Saturday, April 24, 2010

Spa Girls says she couldn’t resist the silver lining!

While thousands have been stranded around the globe due to the volcanic eruption in Iceland, Spa Girl couldn’t resist the silver lining!

While airlines indeed are suffering in an already shaky economy, and travelers world-wide have had their plans disturbed, many in the UK were delighted with the peace and quiet that came with Heathrow being shut down.

Iceland urged its stranded visitors to take a free dip in its thermal pools where temperatures range from 29 to 42C.
"We have bubbling hot waters, spas, saunas and heated water pools to swim in," said Svanhildur Konradsdottir, chairwoman of the Icelandic Tourist Council.
And with unique anti-inflammatory properties, volcanic ash clay, nature's best kept secret to flawless skin, is quickly become the hit of the day.

Volcanic ash clay has been embraced throughout history for its extraordinary health and cosmetic benefits. Ancient tribes of central Africa, North American Indians, and the spiritual leader Mahatma Gandhi all praised clay for a multitude of uses. Even Cleopatra made volcanic ash clay a part of her daily beauty regimen.

Volcanic ash clay has been praised for its ability to dramatically improve problem skin as it helps sooth away troubled spots, and brightens and smoothes the skins appearance. It also helps reduce the accumulation of dead skin cells and airborne impurities that can clog pores. Known for its ability to draw out trapped impurities and toxins and for its gentle nature, those who have used volcanic ash clay rave about it.

Clay Essentials states,
“When applied to the skin's surface, this soothing clay lifts, firms and exfoliates, resulting in a revitalized and more youthful looking complexion. The powerful cleansing and absorptive properties of Volcanic Ash Clay make it a highly sought after solution for blemishes, cellulite, sun damage, stretch marks, wrinkles and more”.
Clay Essentials tells the story that long ago, the earth bore one of its most precious gifts to mankind. Erupting volcanoes sent showers of powdery ash into the sky, which drifted throughout the world, settled to the ground and became drenched with the falling rain. The fusion of volcanic ash and water created a mineral-rich substance that remained there for an untold number of years until man discovered that this substance, Volcanic Ash Clay, held the key to cleansing, beautifying, and purifying the human body.

So remember Spa Girls, every cloud has a silver lining, Iceland is helping to keep us stocked up on volcanic ash clay for centuries to come!

For more information:

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Spa Girls says lets go jiggle!

Suggesting they will shake and shimmy your way to good health I recently had the opportunity to try out T-Zone Vibration Technology. Promotional material says whole body vibration will “transform your health and fitness in just 10 minutes”.

This latest fitness craze is booming, whole body vibration (WBV) machines are being installed in spas, gyms, weight loss clinics, rehabilitation centers, you name it.

So how does it work? You stand on a platform which produces vertical vibrations in a side to side rocking motion similar to walking. Our bodies react to this motion with involuntary reflex muscle action and depending on the speed you select, can react up to 23 times per second.

The company indicates it has been researched by over 30 universities worldwide (the booklet provides a number of researched articles) and suggest WBV will increase muscle strength, build bone density and fight osteoporosis, increase metabolism, burn fat and raise energy levels, tone and tighten skin, decrease cellulite and blood pressure and if that’s not enough, stimulate the “happy hormone” Serotonin.

The ten minutes program includes, if you so choose, strength exercises, stretching and flexibility positions, and massage positions which help slim, tone and increase metabolism, improve flexibility and range of motion, improve circulation and assist in relaxation.

Thinking this was all too good to be true I researched a number of web sites where participants of WBV left comments. Some said they saw no significant change while others raved about how many inches they had lost and how good it made them feel.

I have used WBV for a week now and while I cannot say I have lost any inches, or feel stronger, I have noticed I am less stiff. While I know better, I tend to sit at my computer all day long, and my muscles get really taut. WBV has helped to reduce my stiffness and taking ten minutes at the end of my day has helped to clear my head of all my days’ stresses. I also add some deep breathing work while I rock and roll. Being more relaxed, I have slept better. And I like it—which is half the battle when exercising! What WBV does not do is help your cardio, so you will still need to work that heart muscle.

Spa Girl says, let’s go jiggle!

For more information about WBV and to download the brochure, go to:

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Spa Girls says most Spas are honest and straight forward!

CBC (Canadian Broadcast Corporation) reported this week that a number of Toronto-area spas are offering esthetic treatments that are paid for through health insurance fraud. A CBC undercover News reporter visited seven spas throughout Toronto and five offered fake receipts in order for customers to claim insurance.

