VOGUE : Avoid the awkward moments with this guide to spa and beautician etiquette. Alice Birrell speaks to expert Spa Consultant, Naomi Gregory.

What you should know about going to a spa. 

Your therapist and you both want the same thing: for you to have the most enjoyable and relaxing experience possible at your spa treatment. Naomi Gregory, head of operations at SpaQ, at QT hotels and resorts tells you what you should know about your appointment (and what you should be asking for if you aren’t already). 

Check in, on time

“My number one faux-pas would have to be arriving late for your spa appointment,” says Gregory. “One of the most amazing parts of the experience is taking time to relax and be nurtured and it is hard to do that when you have to rush through getting ready.”

Know what you should expect

You shouldn’t be left wandering around, unsure where to put your belongings, your clothes and when and where you should change into your robe. “Every new guest…is escorted to the various areas of the spa and full instructions are given. As it is a new environment for many guests, we believe it is an important part of the journey.” 

Don’t come if you’re sick

“We definitely recommend staying away,” says Gregory. Enough said.

You can nominate the gender of your therapist

“Absolutely!” confirms Gregory. “Your spa time should be about you. When you book, if there is any specific request you’d like taken into account, do make sure to tell the receptionist.  If the therapist you really wanted happened to become unavailable, I’d recommend ensuring the reception team leave a call back note on your booking.”

You should be spoken to about your treatment

A therapist should be in conversation with you says Gregory. There should be “scheduled breaks between appointments to allow time for your therapist to speak with you before and after your appointment. If your spa therapist doesn’t take this time to find out about you, then it is very difficult for them to deliver the right treatment.”

Don’t be afraid to speak up

“If the pressure is not right, the products make you feel uncomfortable or you are feeling cold or hot, make sure you communicate how you’re feeling,” says Gregory. “All good therapists should be regularly enquiring how you are finding the various aspects of the treatment, but…you'll enjoy your experience more if you communicate clearly what is and isn’t working.” 

You shouldn’t always have to decide which treatment you want before you book

“My mood, my body and my skin changes so I love a spa experience which enables me to customise an experience based on how I feel on the day rather than what I thought I might like several weeks before when I booked.”

 

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