Some forms of massage therapy are better at promoting a relaxed mind-body state than others. These types of massage are great for helping to ease mental and physical stress that might be hindering your sleep.
Swedish massage:¬†This form of massage is relaxation-focused, using a sequence of long, gliding kneads, strokes, and circular motions to erase shallow tensions in your muscles. Swedish massage helps to reduce superficial muscle tension, while boosting circulation throughout the body.
Hot stone massage:¬†A masseuse uses hot, smooth stones typically placed on your back to relax and invigorate your body. The heat helps to release tension built up in your shoulders and back, allowing the therapist to more easily reach areas of muscle ache.
Massage for Pain and Specific Conditions
Other forms of massage are designed to relieve specific types of pain. The cause of the pain isn‚Äôt important. As long as you feel certain that the pain is caused by soft tissue damage or inflammation (as opposed to joint or bone problems), these types of massage can help.
Deep-tissue massage:¬†The practitioner utilizes techniques designed to get beyond the superficial layers of the muscle. If your pain is longstanding or comes back even after repeated Swedish massages, this can help get at its core. These massages can be more painful than relaxation massages, but they can also bring more relief.
Trigger point massage:¬†This type of massage utilizes trigger points to release tension in the muscles. By placing pressure on the point, the muscle is triggered to relax and lengthen, rather than remain short and tight.
Rejuvenating Massage and General Health
Finally, some forms of massage work to relieve specific ailments or help the body find or retain health. These practitioners usually focus on pressure points believed to run along the body‚Äôs energy meridians. Massaging these points can help relieve pain and enable the body to become healthier.
Shiatsu massage:¬†A Shiatsu practitioner uses his or her hands, elbow, feet, etc. to place pressure on traditional Japanese pressure points throughout the body. The practitioner also focuses on stretching and rotating limbs in order to free blocked energy so that the body can function as it was designed to.
Reflexology:¬†This form of massage focuses on trigger points in the hands and feet. Each point corresponds to a part of the body or a specific organ. Regular massage of the points associated with a part of the body is said to bring healing and health to that part.
Massage and Serotonin
Serotonin is essential for good sleep, though researchers have not yet pinpointed exactly what it does to facilitate falling asleep and/or staying asleep. However, when serotonin production is halted using medication, subjects cannot sleep at all.
Scientists do know that an area of the brain called the raphe nuclei somehow mediates sleep. The neurons in this area specifically use serotonin to communicate with each other, so they hypothesize that serotonin somehow helps the brain communicate that it‚Äôs time to sleep.
Serotonin is also a precursor to the production of melatonin. This chemical helps regulate the body‚Äôs sleep/wake cycles, or its circadian rhythms. The body produces melatonin when it‚Äôs time to fall asleep and reduces it when it‚Äôs time to wake up. Thus, having more serotonin could help your body produce the melatonin it needs in order to fall asleep at the right time.
All of this ties into massage because¬†massage can lead to higher levels of serotonin. Again, science has not discovered the exact mechanism by which this happens. For the insomniac, though, HOW massage helps them sleep is likely less important than the fact that it DOES help them sleep.
Massage and the Vagus Nerve
In addition to the serotonin-melatonin connection,¬†massage also stimulates the vagus nerve. This is the major parasympathetic nerve in the body. When it is stimulated, it tells the entire body to relax. This can lead to lower heart rate, lower blood pressure, relaxed facial muscles, and increased gut function.
Stimulation of the vagus nerve also leads to lower cortisol levels. Cortisol is the major stress hormone. When its levels are too high in the body, the body is stressed out. Over time, this leads to fatigue. However, if the cortisol levels aren‚Äôt lowered, the body can‚Äôt rest well. Stimulating the vagus nerve reduces the cortisol, allowing the body to rest as it should.
Massage and Hyperarousal
There is some evidence that¬†insomnia is tied to hyperarousal. This is basically the state of being ‚Äúalways on.‚ÄĚ If you feel like you can never relax, if you lie down and think about all the things that went wrong today and all that could go on tomorrow, you may suffer from this condition. It can lead to long-term health problems, of which insomnia is one.
