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  Spa Etiquette
What is client etiquette? As a spa guest you are expected to:
Arrive 15 minutes before your appointment (15 minutes).
Turn your cell phone off or put it onto silent.
Generally, undress completely for body services, your therapist will keep your body draped in dry services and only expose area to be worked upon, however in wet services such as body scrubs, body wraps and hydrotherapies you will not be draped in order to reap maximum benefits.(Swimsuits are optional in some of these services).
Allow the therapist to perform a service as reserved and timed.
Give the therapist feedback as to your comfort and special troubled areas.
Relax... that's generally why you are in the spa.
Enjoy, benefit and allow others to "do for you".
Know that you are in a professional spa therapy operations and do not expect anything other than therapeutic or spa services.
Know that you may be silent or quietly talkative.
Share public space respectfully with other spa goers.
Do not bring children and leave them unattended, this is very disruptive to other spa goers and unsafe for children.
Know if gratuities are included or not and be prepared according to your experience and desire to tip or not.
Relax, yet respect that the room must be prepared and used for the next client; so know that you must vacate treatment room upon completion of service within a reasonable amount of time.
Give honest feedback to the therapist, owner, receptionist, etc., as operation personnel cares to know if your spa experiences was as expected.

Unacceptable behavior
What client behavior would be considered bad manners? When should a guest be removed from the spa?

  • Lewd behavior
  • Inebriated
  • Demeaning and abusive behavior toward receptionists or therapists.
  • Guest insisting upon services without an appointment when spa is fully booked.

Such behavior does not conform to spa etiquette, but even with such behavior it is important to first fix the person and then the problem. This is a service industry and as such, the motto remains, "customer first." In the above situations, advocate addressing the situation with respect and an agreeable outcome. Remember, its not the one client that needs to be "managed" that is lost, it is the 10 others that they complain to about their experience that are then lost too. Word of mouth is powerful.

Professional Staff Conduct
Treats all clients with fairness and courtesy. Treats the client's modesty with absolute respect.
Provides adequate draping procedures so clients feel safe, secure, comfortable and warm at all times.
Respects the therapeutic relationship and maintains appropriate boundaries.
In no way allows or encourages sexual innuendo or activity in their practice.
Respects the client's right to refuse, terminate or modify treatment.
Keeps communications honest and confidential.
Discloses adequate information regarding qualifications, procedures and expected outcome.
Obtains informed consent before providing treatment if contraindications are present.
Respects and cooperates with other ethical healthcare providers to promote health and wellness.
Offensive staff conduct
What about staff etiquette? What in the professional opinion is a probationary or firing offense within a spa regarding spa etiquette?
Blatant discrimination such as refusing to give a service to a guest because someone is physically challenged or overweight, or because of medical history listed on client card.
Switching guests from one therapist's docket to another because the therapist doesn't want that particular guest for whatever reason or does want them (often because they know that the guest is a big tipper).
Saying the spa is booked because a therapist wants to go home early!
Pointing out to a guest that gratuities are not included or simply asking for a tip.
Poor personal hygiene-unkempt appearance, body odor, poor dental care, etc.
Personalizing services so that they do not conform to established spa standards and, as a result, causes dissension among guests.
Discussions or comments about employment, staff and spa operation that are negative (either with guests or co-workers)
Continued overuse of product and supplies thus differing guest services as well as drastically affecting bottom line expenses to revenues on behalf of the spa.
The spa operator, director or owner will learn of these things from witnesses, guest complaints or co-workers' reports. Just as one is schooled in proper table manners, constant training and emphasizing protocol from a spa service point of view is vital to the success of the day spa industry.

Massage Therapy
To receive maximum benefit and relaxation from a massage:
Arrive a few minutes early. Prior to your massage you will receive a robe to change into. Most people prefer to remove all clothing and jewelry. During your massage, your therapist keeps your entire body draped and only undrapes that portion that is being massaged. If you feel more comfortable leaving your undergarments on, that's fine too.
Once you are with your therapist you will be asked certain questions, such as whether there is anything you like to convey he/she should be aware of. Feel free to express your needs so as to receive specific attention to tense or trouble spots. Your therapist will ask you a few questions to ascertain the most optimum treatment for your sessions.
Relax, this is your time and time for your body (and your mind) to release the worries and stresses of the day. Deep breathing and closing of your eyes will assist in your complete relaxation.
Let your therapist know if you are comfortable or uncomfortable, too warm or too cold or if the massage pressure is too light or too intense.
Trust your massage therapist to move your limbs in whatever position is necessary for and during the massage.
Enjoy the massage and know that you are doing something very good for your body and your mind. You deserve this healthy interlude.
What can it do for you? How often should you have a massage?
Massage therapy increases circulation, thus is nourishing to the entire body. Massage also promotes the release of by-products such as lactic acid, which is one of the causes of stiff and sore muscles. We recommend one weekly massage for health maintenance and to counteract the effects of daily stress.
Sources: Day Spa Association.com and Bodysuite.com