So you think you want a Brazilian wax?

Thank you to our guest contributor (who shall remain nameless) for a “Real woman’s” account of her first Brazilian wax.

Have you ever thought such things as:

“A lot of people I know get Brazilian waxes, there must be something to it!?”

“I hate shaving my bikini area. A lot.”

“I have waxed my eyebrows a million times, a Brazilian wax can’t be THAT bad, right?”

“I haven’t shaved in so long, I might never shave again…”

Dramatization of tropical vacation to protect the author’s identity. Actual events included lots of empty cocktail glasses.

These thoughts are what eventually talked me into getting my first Brazilian wax. I had returned from a fantastic tropical vacation, which forced me to keep things trimmed up “down there”, because that’s what we ladies like to do when we are in swimwear. And each morning I went to tackle this issue, I grumbled and complained to myself about how much I absolutely despised shaving this area! The angles, the tiny razor nicks, the razor BURN! Why on earth WOULDN’T I try waxing!

When I returned home, the temperatures topped out at 30 degrees for a couple weeks, I became lazy and had no need to shave. I can’t be the only one right? A little over 4 weeks from when I returned from the beautiful tropics, I decided I was going to take the plunge. I scheduled my first ever Brazilian wax at the spa one morning while I was at work. I didn’t even flinch. I had 3 days to prepare my nerves, which were oddly nonexistent. I talked worriedly to probably every esthetician we have on staff about my concerns, and always received the typical “It’s really not that bad” response. So for the last 2 days leading up to the procedure, I was ready. It can’t be that bad. It just can’t be. I’m sure it seems to last 5 minutes, and you’re done, and everything is smooth and great and the world’s a better place!

Fast forward to brave little me, lying in the treatment room, awaiting the first “pull”. When that first pull happened I realized, I wasn’t ready. Nothing could have prepared me for this! How on earth is this classified as “not that bad”!? I now completely understand the “AHH KELLY CLARKSON” situation in The 40 Year Old Virgin. Holy smokes.

I spent a bit of time trying to figure out how I had made such an extreme mistake on my expectation of the pain vs. the actual pain. I realized the reason I initially thought it was so incredibly terrible was because I had absolutely no expectations whatsoever. I had no clue it would hurt on that level, because in my mind I thought, “how bad can pulling a few hairs out really be? My eyebrows aren’t terrible…” In reality, it is pulling hundreds of hairs out at once, so of course it’s going to hurt! A lot.

However, within about 10 seconds the discomfort is completely gone. With each pull, it became more and more bearable. I was in and out of the treatment room in under 30 minutes! We do book the treatment for 40 minutes here at the spa, but sometimes it can take much less or a little more time. It just depends on the person, the hair growth, etc. Brazilian waxes can only be done with at least ¼ inch of hair growth. If you arrive for your appointment and your hair is not long enough, the therapist will let you know. Typically this is about 4 weeks of hair growth, but can definitely vary depending on the person. It has been 2 weeks since my wax and I have almost no regrowth at all. I could literally attend a last minute pool party comfortably. (Granted, it’s still March… in Iowa… so a last-minute pool party is not likely.)

I had no discomfort after the treatment, aside from one tiny ingrown hair that lasted about a day. There was no rash, no “razor burn”, really no discomfort at all afterwards. These are the reasons I am now a forever Brazilian wax receiver. Any amount of discomfort felt during the treatment could never outweigh the amazing outcome of receiving it.

If our guest writer has you convinced that a Brazilian wax is really “not so bad” you can click here to book yours online! Have more questions! Click here for another post on waxing.

More Waxing FAQs: Your most delicate questions answered!

Our friend Colleen from Star 102.5 and I chatted this week about how it seems like all of a sudden lots of women our age (and quite a bit older) are starting to get bikini and Brazilian waxes regularly.  Colleen invited her East Village Spa esthetician Camille to visit with her on air to share a few pointers with her listeners who might be considering getting waxed for the first time.

