Tag Archives: Spa

Apothecanna: Cannibis infused Spa products

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Where there’s smoke there is fire and the cannabis cloud over Colorado appears to be lingering like smog on a otherwise clear day. Cannabis proponent Apothecanna has positioned itself beyond the pale, as an adjunct measure in pain management and only time will tell if they can remain straight enough to keep their wellness branding intact.

I wrote this piece originally in June of 2015 and removed it from this blog over a reservation about logical reasoning summed up simply by “begging the question.” But let’s talk products for now.

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Apothecanna does offer a variety of scents that leave the 1960’s behind.

The statement on their website detailing the benefits of their “natural” products Topical Cannabis, Hemp Lotion, & THC Spray (located under the tab “learn” and “apothecanna massage”) is simple and basic:

Revitalizing botanicals like arnica and capsaicin combine with topical marijuana to provide natural herbal pain relief .

The Marketing is both Spartan and clever.

“Here at Apothecanna, we’re committed to providing innovative topical pain relievers that combine topical cannabis with other healing and soothing botanicals for a more natural option for topical pain relief. Unlike conventional topical pain relief cream products, our cannabis calming cream offer pain relief without unpleasant “medicine” scents, instead incorporating sense-soothing botanicals like lavender, chamomile, and frankincense. These botanicals make using our topical marijuana products more enjoyable, contributing to a sense of well being that can aid the healing process. In addition to our full line of cannabis cream and THC spray products for pain relief, which are available at over 200 Colorado medical marijuana centers, we also offer several invigorating, calming, and pain relieving cream products made with hemp and arnica cream, as well as other botanicals to soothe your skin as well as your senses.”

Rejuvenate your skin and senses with topical cannabis cream and botanical skin therapies from Apothecanna.

Under the “About” tab are three discreet paragraphs that provide a brief nod to both legality and their position on the role of natural philosophy in society at large.

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By reordering the brands statements, it may be a bit more obvious to educated consumers and those who question the politics involved, how the advent of Apothecanna will impact the Spa and Wellness Industry. And in particular, the Professional Massage Community which may utilize such products IN TANDEM with mainstream pain management professionals.

Let’s break it down like any syllogism, but let’s do it backwards and examine the logic of the marketing.

“Our mission at Apothecanna is to spread the wisdom of traditional plant medicine. We believe in the fundamental right of access to the healing powers of nature and promote sustainable interaction with the world around us.”

Preceeding this ‘tidbit’ is the following ‘tidbit.”

“We do not use artificial ingredients, fillers, parabens and only test on humans. We believe that natural treatments are the best treatments, and strive to create products with uncompromised purity, quality, and functionality.”

And the page begins with this introduction:

“Apothecanna is a natural apothecary featuring cannabis extract as the primary active ingredient due to its potent anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. Our formulations combine cannabis with other organic and wild crafted essential oils to create highly functional topical treatments for pain and stress relief, while delivering a host of skin nurturing benefits.”

Viewed and analyzed from last statement to first, Apothecanna’s marketing strategy seems to be suffering from marijuana induced paranoia if not ordinary anxiety. Remember this assessment proceeds in reverse order from their official website circa 2015!

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The first (last) CLAIM Apothecanna puts forward, is that their products have scientifically proven value. (This is TRUE of Cannabis- as science has admitted.)

The second or (middle) premise Apothecanna offers is that their products are 100% “Natural” and that they TEST only on humans.

In the third (first) STATEMENT that in traditional logic would be called a premise, Apothecanna DOES INDEED draw a CONCLUSION predicated on the two preceding premises! Want some pseudoscience wellness professionals or just a side of religion to go with your own and your clients health investments?

Consumers are informed of Apothecannas “rights” and significantly there is an appeal to nature for sovereign status as if this is an innate right, protected by the United States constitution and by the State of Colorado. Don’t choke on Abraham Lincoln’s comment that The Bill of rights “Is a REBUKE” or the fact that it’s not A LAW in or of itself. 4th amendment is mere Axiology? Taste? Genre? 

