Travel Tips

There’s WHAT in my Facial? Strangest Spa Treatments

Locations in this article:  Miami, FL Tokyo, Japan

FacialYes, it’s easy to get an ordinary facial. But you can also opt for one that’s a bit more interesting, and sometimes with ingredients and materials you would never expect. These treatments will leave you relaxed, with glowing skin, and could take a few years off. While the process sounds unusual, the result could very well surprise you.

L.A. Lift

The new spa at The Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey, Spa del Rey, has a new treatment that was actually designed to extend the life of Botox treatments. This is L.A., after all. The treatment uses non-invasive techniques, and even if you haven’t had Botox, it will leave you with a glowing complexion.

The L.A. Lift involves products from Natura Bisse’s Inhibit Collection and Three-dimensional Lifting Technology. The process starts like a traditional facial, but then it takes an interesting turn.

Start by lying on a table that curves with your body, and the specialist will analyze your skin. She’ll rub a variety of creams into your skin (one even feels a little prickly for a few minutes). The specialist then spreads out your wrinkles and works in a product that acts like scar tissue, building up in your creases to help those lines disappear. Naturally, the more lines you have, the longer this process takes.

After this, she uses a Sono Lifting Massage Tuning Fork to tighten your facial muscles. The specialist will tap it lightly on your wrinkled areas, and you’ll feel a slight vibration in your face. While each product is slowly sinking into your skin, the specialist massages your arms and gives you a bit of an adjustment. Unlike a true Botox treatment, you’ll not only be able to move your face afterward, but you will be completely relaxed and refreshed.

Kim KardashianBlood Facial

You’ve seen Kim Kardashian Tweet about it. If you’re ready to see what the fuss is all about, check out The Miami Institute for Age Management and Intervention for PRP Rejuvenation Therapy. The process begins by taking a small amount of blood, which is centrifuged so that the platelets, serum, and fibrin can separate and activate. This separation creates the Platelet Rich Fibrin Matrix or PRFM.

The PRFM is injected via The Dermapen, which has nine micro needles and a spring-loaded tip. The blood is injected into the face through a vibrating and stamping movement, which creates very small holes. This allows the PRFM to enter beneath the surface of the skin, but also stimulates the production of collagen.

As a result, the platelets release factors that promote natural tissue regeneration for up to seven days. And while the process sounds painful, it’s considered to be a growing alternative to plastic surgery, and results can be seen anywhere between six months and two years after the procedure.

Reiki by a Horse

If you’re not familiar with Reiki, it’s a type of Japanese-based healing that typically involves some amount of touch. Sometimes the practitioner’s hands will hover over parts of your body that need extra energy to help the body’s natural energy flow, which relates to your overall health.

Free Rein Australia, a destination dedicated to promoting health and self-awareness through interaction with horses, has a “Reiki by a Horse” treatment. When you arrive at the site, you meet with a Reiki practitioner and are introduced to the horses. Once you lay down on a table outside, the horses will approach you to perform Reiki.

Since the horses at Free Rein Australia live like a natural herd, they have a different awareness of one another’s well-being, which translates to their interaction with clients. The sessions can last anywhere from 20 to 90 minutes. It depends on the horses.

Snail Facial

Yes, you read that right. This new trend has gained some attention lately, and the Ci:z.Labo Clinical Salon in Tokyo, Japan offers facials that let you take advantage of the health benefits of snail slime. While it sounds odd, the slime includes healing components that work particularly well for acne and wrinkles. There’s a great deal of moisture in the slime itself, as well as properties that can heal wounds and acne, leaving minimal scars. It also works to treat sunburns and relieve the effects of aging.

There are two ways to take advantage of these properties. One is through products. Ci:z.Labo imports skin care products from Switzerland that include snail slime, and these are used in the typical Escargot Facial. If you so desire, you can opt to have the snails trail along your face for five minutes, but it might feel like a long five minutes.

But don’t try this at home. The snails used for these facials have been groomed for this since birth. They live on a strict diet, stay in a temperature-controlled, sanitary room, and only perform one snail facial a day. That’s why the clinical salon refers to them as Celebrity Snails.

Floating Meditation

We all know the benefits of meditation, but sometimes it’s a little difficult to focus. Miraval Spa in Tuscon solves this problem by taking the experience one step further. The Spa offers Floating Meditation, which involves a silk yoga hammock that is suspended from the ceiling. Once you climb into the hammock and find a comfortable sitting position, it rocks you slightly back and forth. Meanwhile, crystal bowls are set to vibrate and “sing” in the room around you. The whole experience should bring you to a new form of relaxation, especially since the hammock will make it feel as if you are being held and rocked at the same time.

Geisha Facial

Shizuka Day Spa in New York is offering a traditional Japanese facial once used for Geisha and Kabuki dancers. Celebrities such as Victoria Beckham have also begun trying it. What makes this facial particularly interesting is its key ingredient—nightingale droppings. Also known as uguisu no fun, the droppings are sanitized through exposure to ultraviolet light and then ground into a fine powder.

The result should give you the same result Geisha discovered—bright, glowing skin with a pearlescent tone. The guanine and natural enzymes in the uguisu no fun can also heal the skin, and ultimately give it a lustrous look.

Credit Trump Hotel Spa

Image Credit: Trump Hotel Spa

Harmonizing Gemstone Treatment

Ever heard of a diamond body treatment? This one doesn’t stick to just one type of gem, it uses several. In addition to diamonds, you can have amethyst, sapphires, and rubies placed on specific chakras to bring the energy within your body to a balance. The idea is to replenish you with iron, zinc, magnesium, silica, and copper. Since these elements help the human body, you can get some trace elements of them while they’re placed against your skin.

Available at the Trump Hotel Spa, you will also be exfoliated with a mauve mousse that has a concentration of gem particles. A mineral rich anti-aging cream is rubbed on you, and the overall effect should leave you glowing and feeling replenished.

Click here for more information about unique and interesting spa treatments around the world.

By Stephanie Ervin for