What Happens During a Hot Stone Massage ?

Hot stone massage is a popular complementary therapy for many conditions.  During a hot stone massage, smooth, flat, heated stones are placed on specific parts of your body.  To prevent burns, there should always be a barrier between hot massage stones and your skin.

A hot stone massage is a type of massage therapy. It’s used to help you relax and ease tense muscles and damaged soft tissues throughout your body.

During a hot stone massage, smooth, flat, heated stones are placed on specific parts of your body. The stones are usually made of basalt, a type of volcanic rock that retains heat. According to the University of New Hampshire Health Services, hot massage stones are heated to between 130 and 145 degrees.

The stones may be placed:

  • along your spine
  • on your stomach
  • on your chest
  • on your face
  • on your palms
  • on your feet and toes

Massage therapists may hold heated stones as they massage your body using Swedish massage techniques such as:

  • long strokes
  • circular movements
  • vibration
  • tapping
  • kneading

Sometimes, cold stones are also used during a hot stone massage. Cold stones may be used after hot stones to calm any engorged blood vessels and to soothe the skin.

Benefits of hot stone massage 

All massages generally fall under the alternative medicine umbrella. They’re becoming a popular complementary therapy for many conditions. Here are some advantages of getting a hot stone massage:

1. Helps relieve muscle tension and pain

Heat has long been used to ease muscle tension and pain. It helps increase blood flow to the affected area. It may also reduce muscle spasms and increase flexibility and range of motion. Cold therapy helps relieve inflammation. Depending on your symptoms, alternating hot and cold stones during your massage may be helpful.

2. Reduces stress and anxiety

It’s the position of the American Massage Therapy Association that “massage therapy can be effective for stress relief.” Research supports their opinion. A 2001 study showed that a ten-minute massage improved cardiovascular responses such as stroke volume. A 1997 study found that 15-minute, onsite chair massages in the workplace significantly reduced stress compared to a 15-minute break without massage.

A 2015 study found that people who underwent abdominal colorectal surgery had less pain, tension, and anxiety after receiving post-operative massage.

3. Promotes sleep

A 2006 literature review found massage may be an alternative to sleeping pills in adults with insomnia. The research showed that back massage helped promote relaxation and sleep. A 2001 study showed that infants with sleep problems who were given a 15-minute massage by their parents went to sleep faster. They were also more alert, active, and positive upon awakening. Massage is thought to help you enjoy more restorative sleep, although it’s not completely understood why.

4. May help relieve symptoms of autoimmune diseases

Hot stone massage may relieve painful conditions such as fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is a condition that causes widespread, chronic pain. According to a 2002 study, people with fibromyalgia who received a 30-minute massage slept longer, had fewer trigger points, and had decreased levels of substance P (a substance involved in transmitting pain signals) than people with the condition who received relaxation therapy. More research is needed, however, before massage becomes a standard fibromyalgia treatment.

A 2013 study found that people with rheumatoid arthritis may benefit from a moderate-pressure massage, such as hot stone massage. Participants in the study experienced less pain, greater grip strength, and a greater range of motion after one month of massage therapy.

5. May help decrease cancer symptoms

A large, three-year study published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management examined how massage affected pain, fatigue, stress and anxiety, nausea, and depression in 1,290 people with cancer. The study showed massage, especially Swedish massage, improved cancer symptoms, even in those with substantial symptoms. Researchers believe the comforting use of human touch played a role.

6. May boost immunity

Massage may give your immune system a boost. According to a 2010 study , a single session of Swedish massage therapy had a positive and acute impact on immunity. Blood samples taken before and after the massage showed a decrease in arginine-vasopressin, a hormone that helps regulate blood pressure and water retention.

WHO SHOULD GET ONE?

Who may benefit from a hot stone massage?

Anyone who is experiencing muscle tension and pain, insomnia, or stress may benefit from a hot stone massage. If you have a chronic condition that causes pain, talk to your doctor to see if a hot stone massage is a good option for you.

How to Prepare for Your Very First Eye Lash Extensions Appointment

eyelash extensions Toronto

Are you just before your first lash extensions appointment? We have prepared this guide just for you, so you can come knowing all of the important things!

PATCH TEST

Yes, you need to have one at least 48 hours before your appointment. So please make sure you will visit your lash salon to just quickly check if you won’t have any allergic reactions. It’s crucial to have this done so you can have the best possible experience later on.

When you have already done your patch test and you’re ready for your first ever lash extensions, here is your check list before your appointment!

WASH YOUR HAIR BEFORE THE APPOINTMENT

Yes, we know how it sounds.  But it’s very important as you won’t be able to wet your eyelashes for at least 48 hours… Therefore is just better to wash your hair just before your lash visit to be sure you won’t be missing our on having a beautiful hair day.

DON’T WEAR ANY EYE MAKE UP

We don’t recommend coming for your first lash extensions appointment with full eye make up. It just saves your time and all of the hassle when you come make up free. Of course you can wear foundation, have your brows done. But please skip heavy mascara and loads of eye shadows. Thank you!

TINT VERY FAIR EYELASHES

If your natural eyelashes are almost invisible, please consider tinting them. It will make the process of application much more quicker and easier for your lash technician. And also- you will have fuller look afterwards.