Oh my! Isn’t this Gnosticism Mitt Romney’s and John McCain’s territory? Colorado did have a FEMALE TEA PARTY INCUMBENT BATTLE DIDN’T THEY…

Since when does any government, at the national or state level have an ability to regulate “unalienable” rights? Gnosticism, gender and Lawd at all the LEGAL PROSTITUTION NEXT DOOR IN NEVADA…Neither LEGAL governing body DOES have that right pro Mblex crusaders. American laws deal with ‘inalienable rights.’ LOOK AT THAT “science based” MARKETING NOW.

The “premise” that any class system is subject to the economic system, which is presumably subject to the political system, which in turn is subject to the legal system, which then, and only then, is subject to a religious system…with an ethical framework, such as one that acknowledges and ensures ‘rights‘ which entail free will, are now on display.

Given that in 99% if not most instances, the defacto and default premise that an esthetics license is required, in addition to a Bachelor’s degree to work for a Professional Spa Product Line and that LMT’s with a Bachelor’s degree are overlooked if they have no outside B2B sales experience ought to give the Spa and Esthetics industry something to mull over when considering the SUBSTANCE of education.

Consider for instance this “new” education offering that is scarcely 20 years old: Disability Studies. It would seem “science” v. “management” rather than “pain” is the canker sore in the post-modern lotus?

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I will leave it to the “moral educators” with political axes to grind about bell jars, States right’s, healthcare and massage monopolies on entry level right to practice (that the FSMTB fails to call collusion but most certainly calls patriotism,) to pander to their fellow citizens about universal relativism and plan for the future conspiracy theories this trend will no doubt spawn.

Until Next Time Campers!

Product Review: Murad Advanced Active Radiance Serum

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I’ve been with Massage Envy just a month shy of two years. We exclusively utilize Murad skin and body care. In the time I’ve been with Massage Envy, I have only tried the Environmental Shield line.

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Why only one?

Because it turned out to be that good!

Perhaps it was the insight and measured discretion of the esthetician who recommend it, or perhaps my situation was unique. It could also be that subconsciously I didn’t realize I AM OFFICIALLY MIDDLE AGED. Denial runs deep in family Padwan’s. Only the Force can combat so deep an evil!

I rely on public transportation. This means that I am exposed to harsher elements of nature than those who only drive and don’t exercise outdoors.

Be that as it may, I noticed results after only 72 hours of applying Murad’s Active Radiance Serum morning and night.

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Here are the details:

1. I used approximately a quarter sized amount each time.

2. I am 41, fair complexion with blue eyes.

3. I am a heavy smoker.

4. I eat healthy on average 2-3 times a week and I don’t drink 8 oz of water a day. I do however typically consume that amount in soda and coffee.

72 HOURS AND THE RESULTS WERE NOTICEABLE.

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Try it. Today Ladies (and Gentlemen.)

Absolute Values Part Three: Language and Professionalism in Context

*This is the third installment of a four-part series on Professional Development for Spa Therapists. The series utilizes the terms Masseur, Masseuse and Massage Therapist as a Touchstone.

What does the structure of language have to do with Professional Development for Spa Therapists/Technicians?

What is the difference between an adjective, a metaphor and a simile? Are they synonyms for one another and if they are not, what makes them distinct and discreetly different? Why does it matter what anyone calls themselves as long as they give a ‘good’ massage?

adjective noun

An adjective is a word that describes a noun and can include the words Masseur and Masseuse.

  • The red car.
  • I am tired of dating him.
  • He is too idealistic.
  • He is a self motivated professional.
  • The name of the book is Stone Soup.

metaphor-diagram

 

A metaphor is a figure of speech in which a word or phrase compares two very different objects, concepts, ideas, or feelings to provide a clearer description.

  • He is the black sheep of our family.
  • You ain’t nothing but a hound dog. – Elvis Presley
  • A blanket of snow fell today.
  • I have a half-baked idea in mind.
  • “Why I am a little black rain cloud of course!” – Winnie the Pooh

Giraffe Similie

Metaphors are different from similes. A simile is a figure of speech involving the comparison of two different things and 9 times out of 10 will incorporate the words “like” or “as.” Because simile’s AND metaphors serve the purpose of enhancing a description they are both considered literary devices. More precisely, the true distinction between a metaphor and a simile is that a simile makes an explicit comparison, while a metaphor makes an implicit one.

