Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009/2010 - Top Five Spa Trends

Impressive statistics show that 70% of sales are represented by consumers who belong to loyalty programs and participate in members only exclusive offers. Membership programs such as VIPs, Loyalty, Customer Appreciation, Frequent Buyer, etc., are highly effective in cultivating consumer retention and encouraging a healthier bottom line. Clearly, consumers love loyalty programs.

Membership programs are becoming a popular trend in the spa community and are an effective way for management to stay connected while working hard building consumer loyalty. The membership process places the spa in an excellent position to understand their client's needs and create unmatchable value, superior service, the right mix of product and service menus. It also gives a spa an opportunity to offer members a sense of belonging and familiarity within an environment where a circle of trust and comfort is enormously important.

Spa memberships generally offer perks and rewards which may include a point system, discount cards, rewards, savings incentives, advanced notice of sales, frequency discounts, and maybe (if you are lucky) a free spa treatment on your birthday. Some are free to join and are specifically designed to keep you "in the loop", while others are based on an *annual fee and include 10 - 15% off products and services throughout the year. Where indulgence has been replaced by practicality, the membership trend is projected to evolve and thrive within the spa community.

*As with any type of signed agreement, make sure to read the fine print.

Monday, December 28, 2009

2009/2010 - Top Five Spa Trends

The economy is still very much on our minds. The great question of 2009 rests on whether the economy is truly in recovery mode or whether it has come up for a much needed breath of fresh air before shifting back into another recession. No one seems to know the answer. Most want to believe all is well, but the overall uncertainty is still widespread. Spending patterns of this past year, and most recently during the holidays, suggest a very tentative, cautious outlook.

Spas got the message loud and clear. An unmistakable quiet fell over the industry . . . and not the kind of 'feel good' quiet spas are famous for. This kind of quiet threatens the very core of a spa's fiscal health. It is a time when management becomes very creative. The result? Discounts, deals and giveaways galore. Modest indulgences. There are four things a spa enthusiast should do when there are so many promotions being offered. Look for them. Expect them. Exploit them. Enjoy them. Helps you, helps them. A win-win situation no matter how you look at it.

Friday, December 25, 2009


Wishing everyone peace, love and joy for today . . . and the rest of your tomorrows.

With love and gratitude for a wonderful year!
Editorial Staff,
Beauty Editor Post

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

2009: One of Our Favorite Things - Sothys Secrets

Women 38+ will appreciate not only the result and function of this cream, but the sheer pleasure of its texture and glide. The key active ingredient is 'Tex-OE' from prickly pear, an ingredient that triggers the skin to neutralize the negative effects of stress, or free radical damage, in a couple of hours. This is the normal time frame for younger women to process damage due to stress, but as hormone levels start to change the proteins in the skin responsible for this activity may take up to eight hours. The result? Slow cellular repair, slow regeneration and increased degeneration, all culprits of aging. Sothys Secrets offers a powerful cocktail of anti-oxidants to accompany Tex-OE, including the peel of an apple, peptides to trigger collagen renewal, and iris extract to increase and protect the dermal proteins (collagen and elastin). Marjoram and ylang ylang are responsible for the fragrance and add to the destressing effects of this velvety textured cream. An addictive luxury? In a word, . . . yes.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Resveratrol - The Latest Greatest

Now, there is one more very good reason to have a glass of red wine with dinner. Resveratrol, a plant compound found primarily in grapes, is being lauded as the new champion in the war against aging. It naturally occurs in plants when an injury or fungal infection develops, and its key role is to provide protection from disease, harmful substances and UV exposure. Resveratrol functions beautifully as an antioxidant and has the ability to neutralize free radicals (which attack healthy cells) and prevent ongoing oxidation and inflammation (both of which contribute to the negative aspects of aging).

In fact, . . . and this is a big one . . . Reveratrol has more muscle power than Vitamins C and E. Knowing its background and attributes begs the obvious question . . . is Resveratrol an important contribution to the anti-aging process or is it another "flavor of the week" ingredient fueled by marketing hype? Scientists are focusing a great deal of attention on that question and are currently very hopeful. As with aging, only time will tell. Cheers.

Friday, December 18, 2009

2009: One of Our Favorite Things - Jan Marini Age Intervention Regeneration Facial Mask

With seductive phrases like dual action occlusion and delivery and saturated with a high concentration of potent active topicals, trying this mask was an absolute must. It is loaded with an impressive list of antioxidants, including the 'new-kid-on-the-block' resveratrol (see next post) and a cocktail of skin rebuilding peptides. A power group of anti-inflammatory ingredients such as red, white and green tea extracts work together to help protect and soothe the skin while diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The pomegranate extract and co-enzyme Q-10 both work to intensify regeneration and repair, and the algae extract promotes invaluable moisture retention and elasticity. The glycolic acid kicks in to boost the absorption of the other ingredients. Talk about teamwork.

