Courtesy of The Raithwaite Estate Spa, N Yorks
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IF DIVERSITY IS BEING INVITED TO THE PARTY; INCLUSION IS BEING ASKED TO DANCE

Lead to Change

 

- by Juliet Wheater 

Over recent years, there has been a significant rise in the attention of inclusivity and the authentic representation of people with disabilities, the LGBTQ community and racial diversity within the beauty and wellness industries. 

During 2017, the largest diversity story was the launch of pop star Rihanna’s beauty brand, Fenty, a cosmetics line that launched its new foundation line, in no less than 40 shades. Vogue magazine at the time, named it a top 2018 beauty trend, exclaiming Fenty Beauty “singlehandedly changed the conversation.”

This conversation continues and more recently, in light of the Black Lives Matter movement, we learn that on these shores, black and minority wellness professionals have united and signed a charter demanding reform for racial equality in the UK wellness industry. ‘The Wellness Industry Charter for Racial Diversity, Inclusion and Access’, aims to tackle three diversity challenges: health inequality, lack of access, and under-representation faced by black and minority groups.

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DISASTERS LEAD TO CHANGE

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-by Juliet Wheater 

Although change is undeniable, it generally just evolves, not usually with ferocious pace, unless a crisis occurs. Covid-19 is one such global crisis and we’ve all had to adapt and change. We’ve implemented new ways of coping and of working. 

Seeing as the very basis of spa is physical touch, our wellness industry is one sector that is bound to experience quite a transformation, for example: the introduction of new ways of working, new ways of interacting with clients as well as patterns of consumption. 

Beauty & wellness will thrive again as looking good is intrinsically linked to feeling good. A relaxing massage or a physical makeover, is linked to one’s self-esteem, providing empowerment. 

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HOW HALOTHERAPY IS THE NEW FACE OF RESPIRATORY HEALTH & HYGIENE

Halotherapy

 

We are all very aware, thanks to the current coronavirus pandemic, of the importance of respiratory wellness and keeping our immune systems healthy.  But how do we do this and how do we keep our customers and clients safe?

Halotherapy, or salt therapy, is a 100% natural therapy that has grown steadily in popularity in recent years and continues to be one of the top 5 growing trends in wellness.  Its attraction is the speed and efficacy of results for customers.  It is proven to aid in relieving respiratory ailments such as asthma, bronchial problems, allergies and cold and flu symptoms and also has a positive effect on many skin conditions including Psoriasis, Eczema, Acne, Dermatitis, Rosacea and dry/ageing skin.

The benefits of Halotherapy can be experienced in many different areas including:

  • Respiratory Conditions / Immunity improvement (with regular use):

Asthma, Allergies, COPD, Cystic Fibrosis, Cold & Flu Symptoms, Sinusitus, Bronchitis

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IT ALL COMES OUT IN THE WASH AND DRY PROCESS

BC Softwear

- by BC Softwear

 

There has been much discussion and conflicting views concerning safety and best practice to ensure the linen used in a spa or hotel is disinfected from any potential virus threats, and more specifically the COVID-19 virus. Some people suggest boil washing at 90 degrees and using bleach, which will may help to remove the virus, but as towelling experts, we know that this will also weaken your linen substantially over a period over time, thus reducing its overall lifespan. Ensuring the longevity of your towels and linen is essential to assisting you in reducing long term costs of replacement items and we are also mindful that using bleach and high temperatures is not good for the environment or our efforts to improve our industry’s responsibility to corporate sustainability. 

When put under the microscope, it is possible to see the effect of detergents and optical brightening agents and even bleach, which are often used by operators to attempt to keep towels looking brighter for longer. In actual fact, these brightening agents may contribute to the rapid degeneration of the towel leading to reduced performance, tears, a lifting of the colour and discoloration. The drying process can also be overtly harsh. The length of the loop or pile is extra-long, as it is the pile which is often singed. The towel fibres are literally burnt through excessive heat and over drying. The heat causes the tops of the pile to shrivel and harden which stops the towel from being soft and fluffy anymore. 

