Rapper Nelly was probably not talking about the stresses of summer heat when he said, "It's getting hot in here, so take off all your clothes." But, there's no denying that when summer hits the ground running, so do most of our outer layers. "People are paying more attention to what they're applying to their skin because it's shown more," Marissa Sokolowski, spa manager at Hashani Spa at the JW Marriott Starr Pass in Tucson, says. After a long and dry winter, your skin might be in need of a little moisture or a tad bit more color, and no matter what your body is calling for, these spa treatments have got the answer.
Face the Day
Your face boasts some of the most sensitive skin on your body, and while it's recommended that you wear SPF year-round, it's vital to do so in the summer. "Most people get sun in the summer whether they intend to or not," Sokolowski says, "so skin suffers." Avoid glycolic or lactic acid peels, which can make skin susceptible to damage, and opt for treatments that gently exfoliate, soothe, and hydrate.
Hydrating Botanical Facial, LakeHouse Spa at Lake Austin Spa Resort, Texas ($140, 50 min., www.lakehousespa.com): The skin's thirst is quenched with bio-active botanical serums and an antioxidant black current oil-fortified cream.
Turquoise Facial, Revive Spa at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge, Arizona ($130, 50 min., www.jwdesertridgeresort.com): Turquoise is mined in the U.S. in only two places -- Arizona and New Mexico -- so it should come as no surprise that it's on the menu at this Phoenix spa more than once. Pure essential oils and botanical extracts hydrate the skin, while anti-inflammatory elements help reduce redness from sunburn. Skin is calmed with a turquoise gemstone facial massage. Also try the Turquoise Blue Sage Body Ritual ($210, 90 min), which combines a body polish, wrap, and massage.
Willow Stream Golf Facial, Willow Stream Spa at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, Arizona ($259, 90 min., www.willowstream.com): Too much tee time can leave you with skin that's not up to par. Exposure to the elements is tackled using the herbal additive bio-maple, which hydrates and carries antioxidant properties to slough away dead skin. The treatment includes a shoulder, hand, and foot massage (perfect after 18 holes) and the spa's exclusive Sports Masque, which aims to hydrate, repair, and protect skin.
Long sleeves and pants mean we forget to moisturize, pack on a few pounds, or lose that healthy summer glow. And, what was once hidden is now on display. "Women show off their back more in summer," Sokolowski says, "so it needs a little attention. We don't exfoliate the area like we do our legs, which can result in acne and a buildup of dead skin." Look for body treatments that incorporate algae, aloe, and lavender, all of which have soothing effects, or caffeine and cayenne, which are known to stimulate the skin, giving it a smoother appearance. Also, don't forget about your hair. Sun and chlorine can damage luscious locks, so look for treatments that incorporate hair masks or scalp treatments.
Bikini Smoother, The Spa at White Barn Inn, Maine ($85, 30 min., www.whitebarninn.com): A Sonya Dakar peel gently exfoliates the area and stimulates circulation. The treatment is recommended a few days after a bikini wax to help prevent ingrown hairs and breakouts. Add a green tea peel to brighten skin and eliminate bacteria ($95 more).
Cool Aquastones & Aloe Therapy, The Spa at Little Dix Bay, British Virgin Islands ($140, 50 min.): Fresh aloe vera gel and cool towels pull heat from the body, while cucumber works to decrease inflammation. A chilled stone massage soothes muscles and reduces swelling and redness.
Deep Regenerating After-Sun Treatment, Deep Ocean Spa by Algotherm at the Intercontinental Resort and Thalasso Spa, Bora Bora ($191, 75 min., www.algotherm.fr/en/bora-bora.html): Highlight your tan or prepare for one with this before or after-sun treatment. Start with full-body scrub of seaweed, sugar, or sea salt (depending on your skin type), followed by a seaweed and aloe vera moisturizer. A facial scrub and peel-off mask complete the treatment. If you want the sun-kissed look without the baking time, try the spa's Holistic Spa Tan ($197, 75 min).
