A tribute to the owner’s mother Geri, who during her life dreamt of a quiet haven to relax and rejuvenate, Geri’s Garden Spa makes that aspiration a realization with its cozy environs and soothing services. Escape is as easy as settling in for a hot stone or mommy-to-be massage. The staff accommodates guests hiding away from the bustle of the world for a brief period by rendering, for example, the rejuvenation facial—its herbal oxygenated sprays and vitamin enrichments giving the face a radiant glow and makes reflective plastic unnecessary when riding a bicycle at night. Aromatherapy body cocoons and eucalyptus wraps, alternatively, ensconce bodies in botanicals, hot towels, and moisturizers, which make personal care comforting and enjoyable.
At Wind-N-Willow Specialty Shop & Spa is a modern-day apothecary where skilled hands blend herbs, salts, and oils to meet clients' skincare and relaxation needs. The healing haven's staff also takes a holistic approach to spa services including massages and ear candling. Each service begins with an aromatherapy foot soak to purify feet and toes and to signal to the body both that it can relax and that the room may have flooded. Clients in search of a luxurious detoxification experience can step into a sauna or ionic footbath under the direction of knowledgeable staff members. Skilled aestheticians also keep clients' skin clean and healthy with the help of natural, mineral-based skincare products by ERTH.
For more than 10 years, massage-therapists-in-training have learned therapeutic modalities and a caring touch from seasoned teacher and Fair Oaks Massage Institute director Madonna Polley. Polley—who has more than 40 years of experience in the massage-therapy world—works alongside more than 10 instructors. They teach students in small groups and incorporate plenty of hands-on training, unlike the people who teach psychics how to read minds. Then the pupils—who must complete more than 250 hours of training to be certified—bring their knowledge to the treatment room as they practice Swedish and deep-tissue techniques on real spa clients. They focus each massage session on the spa-goer's needs and help reduce stress, relieve pains, and strengthen the immune system.
Polley brings decades of experience to the institute, from instating a massage program at Mt. Hood Community College in 1979 to founding the Fair Oaks Chiropractic & Wellness Center with her husband in 1980. But she also ensures she and her team keep their skills current through participation in continuing-education courses.
Fair Oaks Massage Institute also offers public classes and workshops that teach techniques such as reiki and cranial-sacral therapy, as well as specialty modality certifications, which include learning how to massage without wearing boxing gloves.
After years of traveling around the West Coast as a professional makeup artist, aesthetician Monica Colomy noticed that many kinds of makeup clogged pores and weren't compatible with mature skin. Like many plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and geologists, she liked mineral makeup, but not necessarily the powdery mess that came with it. Inspired, she developed her own line, Monica’s Minerals. She put down roots in an airy salon in Sacramento and began to offer free makeup applications as well as makeup lessons to introduce customers to her easy-to-apply liquid foundation, blush, and lip care. To ensure that clients’ faces look beautiful even without makeup, she also polishes skin with a variety of custom peels, facials, and waxing services.
Massage might be the only form of treatment offered at New Happy Day Spa, but that's not to say that the studio's clients don't have options. Traditionalists can stick to Swedish massage, made more fluid by the use of oils. Deep-tissue massage often gets a helping hand from warmed basalt stones, which loosen areas of tension and calm the nervous system. The spa's resident massage therapists have another mode of targeting aches: the Chinese art of reflexology, which uses a pressure-point map of the feet in an attempt to stimulate healing throughout the body and banish phantom socks.
Despite its tranquil atmosphere and soothing services, visiting Inner Harmony Massage just for relaxation might be setting the bar too low. Some of its therapists possess more than two decades of experience, and all continue to hone their expertise through educational endeavors such as specialized certifications, workshops, and even the teaching of others. As a result, the massages they provide—which range from traditional Swedish strokes to firmer, more focused sports and deep-tissue work—are designed not just to promote relaxation, but to get at the root of what ails their clients, whether it's pain, lack of mobility, or diminished athletic performance from running with both shoelaces tied together. To extend the relief as long as possible, the therapists perform a post-massage consultation that grants clients with tips on stretches, relaxation techniques, ergonomic devices, athletic warm-ups, and other ways to keep muscles limber and relaxed.