Top dry skin solutions, all under $30

Every year we like to compile a list of our current favorites for dry, chapped skin.  This year we have some new additions to the mix!

farmhouse-fresh-hydrationFarmhouse Fresh Plum Chiffon Balm: Pure Shea, cocoa and mango butters have been combined into a rich, solid, scrumptious all-purpose balm that melts into skin on contact, nourishing dry, chapped hands, knees, knuckles – even lips! This blend of butters is a highly effective skin conditioning formula that helps fight wrinkles through deep penetration of vitamins A & E. The Farmhouse Fresh team even suggests dabbing a bit to the outer eye area before bedtime, for a deep moisturizing sleep shield. I personally used it with socks last night when I realized I could exfoliate one foot with my other foot!This balm really does it all.  $12.50

Farmhouse Fresh Shea Butter Hand Creams: Shea butter and Vitamin E-packed Jojoba and Soybean oils calm even the severest of dry skin. We recommend the shea butters over the body milks for this time of year for a longer lasting burst of hydration. The purse size tube is just $14.

Farmhouse Fresh Honey Heel Glaze: Great for hands, feet, any dry patches! Use as a mask and remove after 15-20 minutes or leave on. Great to leave on overnight with an old pair of socks or do a home spa treatment and put your hands in saran wrap or baggies to let the mask work! One client had us order 10 of these so she can gift one to all of her friends for a “My Favorite Things” party theme. $25

Farmhouse Fresh Clementine Oil: Antioxidant rich Olive Fruit and Grapeseed oils combine with Orange Peel, Jojoba, Sunflower Seed and Apricot Kernel oils to nourish and calm the most sensitive of skin types.  Great for after the shower while pores are open OR a few pumps in the bath (just be careful getting out) so you don’t have to sacrifice your skin to enjoy a hot soak in the tub.$18

hspureinvPure Inventions Drink Mixes: Hydrate from within!  Pure inventions mixes are a great alternative to caffeine or alcoholic beverages (or to stay hydrated between them). Because these drinks are caffeine free, sugar free, and free of other icky ingredients, they are hydrating and satisfying! (I won’t lie, I make a big mug of the Cranberry Elderberry blend with a cinnamon stick and orange wedge and add a splash of Jameson for the best hot toddy ever…yes, you lose some of the health  benefits this way!) $28.95 (60 servings in a bottle)

hssolaroilSolar Oil Cuticle Oil: Hand cream is a must have, but it won’t quite do the trick to hydrate cuticles. A cuticle oil that is designed to penetrate better into the nail are than thicker balms should be used morning and night to help prevent painful hangnails and dry cuticles and that can open the way for infections. The mini bottle is just $2.50 so you can keep one in your car, one on your night stand, and at your desk!

hsraultraRhonda Allison Ultra Hydration Cream: This is a rich moisture cream that delivers and binds humectants within the skin. It contains the purest and most potent form of hyaluronic acid – L-Sodium Hyaluronate and Cassia Betaglycan (plant hyaluronic) to increase moisture by 300%. Hyaluronic Acid is said to be the principal water-regulating molecule and can bind up to 6,000 times its weight in water.  Because of this, it will keep skin hydrated all day or night, without going on heavy or oily. $15 for the trial size bottle.

evspa-133Book a visit! Need more than home care to ease your dry skin? Our favorite skin hydrating services are the Gong Fu Chai Body Scrub, our EV Signature Facial Experience, and the EV Signature Manicures and Pedicures. Our Seasonal Hydrating Honey Plum features are also designed with winter skin in mind!  To learn more or book your services, visit our website!

 

The value of professional skincare

acneLet’s say you are experiencing some skin break outs. Your first instinct might be to try the drugstore products you used in high school when you had teen acne, or to buy a full line of products at a home-party that is specifically labeled for acne. The problem with this approach is that breakouts, like many skin concerns, can’t be treated with a “one size fits all” approach. Without knowing the cause (stress, diet, hormones, bacteria, medications, etc…), breakouts are hard to treat and prevent.  A licensed esthetician can help you get to the root of the problem, whether acne, hyperpigmentation, dry skin, etc… to address it with a customized approach.

Licensed estheticians are professional skin care experts.  In Iowa, an esthetician is required to have a minimum of 600 hours of training in skin health, anatomy and physiology, chemistry, ingredients, and hands-on treatment techniques before they can sit for a licensing exam that allows them to provide facials, skin education, waxing, and powerful “professional only” treatments like chemical peels.  Once licensed, they must continue their education regularly.

