A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas—its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries—Planet Beach Contempo Spa is a futuristic relaxation station where state-of-the-art machines administer all the spa and tanning services. These friendly automatons sometimes replace familiar treatments, as in the Luminous facial, a light-based service that delivers blemish-busting results similar to those of a conventional facial. But other equipment maps out new spa territory entirely: the Hydro-Derma Fusion chamber moisturizes the whole body with nutrient-rich steam in order to offset the effects of a dry climate or a rear-end collision with a salt truck. Other machines whiten teeth, spray tan skin, and massage muscles.
Planet Beach operates on a gym-style membership system, meaning that members purchase packages or pay flat monthly rates. As members spend more time at the spa, they get to know the helpful assistants who are always on hand to demonstrate how to use the equipment without activating its ability to cry.
At Pure Essentials Day Spa, therapist Yencid Hiller surrounds bodies in a 27-ingredient wrap that nourishes and detoxifies tissues. Just as an Italian mother swaddles her young in lasagna noodles, Yencid blankets clients in a quilt of herbs and allows each curative element to soothe and slim the figure. During the 90-minute treatment, clients lie supine in a serene pastel-colored room as toxins exit fat cells. After a cocooning, clients can lose upwards of 20 inches, resulting in a svelte figure that easily shimmies into packed elevators and tucks behind trees during hide-and-seek.
The licensed massage therapists at Massage Alaska vaporize stress with a menu of both soothing and rehabilitative body treatments acted out within a powder-blue room. The list of modalities extends from basic relaxation massage to more intense deep- tissue massage and myofascial release. Natural aids such as hot stones, warm canes of bamboo, and badgers with velvet gloves suffuse the homey studio with the serenity of the forest. Nail techs also groom men’s and women's fingers and toes, evincing Massage Alaska's dedication to hygiene by using disposable implements.
At Alaska Pain & Injury Clinic, Dr. Evan Tipikin straightens out crooked spines and wayward lifestyles with chiropractic care, massage therapy, and nutritional counseling. Though his list of services runs long, a single philosophy unites them all: no two bodies are quite the same. That’s why Dr. Tipikin insists on conducting a full evaluation each time he sees a new patient. During your initial visit, he may jot down notes on your reflexes as well.
Armed with that knowledge, the doctor and his team develop personalized plans to heal injuries and relieve chronic pains. Massage therapy and corrective exercises work to alleviate some of those bodily troubles, with the clinic's nutritional counseling and advice services helping patients reach the next level of fitness.
Stationed at her stress-free oasis inside Salon Glow, massage therapist Liz Morse draws on her extensive training and years spent working in a chiropractic office to dissipate tension with therapeutic massage techniques. Like a poorly trained team of synchronized swimmers, Liz changes her strokes constantly, mixing a variety of modalities into each of her therapy sessions. Her techniques range from flowing Swedish strokes to concentrated deep-tissue pressures, encompassing specialized methods that target neuromuscular junctions or melt away stress with heated bamboo. Along with her regular services, Liz triggers mutual relaxation with couples massages and tends to sore muscles on their own turf with in-home treatments.
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