Hyperarousal is a bad cycle for the body. It often starts with a stressful event, one that truly requires the system to be aroused. However, it continues when we worry, when we can‚Äôt relax after something bad happens, or when our bodies continue to struggle with low levels of pain because of an accident or an illness. Pain can also come when we can‚Äôt relax. We continue the cycle of arousal, which makes us more stressed out, etc.
Massage can help break this cycle. It can actually force the body to relax, pulling muscles smooth and long again and causing an increase in blood circulation. These send signals to the brain that tell it to relax. Over time, massage can intervene in this cycle and end hyperarousal, allowing us to sleep well again.
Experts agree that one of the most significant components of a healthy lifestyle is restful sleep. It’s the place where the brain and body restore themselves, and can be the most neglected wellness habits. Natural Body wants to share information on sleep, how to pay attention to its need and usefulness.
“While there is some evidence that massage can help almost anyone sleep better, it has been shown to help people in specific populations.
For instance,¬†massage helps postpartum women sleep better.¬†The postpartum period can be extremely stressful for a new mom. Not only is she learning to care for her baby, but her own hormones can be all over the place. This causes her to be emotional, to have high stress levels, and to feel generally unlike herself. All of this can combine to cause her to struggle with sleep. However, when women in this situation received massages for 20 minutes a day on five consecutive days, they slept better.
Massage also helps fibromyalgia patients¬†improve their sleep. Many people with this debilitating disease struggle to sleep because they are in so much pain. Massage helped them to that point that they had fewer tender spots on their bodies and lower levels of a neurotransmitter associated with pain. These people also slept more. They also moved less in the night, which indicates a higher quality of sleep.
Massage also¬†helps hospitalized cancer patients to rest well. It‚Äôs always hard to get good sleep in the hospital¬†because people check on you throughout the night. When you add the¬†stress of cancer¬†and any pain or anxiety that can come with being in the hospital, sleep can be extremely elusive. However, patients who received massages at night reported better sleep, despite all of these other factors.
Acupressure is a type of self-massage, and studies have shown that it can¬†help menopausal women sleep better. Women in this stage of life notoriously struggle with sleep, so this technique could bring a lot of relief to many women, and they don‚Äôt even have to leave the house! Women who massaged 4 pressure points over 10 minutes before they went to bed slept better than women given sham acupressure techniques and women given no massage techniques at all.
Massage also helps with insomnia¬†in general, whether it is tied to pain or anxiety or not. While the majority of these studies have taken place in the hospital setting, the fact that massage can help there should bring hope that it can help anywhere. People tend to feel more pain and anxiety when they‚Äôre in the hospital than they do when they‚Äôre out. If it can help there, it should be able to help with¬†insomnia¬†at home, too.”
Have you heard about CBD? This compound and all the products it‚Äôs found in has taken the natural healing world by storm over the last year, but many people still aren‚Äôt sure what it is how it can benefit them. Here‚Äôs everything you need to know about this new treatment.
What is CBD?
CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, or chemical compound, found in cannabis plants. This includes not only cannabis sativa (weed), but also industrial hemp. It provides marijuana‚Äôs therapeutic effects without the mind-altering symptoms. This is because it does not contain THC, which is the cannabinoid that creates a ‚Äúhigh‚ÄĚ feeling. CBD is legal in 43 different states, despite the varied legal status of marijuana.
What are the benefits of CBD?
Due to the federal restrictions on marijuana, only a few studies have been done on the benefits of CBD. Still, dozens of studies have found that CBD can offer a variety of benefits, including:
- Alleviate joint pain
- Treat childhood epilepsy
- Cure nausea or vomiting
- Therapy for schizophrenia
- Reduce chronic inflammation
- Relieve pain
- Reduce anxiety and depression.
