After almost a year and a half of working from home, too many lockdowns to count and plenty of missed occasions, summer 2021 has officially arrived and the return to the new normal, while exciting, has left many of our minds and bodies in total shock.
Spa and beauty experience specialists, Buyagift, are no strangers to the necessity of tranquillity, offering hundreds of spa days and luxury spa weekend experiences with their trusted partners, creating endless opportunities for rejuvenation with your loved ones.
With Google searches for spa treatments at their highest since January 2019 and sales of spa breaks up 400% on last year alone, Buyagift have teamed up with industry experts and developed a specialist spa guide revealing the best (and unique) treatments specific to your lifestyle, so you know exactly what your body needs.
If you’re an office worker
For office workers, who have been hunched over their make-shift desks since last March 2020, rolfing is a great form of alternative therapy. The hands on body work is designed to re-organise the connective tissue, balance the body and ensure it can function more efficiently.
Being sat at a desk all day doesn’t do any favours for your circulation either. If sitting all day makes you feel sluggish, it might be time to try Hydrotherapy. This water-based experience plunges your body into waters of various different temperatures, and is known to have excellent effects on reducing poor circulation and lowering high blood pressure.
Jessica Whitehead, a therapist at Turkish Baths Harrogate adds: ‘The combination of bathing in both hot and cold water has a number of benefits on the body. The heat allows our muscles to relax and with the rising temperature it also makes us sweat which is the body’s method of naturally detoxing.
‘Cold water helps to increase our heart rate again which increases circulation. The low temperature of the water also has an anti-inflammatory effect on the muscles to soothe any swollen joints and help to ease any discomfort caused by muscle sprains or strains.’
If your job is hands-on
The Alexander technique is a treatment worth considering for nurses, dentists, cleaners and drivers whose jobs are often associated with repetitive strain injury. It works on the basis of re-training the body’s posture to refrain it from falling into bad habits which can hurt your joints over time. More gentle therapy patients are taught how to re-educate their mind and body to encourage the body to use muscles more efficiently.
If you are looking for a more relaxing treatment, a paraffin body wax wrap is the perfect way to unwind your muscles after a long day. It seals in moisture and heat from your body, working its way through the muscles to relax joints, leaving your skin very soft.
Stuck inside all day?
For retail and hospitality staff re-adjusting to the changing temperatures of in-store air conditioning and lack of natural light, IPL therapy is an intense pulsed light treatment designed to give tired skin a vibrant glow.
For a more luxurious treat, gold leaf facials will boost cell renewal and microcirculation leaving skin feeling refreshed and energised. This treatment is frequently seen on the faces of those who walk the runways of fashion week as it keeps their skin plump for long and busy days ahead.
Whitehead adds: ‘Facials can provide a number of benefits to the skin and can be personalised based on your needs. A brightening facial treatment will boost levels of hydration to have a re-plumping effect, transforming distressed or dull skin. Whereas treating acne or spot prone skin would involve a soothing and mattifying treatment to replenish the skin.
‘Regardless of your skin concerns we would recommend having a facial treatment at least seasonally as our skin changes throughout the year.’
For stress relief and emotional well-being
For spa treatments and therapies which focus on our emotional and mental wellbeing, options include bach flower therapy developed in 1930 which uses 38 flower based oils, treats low confidence and nervousness and the Aleksandrowicz Spa Massage designed for both your mind and body and credited as a true all-rounder.
The Aleskandrowicz Spa Massage in particular is renowned by Tatler as the ‘best in the world’ in their global spa guide. It consists of a pure massage technique which combines elements of deep tissue, trigger points and myofascial release, quantum healing and energy work.
The creator of the Aleksandrowicz spa massage, Beata Aleksandrowica, says: ‘Clients are very locked on the muscular level at the moment. This is caused by the suspension of emotions due to the great uncertainty we all face. So, it is not easy for me to find that bridge that would allow me to enter the muscle tissue.
‘I have to work on the level of negotiation with the connective tissue to enter the body and start to make the changes. Sometimes the effects of the lockdown become so severe in the body that the only thing I can do is to apply gentle touch and encourage the client to breathe, and then gradually the body opens up and becomes more responsive.’
Alison Vickery, executive digital and marketing director at Buyagift said: ‘As we get back to our busy daily lives there are many physical and mental strains for the mind and body to adjust to. What seems like overnight, people are suddenly going back to work, drinking with friends at the pub and facing being around many people in public. This can be a lot to readjust to after so much time spent isolated at home.
‘Spa treatment names can be quite confusing and complex at times which can make it difficult for people to decide the best route. Our specialist spa guide is here to help people better gauge the many types of treatments available for different lifestyle needs, choosing what is right for you.’
- Hayley Khazaneh from Berkhamsted shared how reflexology has helped her sinusitis: ‘Hay fever was rendering me a total zombie – my nose was streaming, my head felt full of water, and my sinuses were inflamed beyond belief. When I arrived for my first massage and reflexology treatments, I felt absolutely dreadful. Then I had a massage which removed all the “bubble wrap” nodules from me, and then we moved on to reflexology. I departed my session with no sniffing or sniffling, and free of pain. I have had further treatments since, and no longer take allergy meds.’
- Jen Milne from Leeds shared how neck massages helped her migraines: ‘Having suffered with migraines for many years, and after trying several remedies, I gave deep tissue massage a go. This was focused on the back of the neck and shoulder region. The aim was to target the muscles that have a connection to the eye, and this causes the migraines. I had a session every two weeks and after a couple of months, the amount of migraines I had reduced.’
- Gabriella Smith from Whitby shared how spa treatments helped her to de-stress as we enter the new normal: ‘I decided to have a full body massage to treat myself to a pamper after lockdown ended. Since life “reopened”, my social life and work has been pretty full on, and I wanted to remind myself that it’s important to spend money on things that are going to make me feel better – rather than simply all on socialising, eating out and drinking. During the massage I completely switched off, and almost fell asleep. When there’s so much going on and with a hectic schedule, it’s difficult to find the time to do this at home. I said to myself I will definitely try to get one at least every couple of months, on what I’ve labelled a “nothing” weekend – a weekend when I have absolutely no plans, which I’m trying to ensure I have at least once a month now.’
- Annie Kenny from Leeds shares her thoughts on the benefits of spa treatments as an office worker: ‘I definitely want to make massages a more regular thing as during my recent treatment I found out that I hold a lot of tension in my upper body from working at a desk, and it’s already made such a big difference! I also really enjoyed using the hydrotherapy suite as I instantly felt like my muscles were soothed from the mix of warm and cool water. Realising that I hold the day’s stress in my shoulders and upper back has made me not only plan out time to take regular breaks to take a break from my desk but also schedule in a massage every month or so to make sure I’m easing that discomfort.’