Washing Recommendations

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THE FUTURE OF A THERAPIST IN THE SERVICE INDUSTRY

Hannah

- by Hannah Charlesworth

 

I’m unsure which is the most common phrase I’m hearing at the moment; “Recorded before social distancing”, or “How are you doing in these difficult times?”. Nevertheless, Covid-19 is proving to be a challenging time for everyone, and the service sector is no different. Life after lockdown for therapists will be a world away from how we worked in late 2019, and thus far not many predictions can be made as to how or when we could reopen our doors. In April 2020, the International Spa Association (ISPA) released a ‘checklist’ of what spas must ensure they have before there can even be a consideration of opening, but so far this is all we have.

When considering the future of therapists in the service industry, it would be so easy to speculate how the current pandemic is going to affect us and our jobs. However, I am sure many are fed up with reading about the doom and gloom this virus has brought to so many, and as I am sure you can guess from my opening statement, I am myself. Instead, I decided to use this article to reflect on the industry changes we could expect to see when we are all back on track, some perhaps now more relevant than they were prior to lockdown. 

I recall a lecturer at my University inviting us to discuss the possibility of technology being integrated into the wider service industry, beyond automated hotel check-ins and online bookings. Technology has had a profound impact on the service industry, with many spa brands being able to develop treatments that require technology to perform. Therapists have had to adapt their roles to use technology on an increasing basis and could expect to continue to do so. 

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THE HEALING POWER OF TOUCH

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-by Juliet Wheater

 

New-borns that are given nurturing touch grow faster and have more improved mental and motor skill development.Partners who cuddle have been shown to have lower stress levels and blood pressure and improved immune function. Elderly people who receive the soothing, affirming experience of touch have been shown to better handle the process of aging. 

(Source: Healthline.com)

Perhaps one of the toughest things about lockdown for many of us is not being able to see our friends or family. To not feel the touch of their embrace. They say you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone, and human touch has been in short supply during the worldwide pandemic. Difficult for the spa therapists amongst you and most certainly your clients too. Spa and the expert, reassuring and beneficial touch it offers, we anticipate, will be in hot demand on reopening. 

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UK SPA ASSOCIATION SURVEY FINDINGS

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We’d like to thank the sponsors of the UK Spa Association’s Work for Wellness survey, they include: 

 

Spa Life International, Journey Travel, La Rue Verte, Body Ballancer and Salon Life. 

 

Our report and its contents would not have been possible without our members also. Therefore, we’d like to thank all participants, as we look for guidance during this difficult time. 

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THE STEREOTYPES OF THE SPA INDUSTRY

Hannah

By Hannah Charlesworth

Being a final year student at The University of Derby on the International Spa Management degree, it  has allowed me to reflect on the perceptions the spa industry has, from those on the outside looking in. The stereotypes surrounding the job ‘spa therapist’ still leaves me at my wits end three years later when I’m left explaining what I do to relatives or friends. 

Many assume I’m still at college, or that I decided to go to college even after completing three A-levels at school and that all I do is paint nails every day. For a while, I even stopped telling people the full extent of my degree, simply stating I just did Business Management. Not entirely a lie, but never something I should have felt like I needed to do by way of avoiding questions, I both had answered no fewer than ten times previously, or that I rolled my eyes at each time I got asked. And it did work - no more was I asked; “How’s college?” or “Do you work at a nail place?”. 

However, the older I got, and the more immersed I became with such a diverse industry, the less I wanted to hide it. So, I began to do my research, and I hope this article can shed some light on how our industry can help to break down these stereotypes and educate those around us. 

Firstly, where do these stereotypes originate? 

