Psychological Benefits of Massage Therapy

Posted by on June 24, 2014 in News | Comments Off on Psychological Benefits of Massage Therapy

Annique Day Spa

May is mental health awareness month.

Have you reflected on your mental state and how it affects your life? Just as we should look after our bodies, we should not take our mental health for granted as there are so many individuals who struggle daily with battles of stress, depression, anxiety and many more concerns. The benefits of massage therapy go far beyond just relaxation and relieving tense muscle aches.

Massage therapy can be a tool in aiding mental well-being, by helping with:

  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Acute Fatigue
  • Tension
  • Irritability
  • Attention-deficit Hyperactivity
  • Post Traumatic Stress

Here’s how:

Through touch, massage presses down on nerve cell receptors under the skin, activating the nervous system and by doing this stimulates the release of mood enhancing chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin. This also stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system and so reduces production of stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. So on a physical level, massage therapy works on the nervous system in the body, to chemically alter your mood. Also very simply put, by massaging the tense muscles, tension and stress is released and you feel more relaxed and peaceful.

As mentioned massage occurs through touch. This act can have profound effects on us as humans, in fact it is one of our most deepest needs and desires to connect with others and feel cared for. For many, massage brings a sense of comfort, caring and a feeling of empowerment, which allows for an increased quality of life.

Benefits of Massage therapy include:

  • Improved quality of sleep
  • Increased immunity
  • More stable blood sugar
  • Improved lung function (Deeper and easier breathing)
  • Improved mind-body connectivity
  • Mental alertness
  • Increased Alpha brainwaves present in relaxation
  • Increased Dopamine and Serotonin
  • Reduces cortisol and adrenaline (Stress hormones)
  • Improved posture
  • Improved circulation

The body’s response to stress causes the production of cortisol and also causes our muscles to tense up as a protection mechanism. We tend to isolate ourselves and be in constant “attack-mode”, which is generally unpleasant and tiring. Having a massage can rattle this rigid sense. We can then think more clearly and cope better by applying what we understand. This is also why massage therapy is excellent in conjunction with counseling.

What to expect

The environment of the treatment room will be suited to what the outcome of your treatment should be- a comfortable temperature, peaceful music and soothing lighting. Ultimately you should feel comfortable to relax and let go and tune in to your thoughts and feelings while focusing on your breathing. You should be able to tell your massage therapist to increase the pressure or lighten it if it is too much for you.

How often should I have a treatment?

It differs from person to person but one can usually expect to start feeling a big improvement after 3 sessions. Regular massage therapy promotes a relaxed state of mental alertness, which reinforces a positive attitude. So it is worth it to look after your health by practicing regular massage therapy as part of your personal well-being.

Here are some of the massages that Beauty Retreat offers:

  • Swedish back and neck massage
  • Swedish full body massage

Winter’s Bodyguard

Posted by on June 24, 2014 in News | Comments Off on Winter’s Bodyguard

Annique day spa

Annique day spa

Winter makes many of us reach for Vitamin C to prevent and assist our bodies from nasty colds and flu, but there is more you can do to prevent illness during the cold winter months. You might have considered a multivitamin supplement but wondered what all the minerals and vitamins actually do. Each plays an important role in strengthening the immune system, boosting energy levels, improving your complexion and restoring vitality. 

Step 1: OptiFlora

OptiFlora provides the necessary counterbalance to the growth of unwanted yeast and bacteria in the body and produces molecules critical to our molecular defence system – thus, boosting the immune system. These beneficial probiotic flora colonise or multiply in the digestive tract, further increasing their effectiveness, even helping to produce vitamins in the body.

Step 2: OptiVite

Supplementing with a multivitamin is crucial for sustained optimum health, energy and consistent mood. It is nearly impossible to get the necessary vitamins and minerals our bodies need daily from our diet. Supplementation is easy, convenient and allows us to fill the nutritional gaps created by our modern lifestyles and diets. OptiVite contains 12 essential vitamins and 9 minerals with added salmon oil for its omega 3 benefits and Rooibos extract – the perfect daily vitamin combination to enhance your health.

Step 3: OptiC

Vitamin C is one of the safest, most effective and well known vitamins. The human body cannot produce this crucial vitamin, so if you don’t supplement it, your health is at risk. Vitamin C has amazing health properties, from supporting the cardiovascular and immune systems and producing collagen that is critical to new tissue formulation, to lowering the risk of cancer and building collagen and tissue for a more beautiful skin, yet most of us don’t get anywhere near these benefits because we don’t get enough Vitamin C.

