If you ask most people how they first came across a Day Spa, the answer would be either from word of mouth (personal recommendation) or from internet browsing – liking the look of the place supported by the reviews.
However, it’s one thing to walk in through the door and get your first service – there has to be something else to get you to keep coming back. There in no one size fits all when it comes to spas. If you’re going to a high end place that offers saunas, “whole body rituals” that may involve a stay of half a day, the atmosphere and client expectations my be quite different from a place where the typical sevice is a one hour facial, eyelash extensions or a mani-pedi. So let’s look at a few areas which potential returnees are interested in:
AmbienceQ. So why did the first spa on the moon fail? A. Clients came out complaining that the place had no atmosphere. But seriously, a spa should have a relaxed and positive atmosphere, it should be pleasing to the senses and create a good first impression — the spa should look good, smell good, and it should be comfortable and peaceful but maybe not too peaceful.
Staff should be polite, friendly and attentive. They should be professional at all times, and focused on you and your spa experience. Of course you don’t want overfriendliness either. You’re unlikely to be going a spa to make friends and influence people. Staff at a spa should be sensitive to your mood and pick up on whether and how much you want to talk. This includes asking you if you’re happy and comfortable during your treatment.
Cleanliness & Hygiene One of the most important things to be aware of in a spa! The spa should have an over all clean look – from there being no dust and dirt in the place to the appearance of the estethicians – clean and tidy, wearing a clean uniform. The estheticians should wash their hands after finishing with each client and they should wear gloves when performing pedicures. The tools used for manicures and pedicures should be disinfected and sterilized after each client. Pedicure stations need to be also disinfected and sterilized after each client. Files and buffers are a one-time use. Sheets and towels must be changed after each client. These procedures should be visible from a casual inspection.
Information and communication before the appointment -You should have your booking confirmed in writing. A good spa will have a computer booking system that sends out an instantaneous text message at the time of booking and a reminder 24 hours beforehand. If there are cancellation fees for no shows or late cancellations, this should be mentioned upfront.
Information and communication during the appointmentGood communication makes for a more comfortable, more enjoyable spa experience. In a good spa, your esthetician will explain the stages of your treatment, and ask important questions, such as whether or not you are allergic to anything. This way there’ll be no surprises, and you will be able to fully relax. Part of the no surprise element revolves around expected service and corresponding price. If you’ve booked in or a lash refill at the list price of $60, you don’t want to be told by the esthetician, at the end of the treatment, that your lashes were sparser than expected and required an upgrade to a $80 treatment.
Have Realistic Expectations “The primary function of a spa is to help you relax and feel pampered. Many of the treatments can certainly improve your health and leave you looking your best, but don’t expect the fountain of youth. Some spas make pretty outrageous claims, but chances are that your chosen day spa isn’t going to get rid of your cellulite, slim and tone your body in a week and erase a decade from your face. Especially when it comes to medical spa treatments, don’t put too much stock in recommended services — even if the staff physician is the one pushing the product. Remember, spas exist to make money. If you have a medical condition and you think a spa treatment is the best thing for it, visit your regular doctor first.Your experience at a day spa should leave you feeling refreshed and reinvigorated, and probably eager to go back again. If that’s the kind of treatment you’re looking for, most day spas should leave you feeling quite satisfied.” (From 5 tips for choosing a Day Spa)
Attention to detail This isn’t about expensive flourishes and freebies. It’s about whether the spa has thought about the little things that make the difference to your visit. The offer of a cup of tea could make all the difference.
Value for money Whether you paid a lot or a little, do you feel you’re getting your money’s worth? You should. If you don’t, tell them.
Products A good spa should let you know what products they use, and why, but you should not expect any kind of “sell”. Your esthetician should tell you what products they have used during your treatment. And if you really loved that cream they used, you’ll probably be happy to buy it.
Tipping It is normal to tip at a spa if you felt your esthetician did a good job. Most people tip between 10 and 15 per cent. But you should not be expected or pressured to tip.