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Recent Comments
Guest — emma
Interesting post - I didn't even realise this was a degree option. Makes me wish I'd had the option when I was studying. PS - pe... Read More
Tuesday, 19 May 2020 15:27
Guest — Hannah Charlesworth
Yes there is a degree, but unfortunately it is now closed. In my research I did find some accounts of these unsavoury rumours beg... Read More
Wednesday, 20 May 2020 10:21
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CHANGE FOR THE BETTER

MargaretWood

By Margaret Wood 

Margaret Mead, the American anthropologist said, "There is no greater power in the world than the zest of a post-menopausal woman." It is a time when women are not concerned about contraception, periods and associated PMS or painful cramps. “This”, she says, “is freedom.” It is a stage of life that is free of many encumbrances and full of wonderful possibilities. Still young enough to live life to its fullest, during this period a lot of women experience a renewed zest for life and look for exhilarating new adventures or new beginnings. 

Research on the stages of women’s development suggests that women find a renewed sense of purpose, energy, and increased vitality for work pursuits in mid to later life (Bardwick, 1980; Borysenko, 1996). This ties in with Margaret Mead’s concept of Post-Menopausal Zest.

Stage 1: Idealism. Women in this phase will most likely base their career choices on their desires for career satisfaction, achievement and success.

Stage 2: Endurance. Women in this phase are pragmatic about their careers and do what it takes to get it done.

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THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SUCCESS

Sally

By Sally Halstead, Dip.H.E 

What does Success mean to you?

Success can be defined as “the accomplishment of an aim” however it is subjective and its’ meaning depends upon many individual factors. My perceived success in finishing a 5km race in an hour may be regarded as a complete failure by an Olympic athlete, so don’t let someone else’s meaning of success define yours.

Bear in mind that our definition of success also shifts over time, as we reach our goals or as our lives change, so you will need to keep periodically reassessing this point.

*Define success for yourself. What does it look like? How does it feel? Is it an end result or is it a process? Is it only material, or perhaps emotional as well? 

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HOW FACE MASKS WILL CHANGE THE SPA INDUSTRY

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by Fashionizer

 

There is no doubt that this pandemic has forever changed the world, and this is especially true for all of us working in the spa and wellness industry. Although we all believe the spa and beauty industry will be in high demand once this is all over, we are also aware that there will be quite a few challenges to overcome before businesses can get back to some semblance of normality. 

In the past few weeks, we have been listening attentively to Zoom conversations within the global spa community and focusing on what this new “normal” might mean for spas, and especially what new protocols will be introduced upon reopening. All members in the industry believe that there will be major changes to the spa experience, which will involve collating data online before a visit, as well as wearing protective face masks for both therapists and spa-goers. 

 

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UKactive's four-stage strategy to support reopening of the physical activity sector

ukactive has today (23 April) revealed plans for a four-stage strategy to support the reopening of the physical activity sector safely, once the Government eases Covid-19 lockdown restrictions in the UK.

Facilities across the physical activity landscape were forced to close by the Government following a Coronavirus briefing on 20 March. Up to that point, gyms, leisure centres and other facilities had remained open by following strict cleaning guidelines and safety protocols from ukactive, supported by Public Health England.

But today, thousands of leisure and fitness facilities employing a total of around 100,000 staff are at risk of permanent closure, as organisations with zero income struggle to access loan support, face threats of eviction and are crippled by ongoing utility fees, delayed furloughing funds and failed insurance claims.

There are 189,000 people employed by gyms and leisure centres across the UK, and a ukactive consultation with leading operators showed that that more than half of this workforce could lose their jobs, with up to 2,800 facilities at risk of closing permanently.

ukactive has been working with partners CIMSPA and Community Leisure UK, gathering evidence of the financial pressures from across the sector and presenting this to the Government in order to ensure essential support across all areas, as well as for the self-employed.

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HOW TO ‘SPA AT HOME’

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During these unprecedented times of social distancing (some say physical distancing) and self-isolation, our spa clients are at home with many wearing less makeup than they usually do. With a plethora of time on their hands currently, they will have the opportunity to research the companies and brands that ‘speak to them’. Make sure that your spa is highly visible at this time, via the medium of video.

As we adjust to our ‘new normal’, daily habits will change, with many having the intention to take the time to research ingredients and formulations to improve their skin. Let it not be underestimated, that making an effort with your appearance, has a huge impact on how you feel about yourself. Our spa industry will need to pivot and adjust as quickly as we can to capture the imagination of our clients, that are staying at home.

