5 Tips for a Perfect Spa Experience


Several years ago a birthday present from my husband helped me discover that my Love Language is “Spa Day”.

You wouldn’t think it would be so. I’m not a fan of strangers touching me, especially my feet. I giggle like I’m in The Mikado, apologizing the whole time.

Also, a massage is fraught with difficult questions—do I keep my panties on? Will lying on my stomach cause the same problem that gets me banned from yoga classes? If so, how much extra do I tip?

Still, I soldier on, making nail techs and massage therapists consider going back to graduate school after each of my birthdays and major gift-giving holidays.

Here are five tips on being a pro at the spa.

  1. On time Is late. Get to your appointment at least ten minutes before you’re scheduled to start your service. There may be paperwork to fill out and changing to be done. Even earlier is better. At a big spa, there may be a place to relax and have a refreshing beverage containing cucumber slices.
  2. When you are booking, let them know of allergies and personnel preferences. If you only want a female message therapist, or you want to re-book the divine Serge for your facial, or you are allergic to cucumber slices and soft jazz, the time to say this is when you are booking. I am frequently surprised at solons that only have latex gloves. Once I thought, “well, I’m not *that* allergic” only to discover red marks wherever the service provider touched me.
  3. Don’t be afraid to speak up. If the water is too hot or the massage pressure is too firm, say something. It’s not being too demanding to let the technician make adjustments like this. Insisting on special imported water to rinse your hair is.
  4. Find out if a gift certificate includes the tip. Very often people go to spas because they’ve received a gift package. Don’t assume the tip is included! If people touch your feet or rip off your mustache, perhaps they deserve a little something extra. I like to figure out in advance how much my bill will be and then bring enough cash to tip about 20%.
  5. Don’t plan anything for right after. Unless you are just getting beauty treatments like makeup application, a blowout, or a mani-pedi, don’t rush from the spa to other plans. It ruins all that beautiful relaxation. Also, massages require rest and hydration afterward, and facials or waxing may cause skin redness. I count a spa visit a success if I roll out completely relaxed with no makeup on. Not the time to rush to a wedding or your high school reunion.

Some of my favorite spas are at JW Marriott resorts. The Spa Aquae at the JW Marriott resort in Las Vegas (Summerlin, Nevada actually) is amazing and totally splurge-worthy. Marriott International is a leading hospitality company with over 3,800 properties in over 74 countries and territories around the world. I’d like to stay in all of them.

Hungry for more spa tips? Enjoy this infographic from Marriott!

I was selected for this opportunity by Clever Girls Collective, however all content and opinions expressed here are my own.

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