The Hippo


Mar 20, 2018








Treat Yourself
How to make Valentine’s Day all about you

By Kelly Sennott

Don’t get your hair, makeup and nails done for someone else — do it for you.

“Who doesn’t want to look good for themselves?” said Jaime Smith, clinical esthetician and assistant manager of Chill Spa in Manchester. “Everyone deserves to be treated. Everybody works really hard. And everybody needs time for themselves.”
She argues it’s a sure-fire way to make you feel good, whether you’re spending the holiday in a relationship or single.
“If you don’t feel like you look good, you’re not going to feel good on the inside,” Smith said. “When I go out, I look good for me. It doesn’t have to be for somebody else. Celebrate the fact you’re happy with who you are.”
So go ahead — get your back massaged, your makeup done, your nails painted or your hair cut, colored or blown out. Treat yourself, because Feb. 14 occurs on a weekend this year, and you won’t have to miss work to do it. 
For skin-deep satisfaction, Kae Mason, owner of Salon K in Concord, said one of the most relaxing things you can do is get an AVEDA facial. At Salon K, that involves massage and aromatherapy techniques. Just as important, you look good at the end.
“I’ve never had a client come out of the facial and not freak out and [be] amazed at how phenomenal their skin is. So many people flag me down the first time, amazed by the results,” Mason said.
The key is to look at the kind of facial you’re getting; anything with the word “extraction” might be painful or irritating, so check with your spa beforehand to learn what kinds are available. But most, Mason said, normally range from an hour to an hour and 15 minutes.
Veronica Kerr, owner of Spa Specialist Beauty Within, is offering a chocolate aromatic facial and chocolate massage special for the month of February — a way to indulge without ruining your New Year’s resolution.
But Kerr said people come in regularly for the  non-chocolate versions, too, either to address specific issues or just to wind down and relax.
“I do have people who come in who just want relaxation, or to de-stress,” Kerr said. “I used to be a single mom. One of the hardest things is spending money on yourself. … But what I tell my clients is, in order to take care of other people, you have to take care of yourself, or else there’s nothing left to give. You’ve got to replenish. … [Getting a massage ] is rejuvenating, and it gives you the ability to kind of be able to give back to people.”
Mason said she sees a lot of people in the salon this time of year who are looking for more color and edge to warm up the short days of the winter season. It’s when she performs the most dramatic hairstyle makeovers.
“People aren’t getting as much sunlight, so lack of sunlight, vitamin D, these are all things that bring people down these seasons,” Mason said. “Things like facials and hair are huge around Valentine’s Day. … It’s the No. 1 time to do drastic changes in women. It’s a fact.”
If you don’t have a lot of time on Valentine’s Day, you can still treat yourself. Just go for the express options. Smith said Chill Spa offers five-minute makeup application consultations and 30-minute shampoo and hair blow-outs on Feb. 14 (or any other day of the week) as well as “simply chill” facials, which don’t require a robe and take only 30 minutes.
If you have specific skin requirements or time constraints, consult beforehand so you can get exactly what you want, from manicures and pedicures to spray tans and back facials. (Guys can enjoy spa time, too; at Chill, it’s called “chill Man.”)
Afterward, don’t stay in just because you don’t have a date. Smith said her clients often make plans post-spa. They feel good, and they want to be seen, either by friends or out on the town at a bar, restaurant or concert.
“When they leave, you can tell their confidence goes up. Their chins are a little higher, they’re standing a little taller. You can tell they know they look good. There’s confidence, when they step out of the door,” Smith said.

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