- Improve heart health
Other studies have even reported that CBD can help inhibit the growth of cancerous cells. It‚Äôs a great supplement because it has such a range of benefits, so there‚Äôs something for everyone. It also is not addictive, nor does it cause a dependence.
CBD is like a super adaptogen that can be taken daily to reduce stress and anxiety. The calming properties can be helpful for people with various ailments or stressors.
How is CBD Made?
CBD can be found in cannabis sativa (weed) and industrial hemp, a plant grown for paper, textiles, and¬†non-dairy milk. The hemp-derived CBD is what allows products to be sold across state lines, not just those with legal marijuana.
How can I take CBD?
CBD can be added to a variety or products, including chocolates, pills, vaporizers, and oils that are ingested. You can also find CBD in a variety of skin and bodycare products, like lotions, bath bombs and massage oil that provides pain relief right to injured areas.
If you‚Äôre curious about CBD oil, try it for yourself! There are few if any side effects, and you might find it‚Äôs a great way to relieve pain and stress. Make an appointment for a CBD massage to treat your chronic pain or just to feel relaxed and calm.
Our GIFT CARD OFFER for Valentine‚Äôs is pretty sweet!
–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Purchase a $125 Gift Card, and receive a $25 Retail/Service Voucher
–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Offer period Jan 18-Feb 18, 2018
–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Redemption period: Expiration March 31, 2018,
–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† No minimum retail purchase/60min service minimum
–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Service exclusion: Feb 10-18, 2018
–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Cannot be combined with other discounts or offers, one voucher per purchase, no cash value
Winter is the toughest season for your skin. Between blustery wind, low temperatures outside, and heated indoors, your skin is prone to significant dryness no matter where you are. Battle the cold and treat your skin right by following Natural Body Spa‚Äôs 4 Ways to Winter-Proof Your Skin!
Locking in moisture to your skin is crucial during the winter months, when you‚Äôre especially prone to dryness. Once you leave the shower or bath (make it a warm one, not hot ‚Äď that just robs your skin of necessary oils), make sure to apply a rich moisturizing lotion while you are still a little damp. Natural Body Spa can assist you in choosing the correct moisturizer for your skin type, with a fragrance you prefer – but generally a thicker body butter on your hands, elbows, and other trouble spots will diminish moisture loss while you sleep.
Shop Natural Body Spa‚Äôs selection of organic and natural skin care moisturizers which help combat winter dryness ‚Äď our experts are happy to make suggestions!
2. Invest in a Humidifier
In addition to moisturizing before bed, you may want to run a humidifier during the night. Humidifiers put moisture back into the air and prevents dry skin from cracking during the night. Humid air can also prevent your lips from becoming chapped, and reduces the ability of airborne viruses to cause infection. Since your home is most likely warmed by dry heat produced by a furnace, running a humidifier overnight will allow you to remain comfortable and keep the air moist.
Dead skin cells are constantly accumulating, and it accelerates during the winter due to dryness, particularly on the hands and face. It‚Äôs important to exfoliate to clear away those skin cells. Moisture can‚Äôt be absorbed into the skin if there are layers of dead cells above it, so be sure to add exfoliation to your routine ‚Äď twice a week should be sufficient.
Exfoliation also help improve the performance of moisturizers. In the harsh winter weather, you‚Äôll want your skin care products to work in harmony with one another. Moisturizing after exfoliation is a great way to lock in hydration for your skin.
4. Cool Off
In the coldest winter months, a hot shower can be the most relaxing part of your day. But don‚Äôt linger too long ‚Äď hot showers can dry out your skin. Extremely hot water will strip away your skin‚Äôs natural oils which lock in moisture, resulting in dry skin after drying off. For better skin throughout the winter, try a lukewarm shower between 10-15 minutes. Gently pat yourself dry after every shower and don‚Äôt forget the moisturizing cream!
As always, the friendly professionals at Natural Body Spa are happy to recommend organic skincare and body care products specifically designed to combat winter dryness. Stop by one of our locations today and browse health and beauty products which help you stay moisturized all winter long!