Take to your digital marketing and social media channels and build your brand, giving relevant, value added tips on how to ‘spa at home’ via video, live or recorded. Do this effectively and consistently and your staff members and spa will become the go-to experts and will remain in the client’s conscious, until we can reopen our doors. Build the ‘know, like and trust’ factor with potential new clients too.

Build your online audience as well as email lists, with guides and sensitively constructed, special discounted retail offers. Use Zoom, Webinars and Crowd Cast face to face screen platforms to keep in touch and offer training to your team members but also to offer advice and demonstrations to clients. With exceptions of course, the employed and now self-employed will receive 80% of their earnings lost over this pandemic, so customer confidence in spending will return and there’s a real thirst for our expert knowledge.

Take the time to harness new skills in the social media arena, take advantage of Instagram and Facebook Lives and embrace IG TV on your phone as well as You Tube for video content such as: a ‘how to guide’ for massage, meditation, yoga practise etc Use the polls on social media channels, to ask what specifically your clients are looking for.

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Tackling the C-Word

Together 4 ladies

- By Helena Grzesk 

 

The announcements on 20th March, that our spas must close the doors to their guests and to their teams sent shock waves through our industry, as it did so many others. In under 24 hours, many of you had to react and prepare to close-up your business for the immediate future; certainly not forever, but with an unknown path ahead and so many questions left unanswered. Only a matter of days later the UK lockdown announcement followed, with a direct instruction for us to ‘stay at home’ so we can work together as a nation to combat coronavirus. 

In the face of adversity, we pressed the pause button on our businesses to protect our loved ones and our communities, but we remain strong; we stand side by side supporting each other through these challenging times and we will come out of this stronger together.  

It is time for the UK spa industry to stand up and be counted. We will be front line in supporting the NHS, now more than ever before. The spa and wellness industry will be crucial to the mental, physical and emotional health, wellbeing and recovery of this country as we propel through and beyond Covid-19. 

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Five Reasons Your Spa Needs Help from a Graphic Designer

Graphic Design Image

- by Emma Clayton

 

So you’ve got a terrific venue, you’ve got some great treatments and facilities - but what exactly does a graphic designer do, and why do you need one? As a professional graphic designer and self-confessed spa addict, allow me to enlighten you. 

Boiled down to its essence, graphic design is about problem solving and communication, using type and image. The best graphic designers will approach a challenge holistically, endeavour to understand your business completely, and help you to find a solution that resonates with you and your audience. If they’re really good, they’ll see things that you haven’t, and help you with those too. Five ways that a graphic designer can help you and your spa are below, in no particular order.

  1. They don’t just do logos

How do you want people to see your spa? Your brand is not just your logo - it includes every single way you choose to present your business to the world, from the interior decor to the types of treatments you offer and products you use, to the tone of voice in your marketing materials. Do you want to be seen as knowledgeable and welcoming? Cutting edge and unusual? Premium and exclusive? Value for money and accessible? Your graphic designer will help you to communicate this clearly and consistently on a daily basis in everything you do. That in turn will help to grow your business and strengthen your reputation and relationships with guests, staff and suppliers.

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Sustainable Spas

Sustainable Spas Image

- By Hannah Charlesworth 

 

After a turbulent 2019 (and currently!) conversations surrounding the future of our planet have never felt more necessary. With the rise of young environmental activists such as Greta Thunberg, speaking out for the generation that will ultimately be the most affected by climate change, consumers are now becoming more aware of how dire the impact unsustainable lifestyles are having on our planet. 

This was further seen after the devastating events in Australia, whereby an estimated 500 million animals died as a result of the most horrendous fires the country had experienced, with suggestions that climate change was responsible for the long periods of droughts which allowed these fires to begin. 