We wanted to share the info with you too since we didn’t have time to cover it all on-air. Plus we know that your most burning questions might have been to delicate for a morning radio show. Listen for their chat on the Ken, Colleen, & Kurt show mornings the week of July 7th!

Colleen, Camille, and Cassie in the studio

Colleen, Camille, and Cassie in the studio

Q: Isn’t bikini waxing just for twenty-somethings?

A: Maybe that used to be the case, but we see lots of women who are older, even grandmas, in for regular maintenance bikini and Brazilian waxes!  First of all, hair starts to migrate as we age so while someone might not have felt the need to wax at 22, they might notice more hair creeping further down their legs in their 30s or 40s. Second, women wax for many reasons, whether because they like the look or they like not worrying about stray hairs when they wear a swimsuit.  We find it is popular with busy moms and athletes who feel like they get less irritation from workouts like running and biking without hair.  Shaving is really hard on the skin so many women are just ready to be done with razor burn.

Q: Does waxing hurt?

A: Yes! But we all agree that the more you wax, the less it hurts.  Your skin becomes used to it and your hair grows back finer over time.  A product like the Relax and Wax “no scream cream” applied 45 minutes before a wax service can help dull the sensation. Most of us feel like waxing hurts way less than painful razor burn.

Q: I’ve shaved forever, do I actually need to grow out my hair to wax?

A: According to Camille, you will need at least 1/4 inch of hair for the wax to work (most people can do this in 2 weeks). If your hair has grown 3-4 weeks, you’ll get a better result because the hairs on a different growth cycle will have had time to catch up.

Q: What about my “backside?” Do people really wax that?

A: The majority of people who get Brazilian waxing wax the back side as well. To quote our esthetician Hannah “It looks odd if you wax the front and not the back.”  Camille and Hannah both have been waxing many years guessed that 95% of Brazilian wax clients opt to wax backside during a Brazilian.

Hannah said that first-timers are most freaked out about the backside before their visit, but all of our estheticians agreed it is the easiest spot for them to wax, and the least painful for the client.  Hannah also wanted to reassure self-conscious guests that in 6 years of waxing she has seen lots of rear ends and the space between the cheeks looks about the same on every single woman and this is no big deal for your esthetician.

Q: Do I need to get on all fours if they wax my backside?

A: At East Village Spa, our estheticians prefer having the client stay on their back but bring their knees up to their chest when doing the backside.  They only use the “all fours” or other methods like side-lying for reaching the backside for women who can’t bring their knees to their chest (for example, someone who has had a hip replacement or who is farther along in a pregnancy).

Q: Is the esthetician there when I undress?

A: No, you will have privacy to disrobe from the waist down and your esthetician will leave you with a cleansing wipe to thoroughly clean the area to be waxed. You’ll be able to drape yourself with a towel for modesty while she re-enters the room, but she will remove the towel while she’s working.

Q: Is it weird for the esthetician doing my wax?

A: Camille said this is the number one question her first-timers ask and she has been waxing for years and sees it as a part of her job to help people with skin care and grooming, very much like it is normal for a doctor to examine and treat people. Camille typically sees 10 or more bikini and Brazilian (mostly Brazilian) wax clients each week; sometimes 50% of the services she provides in a typical week are waxing services!  She knows her clients appreciate her fast, safe, and professional services and she’s happy to be able to provide something that helps women.

One of our waxing rooms

One of our waxing rooms

 

For more information, check out the Waxing FAQs section on our website here.

Have other questions about female waxing or ready to schedule? Give us a call at (515) 309-2904 or book online here!

 

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!

The Spa Newbie gets her first CND Shellac Manicure!

Our awesome summer intern, Alyssa, has had her final “Spa Newbie” experience with us, the CND Shellac Manicure.  We feel like she’s graduated to spa expert status over the summer and will miss her! Here’s what she had to say about her manicure:

*****

I have had my fair share of manicures at the local spas.  I don’t normally like up keeping my own nails, so when I got the chance, I would find myself getting a gel-polish manicure.  Every place I had been to, I felt as if I was sitting in the chair for hours.  By the time I walked out of there, I wondered why I even went.  At that point in time I wasn’t too thrilled going to the salons anymore.  I felt like I exhausted my limits and decided it was something I could do on my own.