RELAX

First lash extensions appointment might sound very complicated. But to be honest- it’s all about YOU. So please relax. If you will feel anything that’s uncomfortable just tell your lash technician. If you have a string reaction to coffee- don’t drink it just before the appointment as we want you to be very calm. That’s why this is very often called lash nap- we want you just to close your eyes and enjoy!

Eye Lash Extensions

All you need to know about eye lash extensions 

Keep Lashes Clean for Optimum Lash Health, Longevity and Retention.

Washing your lashes is extremely important for a few reasons. The obvious reason is to remove makeup that you’ve worn.  Other not so obvious reasons is because we all carry mites on our body. Most of the time these mites are harmless, however, there are times when these mites can get out of hand and have a lil feast on the bacteria and oils left on your skin, and, especially on your lash line. When this occurs you may have encountered two possible irritants such as Demodex and Blepharitis. Demodex (eyelash mites) seem to have a connection with mascara  as women who wear a lot of mascara tend to have a higher prevalence of these mites on their eyelashes. This is the same case for people who wear a lot of eye makeup in general. Demodex often feed on your skin cells and oils which often accumulate on your skin pores as well as in hair follicles. 

Beware of Blaspharitis

Blepharitis commonly occurs when tiny oil glands located near the base of the eyelashes become clogged. This leads to irritated and red eyes and sometimes can also have a yellowish crusty appearance. 

Using an oil free foaming cleanser that contains gentle yet effective ingredients such as tea tree oil can help keep these critters at bay. Ensuring that you have the proper cleanser is imperative to lash health and allows for longer wear of your extensions.

Many ladies aren’t told to wash their lashes and may experience a burning or stinging in the shower… this is dirt, oil dust, sleep, tears and other fun stuff that has been accumulating in your extensions so when you get them wet these aggravating ickies drop into you eyes causing irritation. Eek

Don’t be Fooled by False Retention

Some clients have told me they’ve had 5-6 week retention before, coincidently these clients weren’t told to wash their lashes. I sometimes refer to this as ‘false retention’. This is when all those nasties stick to your natural lash and extensions anchoring them together. You lose on average 3-5 lashes a day so when one is ready to exfoliate it can’t because it’s stuck to its neighbour unwillingly by some of those culprits listed above causing strain on the follicle and making your extensions look stiff and feel yucky.

Lashes should be worn for an average of 2-3 weeks tops, I would prefer around 2 weeks for the following reason. I sometimes compare it to nails. You can have your nails for 3 or more weeks, but sometimes they’re not looking so good. Some have chipped or you lost one or two even. Think of lashes like your nails in the same sense. If you’re at 3 or more weeks the chances or you having full, fluffy not twisting extensions is unlikely. And when you arrive at your fill appointment your stylist will need to remove those ones that have grown too far away from the lash line as it is damaging on the follicle causing strain as well it would look odd beside a freshly placed extension closer to the lash line.

When’s the Best Time to Fill?

Many places ask for a minimum % to be remaining in order to qualify as a fill rather then a new set. This is calculated when the old extensions are removed not when you arrive. So coming at 3 weeks or longer with loose, grown out lashes doesn’t always put you in the ‘fill’ category. All stylists are different and have varying policies so check with your lash guru about what she thinks is best for you and your lash health!

Manicure and Pedicure Health Benefits

You already know that a mani-pedi makes your nails look fantastic.  What you may not know is that a professional nail treatment actually has long-term and health benefits as well!

Skin Care

Your hands are more exposed to daily dirt and weather than any part of your body, except maybe your face.  That means that they accumulate grime easily, as well as constantly create new skin cells and slough off the old.  Your feet are generally only exposed in the spring and summer times, but walking on them all day can create callouses and other uneven skin conditions.

A professional manicure includes a thorough cleaning and lotions designed to exfoliate your skin.  Any grime will be removed, as will dead skin cells, keeping your hands smooth and reducing any appearance of wrinkles.  A professional pedicure will also exfoliate your skin, as well as remove any callouses on the bottom of your feet.  This not only makes your feet more attractive, it also helps you distribute your weight more evenly across your feet, which can reduce leg and back pain after standing for long periods.

Blood Flow

In addition to exfoliating, moisturizers and cuticle treatments are massaged into the skin in a professional mani-pedi.  This massage action is not only incredibly relaxing, it also helps to improve blood circulation to your extremities.  This can reduce pain and help your body distribute heat during cold months.

Fungal Infections

Fungi often grow on toe nails when your feet are exposed to excess moisture.  Often, it takes a few weeks for the infection to become noticeable.  However, a professional manicurist will be able to identify a fungal infection even in its early stages, when it is most easily treated.  Getting regular pedicures is actually a great way to maintain the health of your toes.

Mental Health

A mani-pedi is a great way to relax and be pampered.  After a stressful day or week, these can completely relieve your stress, and the benefits of having gorgeous nails can last for weeks.  A great nail color is a perfect accessory to any outfit, so you can cross painting your nails off your list of things to do.

Both the physical and mental health benefits of getting a manicure and pedicure are incredible.  Your feet and hands will both look and feel great, your stress will go down, and your circulation will increase.  The whole procedure takes relatively little time, so contact the Bliss Med spa today to schedule your manicure and pedicure.