BUT WAIT!!! What does this have to do with Professional development?

PLENTY! And here is WHY: As you may have already noticed, the definitions above OVERLAP. What one person will call an adjective may be further categorized as a metaphor or in some instances as a simile depending on the usage. These definitions underscore both the creativity and subjectivity involved in personal self-expression.

Massage Therapist: Tenor or Vehicle?

I’m not talking about music or cars! So what do Professionals mean when asking the question above?  Metaphors can be described by several means and methods. Tenor and Vehicle are terms that were coined by I.A. Richards in the early 20th century.

  • The Encyclopedia Britannica defines the terms this way: “tenor and vehicle, the components of a metaphor, with the tenor referring to the concept, object, or person meant, and the vehicle being the image that carries the weight of the comparison.” This is not the only way to define the terms.

Here is a broader definition.

An academic source from Carson Newman College’s English Department affords tenor and vehicle more liberal definitions: “In common usage, tenor refers to the course of thought, meaning or emotion in anything written or spoken.”  

“A modern theory would object, first, that in many of the most important uses of metaphor, the co-presence of the vehicle and the tenor results in a meaning (to be clearly distinguished from the tenor) which is not attainable without their interaction. That the vehicle is not normally a mere embellishment of a tenor which is otherwise unchanged by it but that vehicle and tenor in co-operation give a meaning of more varied powers that can be ascribed to either. And a modern theory would go on to point out that with different metaphors the relative importance of the contributions of vehicle and tenor to this resultant meaning varies immensely. At one extreme the vehicle may become almost a mere decoration or coloring of the tenor, at the other extreme, the tenor may become almost a mere excuse for the introduction of the vehicle, and so no longer be ‘the principal subject.’ And the degree to which the tenor is imagined ‘to be that very thing which it only resembles’ also varies immensely.” (I.A. Richards, The Philosophy of Rhetoric. Oxford Univ. Press, 1936)

Philosophically speaking, the witty amongst us will have already noted that Richards describes a “modern theory” and thereby indicates that he has a basis for making a distinction between tenor and vehicle that avoids the solipsism he is describing!

Richard’s may have had an agenda of sorts or not. Regardless of his own views of what constituted “modernism” or even his private politics, by categorizing “modern” rhetoric as having “relative” meaning Richards accomplished or obscured two important historical developments of his era. Richards wrote the passage above in 1936, prior to Hitler, Hiroshima and the Holocaust. As previously noted in this series, logical positivism was reaching it’s zenith in Europe in the 1940’s as the discovery of the atom bomb illustrated. The taxonomy Richards created and “embellished” beyond rhetoric and into literature as a whole stream of thought, rather than the nuts and bolts of language structure allows us to note that the solipsism he describes is a feature of both logical positivism AND relativism which facilitates the unspoken “POST MODERN” label predicated on Richard’s own definitions which imply reflexivity.  This occurred at least 40 years prior to the supposed advent of the term in the 1970’s according to art historians.

The relationship between logical positivism and language as we have noted in prior installments of this series was carried forward by Ludwig Wittgenstein and his contributions to logic and language. Popper and Kuhn built on this existing legacy and made contributions to the philosophy of science that form the basis of many massage education curriculums today.

Professional Foundations and the Individual: Why and Where does gender matter in professional communication?

Let’s revisit the second post in this series to provide a starting point and context from which to answer the question above.

“Logical Positivism was supposedly abandoned because it was revealed that empirical PHILOSOPHICAL claims which were presumed to undergird scientific endeavors cannot be VERIFIED to be UNIVERSALLY true and that this revelation placed limits on how much we can know. This “revelation” (a form of knowledge itself) filtered into common parlance (language) in phrases such as “the linguistic turn” cited above. It is also another way to describe phrases such as “asymmetrical information” which are frequently floated to describe a variety of imbalances in power implied by terms such as “Balkanization” and resulting abuses.”

