spavia lincoln park

2121 n clybourn ave suite a5
chicago, il 60614



Swedish Massage 101: Everything You Should Know

When you think of massage, Swedish massage is what typically comes to mind. While there are other forms of therapeutic treatments, the Swedish massage is the foundation for many. Despite the commonality, the Swedish massage has a very distinct method and certain benefits that other types of massages don’t provide. Here is what you should know about this type of bodywork:

The Swedish massage uses a series of five strokes developed by Swedish doctor Per Henrik Ling:

Effleurage – It’s a French term that means to glide. This is usually the first one performed because it helps the client relax before getting deeper into the tissue. It’s essentially gliding strokes on either side of the spine.

Petrissage – Another French term that means to knead or lift. The therapist will use thumbs and hands to get deeper into the tissue. This also increases circulation while making the tissue pliable.

Tapotement or Rhythmic Tapping – Using the sides of their hands, the therapist will create a firm tapping motion, increasing the tissue surface circulation. This allows the muscles to loosen up while also energizing them.

Friction – This involves compression with circular movements across the muscle fibers, causing the muscles to rub up and down. The palm or forearm is used to create a circular motion, which helps spread the tissue and release muscle tension.

Vibration or Shaking – The fingers are used to create a vibrating motion to wake up the nerves and tissues, as well as increase blood flow to any targeted area.

Most people request a Swedish massage to release physical tensions. While it definitely improves the body’s physical functionality, a Swedish massage can also relieve a lot of emotional stress that we endure on a daily basis. By increasing blood flow and improving digestion and muscle movement, Swedish massages are starting to be accepted as a medical necessity, not just for one’s recreation.

If you’ve never had a massage but plan to schedule one soon, a Swedish massage is the best place to start. At Spavia, we welcome the opportunity to show you the many therapeutic advantages massages have to offer.


The Best Skin Peel For Your Skin Type

No two skin peels are alike! Each peel will vary depending on ingredients, penetration level, time spent on the skin and strength. That’s why It’s so important the right strength is chosen based on your skin care needs.

You’ll want to schedule a consultation with a skin care professional to have your skin type analyzed to ensure you receive the proper treatment. Ultimately, choosing the right peel depends on your skin type goals.

Superficial/Light Skin Peel
The superficial, or light skin peel, is the easiest type of peel. It’s also referred to as a “lunchtime” procedure, as downtime is minimal and you can return to work afterwards without anyone noticing. This peel only penetrates the top-most layer of skin – the epidermis – and instantly gives your skin a brighter and smoother look. This option is ideal for minimizing fine lines and wrinkles, mild sun damage, mild acne scarring and age spots. You will see instant results, but maximum benefits are best achieved after more than six treatments. Contrary to popular belief, the light skin peel does NOT hurt. At most, you will feel a slight tingling sensation.

Medium Skin Peel
For stronger results with more stubborn skin conditions, seek out the benefits of a medium skin peel. These penetrate deeper into the layers to treat moderate sun damage, pigmentation and wrinkles. Due to the higher intensity of a medium peel, the results are noticeably stronger, but recovery time is longer. You may want to have a few days away from other people as your skin will remain pink for about a week. Your skin will exhibit all the signs of a bad sunburn following a medium skin peel, so expect peeling, itchiness and swelling.

Deep Skin Peel
Deep peels are dramatically more effective at treating the most severe wrinkles, sun damage, scarring and deep lines. The healing period for a deep peel is significantly longer than any other peel, with nearly two weeks of downtime. You’ll want to avoid going out in public during the recovery period since your skin will be very red and feel like it was severely sunburnt. It’s recommended that you seek out the services of an experienced professional, as there are risks for developing permanent loss of skin pigmentation and scarring should a deep peel be improperly administered. The deep peel can provide absolutely incredible results when done properly.

Before committing to any peel, schedule a consultation with the person who will be conducting the treatment, to ensure you will achieve the best results.


Maximize the Effectiveness of Your Skin Peel

A skin peel is only the beginning of the journey to uncover your most perfect skin.The next step is to learn how to care properly for the incoming healthy skin.

Depending on the intensity of the peel you chose, the recovery time of your skin will vary. Several days after the treatment, the new skin will begin to emerge with a sunburned color and sensation. (Don’t worry, the redness and post-treatment puffiness will fade within a few days!) The skin will have increased sensitivity following a peel, so being extra alert to potential irritants is recommended. Thankfully, there are a number of products out there to promote faster healing.

The ILUMA product line is designed with skincare properties that work perfectly for post-treatment care. The products speed up the process to improve skin clarity and even out skin tones, moisturizing skin and improving texture to amplify the positive effects of the peel. The ILUMA Intense Lightening Serum is a fantastic source of Vitamin C, which your skin is now craving, and has incredible anti-inflammatory properties to soothe and promote a fresh post-peel complexion.

Immediately following a light to medium peel, your skin will be red from irritation — the redness should only persist for a few minutes. If you don’t see an improvement in redness, dryness and irritation, then try using moisturizing and soothing products with hyaluronic acid and green tea. Vitamin C and E are also great agents to prevent and lighten skin discoloration.

