Certified Natural Health Practitioner Victoria Bender, owner of Vscentials, integrates her ancient healing practices and cutting-edge modern technologies into custom treatment plans. In addition to shepherding bodies toward well-being with Swedish, deep-tissue, acupressure, and prenatal massages, she performs reflexology treatments on hands, feet, and ears as the therapeutic scents of essential oils waft through the air. During these reflexology sessions, she draws upon the time-honored idea that reflexes in the extremities can, like the undeniable rhythms of the Macarena, exert influence over the entire body. Otherwise, during more contemporary treatments, she relies on targeted microcurrents that she believes may have the power to rejuvenate sagging faces, alleviate chronic pain, and balance bodily energy flow. To ensure personalized service, she begins each appointment with a consultation to discuss unique physical maladies.
Tucked away in the historic Exchange Hall, Massage Sanctuary's skilled massage therapists use a diverse palette of bodywork techniques, along with a variety of healing arts workshops and classes, to try to improve the health of their clients. Massage Sanctuary director Julie Duffy traveled throughout India for almost two years, studying alternative natural therapies, which she now incorporates into her treatments. Massage therapist Emily DuRussel, meanwhile, has performed massages for Boston Marathon and Pan-Mass Challenge athletes, as well as for cancer patients through her specialized training in oncology massage. Massage Sanctuary also hosts workshops from visiting teachers in Taoist healing, yoga, and other treatments.
Owner Ali Bourgault’s signature deep-tissue and energy-balancing massage is a sample of the services offered at A Healing Vibration. After softening recalcitrant muscles with a blend of deep-tissue and Swedish massage kneads, Ali targets deeper problems, recalibrating bodily energies with a multipart regimen that includes reiki, polarity therapy, a foot soak, and a chakra clearing. Bourgault—a licensed massage therapist who has received certification for holistic massage and deep-tissue therapy from Spa Tech Institute—employs this blend of traditional and unorthodox techniques to help alleviate her clients’ pain, stress, and fatigue. To complement her holistic ways, she also makes dream catchers, jewelry, and skincare products that are crafted from natural and organic ingredients whenever possible.
Licensed massage therapists and aestheticians at Christine’s Day Spa know how to pamper their clients, but the spa’s service list reflects a greater goal: with 15 facials and peels, the staff has a far-reaching slate of aesthetic treatments with which it dedicates itself to vivifying its clientele's complexions. Their botanical extracts and cosmeceutical products help to boost collagen and minimize fine lines, slowing signs of aging without having to slather faces with molasses.
Massage therapists administer Hawaiian, reiki, and traditional European massages to relax muscles, and Christine’s Day Spa's UV and sunless tanning helps to burnish bodies with golden glows. An array of nail services exfoliate, moisturize, and polish fingers and toes. The spa is open after hours every weekday, and its interior unites floral arrangements with vivid orange and red sponge-painted walls for a warm ambiance.
For more than 18 years, the licensed practitioners at Harvard Therapeutic Massage have relaxed and healed patients suffering from stress, injury, and chronic pain. Each member of the team specializes in relaxation massage and pain relief therapy. The former uses oils and lotions with a combination of gliding, kneading, and stretching all over the body to help muscles unwind and put minds at ease, while the latter sees therapists focusing on trigger points, helping blood flow to contracted areas in order to bring relief to the surrounding nerves. Select members of the team are also specialized in styles of treatment such as hot stone massage, reiki, and pre-natal massage, which helps bring relief to expectant mothers and unborn babies tired of sitting in the same position for weeks on end.