By Kristin Hull
A community spa day can be just what your neighbors need after a hot summer day’s work. With a little pampering and a lot of relaxation, here are a few simple ideas that will make a big impact and have everyone begging for more.
The first order of business is to decide if you’d like to bring in experts or go the do-it-yourself route. Both have their advantages. While the former takes less work, it could cost more. The latter is inexpensive but requires a hands-on approach. Consider your invitees and go with whichever they’ll enjoy most.
Planning an in-house spa
If you seek professional services, contact local spas to ask if any of their staff members make house calls — many will be happy to accommodate. Also, be sure to check on your local licensing requirements. These days, everything from spray tans to facials can be done right in your living room. The most popular treatments though, are manicures, pedicures, and hand or foot massages.
Carolina Hernandez, esthetician for La Prairie at The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Central Park in New York City offers some valuable advice: “When booking a beauty pro, make sure they are going to bring all they need, and that you won’t have to prep or supply anything.”
On a budget? Don’t worry; simply offer one complimentary treatment to guests and provide them with a list of the other options (with prices included). They’ll get the hint, but will still be appreciative of the variety of treatments.
Do-it-yourself spa parties can provide a more active experience for guests. Hernandez recommends trying homemade face masks. (You can even make mixing the ingredients part of the party fun.)
Here’s how to make an exfoliating mask for your guests:
- Cut up a pineapple and mango; mash into a paste-like texture
- Apply to clean skin
- Leave on for 10 minutes (no eating!)
For a moisturizing mask, replace the ingredients with a blended paste of avocado and banana.
Lastly, set out a pretty tray containing manicure and pedicure items like cotton balls, nail polish remover, toe separators, a base coat, top coat, and a variety of polish colors.
Set the scene
To create a tranquil atmosphere, Hernandez suggests the following:
- Unplug yourself! In fact, unplug guests as well. Place an attractive bowl by your front door for everyone to place their cell phones in (with ringers off) for the duration of the party.
- Turn on soft music and light some scented candles. “Lavender is a good choice for relaxing and citrus is perfect for re-energizing, but the scent is ultimately up to you.”
- Prepare a refreshing beverage. Add sliced oranges, peaches, or even cucumber or mint to ice water before refrigerating. For those who’d like to imbibe a bit, mix orange juice with sparkling wine and serve in chilled glasses.