Awareness of how the growth of modern views on language and linguistics fits into the history of science can shed more light on WHY the professional massage, spa, wellness and allied CAM community has agreed by general consensus to uphold the term “massage therapist” as the most appropriate term for professional use by bodyworkers.

“Masseur” and “masseuse” are descriptive stand alone words. With such gendered terminology as a starting point, who is the observer and who is the subject?

Massage Therapist is not a metaphor any more than Masseur or Masseuse: therefore it is illogical to ask what is the tenor and what or whom is the vehicle in this word phrase.

One of the facts of professional practice for LMT’s in the 21st century is that the massage profession will never be able to replace the scientifically mainstream profession of physical therapy. Due to this impasse, the massage profession is viewed by some within the industry as ‘struggling’ against everything from health care politics and monied vested interests, to conspiracy theories of every stripe and even with private matters for individuals such as religion, faith and sexuality.

Choosing the term “Massage Therapist” is in many respects a discretionary decision. Many LMT’s make this choice because it is what they were taught. Other’s make this distinction predicated on axiology and value judgments. Yet others if asked will say that they find the decision to utilize the professional designation “Massage Therapist” because they are supporting the growth of the profession and of the wellness industry as a whole.

Regardless of the reasons one has for choosing to ‘follow the crowd’ there are still more reasons than we have yet discussed for chosing to adhere to the term “Massage Therapist” as a professional designation.

We will touch on some of those reasons in the final installment in this series. Until next time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clearing the Air? Spa and scent

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The human sense of smell is profound. Not that long ago, the olfactory system was subject to a very different cornacoupia than we have available to us today. We are bombarded with scent, be it thru perfumes in our toiletries, in our home cleaning products, while we window shop in stores or boutiques and even when we step into a crowded room. Unless we are outdoors with the wind, we rarely encounter “clean” air.

In massage therapy and alternative health and wellness, the old notion of climatology as a backhanded form of racism has been transformed into a ban on perfume. It’s not necessarily unjustified in many cases and perhaps most cases. But it’s there nonetheless.

200 plus years ago, people lived on farms. Animals provided locomotion alongside new industrialized marvels like trains. Tobacco smoke was common and adopted by many. Tobacco smoke also served to temper the more unpleasant smells picked up during the day. Think about what those ‘other’ unpleasant aromas more than likely were for a moment…and then look at the number of tobacco scents available on the market. I’ve typically seen it paired with leather. Cologne and perfume, incense and candles, oils for home fragrance are the common products that cater to this aesthetic.

Which brings us to flowers and nosegays and what passed for perfume.

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In the spa where I currently work, we are not allowed to wear perfume. Period. Regardless of job description or role. Period. This rule is designed for client comfort. We do offer scented products but we do not burn candles or use even so much as a scented air freshener anywhere other than the bathrooms. On that note, have a look at these product gems:

Poo Pourri

Renova

Which brings us round about to the subject of progress, climatology, pseudoscience, consumerism, design and environmental issues. Also known as conspiracy theory central: the home of Marxism in action as the witty occasionally deign to call it.

With so many unsavory scents bombarding us daily, many spas incorporate the absence of olfactory stimulation to soothe their guests. In our modern era, we all have personalized scent and internalized it. In our favorite shampoo and body products down to our chosen laundry detergent. Offering guests the absence of smell can be quite an unexpected change of pace from those spas that do utilize it.

Not all spas have the luxury of utilizing scent as a strategic endeavor. It’s my experience that aromatherapy treatments in theory require the absence of competing scents to be most effective and that this is the key selling point of scent in the modern era.

Spa layout and design should be a factor when making a decision to utilize scents and fragrance. How close are your treatment rooms to the lobby? How long are the hallways your guests use? Where are the bathrooms located? Do you have set rooms for aromatherapy purposes or not and are diffusers incorporated into each aromatherapy service? Does your spa offer hydrotherapy and so on? If your running a diffuser in the lobby and it permeates the treatment rooms, your losing money by diluting the quality of services and so on.

Suffice it to say, scent and it’s absence have value. How we interpret those facts and package them for clients remains an art.

Updated AGAIN! Jane Buckle PhD, RN misquoted and referenced by Young Living Esential Oils Conference

Author of Clinical Aromatherapy, Jane Buckle, PhD, RN recently learned that her published work had been misrepresented by Young Living Essential Oils at a recent conference in Utah. While her response is on the picture that accompanies this post1 Aromatherapy and is big enough to read above, additional notes by Gabriel Mojay about the research snafu are below:

  • 1″. Basil (Ocimum basilicum) is mentioned only once in Jane’s book, and not in relation to toxicity or safety. ‘Essential Oil Safety’ by Tisserand & Young states that Ocimum basilicum ct estragole essential oil should not be taken in oral doses.”

2. “Clove is indeed mentioned on p78 of her book — in the context of a referenced case of oral ingestion in which 5-10 ml resulted in seizure and coma. 25 ml, as quoted by Young Living, would possibly be fatal. “

3. “Hyssop is also mentioned on p78, with reference to a case of oral ingestion in which 10-20 ml resulted in convulsions — not just vomiting, as Young Living suggests.”

4. “Oregano is mentioned three times in Jane’s book, but not once in relation to toxicity or safety. According to ‘Essential Oil Safety’, oral doses of Origanum vulgare essential oil are contraindicated in pregnancy and breastfeeding, diabetic medication, anticoagulant medication, major surgery, peptic ulcer, hemophilia, and other bleeding disorders.”

5. “Sage is mentioned three times in Jane’s book, but not with respect to toxicity or safety. According to ‘Essential Oil Safety’, Salvia officinalis essential oil should not be taken in oral doses.”

6. “Wintergreen is mentioned on three pages in Jane’s book, but not specifically in relation to oral toxicity. According to ‘Essential Oil Safety’, oral doses of Gaultheria fragrantissima syn. G. procumbens essential oil are contraindicated in pregnancy and breastfeeding, anticoagulant medication, major surgery, hemophilia, and other bleeding disorders. The dosage quoted by Young Living as somehow ‘safe’ is almost 50% greater than the maximum adult daily oral dose recommended by Tisserand & Young.

I posted this article on July 5th, 2014.

I didn’t think much about it but did share the article on Facebook with various groups and on my own timeline and professional page. To be honest, from a small business standpoint, lots of small businesses carry Young Living Essential Oils. But this is not all about money. While I have never used this product or worked with it in a professional capacity in a Spa, I will say that Jane Buckle’s response lacks nuance and depth for several reasons.

  • This may be a simple matter of inappropriate preparation and presentation for a conference. When this became known and public, the appropriate business and ethical response would be to issue a press release, note the error and issue a correction. No harm – No foul. So far, Young Living has not responded to my knowledge and the blogosphere, including me, may need to double check our facts before picking up strange memes on Facebook! Time will tell.
  • While Jane is entitled to defend the integrity of her own work, copyright, authorship and research, the attitude her comment displays is not the best way to address the issue of research literacy both in the mainstream medical community or in the alternative health and wellness community. Obviously, just because Jane Buckle is an author does not make her an educator or a teacher and frankly, this shows in her comments. That said, I have known a number of nurses over the years with varying degrees of academics behind them. I would not put it past any of them to run thru a crowded theatre yelling “Fire!”. If research  was truly adhered to by MD’s and RN’s among many others, there would not be such an emphasis on Evidence Based Practices being adopted across the board by the Health Care Industry. Forgive me Jane, but as a graduate student in Health Care Administration, your pride is showing.
  • Young Living needs to issue a Press Release. That is just basic professional industry conduct and ethics. Period.

Young Living Essential Oils did respond to this blog post. They included this post in their July 6th, 2014 Twitter newsletter. While it’s not the correction that I am sure Jane Buckle would like to see in print, they clearly are not hiding the mistake from their distributors or customers and clearly have no problem with the notes and corrections made by educator Gabriel Mojay. I didn’t intend to ride Jane’s thunder but got a free ride! For a humble blogger and would be grad student, having a Facebook meme get featured in a well known companies newsletter is flattering! Thank you Young Living Essential Oils!