Words like repair and rebuild suggest this mask needs time to do its work, so an overnight magic act it is not. But then, we all know there is no such thing . . . right? There was, however, a noticeable glow following the first treatment, but the real bonus is the overall cumulative effects while the skin works hard to rebalance, rebuild and rejuvenate. Two thumbs way up on this product, which is why it is 'one of our favorite things of 2009'.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Win a Weekend Spa Getaway for Two!
Enter by January 17th
One winner will receive a trip for two to Arizona including round-trip airfare, three nights’ hotel accommodations, $1,000 spending money. Prize package has approximated retail value (ARV) of $5,000. A $3,500 cash option will also be offered as a prize substitute.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Enter by December 21st
GRAND PRIZE: One winner will receive a 4-day, 3-night stay for two at Eldorado Hotel & Spa in Santa Fe, NM, including Junior Fireplace Suite accommodations (approximate value, $1,850), two spa treatments at the Nidah Spa (approximate value, $150 each), and dinner for two at the Old House Restaurant (approximate retail value, $150), and round-trip coach airfare for two from the major airport nearest winner’s residence (approximate retail value, $600). Approximate Retail Value $2,900.

Friday, December 11, 2009


Cuccio Naturalé's Butter Lytes Holiday Set features a lovely set of their ultra-sheer body butters. These body butters are available in Tuscan Citrus with White Tea to give the skin a toned and brightened appearance; Guava & Mangosteen to renew and deeply hydrate for silky smooth skin; Pomegranate & Açai to promote healthier and younger looking skin; and Honey and Soy Milk to regenerate damaged tissue and skin cells. Formulated to dispense time-released emollients into the skin to hydrate it throughout the day. De-light-ful!


Jane Iredale Eye Gloss Bar Holiday Kit consists of a set of six glide on, crease resistant, liquid eye shadows and one lash defining, lengthening mascara for sparkling, smudge-proof celebrations. Shades include Champagne Silk, Brown Silk, Green Silk, Mauve Silk, Grey Silk and Wine Silk. The set comes in a white, plush cosmetic bag that features a mirror and zippered closure. In a word . . . beautiful!


Klapp Cosmetics offers the Golden Glow Face & Body Holiday Set which includes, Chi Yang Exclusive Golden Moisturizing Cream to regenerate dry skin; Golden Body Oil Dry for a non-greasy approach to silky smooth skin; and Golden Body Oil Regular for velvety smooth skin. All products are infused with 24K and 22K gold for a luminous, radiant glow.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Murad's "Give the Gift of Gorgeous Holiday Set" consists of Renewing Cleansing Cream to gently exfoliate, restore radiance and protect the skin's natural moisture barrier; Age-Diffusing Serum to reduce the appearance of medium to deep wrinkles and improve elasticity; Age-Balancing Night Cream to restore suppleness and minimize wrinkles while improving the skin's texture; Sheer Lustre Day Moisture (SPF 15) to work on the restoration of the skin's elasticity; the Renewal Home Facial Kit to effectively take care of your skin at home. This 30 day supply/set includes a free cosmetic bag, free shipping (for online users), a 60 day guarantee, and free samples.


Peter Thomas Roth's Un-Wrinkle Holiday Kit offers their anti-aging trio. The Un-Wrinkle to combat wrinkles by delivering a patent-pending, highly concentrated formula of vitamins, peptides, and moisturizers; the Un-Wrinkle Peel Pads for an efficient daily peel to prepare the skin to receive these ingredients more effectively; the Un-Wrinkle Night to provide an advanced night time moisturizer formulated with an exclusive blend of eight powerful anti-aging peptides and neuropeptides (plus retinol) for maximum results.


Elemis offers their Limited Time Edition Collection Gift Set for the holidays in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness. The set includes the Papaya Enzyme Peel to brighten and clarify the complexion with a non-granular exfoliating cream; Pro-Collagen Marine Cream to reduce the depth of wrinkles, increase hydration and skin firmness in *just over 2 weeks; Pro-Collagen Oxygenating Night Cream to increase oxygen levels and assist in the regeneration process; Pro-Collagen Lifting Treatment Neck and Bust to provide a smoother, firmer skin. These products are included with a luxury pink Elemis Cosmetic Bag.
*independent clinical trials 2003

Monday, December 7, 2009


Sothys Hydroptimale Gift Set includes two great products. The first product, Hydroptimale Comfort Hydrating Cream, treats the skin to instant hydration that will last up to 16 hours while regulating and strengthening the skin's own natural protection.

The second product, Active-Contour Age-Defying Cream, is formulated to reduce dark circles and puffiness under the eye area and prevent the appearance of fine lines. A perfect duo!


SpaRitual's, "It's a Wonderful Life Eco-Luxury Holiday Gift Set," includes the following three products; Look Inside Organic Moisturizing Lotion, Instinctual Energizing Fragrant Mist, and Infinitely Loving Oil.