What to Avoid
Limit your exposure in the sun. That big ball of fire in the sky is no friend of your vulnerable and sensitive skin. Use an SPF-30 sunscreen containing either zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to prevent sun damage. Retinol creams have a history of irritating the skin following a peel, so avoid these products. Following a peel it is best to avoid excessive heat, sweating and scrubbing. It is also recommended to avoid shaving or picking at your face due to the increased sensitivity of your skin.

Post treatment, your skin is going to be extra sensitive and fragile, so be extra aware of what you put on your skin to avoid scarring. Yes, this sounds a bit frightening, but the negative effects will fade to reveal beauty underneath.


Skin Peel 101: Everything You Need to Know

Skin renewal peels are the perfect way to reset your skin to make you look as young and confident as you feel. The skin renewal peel will remove old skin so that new layers grow in their place, appearing smoother and with fewer blemishes, redness and wrinkles.

Here is everything you need to know about what a skin renewal peel is and how it works.

What is a skin renewal peel?
A skin peel, also called chemical peels, is the controlled removal of the top layers of skin to promote the growth of a healthier and smoother layer of skin. There are varying degrees of intensity of skin peels and the strength of one will directly affect your recovery time and the results you experience. If you don’t want an intense skin peel, you can set up several lighter peels to achieve the same results over a longer stretch of time.

Why would I want a skin peel?
When done correctly, skin peels are like hitting the reset button for your skin. They can make your face look younger and healthier by removing wrinkles, boosting collagen production and evening out your skin tone. An added bonus of skin peels is that, when performed in a series, they are an incredible way to treat persistent acne. Anyone who wants to improve the overall health and glow of their skin is someone that wants a skin peel.

Who should get a skin peel?
You should seek the advice of a professional, but anyone with major crow’s feet, sun damage, age spots, acne or wrinkles should get a skin peel. Since the solution is applied manually, it can be applied to the entire face or specific spots. A professional can also determine the type of skin you have, its thickness and texture to recommend the proper type of skin peel for your unique skin type.

Is there a recovery period?
Yes, and the time depends on the degree of the skin peel, ranging anywhere from three days to two weeks. Skin peels performed in medical offices may cause discomfort after an intense deep peel session; however, this is easily controlled with temporary medication. Several days into the recovery period your skin will begin flaking off – starting around your mouth leading up to your ears. Avoid picking at the skin as this will reduce the affects of your peel. Since the skin is so fresh and new, it’s recommended to follow a moisturizing regimen, and avoid long exposure to the sun.

Where should I get one?
A skin peel can be extremely effective at renewing the skin on your face leaving you with a younger look; however, they can also be relatively ineffective if done improperly. If you’re interested in resetting your skin, a spavia esthetician is able to analyze your skin type, recommend the correct treatment and properly administer the peel. Protect yourself and your skin by doing a skin peel the proper way!


Preparing for the Chicago Marathon: Caring for Common Injuries

Running the Chicago Marathon is a huge accomplishment that requires intense training and preparation. As a serious runner, it’s likely you may already feel bodily strain and even experience minor injuries. As you ready yourself for the challenge of the Chicago Marathon, here are a few to care for common runner-related ailments.

“Hopefully you’ve been training for months in anticipation of the Chicago Marathon: adding mileage weekly to your running regimen; taking longer runs on weekends; blending in speed workouts mid week, rain or shine; all while managing a runner’s aches and pains,” says Paul Groshko, owner of Spavia Lincoln Park. “With less than a month to go, this is the best time to build up your body to peak condition to meet your goal and finish the race.”


Achilles Tendinitis

One of the most common runner injuries is inflammation of the Achilles tendon, called Achilles Tendinitis. This occurs when the tendon that attaches your calf muscle to your heel bone becomes inflamed, swollen and painful. It’s typically caused by the repetitive stress of running long distances — the very thing you need to do to train for the Chicago Marathon!  The best ways to treat Achilles Tendonitis are rest, ice and stretching. Deep tissue massages are an excellent way to stretch out the inflamed tendon and bring relief to the area before tackling an especially long run.


Shin Splints

Shin splints, also known as medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS), is a common lower leg injury felt along the shinbone. Runners may experience shin splints after an increase in the frequency or distances you run. Those with flat feet are more likely to develop shin splints. Ice and stretch the inflamed area to avoid worsening the injury. A certified sports massage therapist can provide relief, as well as a more personalized stretching routine to get you ready for the marathon.


Iliotibial (IT) Band Syndrome

IT Band Syndrome is a common running injury developed from and felt along the outside part of the knee, especially when the heel strikes the ground. Anything that you can do to reduce inflammation is a great way to avoid aggravating the injury. A certified sports massage is an ideal way to increase blood flow to the area to stimulate healing and decrease recovery time.

Proper injury care is essential for effective pre-marathon training. If you have questions about your specific ailments, feel free to stop in to our Spavia Lincoln Park boutique and spa.

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