Treat Mom to a Spa This Holiday; First Know Which Type Fits Her

The holidays are fast approaching and while many of us are mentally shopping, some of us have actually made some purchases. I find myself running into the same road block every year: "What to get mom?" Some make up? Bleh. A scarf? Boring! Jewelry? Not on this college student budget! Plus, why give her anything if it will end up in the holiday gift graveyard?  This year, consider something she could actually use. Everyone loves a day off and very often mom is the last person to get one. So why not give her one? Consider a spa day!

Where do you start? A hotel? Massage place? Medi-spa? Here is how to navigate spa options to match your mom’s personality and needs.

When you think of a spa, what comes to mind? Soft lights and sounds of ocean waves crashing on the shore? Ahhh! If you’re seeking relaxation then you’re better off going to a hotel spa. Luxury hotel spas use skin care products that feel rich and indulgent. A basic European facial consists of a gentle manual cleanse, exfoliation, steam, a mask, several warm towels and a facial massage. Extractions are not encouraged as it may cause discomfort.

Within this hour you should also experience a hand, neck, scalp or foot massage. The protocol is designed to help you relax with aromatherapy and gentle hands. This experience, when done right, is “Oh so heavenly!” You should leave in a daze. Massage places offer very similar treatments but also recommend a membership option to allow monthly treatment at a reduced rate.

The setting at a Medi-Spa is very different. Typically, it is clean and white, but lately some Medi-Spas have opted for a softer look. Facials are much shorter, lasting only 30-40 minutes, because they cut out the fru-fru—no massage, no steam or aromatherapy and rarely any music.

Most treatments are designed for lunch breaks or the busy who just don’t want the fluff. The idea is to find your skin condition and treat it. Typically, the protocol of most Medi-Spas will consist of a cleanse, microdermabrasion (as is addresses many skin care concerns), serums and a moisturizer. They may offer other options like chemical peels, laser genesis, intense pulsed light (or IPL); which are wonderful treatments that give a quick fix that can be seen almost instantly. Many of them also offer an array of body treatments that range from skin tightening to cellulite smoothing.

If you’re lucky to find a place that offers the new Hydrafacial, take advantage of this treatment. It’s been featured in aesthetic conferences and beauty publications nationwide as one of this year’s best medi-facial, and I have to agree. Most women who have heard of it want to try it but haven’t found a place that offers it. Finding this for mom would make her very happy. So, if she complains about needing a little “refresher,” the Medi-Spa is where she wants to be.

In my opinion, both are wonderful depending on her needs. Consider how nice she will feel after a little pampering. The cherry on that cake would be to grant her a gift card to purchase some products to take home. That way, every night when she’s washing her face, she’ll be thinking of her thoughtful baby who got her just what she needed. And just like that, you’re God’s gift and mom’s favorite. This makes up for anything you’ve ever done.  Merry Christmas, Mom!

Thamara Lamarre
Skincare Columnist / The Record
Thamara Lamarre is a skincare columnist at The Record. She began studying skin care seven years ago. She now holds numerous certifications and is licensed in three states as a medical aesthetician and a registered electrologist. She believes in finding a balance between both medical and holistic therapies.