Step 4: OptiBoost

OptiBoost provides a complex formula of nutrients to help boost the immune system. The body’s ability to deal with invaders quickly and effectively will help you overcome illness, infection and disease. Vitamins A and C are combined with zinc, bioflavanoids and natural herbal extracts of African potato, Sutherlandia and Olive leaf extract for a more natural solution than medication to pack the punch. Timing is crucial when dealing with infections. The quicker you react, the better you can recover! Listen to your body; after all you have known it all your life!

Step 5: OptiToniQ+

Most people don’t know that many foods are acid forming. The body has a naturally alkaline environment, but when too much acid forming food is consumed, it can interfere with the body’s pH balance, making it susceptible to illness and disease.


Win the Cold War: Seven strategies to fight an infection

Supplementation aids in prevention of illness in the first place, but when infection does set in, try the following:

  1. Up your OptiFlora intake from one to two capsules per day.
  2. Take two to three OptiBoost capsules per day.
  3. Take one OptiC capsule every two hours when infection is first detected (sore throat, swollen glands, sneezing).
  4. Take 16 drops of OptiToniQ+ per day.
  5. If your throat is sore, gargle with OptiToniQ+ two to three times a day.
  6. Get lots of rest.
  7. Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates completely.

Mindful Learning

Posted by on June 24, 2014 in News | Comments Off on Mindful Learning

Mindful Learning: Dermalogica Shares Its Mindful Mantra for Success at Its Annua

Image courtesy of Dermalogica

Dermalogica welcomed more than 120 Senior Instructors, Corporate Trainers and Education Managers representing more than 40 countries to the brand’s 21st annual weeklong Global Education Conference in May, held at Dermalogica world headquarters in Carson, CA.

The emphasis of this year’s conference, which included more than 35 different presentations, activities and skill workshops, addressed the importance of mindfulness through learning, relationships, communication and leadership. The Corporate offices became an oasis filled with plush couches, with classrooms transformed into mediation rooms where guests were encouraged to visit and unplug from every day distractions like cell phones and computers so they could fully immerse themselves in the present. The week began with mindful exercises to get the group centered with a special guest, Joey Soto, a mindfulness expert who specializes in teaching meditation and yoga to corporate executives, attorneys, parents, women and teens. Dermalogica Founder and Owner Jane Wurwand then kicked off the week by speaking on the Global Mindful Revolution and the need for us to be fully in the present. She challenged the rapt audience to think more deeply about who they are, where they are and why they are here. Wurwand’s closing presentation at the end of the week focused on “The Third Metric: Redefining Success.” Based on the bestselling book by Arianna Huffington, beyond money and power, there is a need to define a third metric that is founded on well-being, wisdom and the ability to give back. “Are you living your resume or your eulogy?” Wurwand posed the question to the crowd.

Other top highlights from the week included presentations by program host Annet King, Director of Global Education for Dermalogica and The International Dermal Institute, who shared insights on the importance of mindful teaching for greater student success, provided the new 2014 global curriculum, and presented an in-depth review on the medical spa landscape. Dr. Diana Howard, VP of Global Education and Research and Development for Dermalogica and The International Dermal Institute, introduced upcoming new products for the brand and presented “What’s in your DNA?” which explored the philosophy and history behind Dermalogica’s hero formulas. Lastly, Mathew Divaris, VP of Global Marketing and Creative, provided a poignant presentation based on the book by Irini Rockewell, which explores a Buddhist philosophy on the five wisdom energies, providing insight on the different types of personalities and emotions that make a leader.

Mindfulness and keen awareness of the customer also permeated the discussion of the brand’s newest and most innovative professional product launch, the BioActive Peel. This powerful professional only acid-based treatment, developed to offer unprecedented exfoliation results, require that the skin therapist observe closely and communicate intimately in order to ensure an experience which is safe, effective and exciting to the customer — the opposite of a cookie-cutter treatment from a generic menu. The BioActive Peel and BioSurface Peel system is Dermalogica’s latest advancements in interactive personalization, based upon the expertise of the professional skin therapist.

For more information on the recent Global Education Conference, please visit

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