I went out and decided to go buy my own imitation “shellac” kit.  At first I thought it was the greatest thing in the world.  I could paint my nails once a week and I wasn’t concerned about money and the time spent at a salon.  Eventually, I noticed that my cuticle beds were no longer healthy and my nails in general were in very poor shape.  My manicure polish would only stay on for 3 days maximum.  I have tried dozens of times to fix this but never have been able to make it last very long.  I haven’t pulled out my kit in almost 4 months now.  I will bring it out occasionally to give myself a manicure before a weekend trip.  I do not think I will ever be pleased with my own at-home manicures.  They never have that professional look.

I had the pleasure of receiving a CND Shellac manicure from Hannah.  She did not use any products or water first and did a dry manicure.  This included shaping the nails, pushing back the cuticles etc… Then she applied a base, two layers of color, and then the top coat.  Then she used an alcohol cloth to remove the sticky layer.  The last step was applying the Solar Oil on my cuticles to make sure they were nice and moisturized.  I chose a bright pink shade that seemed fitting for the summer.  I was very surprised how easy she made it look and how fast it was to accomplish a great shellac manicure.  This was the perfect amount of length for me to be able to enjoy it to the fullest.

Alyssa's nails right after her CND Shellac Express Manicure with Hannah

Alyssa’s nails right after her CND Shellac Express Manicure with Hannah

I never had been to a place where there was CND shellac before.  This is a non-gel which doesn’t damage the nails like all the other polishes out there.  I have found that this is one of the best polishes that I have come across and wouldn’t go back to any other brand.  It has been over a week now and it looks just as good as it did when they were first done.  With my always on the go lifestyle, I found it amazing that I haven’t had one chip yet.

Alyssa's CND Shellac manicure 8 days later, still looks amazing!

Alyssa’s CND Shellac manicure 8 days later, still looks amazing!

I am very impressed with my manicure and 110% would recommend it to anyone and everyone.  The quality of service I have received with each individual service since being here at East Village Spa, has been superb.  Everyone here is so professional and makes you feel cared for.  I have been to no place like it and I’m not sure I could ever go back to the places I had gone to in the past. I’m a big fan.

*****

Best wishes to Alyssa and we’ll look forward to meeting future interns and introducing them to the spa!

The “Spa Newbie” gets her first professional massage!

Our Intern Alyssa has I have only had two massages before receiving our summer special, the one-hour “Massage on the Rocks” treatment with our therapist Tiffany.  Both of Alyssa’s previous massages were done by students so this was her first professional treatment.  She had the “tough” job of getting her first REAL massage and writing about it for her internship.  Here’s what she thought:

Massage on the Rocks Products

Massage on the Rocks Products

I had only had two massages before getting the Massage on the Rocks at East Village Spa (a one-hour full body massage that incorporates warm and cool stones, Farmhouse Fresh Agave Nectar, and Farmhouse Fresh Watermelon Basil Vodkatini back scrub).

This massage was different from the others because I have only gone to massage schools where I didn’t feel a professional mannerism. I felt at ease with my Massage Therapist, Tiffany.  In the first few minutes she checked with me to make sure that the pressure was just right.  I had a knot underneath my shoulder blade for quite some time.  She used more pressure in that area to work it out.  She also used hot and cold stones which was definitely my favorite part.

The atmosphere at the spa is very relaxing. I felt completely comfortable just resting quietly and not having to speak.  They allow you to get undressed at your own comfort level and  I had no problem doing so. I am the type of person who always thinks of what I need to be doing next. I don’t know that I could fully shut my mind off but it was the closest thing to peace I have had in a long time.  At one point I believe I fell asleep.  I want to go back for another one just thinking about it!

After getting the Massage on the Rocks I would like to try the Two Feet Deep or Athletic Edge Sports massage next.  It would be fun to compare different techniques and finding the best fit for me.

