A body treatment is a blanket term for a whole gamut of different holistic, non-medical, physical procedures aimed at helping you achieve something specific for your body. A "body treatment" could involve all sorts of things.
You might be:
massaged or scrubbed with a particular oil, cream or mineral
wrapped or enveloped in something - perhaps mud or seaweed or even plastic
immersed or soaked in a liquid, such as water or algae
stroked, treated with or exposed to something external - like brushes, magnets or electric current, or lights.
The term 'body treatment' refers to facials, massages, belief-related therapies, rubs - any non-medical procedure that you go to a spa or centre to have.
A spa ritual or spa experience describes a package of different body treatments that you get on the same day: a massage, a facial and reflexology, say, followed by use of the facilities and a light lunch.
What is a body treatment good for?
Different body treatments are good for different things and they are usually clear about their goals.
You may have a massage to soothe your muscles and help relieve your stress.
You may have a fairly rigorous scrub to exfoliate, moisturise and reduce cellulite.
You could choose to firm up your stomach muscles and bottom by, for example, having a series of electro-magnetic pulses passed through your body.
You might decide that you want to pay penance for unhealthy eating by being wrapped in algae for a few hours to be detoxified, or
You may choose to embark on a series of body treatments that will help you change your lifestyle and your shape, that involve diet, exercise and therapeutic massage and counselling
The choice is yours! Most body treatments will leave you feeling invigorated and relaxed - a powerful combination!
Before you go
This will depend on what kind of treatment you are going for. Your best bet is to contact the place you're getting the treatment beforehand to see how soon in advance you should get there, what to expect, whether or not you need to take anything and what kind of state you'll be in afterwards!
Whatever treatment you're having you should always tell the therapist if you are, or think you might be, pregnant; you should also tell them of any medical conditions you have, including any treatment or medication you are receiving, as this may affect which body treatment is suitable for you.
Drink plenty of water before, during and after to avoid getting dehydrated, especially if you have a heat treatment or a massage, as these often leave you feeling thirsty. Avoid big meals and alcohol beforehand as this could make you feel uncomfortable during the body treatments.
What to expect from a body treatment
This depends on the type of body treatment you're going for. Make sure that you have plenty of information in advance, and, if possible, read some reviews or find out from someone who's already had it what it was like.
You'll find lots of honest, independent reviews of specific body treatments on this website!
Use the sauna or steam room before your treatment. This will open your pores, soothe your muscles and make sure you are really relaxed so that you can get full benefit from your body treatment.
Again, how you'll feel afterwards will depend on what kind of body treatment you have. Remember that very few body treatments send you out into the world looking and feeling ready for an afternoon at work; make alternative arrangements as needed.
Different kinds of body treatment
There are hundreds of different body treatments. Some can be found at a number of spas, some are unique to a particular place. The more common body treatments include: