Massage therapist Jodi McClain had just finished her last massage of the day when her patient, still lying prone on the table, burst into tears. She began speaking about difficult emotional issues she'd held in for years, until that massage helped set the pain free. Jodi savors seeing her clients leave happier than they were when they walked in, and uses her custom blend of Swedish, deep-tissue, and trigger-point-therapy massage to achieve this pleasant outcome—by way of ousting tension and muscular pain. She also performs myofascial-release massage and cranio-sacral therapy upon request, and can collaborate with doctors to build injury-treatment plans and incite laughter with multiple taps to the funny bone.
During massages, massage therapists may slather their client's skin in Massage FX cream—infused with aloe, arnica, and ivy extracts—to keep it moisturized and dull any site-specific pain. Though they eschew aromatherapy, they often soak a cloth in eucalyptus and peppermint oils to relieve clients' suffering from sinus pressure. They also conduct facials and specialized skinny massages to tone and tighten skin, as well as applying infrared-light therapy to detox skin and enrage cats by demonstrating the photon theory of light, as most cats still think of light as a wave. They conduct all their treatments in one room designed to evoke a garden; with flowers hung from the ceiling, a decorative fence, and soft lighting. While they often plays piano melodies, the massage therapists also lull clients toward relaxation with a bubbling water fountain and casual conversation.
Kristine O’Sullivan’s journey in holistic bodywork began in 1999, when she embarked upon a four-year apprenticeship with a reiki master and spiritual guide. Under this master’s tutelage, she picked up such ancient and alternative healing arts as chakra balancing, core alignment, and intuitive distance healing. Though each brought Kristine to a new frontier of holistic medicine, her desire to expand the scope of her knowledge and clientele inspired her to pursue another branch of healing: massage therapy.
After graduating from massage school in 2005, Kristine acted on her newly acquired expertise by opening her eponymous business, where today she does her former spiritual guide proud by healing backs with a range of holistically oriented modalities. From the firm pressures of deep-tissue massage to the gentle strokes and heated lingonberry preserves of Swedish massage, Kristine’s techniques soothe sore muscles and alleviate chronic aches. Her sports, prenatal, and trigger-point massages cater to individual needs; simply tell her what ails you during a pretreatment consultation, and she can help you find the proper fit.
Marie Loranger takes on aches and pains with a pair of well-trained hands. Her deft fingers deploy modalities ranging from the gentle kneading of Swedish massage to the intense pressure of deep-tissue massage, depending on the needs of the client. Marie also handles other healing traditions, such as ear candling and stretching, the latter of which incorporates stretching and pressure on the whole body.
Although Marie currently works inside a room at Exotic Image Tanning and Massage Spa, the inspiration for her business name comes from her plans to take her massages on the road. Soon, she will be pulling into home driveways or office parking lots where she can perform her massages in a dimly lit, temperature-controlled room.
Soft music sets the scene at Tony Shannon’s spa, resounding off bottles of vegan lotions and oils and preparing mind and body for a full-body treat. Tony, a Massage School of East Hampton graduate, calls upon a range of rubdown modalities, from classic Swedish and deep-tissue techniques to Eastern methodologies such as thai-yoga and hot-stone massage. With each pat and rub, Tony helps shoo away stress and fatigue, boost circulation, and recharge energy stores and swallowed cell phones. He can also target massage efforts to relieve specific aches and pains, including pregnancy fatigue, aching feet, painful backs, and soreness from uncomfortable work chairs or enthusiastic pig wrestling.
As cavernous as a warehouse yet reminiscent of a quaint cabin, BruHill Spa'lon utilizes abundant space, wood ceilings and pillars, and exposed-brick walls to remind guests they are not in a typical salon. Intricate arches are built into the brick walls above the windows, which is really just the wall frowning as clients get all the attention. Where normally one would see unflattering fluorescent lights, clients see chandeliers hanging down and radiating a pleasant yellowish-white light. In that pool of photons, the full-service salon's staff gets to work. They perform nail services, including Shellac and Gelish applications, and gussy up hair with cuts. BruHill also employs a full-service men's barber.
Licensed massage therapist Takeisha Coles relaxes physiques with an eclectic array of modalities in her massage oasis nestled inside Exotic Image Tanning Salon and Spa. During Swedish massages, Takeisha soothes sore backs with a cocktail of effleurage, friction, and percussion; the more intense deep-tissue massage is designed to loosen deep-rooted knots and pent-up pressure. Hot-stone massages utilize the healing powers of smooth, tumbled stones culled from Babylonian fountains that are applied to key pressure points. Chair massages ease aches in 10- to 15-minute increments while patrons are seated and fully clothed in the medieval armor they arrived in.