This winning trio is thoughtfully designed to balance of your body, mind and spirit and consists of three vegan, paraben-free, multi-purpose, travel size Chakra Care products. Oohhmm . . .


Skin Medica's Holiday Gift Pack includes a full retail size of Skin Medica's most popular products - TNS Night Eye Repair and TNS Lip Plump System. These two products will help hydrate and brighten the delicate eye area and add instant fullness and volume to the lips.

This limited edition is packaged in a stylish, zippered, purple case. Talk about purple power!


This year YON-KA PARIS is offering their clients a set of three round leather treasure chests that gently fit within one another for easy space saving stacking.

These beautiful boxes present a unique and beautiful way to store your favorite products, perfumes, and other very personal treasures.

Friday, December 4, 2009


Biotone's Holiday Gift Set consists of trial-sized samples of Facial Therapy MicroRefiner with Bio-Firming Complex to provide a gentle microdermabrasion to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and large pores; Micro-Buff Crème Body Polish Milk & Honey to stimulate microcirculation and restore soft, smooth skin; Body Lush Hydrating Wrap to moisturize thirsty skin with active botanicals; and Smoothing Massage Butter Pomegranate & Cranberry to relax the body and help dry, chapped skin on the road to recovery.


Dermalogica's Favorites Set is great for all skin conditions. This travel-sized set includes versions of PreCleanse to gently liquify sebum and oil-based debris; Daily Microfoliant to eliminate cell debris leaving the skin noticeably smoother and brighter; Gentle Cream Exfoliant to refine the skin without irritation; and Skin Hydrating Booster to replenish the skin's capacity to hold moisture.


Don't forget to pamper the special men in your life. Guinot's Holiday Set includes Baume Hydra Apaisant (After Shave Balm) formulated to instantly calm, soothe, moisturize and protect the skin, as well as a complimentary Defatigant Express Eye Gel to rejuvenate the eye area and smooth away the fine lines and dark circles.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Eminence Organics Gift Box includes all 9 Biodynamic products - Lemon Grass Cleanser, Hawthorn Tonique, Radish Seed Refining Peel, Primrose & Melon Balancing Masque, Yellow Sweet Clover Anti -Redness Masque, Apricot Calendula Nourishing Cream, Echinacea Recovery Cream, Bearberry Eye Repair Cream and Quince Nourishing Body Lotion.

What could be better than that? Each incredible gift set comes with a unique number that could be your ticket to paradise! Each purchase offers you a chance to win the trip of a lifetime to Spa Grande at the Grand Wailea in Hawaii! Contest closes January 31, 2010.


Eminence Organics Stone Crop Holiday Gift Set includes three favorites - Stone Crop Gel Wash, Stone Crop Hydrating Mist, Stone Crop Body Lotion and an adorable 100% organic cotton bag with 100% recycled linen lining. Oh, and don't forget . . . a chance to win a trip to the Spa Grande at Grand Wailea, voted "Top Hotel Spa" in Hawaii by Travel & Leisure, World's Best Awards. 50,000 square feet of complete luxury, unique treatments and exceptional service. Aloha!


2009 Pevonia Holiday Gift Selection
Collection includes the Your Care Solution Collection as well as luxury gift bags and Eye Makeup Remover. Available in nine different varieties - Dry Skin, Sensitive Skin, Combination Skin, Eye Care, Rosacea, Power Repair, Spa-At-Home Essentials, Safe Sun Face & Body and Spa Travel Essentials.

Monday, November 30, 2009

SPA SWEEPSTAKES - Woman's Day Magazine

Womans Day’s Mammoth Mountain, California, Ski Getaway Package Giveaway
Enter by December 9th
Grand Prize: One five-day, four-night stay for two at The Village Lodge in Mammoth Lakes, CA, including one group lesson plus two days of rentals/lift tickets for two people; dinner for two at the gourmet Lakefront Restaurant at the historic Tamarack Lodge, and two spa treatments from the Double Eagle Spa at Snowcreek (guests’ choice of a 50-minute Creekside Signature Massage or a Neck, Back & Shoulder Massage). Approx. Retail Value: $1,500

Friday, November 27, 2009


USA Network’s The Good Life Sweepstakes in New York City!
Enter by December 10th
Grand Prize: Four-day trip for two to New York City, includes luxury accommodations at Robert DeNiro’s boutique hotel, The Greenwich, complimentary airfare for two and luxury airport transfer, meals and drinks at some of the hottest local spots (Monkey Bar, DBGB, Minetta Tavern, The Modern and Milk & Honey), $1000 Shopping trips to Thomas Pink and Links of London, private VIP tours of The High Line and MOMA, passes to New York’s finest museums, (The Met, Guggenheim, and Whitney), and rejuvenating spa treatments. Approximate Retail Value $20,052.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

MD Skincare - Alpha Beta® Daily Face Peel

The Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel is a two-step exfoliation system that is as easy as sweeping two moist, ready-to-use pads over your skin. That's it!