With an abundance of professional skincare lines and more advanced ingredients at their disposal, Estheticians have the ability to mix and match products to provide the most customized treatments for ideal results. Many estheticians invest much time and training to select the best professional line for their clients, paying close attention to ingredients, effectiveness, ease-of-use, cost, and complementary services like chemical peels to help maximize benefits.

A few of the benefits customers might expect with a professional use line:

  • Greater ability to customize products for desired results.
  • May need LESS product due to higher level of active ingredients
  • More pure ingredients for more potent results
  • Similar price points to mass-marketed or direct sales lines due to less money spent advertising to mass-markets. The savings are passed on to you!
  • Advice from a professional who has had extensive training in product chemistry
  • The ability to combine home care with professional treatments like facials or peels for more intensive results

At East Village Spa, another benefit of using a professional skin care line is a professional BEHIND the line.  Not only will you have access to our estheticians for advice via e-mail, phone, or in-person, but our estheticians have direct access to those who formulate their products and thousands of their licensed peers for advice on particularly difficult skin care situations.  We have even been able to submit (with client permission!) skin histories and photos to product educators to “crowd source” a perfect solution for unique cases from advanced professionals.

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Too good to be true?

We’ll be honest: Professional skincare takes work.  Your skin won’t likely become perfect overnight and your skin’s needs are always changing, but your esthetician will help guide you as your needs change, from pregnancies, life stress, new medications, seasonal changes and aging.  Like exercise, you have to stick with it and be diligent to create change.  You can’t go to the gym once and expect to your biceps to swell overnight!

Ready to learn more? 

Set up an appointment for a facial with any of our licensed estheticians who are happy to help you learn more about professional skin care and offer you a service that is not only super relaxing, but really informative.  Click here to schedule or e-mail EVSpaDesk@gmail.com if you aren’t sure which facial is right for you.

 

Casey tries our Gong Fu Chai Body Scrub

Casey Melhus, our Front Desk Assistant!Casey, one of our amazing Guest Service Assistants, was fairly new to spa services when she started with us, but she’s been enjoying “sampling” all of our services and will be contributing to the Spa Newbie section of our blog.

From Casey:

Being a newer employee working the front desk at East Village Spa, I have the opportunity to be the practice “body” for our awesome service providers to try out services they haven’t performed at the spa.  My most recent endeavor was getting to be a practice body for three of our newer team members to learn about our Gong Fu Chai Body Scrub.

Before working at the spa, I had personally never heard of a body scrub, as I’m new to the spa scene.  After taking part in the training session, I know know that the service entails a stress-relieving and circulation massage, while incorporating the Gong Fu Scrub.  The therapists alternated between a body oil application and the scrub.  I absolutely loved the difference of feeling a smooth rub, followed by a coarse rub, and finished with a warm towel.  It as more relaxing than I ever anticipated.

After the service, my skin was noticeably softer.  Any anxiety I had felt when we started had completely faded away.  Although it is not a deep tissue massage, I still felt my body and muscles had relaxed as well.  I would recommend this service to anyone wanting to relax and have their skin exfoliated at the same time.  It is definitely something I will schedule for myself again!

To learn more about our Gong Fu Chai Scrub, check out our You Tube Video where Hannah demonstrates elements of the scrub on one of our employees.  The scrub treats skin on the back, arms, legs, and feet and can be upgraded to include a 30 minute facial or 30 minute focused back massage.

Book your Gong Fu Chai Scrub online here!

Aloha Summer 2016 Specials Coming Soon!

Our long-awaited summer specials announcement is here!  This year we were inspired by island travel, cocktails on the patio, and barefoot afternoons in the grass.  Aloha summer specials are available June through August 2016.  You can book prior to June 1st by calling (515) 309-2904 and after June 1st online or by phone.

Maui Glow Facial: 60 minutes, $85 M-F(Weekday Special Price), $90 Sat

While you’ll feel like you’re relaxing on an island, the hard-working extracts of hibiscus flowers and fruits like pineapple will help to hydrate and brighten your skin while providing powerful antioxidant support.  This is an ideal facial for summer skin damage.

