Monday, March 25, 2013


I’ve been covering aspects of spa for over twenty years, and while it is possible to approximate and create a spa experience at home,  the only genuine way to experience a spa and benefit from it is to actually go to one.  That being said, however, one can replicate aspects of spa experiences while in a home setting, provided planning, organizing, conditions and product mix come together as one, but again, it isn’t meant to replace an actual spa experience.  For example, just in the area of the treatment experience at the hands of a highly skilled, trained and experienced spa technician, it is impossible for one to replicate that individual’s touch and skill in the home setting. 

The spa experience is sensory-driven and should engage the five senses of tactile, taste, auditory, visual and olfactory.  The innate senses such as emotion and psyche, which greatly rely on perception and imprinting recall, also come into play.  When one’s senses are engaged, the efficacy of the experience is elevated.

Following are a number of products I recently tried that effectively transform your spa at home experience to one that captures the essence of a spa experience, as if you’re at one.  I’ve also included a few DIY tips and treats for you to also consider as part of your spa at home experience.  The products, tips and treats are all based on engaging various senses throughout the experience to magnify one’s sensory acuities.  So, get ready and go and get your spa on…..


Tarocca Orange, Eucalyptus & Sage Body and Hand Care Collection ~ Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing various products from Crabtree & Evelyn, and have always enjoyed the unique aromatic and restorative formulations.  Launched in mid-February, this product range was aromatherapeutic, hydrating and restorative.  I tried the Ultra Moisturising Hand Therapy, Skin Invigorating Bath & Shower Gel, and Silk Silkening Body Soufflé.  Each product was infused with anti-oxidant rich Vitamin C, Tarocca Sicilian red orange extract, eucalyptus extract and sage extract.  Some of the other key ingredients included cedarwood, patchouli, aloe leaf, macadamia seed oil, angelica, shea butter and juniper berry.  The aromas of the ingredients were uplifting, fresh and invigorating.  Ingredients were restorative and revitalized.  Hydration levels were noticeably improved after one use and were maintained throughout the day.  The Bath & Shower Gel thoroughly cleansed without leaving skin dry.  The Hand Therapy and Body Soufflé were quickly absorbed and left no residue or tack. 

Your Skincare Solution Spa-At-Home Essentials Kit ~ This handy all-in-one Spa-At-Home Essentials Kit is ideal for home or travel and comes complete with Pevonia’s top performing skincare products.  Included in the Essentials Kit are Silky Skin Body Scrub, Anti-Stress Bath Salts, Anti-Stress Bath & Shower Gel, Preserve Body Moisturizer, Spalasium Spa Ambiance Candle (Place of Serenity Lavender aroma) and a handy reference card “Four Easy Steps to Spa-At-Home Bliss”; everything is neatly stored in its own white waffle cloth design zippered carrying bag; the inside of the bag is made of waterproof material to prevent any leakage or spillage from getting onto clothing, if used in traveling.  Ingredients in the Scrub included safflower seed oil, sage extract, chamomile flower extract, rosemary leaf extract, aloe leaf gel, lemon peel oil and jojoba seed powder.  Ingredients in the Salts included sea salt, ylang ylang essential oil, lavender flower oil, balsam fir oil and orange peel oil.  Ingredients in the Bath & Shower Gel included hazel nut oil, sweet almond seed oil, sesame seed oil, chamomile flower oil, cornflower extract, lavender flower extract, and linden flower extract.  Ingredients in the Moisturizer included safflower seed oil, Vitamin E, alpha hydroxy acids, rosemary leaf extract, chamomile flower extract, horsetail leaf extract, pine leaf extract, lemon peel oil, French rose extract and orris root.  Each product delivered intended results beautifully and effectively.  My skin was clean, gently exfoliated, revitalized and exceptionally hydrated.  The aromas of each product were refreshing and calming.   Over the years, I’ve reviewed various Pevonia products and have always enjoyed their formulations and effectiveness; it’s understandable why this spa brand is a preferred one at so many spa facilities.

Hand Scrub and Salt Soak ~ The Hand Scrub (Midnight Garden aroma) was ideal for hands, elbows, knees and other body parts that were in need of gentle exfoliation.  Key ingredients included Atlantic sea salt, aloe leaf juice, shea butter, coconut oil, dried rosemary and essential oils.  Product gently and effectively exfoliated, while restoring hydration levels; after rinsing, there wasn’t any greasy residue or tackiness; pleasant aroma.  The Salt Soak (Southern Pecan aroma) was ideal for bathing or foot soaks.  Key ingredients included Atlantic sea salts, pecans and essential oils.  Product effectively restored hydration levels without leaving any trace of the sweet aroma, which was more like pie than a treatment soak.  All products are handcrafted and packaged in beautiful recylced cobalt blue glass or plastic containers.  Environmentally and ethically formulated without sulfates, colorants, parabens, petrochemicals or animal products.  Products are available in a variety of natural aromas.  One of my favorite aromas, rose, is their latest fragrance edition to this lovely line.  Packaging can also be custom imprinted for special events, which makes for ideal gift giving (bridal or baby showers).