After swiping the first pad in circular motions over your face, wait for two minutes, then follow with the second one. The first pad contains alpha hydroxyl and beta hydroxyl acids, both working to exfoliate dead surface cells along with other great ingredients to ensure minimal irritation (if any). There are also anti-oxidants from green tea, soothing anti-inflammatory properties of chamomile and anti-aging benefits to boost collagen production. The second pad gives the skin a vitamin boost while providing a cocktail of anti-oxidants that enhance each other's capabilities, promote cell regeneration and offer other key components needed for the skin to synthesize collagen.

This two part product is an easy 'no-mess' exfoliating system, beneficial for any skin type, and completes the process with ingredients able to penetrate quickly on fresh, exfoliated skin. Great for the face, but also incredible for the backs of your hands. This two-step is not only easy, but ultra convenient for traveling. MD Skincare packaged these pads in individual packets so you can just throw a couple into your cosmetic bag and off you go. All the way around, this product is a winner.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Alpha Hydroxy Acids - AHA & Cancer?

Does the use of Alpha Hydroxy Acids increase the risk of skin cancer?
There has been a fair amount of buzz, and perhaps a little bit of negative press, regarding AHAs and cancer. To date, no studies have found a credible correlation between products that contain Alpha Hydroxy Acid and cancer. There is, however, the distinct warning that Alpha Hydroxy Acids may make the skin more sensitive to the sun . . . and everyone knows that too much unprotected exposure to the sun has the potential to cause skin cancer. While on the topic of AHAs and possible problems, . . . a word of caution. High concentrations of glycolic acid are being sold on the internet in home exfoliation/peel DIY kits. If the concentration is too high, or the product is improperly used, there is a very real possibility of burning the skin which could result in permanent damage. As always, do your homework. Leave this type of skin care in the safe hands of your estheticians and/or dermatologists. It is always better to be safe than sorry.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Great Spas of the Southwest
Enter by November 30th
GRAND PRIZE: One 4-Night/5-Day Stay for Two (2) People at Red Mountain Resort & Spa, Luxury Villa Suite, one 50-minute Spa Treatment per person, one Zion National Park Adventure per person, Signature Package includes three meals daily, guided morning hiking, healthy life classes, unlimited fitness classes, personal discovery activities, cooking demonstrations and use of resort facilities including the exclusive infinity Villa pool. Approximate Retail Value $4,400.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Beta Hydroxy Acid - BHA

In the world of cosmetics, Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA) is the term used to describe an oil-soluble, natural occurring acid that exfoliates cellular buildup while targeting the oil embedded in the pores. Although the exfoliation properties are similar to Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs), BHA performs at a deeper level with the ability to penetrate the pores and dislodge impurities. Oily, acne prone skin benefits more from this type of exfoliant than the AHAs. Beta Hydroxy Acid is considered less irritating than the AHAs, but the skin needs to be gradually introduced to this ingredient. Caution is required to prevent redness and inflammation.

Salicylic Acid is the star of this show. Derived from willow bark, salicylic acid is an effective weapon used against non-inflamed acne, psoriasis and eczema. Found in cleansers, lotions and creams, this ingredient speeds up cell turnover and targets the activity going on in the pores to help prevent clogging while breaking down blackheads and whiteheads. Its natural anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties have a positive effect on troubled skin, which in turn, results in improved skin texture and skin tone. A star indeed.

A few words of warning . . . those with an allergy to aspirin should avoid any products containing this ingredient as salicylic acid is part of the aspirin family. Sensitivity to sun exposure greatly increases so it is an absolute must to use an SPF. Pregnant women should check with their doctors before using any products containing a BHA.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Alpha Hydroxy Acids - AHAs

Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) is the term used covering a broad range of water soluble, naturally occurring acids (fruit, milk) that are specifically incorporated into products to provide dynamic exfoliating benefits to the skin. AHAs work on the upper layer of the skin dislodging surface impurities, evening texture, smoothing the skin, attracting moisture, effectively reversing sun damage, and promoting cellular renewal. Quite a bag of tricks. The decomposition of dead skin residue also helps boost penetration of other beneficial ingredients.

AHAs may be a good bet if you have dull, 'ho-hum' skin that lacks that healthy glow, but a little caution will go a long way to finding the right product for your skin. Begin with a lower strength and increase slowly while your skin adjusts. This will mitigate any irritation your skin may have to the process, which usually results in redness, dryness and flaking skin. Not attractive.

