Archive for September, 2010

Happy Feet: Top Foot Massages

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Foot massageAll day long, we rely on our feet to take us safely (and quickly) from Point A to Point B. Walking, running, strolling – occasionally in the highest of heels – we put a lot of pressure on our soles, and spas have taken notice that our feet deserve more than your basic TLC. This makes the timing of two new spa packages at the Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz, New York more apropos – or, in this case, apro-toe – than ever.

Indulge your tired feet with Mohonk Mountain’s High Heeler or the Man on the Go treatments, featuring invigorating foot rubs and massages combined with exercise techniques to stretch aching feet and calves, and reinvigorate your lower limbs. Peppermint-infused oils leave your toes fresh all over, and help bring life back to overworked feet.

On tap at the Chuan Spa’s many international destinations (including locations in Boston and Pasadena) is Tips and Toes, a luxurious 90-minute treatment that works magic from top to bottom. A scalp massage and hand wrap lead into Feet Retreat, Chuan’s solution to the pain of high heels. Designed to enhance circulation and relieve pressure and tension,

Feet Retreat features an aromatic foot compress, an oil and herbal salt-infused rub process, a peppermint, lemon and cypress foot mask, and a relaxing foot massage.
Our feet are our personal transportation to everything. And for all we put them through, they deserve as much pampering as they can get! Look out for foot-focused spa packages and treatments popping up all over the place, so you can put your best foot forward.

Nature Calls: Spas In Touch With Nature

Monday, September 20th, 2010

What’s more relaxing than the soothing sights and sounds of nature? According to a new spa trend, absolutely nothing! As we head towards autumn, it seems that nature is popping up all over the place, in spa design, materials, and treatments. It’s a trend that encourages a unique application of resources, and focuses on the amazing natural elements of diverse geographies.

At the Lake Austin Spa Resort in Austin, Texas, both local and foreign flora inspire the extensive spa menu. And starting October 1, a slew of new, nature-based treatments will hit the scene. The highly anticipated Bamboo Bliss massage incorporates relaxation tools crafted from real bamboo, heated and infused with aromatherapy oils for ultimate soothing. Also on the menu are treatments with a more regional hint of nature, like the Texas Sage Herbal Infusion, an invigorating treat for your skin. Dessert sage clay is used to create a revitalizing face mask, and wild Texas sage and lavender are infused in a comforting body wrap. But if it’s true Texas nature you’re after, the Best of the Southwest body scrub and massage uses an unexpected source – local mesquite – to refresh and hydrate skin.

Lake Austin Spa

Lake Austin Spa

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Wet Heat vs. Dry Heat

Monday, September 13th, 2010

For as long as man has roamed the earth, we’ve contended with substantial debates. Chocolate vs. vanilla, toilet paper rolled in vs. out…and, of most significance in the spa world – wet heat vs. dry heat. The battle between the sauna and the steam shower is strong, with powerful arguments advocating both sides. So who’s the winner? Let’s take a look…

Steam Shower

Steam Shower

There’s no one who will disagree with the fact that heat is good for the body. So whether you opt for dry heat or wet heat, you and your skin will benefit from the effects of increased temperature. And for many, these high temperatures are precisely why some opt for a sauna over a steam shower, as the thermostat of a dry heat sauna can be set to extraordinarily high temperatures, sometimes exceeding 150 degrees Fahrenheit. But apart from being able to push the temperature to such extremes, saunas offer few other benefits that differentiate them from steam showers. For those who use heat for respiratory relief, steam showers take the cake. Dry heat can irritate the membranes of the nose and lungs, actually making breathing more difficult, when compared to the soothing moisture generated by a steam shower. Skin also loves the magic of wet heat over the draining effects of a sauna. Steam showers infuse our skin with the moisture it craves, and encourages perspiration – great for health and the health of your skin. The low humidity of a sauna might seem more soothing, but the lack of moisture siphons essential water from the skin, and prevents pores from opening as readily as in a wet heat environment.

Of course, the decision to “steam” or to “bake” is a personal choice. But if you’re hoping to get the most out of your spa session (and want to take advantage of the health benefits of heat), I call this debate in favor of Wet Heat…and your skin will too!


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