It is of no surprise that, globally, changes are happening. Movements which lead to a more sustainable way of life, such as plastic-free lifestyles, and veganism, are taking off, and the younger generations are at the forefront of change with consumers being more aware of the environmental impact of their purchasing decisions. In a 2019 interview with Bonnie Baker, co-founder of Green Spa Network and Satteva Spa and Wellness Concepts, stated simply that; “Failure to stop both production and consumption will cause untold human suffering and condemn polar bears, coral, and other species to extinction. It’s everyone’s obligation to do something about it. Every business is responsible for the future of our environment and planet.” But what can the spa industry do to better their own sustainability? 

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Monumental Turnout for the UKSA Spring Networking Event

Carden Park Image

Once again the UK Spa Association team smashed all previous attendance records at their completely sold out, highly successful, Spring Networking Event, held at Carden Park in Cheshire on 4th March, with additional opportunity for delegates to tour the opulent new £10 million spa. 

 

 

The UKSA events are increasingly gaining traction as the industry’s ‘must attend’ networking events; the spa professional gatherings where everyone ‘needs to be’ or seriously risk ‘missing out’, once again proved this, by being the largest one to date, despite fears that the Coronavirus outbreak could affect numbers. 

Carden Park welcomed guests, some who travelled from both Ireland and Scotland in order to attend, with a drinks reception and dinner, the evening prior. Well over x 200 senior level professionals and spa suppliers, enjoying the relaxed, social, yet educational format of the networking event, which took place the following day. A Spa Directors Assembly was also built into the schedule of the Spring Networking Event. 

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UKSA Launches SpaLine Online

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We’d like to thank so many of you who have reached out to the UK Spa Association for support and guidance regarding this Coronavirus pandemic. We would like to reassure you that we are liaising with our industry partners and organisations to provide you with as much regularly updated information as possible. A dedicated Covid-19 section has been added to our website and Spa Line Online has been launched. Via this particular Spa Line Online page, we have set up freely accessible links (from industry to financial) to resources (such as business planning) to help you understand the conversations happening around COVID-19, as well as advice and suggestions to keep your mental health in check and to upskill should you choose, whilst staying at home.

These are very challenging times for the UK spa industry and we will do our utmost to help our members adapt to a rapidly changing landscape. A starting point, is our website article, Keep the Spa Goer Ignited by Showing Them How to Spa at Home/ Be the Visible Spa Expert Via Video.  

Let us think to the future, now is a great time to sensitively highlight the value of your spa brand, particularly your products and any online services in order to raise awareness for the future. It’s possible that as a result of this current crisis, there will be a reawakening and a consciousness of people, who become much more appreciative of the incredible work you do, as self-care, health and wellbeing become their priority.

We update and regularly add to these articles, quick links (includes: self-employment income support scheme) and resources (for example: How to Use Zoom) located in the dedicated Covid-19 section, so please do keep checking our website to keep informed. 

https://www.spa-uk.org/covid-10/co

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TOGETHER WE COMBAT COVID-19


On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) named COVID-19 (the Coronavirus) a global pandemic, which is defined as when a new virus (such as SARS-CoV-2, or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, which causes COVID-19/Coronavirus) for which people do not have immunity spreads beyond world expectations.

While we already know that social distancing and self-isolation are our greatest chances at combatting the spread of the quickly evolving virus, we also know that for many, their anxiety and loneliness levels are at an all-time high.

With direct contact with clients and as a sociable industry that prides itself on making clients look and feel their best, this is the exact opposite as to how our industry operates.

For many personal trainers, the month of March can be the start of the great ‘get summer ready’ mentality and the beginning of a business period. However, with news of social distancing, many clients are not working out in gyms but rather their own homes whilst self-isolating.

However, some international advice has been that gym clients should try to avoid group sessions that don't allow for 6 feet of space between each person. Gym owners could also consider encouraging distancing for instance by spacing out people or machines in classes.

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Are you planting the seeds to grow your business beyond COVID-19 (CoronaVirus)?

Planting The Seeds

- By Helena Grzesk

 

Without a shadow of a doubt this is a time of much confusion.

There is widespread panic and apprehension amongst many of our spas, our teams and the wider consumer, our potential guests. 

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