd twinge can be an early indicator of infection.

With these tips you should be able to keep your feet in good working order, but always seek professional advice when needed.

 

Rainbow’s End has a great choice of footwear from brands such as Marco Tozzi, FitFlop and Heavenly Feet shoes.

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