In order to be sold to consumers, AHAs must have a concentration of less that 10%, although most 'over the counter' products contain 3%. There are five major types of AHAs in skin-care products - glycolic, lactic, malic, citric, and tartaric acids. It is now possible to get buffered glycolic acid products, which maintain a healthy concentration but increase the pH, therefore the exfoliation process takes place without the obvious physical signs of AHA-itis. BTW, fall and winter are the perfect seasons to introduce AHA into a skin care regime since AHAs tend to make the skin quite sensitive to sun exposure. If used during the spring and summer, sun protection is an absolute must.

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Exedra Nice Luxury Hotel & Spa

Too worried about the flu season to visit a destination spa abroad? The Exedra Nice Luxury Hotel in Nice, France is certainly something to think about. Part of the amazing Boscolo Hotel chain, the hotel rooms and wellness spa are literally a sea of clean, bright, white. In fact, everything is white, including the billiards table in the recreational area. Guest rooms are well appointed (and white) and the spa's interior design is white enamel with a slight dash of pink. Interesting interior design. A germaphobe's dream spa experience. Not keen on a long flight to the heart of the Cote d'Azur? Do yourself a favor and visit the entire Boscolo Hotel and Spa chain online. It is an experience you won't soon forget. C'est bon!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Mobile Spa Experience . . . Bring It!

Has the flu season got you spooked? Would you prefer a more solitary approach to a lavish spa experience without leaving your living room? The answer is a phone call away. Pick up the phone and call for a mobile spa to come your way. Mobile Spas deliver a full professional spa experience without compromising quality in the comfort of your home. Why bother getting dressed, fighting traffic, searching endlessly for a parking space? High end spas are now on the road and will bring the pampering to you. Private in-home esthetic services offer professional luxuries that offer first class treatments, a more individual approach, save time, and believe it or not, are reasonably priced.

A trip to the spa can be time consuming and sometimes inconvenient. Depending on how far you have to travel, and the time of day, the investment of time doubles. Mobile spas, on the other hand, deliver all the luxuries of professional services right to your door. No need to undress, redress, redo your makeup or rearrange you hair. The convenience and comfort is immeasurable.

Do you have a manicure emergency? Need a morning-after-a-late-night-pick-me-up? Have a special engagement requiring a glowing treatment? No problem. Wherever you are . . . they will be. So, keep your slippers on, pour yourself a cup of tea and relax. The mobile spa experience motto? Bring it!

*Don't forget to check references as trust is a key component to inviting anyone into your home and this is no exception.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Spas and the H1N1

"Considering what is going on with the recent outbreak of the swine flu, is it safe to keep my appointment at my local Spa, or should I rebook?"

It is a valid question. The Swine Flu, or H1N1, has certainly heightened health awareness. The truth of it is, the hygienic practices discussed in the media should be a part of our daily routine, not just when there is an epidemic, or potential pandemic. These kind of health matters are definite concerns of the Spa you visit, if you are in the right place of business. Spa management and their staff members are trained to provide a safe and sanitary haven to their clients. You may notice extra precautions such as gloves, masks, and stricter rules for employees (and clients) who must stay home if they are ill. Obviously, vigilant sterilization and hand washing play a key role.

Passing any type of infection is definitely not good for business. Plain and simple. If you are nervous about it, (and who would blame you), ask your Skin Care Specialist to address your concerns and inform you as to what they are doing for extra precautions. We are certain they will welcome your questions. If they don't . . . you need to look for another Spa.

Friday, November 6, 2009


Saint Lucia Getaway Giveaway - Sandals Resorts
Enter by November 11th
Grand Prize: One lucky winner will win a four-day, three-night stay for two at any of the three Sandals Resorts located on the island of Saint Lucia. The prize includes round-trip airport transfers to and from the resort, as well as gratuities. Approximate Retail Value: $2,000

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Lucky Magazine Jamaica Beach Vacation

Lucky Magazine Jamaica Beach and Spa Vacation
Enter by November 30th
Delta Vacations is offering airfare for one winner and a guest, plus a four-night stay that includes all meals and activities (snorkeling, kayaking, and golf, to name a few). The new Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, located right on the beach in postcard-perfect Montego Bay, has well-appointed rooms, all-whirlpool bathtubs, balconies with swings, and a 24-hour butler who will stock the minibar with your favorite snacks. The prize includes two massages at the hotel's spa.
Approximate Retail Value $3,750

Monday, November 2, 2009

Top 3 Pumpkin Skin Care Products

Yam and pumpkin pulp purées rich in enzymes, beta-carotene, amino acids and antioxidants. Lightens, brightens, encourages healthy cell turnover, keeps pores clear and raises hydration levels. Recommended for all skin types (except in active acne areas).

A gentle skin purifying enzyme peel that exfoliates and repairs the skin using the power of antioxidants and Vitamin A to protect the skin. Leaves the skin soft, clean and nourished. Recommended for all skin types.

A detoxifying mask infused with ingredients including pumpkin, honey and calendula. This mask has been formulated to diminish dull skin, fight off bacteria, rejuvenate and revitalize skin. Recommended for mature and aging skin.