Patio Fiesta Massage: 60 minutes, $85 M-F(Weekday Special Price), $90 Sat

Celebrate summer with this fun and relaxing full body massage that includes the added benefits of agave nectar massage oil, a citrus scrub for your back, followed by a hydrating avocado back mask to nourish hard-to-reach skin on your back while your therapist massages your legs.  This massage pairs perfectly with a day spent relaxing on the patio!

Farmhouse Fresh hydrating and refreshing “Guac Star” avocado mask

Flip Flop Foot Massage: 50 Minutes, $65 M-F(Weekday Special Price), $70 Sat

Standing at music festivals, running races, or walking at the fair can stress your soles!  This indulgent foot massage includes a coconut milk towel wrap, citrus grass scrub, and fresh melon foot massage that incorporates elements of deep tissue, reflexology, and hot stone massage.

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Farmhouse Fresh Citrus Grass Scrub

 

Book YOUR Aloha spa getaway by calling (515) 309-2904 before June 1st or booking online after June 1st.  Services are available June 1 through August 31, 2016.  We can’t wait!

3 counterintuitive skin care facts your esthetician wants you to know

Our estheticians want to shed light on a few common misconceptions about skincare.  It is easy to see why people get confused because these ideas are sometimes completely counterintuitive!

Myth: The best way to treat excessively oily skin is by drying it out.

Truth: While it seems like drying out oily skin is the best route, skipping moisturizer or using a harsh toner to try to dry skin can actually strip natural oils from the skin causing the skin to over-produce oil to protect itself.  The best option to hydrate oily skin is a serum or gel moisturizer.  These products will absorb quickly and skin won’t “panic” and produce even more oil.

Serums or gels, like the Rhonda Allison Blushed Wine Gel are great light moisturizers to hydrate oily skin.

Serums or gels, like the Rhonda Allison Blushed Wine Gel are great light moisturizers to hydrate oily skin.

Myth: Acids are harsh chemicals and aggressive on skin

Truth: The acids we use in skincare are naturally derived and vary in strength and benefit.  For example, Hyaluronic Acid, which may sound scary, is naturally occurring in the body in synovial (joint) fluid and in the eye.  This acid is used in products to plump and hydrate skin and some medical professionals recommend this for wound and burn healing.  Lactic acid is derived from milk and is beneficial for dry, mature skin and is often used to exfoliate without over-drying.  Some acids are more potent, but just because a product or ingredient is labeled an “acid” doesn’t mean it is scary.

Cassie getting a light facial peel using a variety of acids from our esthetician, Cammie.

Cassie getting a light facial peel using a variety of acids from our esthetician, Cammie.

 

Myth: If you have true acne, you need a good facial (or body) scrub to help unclog pores.

Truth: True acne occurs when excess skin cells, oil, and debris clog pores, potentially leading to infection.  Using a mechanical scrub over acneic skin may spread bacteria and increase inflammation, worsening the problem.  Depending on the severity of the acne, a chemical exfoliation (don’t let the word “chemical” scare you!) is best.  For example, glycolic or salicylic acids, applied topically as recommended by your esthetician or dermatologist, will help to break down skin cells and excess oil without spreading bacteria or increasing irritation.

Gritty scrubs like those pictured can spread bacteria and further inflame acneic skin.

Gritty scrubs like those pictured above can spread bacteria and further inflame acneic skin. It is best to stick with an acid based exfoliation instead of a manual exfoliation during a breakout.

If you have questions about your skin care or want to find out whether or not something you read online or heard from a friend is accurate, ask your esthetician!  To schedule a facial for an in-depth consultation and treatment, click here.

Cassandra’s Peel Experiences

Today we’re featuring guest blogger, Cassandra Lacina-Griffin, one of our estheticians and Rhonda Allison expert. Cassandra has been enjoying our peels and wanted to share her experiences so far to provide information to people who aren’t sure what to expect in regards to peel services and advice for people who are newer to peels and corrective skin care.  Cassandra also shared a collage of photos to show some of the peeling she’s experienced (above).

From Cassandra:

CassandraI developed adult acne when I was 19 and have struggled to find the right products. I have been under the care of a dermatologist for the past few years treating my acne with a topical cream. I’ve to stop using the cream for some time now because it’s harsh and drying.  While on the cream, I’ve been unable to use many of the corrective Rhonda Allison products. I’m love the Rhonda Allison line and said “that’s it I’m done!” No more prescription cream.