Envious of Alyssa’s great massage?  You can book your OWN Massage on the Rocks through the end of August.  Just click here to go to our online scheduler.  Stay tuned for Alyssa’s last “Spa Newbie” post coming soon…next she tries a Shellac manicure!

The Spa Newbie Gets a Facial!

We put our intern, Alyssa’s next spa service to test out to a vote and by a close margin, our Facebook fans (and ALL of our estheticians!) suggested she try our EV Signature Facial.  Here’s what Alyssa had to say!

***

Spa Intern Alyssa relaxes during her first ever Facial at East Village Spa

Spa Intern Alyssa relaxes during her first ever Facial at East Village Spa

The votes came in and I was chosen to try the EV Signature Facial Experience.  The past few years I started to struggle with dry skin and am constantly having to apply moisturizer.  I’m secretly happy (I guess not so secret now) that this is what was selected by all of you!  I have always wanted to get a facial, but never knew where to go.

Never having a facial before, I was not sure what to expect.  Camille used a light on my face to see what problems were going on that can’t be seen by the naked eye.  She was able to adjust the treatment specifically towards my skin care needs.  She used a Clarisonic for a deeper clean and to make the skin more receptive to the products.  I also had steam, which helped to detoxify the skin and soften pores for easier extractions.

Not only did this facial include attention to my face, but I also received treatment to my arms, hands, face, neck, and feet.  Camille explained each process with me and it was nice to understand why.  With this, I was able to understand what type of home care I needed to use.

Camille explained whether you have sensitive or problematic skin, facials are great for deep cleansing and exfoliation.  They stimulate new cell growth for a fresher, younger look.  She recommends to come in every 3-4 weeks so your estheticians can monitor your skin changes and adjust at home care accordingly.

The arsenal of products that Camille, Alyssa's Esthetician, chose to use on her skin.

The arsenal of products that Camille, Alyssa’s Esthetician, chose to use on her skin.

After receiving the facial, I noticed that my skin appears much healthier looking, more moisturized, which made the expression lines on my forehead less defined.  The treatment left my skin feeling very smooth and silky.  I highly recommend the EV Signature Facial Experience.  I’m a believer.  It was truly what my skin was looking for.

Be sure to check out my next blog when I will be spending the day as a Massage Therapy Student at the school where Cassie teaches!

***

Are you inspired to try a facial?  Click here to book your own EV Signature Facial Experience and meet with one of our skilled and relaxing estheticians.

The Spa Newbie Gets a Pedicure!

Alyssa, our intern from Grandview

Alyssa, our intern from Grandview

Blog post by Grandview Business Student and Spa Intern, Alyssa:

As a business management student, I never thought I would find myself in a day spa yet alone interning at one.  I grew up in a town of less than 130 people, so there were not many amenities to be found.  A great opportunity arose and I will be working at East Village Spa for the summer.  One of the perks about being at a spa is getting to try out the services they have to offer.

I was ready to bust out the sandals for the summer but my feet have seen better days. A pedicure was calling my name. Cassandra was my nail technician and she used the watermelon basil vodkatini scrub and then then for the foot massage, ginger sorbet lotion. I can’t express how great the foot rub was; it was the ultimate relaxation. I chose Vinylux Tropix as my color. I am all about the bright pinks for the summer months.

As a newbie, I have only had experienced two pedicures. I’ve been to places that made me stick my feet into whirlpool chairs. I noticed that East Village Spa used a foot bath instead so I got a little curious as to why. I learned that whirlpool chairs are not sanitary and can cause infections if the jets are not cleaned properly. The spa uses a clean disposable liner which is sterile. They also use single use nail kits which you can take home with you. You can really tell the spa cares about health safety.

Overall, I loved the experience and am very glad I got to start off the summer with some fresh sandal ready feet. I am eager to try other services during my time here like the Skin Renewal Peel and EV Signature Massage. I feel very lucky that I was able to get such a great internship here at East Village Spa!

Note from the spa:  If you want to try out the Wellness Pedicure that Alyssa had, or ANY of our great services, click here and schedule your appointment online!