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Power of Pumpkin

Halloween is a perfect time of year to take a closer look at the pumpkin's contribution to the skin care industry. Many interesting specialized products are based upon this beautiful superfood. Other than the natural fruit acids (yes, the pumpkin is technically a fruit), it is high in Vitamins A, C, & E, several B's, potassium, magnesium iron, zinc and copper. Quite the list! In fact, some have said that, "the pumpkin contains one of the richest supplies of bioavailable carotenoids known to man." Bold statement.

In skin care, however, the pumpkin has a unique ability to efficiently exfoliate dead skin cells while cleansing, detoxing and promoting a healthy healing process. It enables other ingredients to penetrate the skin more effectively, works on restoring the elasticity of the skin and offers moisturizing properties that leave the skin feeling silky smooth. Pumpkin skin care is most effective for dull, sluggish skin that screams for nutrition and the return of a long lost radiant glow. There are many great pumpkin products on the market that deserve your attention. It is clear that pumpkins offer so much more than just baking into great pies. Pumpkin power, indeed.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

MATIS PARIS Le Cou Enriched Neck Cream

Macadamia oil has a great affinity with the skin as the composition is similar to sebum which allows soothing and nourishing hydration properties. It also gives this neck cream a beautiful creamy texture without leaving a heavy feeling on the skin. Other interesting botanical ingredients help promote collagen synthesis and moisture absorption which result in the skin on the neck being revived.

There are even a few ingredients like cecropia obtusa bark extract to help work against the build up of fatty tissue under the chin, otherwise known as the dreaded 'waddle'. The elderberry extract and tannic acid will help fade pigmentations and tone and smooth the skin. This cream is loaded with vitamins A, E, C, B’s and minerals like potassium and copper. It will help provide the necessities for cellular regeneration and repair of the skin, including those oh so important dermal proteins to firm and promote the elasticity of the skin. The polyphenols and vitamins also provide a nice cocktail of anti-oxidants to protect from further degradation (aging) caused by free radical damage. You will see results with this product, especially if you apply from the decolette up the neck and slightly over the jaw line.

Monday, October 26, 2009

ELEMIS Pro-Collagen Lifting Treatment for Neck and Bust

Now we are getting serious, . . . toning the skin of the neck and breast at the same time. It is simple and logical; the continual strain of breast tissue helps gravity along as it weakens the tissue of the neck.

This product is loaded with some great botanical oils like sunflower, macadamia, jojoba, and buckhorn, offering nourishment and regeneration while boosting the health and tonicity of the tissue. These oils are rich with anti-oxidants, flavonoids, vitamins C and E, beta carotene, the essential Omega’s 3, 6, and 9, not to mention revitalizing collagen and some essential minerals needed for regeneration and repair. Don't get the wrong impression, with all these oils this treatment cream does not have an oily slick to the product, but instead a soft emolliency that disappears into the skin. The shea butter component enhances the benefits of the oils, being rich with essential fatty acids (EFA’s) Omega 3,6,9, and ensures the restorative properties of this product. This treatment cream also contains Padina Pavonica, an incredible algae that applied topically stimulates collagen production and improves the elasticity of the skin.

There are also a couple of algae extracts that will promote metabolism and regeneration. The iodine content will promote lipolysis (breakdown of excess fatty tissue) and address that extra cushioning that often appears under the chin as we age. If you are sensitive to algae ingredients, this product may not suit you, but for everyone else this product will offer the “wow” factor you are looking for.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Neck's Little Extras

There are little extras you can do to prevent “softening" of the neck line, or to improve an already “softened" neck. They should definitely be considered before resorting to plastic surgery, or the more aggressive medi-spa treatments. If you decide to choose the medical treatment route these little extras will expedite healing, recovery, and enhance the result of the treatment, especially if you treat your neck to a healthy home treatment program.

Mini Home Treatment: Apply a firming mask to the area of the face and neck. Lay a strip of gauze into it with a lifting motion gently pulling it up over the jaw. Let it set. After 10 - 15 minutes, moisten and remove. The gauze will enhance the effect of the mask and give a little extra lift for a special occasion. Most skin care professionals will recommend masking once a week, but don't be shy, incredible results have been noted with masking daily. Make sure to rinse off the mask before it dries, particularly if it has a clay base as it will dehydrate your skin.

Mini Exercise: Apply cream gently from the center of your chin towards your ears then down the sides of your neck. This will improve the nourishment and detoxifying action of the blood and lymph. Take the pads of your thumb and rest them under your chin, with your mouth closed try to open your mouth with your thumbs providing the resistance, hold for a few seconds then repeat a few times. You will feel a little tightening in the muscle that covers the neck - the one that tends to relax a little too much for our liking. Repeat the same action again, only this time hold your tongue on the roof of your mouth. Hold and repeat as before. You should feel tightening again, but, in a little different place on the muscle (platysma). Now, use the same positioning of the thumbs, but this time open your mouth open and try to push it closed using your thumbs, . . . hmm another sensation of tightening. This little bit of aerobics for the neck takes a couple of minutes and is a great way to apply a serum or cream, or fill in time at a red light. This is a great "waddle-buster."