I decided to start doing the RA peel for acne. Chemical peels are great to help clear up acne and refine the pores also to help with scaring or hyper pigmentation. The peel Camille and I chose to use on my skin is a bit intense. There is a strong burning/tingling sensation but it doesn’t last long. I started out slow and I’m working my way into stronger peels.

After receiving several peels, I have realized in my peel process that it is best to take extra time after the appointment. My second peel stung a bit longer than the first but after drinking some water and sitting for 10-15 minutes I was fine. Plan ahead before you book a peel. Your skin will not peel with every application but the deeper the peel  the more your skin will peel. Another thing is that the deeper the peel the longer it takes your skin to peel. So plan ahead so that you don’t have any major events or parties while your skin is peeling.

I have found it beneficial to not wear makeup while my skin is peeling. It just allows me to apply extra recommended soothing creams and the cucumber spritz as needed. The hardest part of the peel process for me is avoiding picking the peeling skin. It is the worst thing you can do after a peel! I know you may want to “help” the peeling along but it is best to just leave it. You may end up peeling to much causing it to be even more tender and red or causing scarring. If you are treating acne with a peel be aware it’s completely normal for the skin to purge. Trust that it will heal up quickly revealing soft, fresh, glowing skin!

EastVillageSpaFacialsIf you’d like to learn more about peels and you already have an esthetician at East Village Spa that you’ve seen in the last two months for a facial, give us a call to schedule a peel.  If you haven’t been in to an esthetician at the spa or it has been over 2 months, book any facial (Wellness, EV Signature, or even our express 30 minute facial) for them to assess your skin and goals to help you determine a peel plan that will be safe and effective for you!

Click here to schedule your next facial online to get more information about our peel services!

Giving Thanks

Our massage therapists, estheticians, and management team have much to be thankful for.  We get to work in a (mostly) peaceful space with lovely music and candles, fun products, and caring colleagues.  We have the privilege of treating clients and getting to know and care about many like family over the years.  Most of all, we get to see guests become relaxed, serene, and unburdened, even if only for a moment.  In our busy, plugged-in world, that is truly the biggest blessing of all.

Camille Arbegast, Managing Esthetician

From Camille: I am thankful for not only being able to help my clients relax and ease their mind, but for being able to see the positive changes in their skin over time as we address their struggles and concerns.

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From Jamee: I’m thankful for the autonomy to use my knowledge (in massage and healthcare) to my clients’ best advantage.

 

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From Katie: I am thankful I can make people feel better about themselves and hopefully be a bright spot in their day.

 

webteresaFrom TeresaI am grateful for all the wonderful people I get to work with: co-workers and clients alike.

 

 

CelesteBrightonHS2From Celeste: I’m thankful for the unlimited resources and knowledge my co-workers have, and for the opportunity to find out more about the lovely people we take care of.

FullSizeRender(1)From Cyerra: I’m thankful to work with a talented and and welcoming group of people who inspire me every day!

 

Happy thanksgiving from our spa family to your family.

Get to know Cyerra Kemp, Licensed Esthetician and Nail Technician

Cyerra Kemp joined our team in 2015.  Her infectious laughter fills the spa and we honestly don’t know how our team survived without Cyerra! She’s got a fun style and her clients love that she can always make them laugh during the more sensitive services like Brazilian waxing. She is a very detail-oriented nail technician and mentors new co-workers. She’s incredibly dedicated to her career and her clients.

How long have you been in the industry?

I graduated from PCI’s nail tech and esthetics programs in 2015. I’ve been working at East Village Spa since.

What are your specialties?

Shellac (I can do precise French tips and fun nail art if you book the extra time!), Brazilian waxing, and acne facials.

Why did you get into this industry?

I love making people’s nails beautiful and showing my creativity through nails.  I get joy from helping others feel good after a long day.

Describe your treatment style in 3 words:

Passionate, comfortable, caring

What is your favorite service to give?

Hydrafacials. Brazilian waxing, Shellac manicures

What is your favorite service to receive?

Hydrafacial

What is your favorite retail product?

Rhonda Allison Growth Factor Serum-It helps with healing acne and lesions. I also love the Rhonda Allison Arnica Therapy. I call that the miracle cream.

What do you do in your free time?

I enjoy spending time with my family and four children. We love to go swimming and go to the movies.