Detox Seaweed Thalasso Wrap, Spa at the One&Only Kanuhura, Maldives ($150, 85 min., www.oneandonlyresorts.com): Bloating and beach-going don't exactly go hand-in-hand. Detox your body, release water tension, and give your metabolism a jump-start with this treatment, which includes an algae or seaweed wrap and the spa's Marine Bath.
Mediterranean Wrapture, Alvadora Spa at the Royal Palms, Arizona ($186-$195, 90 min., www.royalpalmshotel.com): Olive oil and seed granules exfoliate dead skin, while a wrap of olive leaf, cilantro, juniper, and lavender extracts moisturize. The treatment (one of the spa's most popular) ends with a scalp massage and application of olive leaf and almond oil lotion.
Para-Joba Body Moisturizer, The Spa at Camelback Inn, Arizona ($135, 60 min., www.camelbackspa.com): Skin is exfoliated with a natural bristle body brush; cooled with lavender spray; swathed in pure jojoba oil; and wrapped in warm paraffin sheets. After the sheets are removed and shea butter cream is applied, your body is hydrated, soft, and smooth.
Peppermint and Anasazi Bean Back Facial, ShaNah Spa & Wellness Center at The Bishop's Lodge Ranch Resort & Spa, New Mexico ($120, 60 min., www.bishopslodge.com): Anasazi bean, blue corn, and peppermint exfoliate, while a regenerating fruit mask smoothes.
Sun Soother, Anantara Spa at the Kempinski Hotel Ishtar, Jordan ($78, 60 min., www.kempinski-deadsea.com): Aloe vera gel soothes sun-exposed skin, while a cool compress of mint and black tea calms and moisturizes. The treatment also includes a floral foot bath.
Ten-Second Tan, Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas ($100, 30 min., www.harrahs.com/qua): Casino lights are bright, but somehow they don't give you the same glow as a day in the sun. Skin is exfoliated to remove dead skin cells and allow for an even and long-lasting tan. The artisan-applied spray tan contains anti-aging ingredients, minerals, nutrients, and vitamins. When you're done, you can chill out, literally, in the spa's Arctic Ice Room, where it's 55 degrees and snowing year-round.
Best Foot Forward
At this point, your response to your Ugg boots is likely "ugh," and you're ready to slip into some sandals or feel the sand between your toes. "Feet take a beating," Fabien DeGuffroy, spa manager at The Spa at Little Dix Bay, says, "but most people do the hands and neglect the feet." So, before you bare it all, make sure your feet aren't as used and abused as those snow boots.
Bastien's Global Pedicure, Spa at the One&Only Reethi Rah, Maldives ($140, 60 min.): The philosophy of renowned French podiatrist Bastien Gonzalez's pedicures is based on beautifying feet with a trim and polish; eliminating nail problems and skin rigidity; and promoting circulation, flexibility, and mobility through massage.
Foot Renewal, Hashani Spa at JW Marriott Starr Pass, Arizona ($125, 50 min., www.jwmarriottstarrpass.com): A lactic acid peel gives feet a face-lift and, according to Sokolowski, "it gobbles up all the dead skin cells and eliminates dry cuticles. You're going to get a much nicer finish from your pedicure."
Grape Seed and Guava Pedicure, Spa at The Carneros Inn, California ($80, 60 min., www.thecarnerosinn.com): The nature of Napa Valley finds its way into this pedicure, which exfoliates with native grape seeds and minerals and moisturizes and soothes with shea-guava butter and warm paraffin. Also try the spa's Sweet Ripened Apricot and Chardonnay Pedicure ($80).
PerfectSense Paraffin, available at The Spa at Mandarin Oriental New York, Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles, and Canyon Ranch SpaClub in Las Vegas (prices vary per spa, www.sparevolutions.com): Germaphobes rejoice; now you can avoid that community paraffin tub for your own personal pouch. Spas and salons are big fans of PerfectSense's single-use paraffin treatments, which are full of vitamins and minerals. Look for the brand's RedRock Detox blend, which uses Arizona red-rock clay and Romanian green silts to remove toxins and increase circulation.
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