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Neck Care

A waddle is cute as long as it is not referring to someone’s neck. The neck area is often forgotten when cleansing and applying protective treatment creams until one day we wake up and panic at the lines and loose skin on our neck. The neck area gets a lifetime of abuse from sun, clothing, and being forgotten. The area just under the chin usually escapes the glare from the sun as it is shaded by the chin, but the sides and lower portion suffer dearly. The pigmentation that occurs on the sides of the neck from photo damage (sun) is enhanced as this area is also where we often put perfume, . . . a definite 'no-no' for sun exposed areas.

Muscles that contribute to the firmness and contour of the jaw begin to age and relax causing a weakening in the tonus of the neck. Many women over time develop an increase in the adipose (fatty tissue) just under the chin contributing to the weight, or heaviness, of the neck area and loss of jaw definition. The texture and color of the skin becomes uneven, ruby points and skin tags may develop (especially along the base of the neck), all of which can be improved with some well deserved attention.

The neck area should be treated as automatically as the skin of the face. Cleansing, toning, regular exfoliation, mask application and a cream should be applied to the neck daily. If you are serious about slowing, preventing, or repairing damage to the delicate skin of the neck there are many specific products to care for this area, not to mention treatments that can do wonders. There are incredible serums, masks, creams, light treatments, microcurrent treatments, even exercises all to be considered before invasive procedures. Stay tuned . . . reviews to follow.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Be Aware and Beware

Troubling news is being reported from the world of wellness communities and medical spa treatments. As a result of a sweat lodge ceremony in Sedona, Arizona almost two dozen people were hospitalized. Sadly, three died. More than 50 attendees paid up to $9,000 to attend a multi-day program run by self-help guru, James Arthur Ray, author of "Harmonic Wealth: The Secret of Attracting the Life You Want." Although authorities have not determined the cause of the deaths, one of the leaders of the ceremony passed away due to multiple organ failure. Many of those hospitalized were suffering from illnesses caused by severe dehydration and kidney complications.

An otherwise healthy woman is on life support after receiving a carboxytherapy treatment in a medical spa in Florida. This type of mesotherapy treatment injects carbon dioxide under the skin to improve the appearance of cellulite and reduce the appearance of stretch marks.

While we cannot go through all the recent reports, we can offer a few suggestions. Be careful. Don't beleive everthing you read. Do your homework. Trust your instincts. Always make sure that a medical procedure is being performed by a medical professional with a sturdy background. Be aware.

Friday, October 16, 2009


Island Outpost Sweepstakes
Grand Prize: 4-Night/5-Day Stay for Two People at one of Island Outpost's most hip Jamaican hotels - Strawberry Hill Hotel & Spa (a signature mountain oasis), The Caves (poised on the limestone cliffs of Negril's scenic West End), or Jake's (designed cottages near a secluded fishing village). The prize also includes a 'Special Welcome Amenity' and one 60-minute Spa Treatment per person. Approximate Retail Value $2,500.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

SPA WEEK PROMOTION - Oct. 12th - 18th

Is the economy getting you down? Are you cutting back on non-essential services in your personal life? It's unfortunate that during a time of major financial cutbacks, when stress is at an all time high, services that help reduce stress and restore health go straight out the window. Well, hold onto your heart monitors everyone, we have great news for you.

Spa Week is here again. This week participating spas in Denver, D.C., Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Boston, Detroit, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Nashville, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Austin, San Antonio, Virginia Beach and Toronto, Canada will be offering a selection of full length signature services for a deep discounted flat rate of $50. That's right, $50. Considering that most spa treatments run between $100 - $200, it's almost financially irresponsible to ignore. So go ahead, book yourself a relaxing, stress-busting massage, or facial, and save big time. In our opinion, Spa Week is seven glorious days dedicated to guilt free, affordable luxury. And that, friends, is music to our ears.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Fall and Winter Skin Care "Switch-Ups"

Ah, . . . winter. Colder temperatures, cooler air, and depending on where you live, the possibility of rain and/or snow. When this happens we turn on our furnaces, start to use the heaters in our cars, and cover up for warmth. All of these things greatly affect our skin. The cooler temperatures cause a drop in the humidity leading to increased moisture loss, and the dry warmth of the furnace pitches in to finish off the job by robbing your skin's moisture levels. Sitting in your car with the heater blowing may feel warm and toasty, but it puts your skin into panic mode.

