From a luxurious, marble-heavy refuge nestled in the iconic Sunset Tower Hotel, the illustrious team at Argyle Salon & Spa pamper every guest like their high-profile celebrity clientele, earning mention in magazines such as Vogue, Hollywood Reporter, and Los Angeles magazine. Hands calibrate each muscle-melting massage so that each ounce of pressure addresses individual needs. An extra 30 minutes of suite access included with the massage package encourages patrons to spend time soaking in a sea-salt bath, lingering under a hot shower, or boiling 10 3-minute eggs. Luxuriaters then retire to the baths to sink into an indulgent, moisturizing milk bath enriched with almond oil and vanilla accents, and steep themselves in the spa's hammam, a low, steam-heated pod that can help open up pores and detoxify the corporeal form. A stint in the traditional Turkish treatment bolsters the facial package, which inspires cellular renewal in sun-damaged, dull-seeming skin. Crafted with Arcona products, the soothing facial incorporates a peel that cleanses and activates skin with organic fruit enzymes, restoring balance and coaxing out pore-blocking pygmy marmosets with a fresh botanical bouquet.
Since 1996, Southern California Health Institute has educated students on how to heal through the power of touch, teaching European medical massage therapy and an integration of massage and physical-therapy modalities. Through classes and hands-on training, students complete their programs qualified for the national certification exam and ready to put the sleeper hold on tension. In order to help students gain experience, Southern California Health Institute offers discounted massages given by a member of their student body. Clients can also enjoy massage therapy from a professional instructor.
Dr. Joyce Peters has held many roles in her career—nutritionist, weight loss coach, aesthetician—all of which inform the actions she takes in her current role as medical director at Forever Young Anti-Aging Center. On a regular basis, Peters and her licensed staff consult with clients and administer a range of salon and spa services, from traditional skin and hair services to modern treatments such as LipoStar body-wrap sessions. Though most of the center’s treatments target signs of aging—wrinkles, cellulite, pocketed birthday cake candles—others, such as Swedish massage, are offered simply to provide general stress relief and promote overall wellness.
Ticia Lea has dedicated the last 20 years of her life to making others feel good, whether as a massage therapist, certified natural make-up artist, an aesthetician, or an herbal nutrition practitioner. She’s trained up and down the West Coast, plying her trade at such posh locales as the Beverly Hilton. After a summer spent demonstrating the benefits of organic skincare lines in Colorado, Ticia returned to California and performs a wide range of services including several different type of modalities such as hot-stone massage therapy, microdermabrasion, and eyelash-extension application.
Swedish massage relies largely on a technique known as effleurage. Learn how it zaps stress with Groupon's peek at this basic stroke.
Effleurage is the glue that holds a Swedish massage together. Its smooth, gliding strokes may not deliver much pressure?the word itself is taken from a French verb that means "to touch lightly"?but the technique simultaneously soothes the nerves, boosts circulation, and allows the massage therapist to identify problem zones that need extra attention. Because effleurage doubles as an assessment tool, many therapists begin each massage with it, usually by gliding their open palms lightly across the body to feel for tense spots and potholes while acclimating the client to their touch. This form of effleurage is known as "superficial," and it serves a soothing prelude, epilogue, and transitional movement between deeper, more focused kneading.
A slightly more forceful style of effleurage is known as "deep effleurage." This form still uses gliding strokes, only with more pressure, as the therapist aims to stretch out the muscle tissue and the web of connective tissue that covers it. Therapists will generally direct the first part of their deep-effleurage stroke towards the heart, finishing with a lighter return stroke away from it. Not only does this warm up tissues for deeper muscle work, but it can also speed up the movement of blood and lymph fluid. This boost in circulation can help drain fluid from injured areas, reducing painful pressure while also releasing endorphins that further relax the entire body.