The detailed notes citing the errors at the conference were made by Gabriel Mojay
The Institute of Traditional Herbal Medicine & Aromatherapy
gm@aromatherapy-studies.com
http://www.aromatherapy-studies.com

Welcome Saxon-Hart! Spa and Wellness Pay it Forward Organization

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Saxon-Hart is an organization devoted to “paying it forward” in  the Spa and Wellness and Esthetics Industry based out of New York, NY. I took a few moments to ask some basic questions of their founder Heidi Burkhart.

You have partnered with ISPA. I noticed that Chef Pedro received a new suit as part of his makeover. How does this element of fashion relate to the Spa Industry in your view?

“Fashion is an expression of one’s self. When a man catches a glimpse of himself in a new, tailored suit, a sense of confidence is not only seen, it’s felt. A tailored suit is a symbol of power, of being “put together.” When Chef Pedro put on his new suit, his eyes “smiled” in seeing the inspirational man he has become, in spite of his many struggles. He does so much to ensure the healthy eating of those less fortunate. – serving nearly 600 homeless individuals a day, throughout our beautiful city. He aims to bring a high level of nutrition into their lives, while also sharing his profound love for the culinary trade. Additionally, Chef Pedro brings weekly soul searching messages to the congregations he speaks to in Brooklyn and at the NYC Rescue Mission. We were really captured by his story and wanted to give thanks to such a deserving, community minded man. While we did not work with the spa industry on Chef Pedro’s makeover, we were able to later treat his wife and daughter to Mother’s Day makeovers through our extended Saxon/Hart family. She was beyond excited about the makeover and posted several pictures of the transformation to Instagram, noting how the Saxon/Hart team is changing lives in what they do.”

Is Saxon-­-Hart strategically building bridges between Medical Aesthetics and Cosmetology centered Aesthetics by bringing these two disjointed elements of the Industry together common cause or is this an organic development for your project that is ongoing?

“Currently, we self-­-fund all of our makeovers. We are hoping that through additional funding in the near future, we will be able to grow, explore and work with more areas of the industry. We did work with the UNC Dermatology Center with our first makeover candidate, Lilli. I would love to work more with medical aesthetics and skin care practitioners. I personally went through a rhinoplasty procedure, which ultimately allowed me to be more confident. During that time, my doctor prescribed various massage and beauty treatments, which I loved. We hope to share that mindset with more of our candidates in the future.

So far your makeover projects have been for those with medical illness and disability. What social causes might your organization be willing to get involved with?

“We recently partnered with the NYC Rescue Mission for their Mother’s Day event, where we completed 70+ makeovers for homeless shelter moms. Aiming to bring awareness of the NYC Rescue Mission and the continued need to address homelessness .We were able to secure coverage of the day’s activities by several local TV news stations. The Saxon/Hart makeovers brought a fun twist to the day, making for a compelling goodwill story for local media. We were quite pleased with how the day turned out and all of the positive responses we received.”

Are you specifically interested in working with Americans or do you see a global future and application for Saxon-­-Heart’s mission?

“I am a “think big” person, so I would love if Saxon/Hart is eventually able to grow globally. At the same time, I also appreciate the mindset of “scaling back to scale up.” Our focus for now is on growing and expanding the Saxon/Hart giving forward mindset in the U.S. In due time, we hope to be able to share with the world, as well. As for further social causes, we are very open to working with the spa industry to find additional creative ways to showcase talent, while also inspiring others through the stories that we tell.”

Do you have any plans to partner with Professional organizations under the ISPA umbrella, such as Professional organizations for Massage Therapists like ABMP or NCBTMB?  What about Esthetics organizations? Particular schools or research institutions for these spa professions such as OMERI or the Miami based Touch Research Institute?

“No plans at the moment, but I do appreciate all your suggestions! Excited to meet with all in Atlanta and look forward to the possibilities for future partnerships/collaborations to come.” Saxon/Hart 584 Broadway Suite 608 New York New York 10012