It is normal to have moisture move through your skin and evaporate from the skin's surface to some degree, but when the skin loses too much moisture it responds with defensive actions. For instance, oil production increases in an attempt to trap more moisture as it plays a large role in holding, or linking, moisture in the skin. The surface layer of the skin begins to thicken in an attempt to lessen the moisture loss. The result? A thicker, duller complexion with more dehydration lines, accentuated existing lines, and a definite feeling of tightness. If that is not bad enough, dehydrated skin is more susceptible to free radical damage accelerating the aging process. Do your skin a favor. Pay attention to your skin care and "switch it up" to products that will offer the best protection for the colder weather.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Mesotherapy Facial Treatment

A large percentage of those seeking a more youthful appearance are making very different choices when it comes to plastic surgery. The data clearly shows a very definite move away from invasive procedures and toward non-invasive (or minimally invasive) cosmetic enhancements. Dermal fillers and Botox are largely responsible for this trend.

Enter Mesotherapy. Europeans have popularized injectable Mesotherapy treatments for treating aging skin for decades. Mesotherapy is well known to effectively treat cellulite for a smoother, firmer appearance to the skin on the body. Recently, it is gaining speed as a treatment used to rejuvenate lackluster, sagging skin on the face, neck and hands. The treatment includes multiple injections just under the skin (meso layer) with one of a variety of special formulations consisting of vitamins, minerals, vital amino acids, natural extracts, nucleic acids, and coenzymes. These injections rejuvenate the cells and create activity, which in turn, stimulate the production of the body's own collagen and elastin.

Results are generally seen after the first treatment, but most medical professionals will recommend treatments repeated every second week for 10 weeks, followed by a consistent maintenance program. This treatment is not for the faint of heart. Each treatment will run between $200- $400 per treatment. It is not FDA approved.

Monday, October 5, 2009


Win a trip for two at LaSource Spa in Grenada
Enter by October 14th
Grand Prize: One winner will receive a trip for two to LaSource Spa in Grenada. Prize includes, round-trip coach airfare tickets from the major commercial airport nearest winner's primary residence in the United States to Grenada; one standard hotel room (double occupancy) for seven nights, all food and beverages, and one spa treatment per person per day. Approximate Retail Value of the prize is $5,500

Friday, October 2, 2009

Dysport - The New Botox?

Dysport (Medicis) is the new alternative to Botox (Allergan). In fact, Dysport is made from the same botulinum toxin as Botox. FDA clearance was recently granted to Medicis, famous for their two great dermal fillers, Restylane and Perlane. Dysport is said to be "faster acting" with a greater "spread" giving a more natural appearance and requiring fewer injections. Dysport has the ability to last up to a few months longer than Botox since it contains less protein which is more difficult for the body to break down. Botox, on the other hand, is recommended for a smaller, more specific localized area.

The downside? A big one. A human one. As always it is terribly important to select the right professionals with the proper credentials. Since the injections go deeper and the botulinum has a paralytic effect, there is a critical need for precision to avoid the potential that the drug may spread to nearby muscles and cause unwanted side effects in neighboring areas. The professionals who administer these injections really need to know their stuff. Make no mistake . . . there is no room for error.

Dysport (Medicis) vs Botox (Allergan) is going to be an interesting boxing match to watch. It is aptly being described as," the biggest feud since the Hatfields and the McCoys." Well said.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Sculptra is not a dermal filler. It is an injectable volumizer that works on building the body's own collagen while improving and restoring facial contours. How does this work? Once injected, the body creates a defense strategy against this trespassing agent and builds up a weapon chest of collagen giving the face more volume and less wrinkles.

The Scoop: Sculptra injections are absorbed deep in the dermis to stimulate skin cells to make collagen. Results take four to eight weeks to be noticeable as restoration of collagen takes time. In other words, Sculptra is not the product if you need to see speedy results. On the other side of things, where other dermal fillers last only 6-12 months, Sculptra has the potential to last 3-5 years.

The Downside: Unlike Juvederm and Restylane, Sculptra is not reversible and there are reports that injections can cause small bumps under the skin that are not easily removed.

The FDA finally approved this product for cosmetic enhancement applications in July of this year. Sculptra requires a series of treatments to achieve desired results. An average of two to three treatments at three to four week intervals are required. Most people require at least three treatment sessions costing between $700 to $2,500 per treatment.

Monday, September 28, 2009


Exotic Resort Spa - 7 Night Luxury Escape
Enter by Oct. 31st
Grand Prize: One winner will receive an airfare travel voucher (up to $2,000.00); accommodations for seven days and nights at The Verandah Resort & Spa, Antigua (the "Resort"); three meals daily, as well as snacks and beverages at the Resort; non-motorized water sports and entertainment at the Resort; Pevonia spa treatments at the Resort (up to $1,400.00); personalized Pevonia Botanica Skincare for one year (up to $4,000.00); one private boat trip during the "Escape" to/ from the Resort and Green Island; one zip-line canopy rainforest tour during the "Escape;" and one couples luxury amenity gift basket. Approximate Total Retail Value $15,000.