Chemical peels often get a mixed reputation in the spa and esthetic industry. You may have preconceived ideas or doubts about getting a chemical peel, but in reality, many of these ideas are based on old-school practices from the past. Modern chemical and power peels are extremely safe and effective ‚Äď read on to discover the truth behind some of the myths you may have heard.
Myth: Chemical peels are painful.
You should not feel pain during or after the procedure, although you may feel the ‚Äėactive‚Äô ingredients in the products while they work. In the past, some chemical peels were performed using harsh ingredients which may have caused pain; modern spas now have the option to use products that achieve results without the nasty ingredients that can cause real discomfort. Since everyone‚Äôs skin is different, you should expect a thorough consultation or preparatory regimen before your first peel. Your esthetician will be able to choose the safest and most effective ingredients for the peel that is best for you.
Myth: All chemical peels are bad for you.
The word ‚Äúchemical‚ÄĚ carries a negative connotation. Most peels performed in a spa can deliver clinical results without harsh synthetic ingredients. For example, an Age-Defying Power Peel with Natural Body Spa uses chemicals such as alpha and beta hydroxy acids, extracted from red wine and organic cocoa.
Be cautious of drugstores or online retailers which offer chemical peel treatments that can be done at home. We always recommend consulting a spa professional to perform a peel treatment to ensure safety and quality.
Myth: I‚Äôll need to take time off after a peel treatment.
You may have heard of clients having to wear a bandage over their face for several days after a power peel. Today, there is generally no need to hide your face after a treatment. Most routines address oily or acne-prone skin with controlled penetration to hydrate and soothe the skin without any harsh side-effects. We typically ask clients to avoid sun exposure, and forego makeup, exercise and swimming for as at least 24-48 hours after they have a peel service.
Myth: Chemical peels only do one thing ‚Äď peel the skin.
Chemical and power peels do so much more than peel your skin. Natural Body Spa‚Äôs clinical strength peel treatments can address conditions such as acne breakouts, premature aging lines, dry skin, ingrown hairs, and dull skin texture. These types of treatments may not involve any peeling at all ‚Äď the actual procedures can be less harsh or invasive than most people may think.
Have more questions about chemical or power peels? Contact Natural Body Spa today to speak with one of our experts. We‚Äôll clarify the entire process and choose the products and ingredients that will compliment your skin.
Your skincare and beauty regimen should change with the seasons. Depending on your environment, the weather can have a huge impact on your skin health and appearance. When it‚Äôs difficult to keep up with the best thing to do, follow these guidelines for the change of seasons. And why not integrate a facial for each season to start things off the right way?
Skin Care for Winter
You may have read our guidelines for winter-proofing your skin. Winter is a harsh season with cold temperatures and dry air. To stay healthy, you‚Äôll want to make sure you moisturize to protect your skin from harsh elements and cracking.
We recommend our HydraFacial service during the winter months: it‚Äôs the perfect way to achieve exfoliation and high potency hydration.
Skin Care for Spring
As the weather warms up and you begin to spend more time outside, it‚Äôs especially important to consider sun damage. After the long months of winter are over, your skin may be particularly vulnerable to UV rays ‚Äď make sure you get a head start on protection by utilizing sunscreen when you‚Äôre spending time outside.
If you experience some preliminary sunburn early in the spring, we recommend a VitaSkin Brightening Facial. It can reverse the effects of sun damage and smooth out uneven pigmentation.
Skin Care for Summer
Even if you live in a cooler climate, your skin can be prone to damage if you spend time outside in direct sunlight. Be vigilant about applying sunscreen daily and wearing protective clothing such as wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses. Extended tanning sessions can leave your skin dry and damaged.
Natural Body Spa recommends one of our VitaSkin Calming Facials during the summer months. You‚Äôll be treated to calendula, chamomile, and arnica herb solutions which combine to sooth sensitive skin and even out your complexion.