I have visited spas all over the globe and have NEVER been offered an illegal deal. I trust this story won’t cloud an industry that offers such healthy benefits to so many! Bad apples can be found in any industry and I am delighted the CBC has rooted out a few of them. I also hope this story will discourage spa owners, thinking of taking on this practice, will now think again, and as faithful spa goers we say “no thanks” to these fraudulent deals!

The RMT’s I have worked with are honest hard working practitioners who are decent, ethical and believe in the healthcare profession.

Spa Girl says a true spa experience benefits both the body and the mind, how can you truly reap the pleasures if you are participating in an illegal act that ultimately hurts an industry we love.

To read the full CBC story, click on the link.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Spa Girl is heading to Newfoundland

History, culture and natural beauty are all part of the Newfoundland experience. The oldest city in North America, St John’s Newfoundland is place where icebergs can be seen from the inner harbour, where you can go whale watching, hiking, enjoy Celtic music, festivals and most importantly the people. They say to prepare yourself to be lost and found in Newfoundland.

This is my second visit to Newfoundland, and I am excited to return and spend time exploring the spectacular coastlines and the rich history and culture of the place. I also understand St. John’s has a few new spas since my last visit, so I am looking forward to some east coast indulgence as well.

St John's is located on the eastern side of the Avalon Pennsula of southeast Newfoundland. Its landlocked harbour is approached through a long, narrow channel and is protected by the high hills on which the city is built. The origin of the name St John's is not known, but its use appears on a Portuguese map by Pedro Reinel (1516-20) as "Rio de San Johem" and later, in a 1527 letter by the English seaman John Rut, as the "Haven of St John's." According to popular folklore, however, the city takes its name from the feast of Saint John the Baptist and the discovery of Newfoundland for England on 24 June 1497 by the Italian discoverer Giovanni Caboto (John CABOT).

St John’s is also known for its architecture, distinctly different from the rest of Canada. As one of the first British capitals and an outpost for European fishermen, St. John’s is known for its Gothic revival and the more significant Second Empire wood-framed homes many painted in bright colours which were built after the great fire of 1892 which destroyed most of the original buildings in the downtown core.

Since the mid 1960s the city's skyline has been gradually undergoing change as several new hotels, banks and office buildings have been completed. Nearby, the city has erected a 6000-seat hockey arena and attached convention facility, which opened in 2001. In 2005 an archives-museum-art gallery complex (The Rooms) opened near the basilica, having a commanding view of the city and its harbour. It has quickly become one of the city's must-see tourism sites. A number of the older buildings in the city's downtown have been redeveloped as private condominiums and other lands in the area have been developed for this purpose, reflecting the city's new wealth generated by offshore oil production.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Spa Girls says no pain, no gain...(OUCH)!

Nothing like celebrating a well deserved day off than heading to the spa. Along with my favourite spa combo—a Clayton Shagal facial and massage—I decided to have my legs waxed.

I have only had my legs waxed two other times and in both cases swore I would never do it again. Unfortunately, although I have a high pain threshold, waxing is not an experience I find endearing at all. Talking with my esthetician she said some people experience little discomfort, while others, like me, find it very painful.

There are however a number of benefits to having your legs waxed and the big one for me is that it takes longer for the hair to grow back, and my legs are nice and smooth after the procedure. I also understand that waxing, in some cases, helps to reduce the volume of growth over time, and that is appealing.

As I was lying there having the hair painfully ripped from my legs I couldn’t help wonder who in the heck decided that a smooth and hairless body was the standard of beauty.

Removing body hair dates back to the beginning of time, early archaeological finds suggest Neanderthal remains indicated men scrapped their facial hair off with shells or other hand-made objects, and it is well known that ancient Egyptian women removed all body hair as a sign of beauty, youth and innocence. The same practiced was followed by the Greeks and Romans as evident in their statuary.

Flint blades dating as far back as 30,000 BC, depilatory creams, sugaring, tweezers, copper razors, oil and honey emulsions, resin, pitch and bees wax have all been used to remove body hair.

In 1520 Bassano de Zra wrote: "The Turks consider it sinful when a woman lets the hair on her private parts grow. As soon as a woman feels the hair is growing, she hurries to the public bath to have it removed or removed it herself." The public baths all had special rooms where women could get rid of their hair. Nowadays the hamams, or public baths, have special rooms for women to depilate. Oddly enough the practice of depilating fell out of public fashion after Catherine de Medici, then queen of France, forbade her ladies in waiting to remove their pubic hair any longer.

While the art of hair removal continued as a quiet practice, smoothness was rediscovered in the 1960’s with the invention of the bikini, and today many women remove hair somewhere on their bodies. It is the fashion to have smooth armpits, legs, bikini lines. Today, even men are getting smooth.

While I’m not likely to try a Brazilian wax, Spa Girl says, no pain, no gain!