In General ~ Set aside time to disconnect from reality and create a new one that’s filled with relaxation and restorative indulgence.  Consider the type of relaxation music you want to listen to and then have it ready to play throughout your special time.  Prepare ahead of time the healthy fruit or veggie infused waters you’ll refresh yourself with throughout the day.  Begin your day with simple stretching movements, followed by introspection and contemplation.  Plan a light and healthy breakfast, such as green tea or an herbal tisane, Greek-style yogurt with fresh fruit and a nutrient-dense healthy muffin (same for a healthy lunch of a hearty salad).  Plan your time accordingly and block out any outside influences and the extraneous that might be disruptive to your relaxed rhythm.  Take the time to go for a walk and get reacquainted with nature and just having some personal time without anyone else seemingly bothering you.  If you have children, make arrangements for someone to take care of them while you’re restoring yourself.

Dry Brushing ~ If you don’t have a body brush with firm bristles, consider buying one; in lieu of a firm-bristle body brush, a loofah chunk or mitt is recommended.  Using one of these on dry skin is great for exfoliating and revving up the circulation.  Using circular small motions, begin from the feet and work your way up the body, towards the heart.   Make sure to avoid any sensitive areas, especially areas with broken skin.  Do not dry brush to recently shaved or sunburned skin, otherwise irritation will result.

Gentle Facial Scrub ~ You’ll need a gentle oil, such as almond, jojoba or olive, as well as corn meal.  Place a small amount of corn meal in the palm of your hand and to this add a small amount of the oil, or enough to make a paste.  Apply this to face and gently rub the skin using small circular motions with the fingertips.  Gently rinse off with warm water and blot dry.  The oil will provide sufficient hydration to the skin.

Pedi Soak ~ You’ll need a large bowl or basin (I use a large stainless bread mixing bowl), Epsom salts (or baking soda), a scented essential oil (optional), marbles (floral or conventional), pedi paddle or super-fine grade sandpaper block (or a dish scrubby), and a gentle oil (almond, jojoba or olive).  Fill basin/bowl with warm water.  Add Epsom salts (or baking soda, or both), and any optional scented essential oils; mix all ingredients thoroughly.  Add marbles.  Soak feet in mix, taking time to gently rub the soles of your feet over the marbles to stimulate and revitalize the circulation; this is also great for giving oneself a foot massage.  After twenty to thirty minutes of soaking, remove feet and then dry; gently exfoliate any calloused areas (use a pedi paddle, sandpaper block or dish scrubby); apply the oil to feet and moisturize (or use one of your body moisturizers); to keep the feet protected and to seal in the moisture, wear cotton socks.  This is an ideal treat prior to retiring for the evening.

Rosewater Toner ~ A culinary-grade Rosewater (available at specialty stores, Indian or Middle Eastern grocery stores, or in mass retail grocery chains with an import section) is an inexpensive alternative to facial-grade Rosewater, and it’s a very refreshing facial toner.  Transfer the Rosewater to a fine mister for ease of applying.  The culinary-grade is wonderful when chilled and sprayed on the face throughout the day as a quick pick-me-up. 

Witch Hazel & Rosewater Astringent Toner ~ Mix the culinary-grade Rosewater with Witch Hazel.  The gentle astringent property of the witch hazel in combination with the rosewater makes for a gentle finishing toner.  I use this mix especially during the summer or after a vigorous workout.  This is ideal for cooling down an over-heated face and as a refresher throughout the day. 

These are just a few of spa at home DIY Treats I’ve put together and have enjoyed during my own special time. 


Prior to your spa at home experience, plan what you want to accomplish and organize your approach, and remember that taking time to regroup, unwind, decompress, relax and restore isn’t hedonistic ~ it’s an investment in self.  Don’t regret the time you’ve set aside for yourself.  And while spa at home may be all about you, you’ve earned this time and you definitely deserve it!

That’s it for this edition.  Until the next one, remember to take care of yourself and those you love.

By Terry Herman

Terry Herman is a recognized expert in the industry, and regularly covers issues that include business, management, operations, customer care, treatments, products, and trends. In addition to writing and reviewing, she is also a management consultant and motivational speaker.  She also serves on EXPERIENCE | PREMCHIT Journeys In Retreat To Wellness Advisory Board, which is comprised of ten international experts in various fields of wellness and spa.  She also serves as a Group Manager for the popular LinkedIn group, The Spa Buzz.  You can email her at


(Introductory photo from Spa and Salon Supplies Canada  All other photo credits as represented from the specific brand.)

N.B.  Google’s blog platform is incompatible with my Mac OS X and Firefox browser latest software versions, which is why some web links appear in different colors and why when attempting to have embedded images, their sizing is consistent and/or can’t be sized. 


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. You're quite welcome. I enjoyed reviewing your lovely products and appreciate the opportunity.


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