Skin Care in Autumn
When temperatures begin to drop again and the air becomes crisp, your skin experiences an increased loss in moisture. Autumn provides a respite from the summer heat, but it‚Äôs important to get a head start on bracing for the winter. Use the autumn months to exfoliate and moisturize, and invest in a hand cream and lip balms to combat the coming dryness.
Stop in for our signature Natural Body Facial to talk about your skin care goals and hydration needs as winter approaches. Your skin will have a healthy glow as it recovers from the summer sun and prepares for the winter chill.
Contact Natural Body Spa today to learn more about our facial services ‚Äď they‚Äôre perfect for any season!
If you want a professional massage but are unfamiliar with the terminology and types of services available to you, we‚Äôre here to help. Natural Body Spa offers a wide range of massage services for our guests, but we also want you to choose the treatment that is best for you.
Read on to discover which type of massage is best suited to your own needs.
Natural Body Massage (based on Swedish Massage)
What is it? This is the type of treatment most people probably think of when they hear the word ‚Äúmassage.‚ÄĚ It uses long, sweeping motions of pressure to ease muscle tension and relax the body.
Who is it for? The Natural Body Massage is a great place to start for beginners. If you‚Äôve never gotten a massage before and are looking to experience one for the first time and just relax, you really can‚Äôt go wrong. You can expect light-to-medium pressure with a focus on the entire body.
How will I feel after? You should feel relaxed with very minimal soreness.
What do I do next? We recommend plenty of water throughout the day, and a warm salt bath at night.
Power Massage, with Deep Pressure Therapy
What is it? Deep pressure massages are not necessarily for relaxation ‚Äď they often treat pain or specific conditions. You can expect a deep pressure massage to focus on a singular area rather than the whole body, with the intent of smoothing out muscle knots.
Who is it for? You may be interested in a deep pressure massage if you notice chronic pain in your muscles, particularly from manual labor or sports. Trouble areas often include the neck or shoulders with a feeling or stiffness or cramping.
How will I feel after? You may experience soreness, as this is a therapeutic massage. The trouble spots may feel tender for a few days. However, after the muscles have recovered, you should be feeling better!
What do I do next? Plenty of water, an aromatherapy salt soak, and some arnica gel applied to the sore spots.
Heated Stone Massage
What is it? A Heated Stone Massage uses conventional relaxation massage techniques, with the addition of warmed stones added to provide weight and warmth to the experience. The heat helps release tension in your muscles.
Who is it for? If you‚Äôre comfortable with traditional relaxation massage and want to add an extra component and treat yourself, consider a Hot Stone Massage.
How will I feel after? Relaxed and free of tension.
What do I do next? We always suggest extra water intake after a massage.
What is it? A chair massage is a quick massage which focuses on the upper body, and can be performed in about fifteen minutes.
Who is it for? A chair massage is perfect for someone who is short on time or does not want to remove any clothing or be covered in massage oil.
How will I feel after? You will experience some relief of tension ‚Äď it‚Äôs the perfect short-term fix for soreness.
What do I do next? Consider scheduling a full length, full body massage next!
Speak with a massage expert at Natural Body Spa and learn more about massage services we offer ‚Äď and schedule an appointment when you‚Äôre ready!
There are so many ways to show Mom she’s appreciated. We’ve set up some spa services that we’re sure she’ll LOVE.
Pear-fect Rest & Renew Body Therapy – experience the delights of this fresh and refreshing service. This season‚Äôs version of our Rest & Renew Body Therapy, using Eminence‚Äôs Pear & Green Apple Sugar Scrub, Pear & Green Apple Body Wrap and Pear & green Apple Massage Souffle.
Eminence Chocolate & Roses Facial – enjoy a gift of some delicious Milk Chocolate, Sweet Red Rose Cleanser and Sweet Red Rose Moisturizer, with this amazing service.
Eminence Chocolate & Roses Pedicure – this luscious service comes with a gift of Milk Chocolate, Sweet Red Rose Cleanser and Sweet Red Rose Moisturizer.