Why should guests visit YOU

I have an infectious laugh and fun personality. If you want nail art, I’m your girl! (Note: Cyerra is TOO modest. Her clients adore her and can’t wait to see her. She’s like a BFF they can’t wait to catch up with).

What are clients saying about Cyerra?

“Cyerra was the best spa technician I have had yet. My experience with her makes it worth driving past many other salons to visit East Village Spa.”

“I love Cyerra and she gives fab pedicures and we always have fun catching up.”

“Cyerra is a seriously amazing esthetician. She has the best, most bubbly personality, and her jokes are welcome and hilarious, too. Cyerra always does a great job on nails, and I get tons of compliments. I loved following her on instagram, and I always tell people she’s my favorite. If I’m going to book online, I always look for her name first! Cyerra is a huge reason I’ve kept coming back to the East Village Spa! ”

To book an appointment for a with Cyerra, click here!  If you want to add nail art, please add an upgrade for french tips or Rockstar Nails so that ample time is allowed. To mark your booking as a request, select “Specific Therapist” option from the drop down menu, then her name.

 

 

Check out our fall favorites!

Whether you need jewelry or nail polish to complement your favorite fall sweater, a unique host or hostess gift for Halloween and Thanksgiving gatherings, or want something sweet, spicy and delightful to nourish your skin, we have the perfect fall finds in our gift shop!

  1. Caramel Lovers Rejoice!

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The Backcountry Caramel Body Milk and Triple Shot Caramel Coffee Scrub are retail favorites every fall.  This year we’ve incorporated them into some of our seasonal services.  Don’t forget to stop up at the desk for your complimentary caramel truffle after your services (we know you’ll be craving one!)

2. Zoya Fall Nail Polishes

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These fun colors are available in full size bottles ($9) and mini bottles ($5) and are perfect to complement your favorite fall boots and sweaters!

3. Morphew Designs Jewelry

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Heather, the designer behind Morphew Designs Jewelry, lives in Central Iowa and regularly updates her collection of earrings and necklaces at the spa.  She’s also happy to do custom orders and has a fast turnaround time.

4. Pure Inventions Cranberry Elderberry Drink Mix

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Pro tip! Mix the cranberry elderberry drink mix into hot water and add a cinnamon stick, orange peel and cloves for a delicious and healthy no-cal alternative to heavy holiday punches and ciders.

5. Pumpkin for your skin

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Pumpkin is a popular skin care ingredient because it contains vitamin A, which soothes and softens skin, and antioxidant rich Vitamin C. Our Farmhouse Fresh Splendid Dirt Mask includes pumpkin puree and our Rhonda Allison Pumpkin Cleanser is a best-seller.  Both are suitable for many skin types, but ask your esthetician if you aren’t sure.

6. Hot Spiced Rum

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Farmhouse Fresh Butter Rum Sugar Scrub is a year-round favorite, but the Spiced Rum and Bunny Slippers Cozy Candle is a new product just in time for crisp fall evenings. Also perfect as a hostess gift for Halloween or Thanksgiving gatherings!

East Village Spa Partners with the Beacon of Life Shelter

East Village Spa has partnered with the Beacon of Life Women’s Shelter to provide free facials and skin care products to help the shelter’s residents learn what it feels like to relax and be cared for, in addition to developing a skin health routine that is attainable and manageable.

The Beacon of Life serves women who do not have a safe place to reside or who need support in their housing.  Many of their clients come directly from incarceration and The Beacon programming focuses on helping them with employment, financial stability, mind/body wellness, and recovery.  When the licensed estheticians at East Village Spa decided to partner with an organization to help educate and nurture women, the Beacon was a natural choice.

Julie Hewitt, Case Manager at the Beacon of Life said that in addition to not feeling worthy of self-care, the women at the shelter have skin care concerns unique to their situation.  Hewitt describes advanced signs of aging due to drug use and stress.  She adds, “I see a lot of acne, wrinkles, dry skin, and pock marks from scabbing.”

Cassie Sampson, owner of East Village Spa, says “I believe working in a spa environment, we take skin care for granted, but we know that when our skin looks healthy and we feel worthy of being cared for by others, we gain confidence. We hope a boost in confidence helps the residents who are making positive life changes like starting a new career or reconnecting with family.”

Both East Village Spa’s employees and the team at The Beacon of Life shelter hope that the women come away from their spa experience with a sense of relaxation and feel that they are valued and important.