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Spafinder Launches The Wellness App

Image courtesy of Spafinder

The app, available for iOS and Android, gives users the ability to find, book and pay for wellness services, plus earn rewards, from their phones.

Spafinder Wellness, Inc. recently announced the launch of its mobile application, “The Wellness App,” for iOS and Android. The app brings together the fragmented landscape of wellness providers and, for the first time, gives users the ability to find, book and pay, plus earn rewards, all from their mobile phones. The Wellness App is available in Apple’s App Store and on Google Play; to download, visit www.spafinder.com/thewellnessapp.

Spafinder Wellness has over 25,000 wellness businesses in its network, including yoga and Pilates studios, fitness clubs, spas, salons and wellness travel destinations. Behind the scenes, the Spafinder Wellness platform allows for payment processing to these locations with the app, even though they have uncommon point-of-sale or booking systems. Mobile and Internet connectivity makes this unique app functionality available to consumers and businesses. The app is especially attractive to employers who have workplace wellness programs or incentive/rewards companies that promote healthy lifestyles.

Consumers who receive Spafinder Wellness 365™ Cards as gifts, incentives or rewards will be able to download them to the app and use them to purchase from providers in the Spafinder Wellness Network. The Wellness App is also fully integrated with the company’s rewards program, My365Rewards, awarding users points for a variety of in-app and on-site behaviors. The new app features well-known wellness providers, including brands such as Bliss, Equinox, Mandarin Oriental, Canyon Ranch, Elemis, Curves and Zeel, the Massage On Demand company.

“We believe finding ways to feel good and stay healthy should be easy and rewarded. With The Wellness App, Spafinder Wellness gives users a simple way to keep wellness funds handy and find, book and pay for services they choose,” says Pete Ellis, chairman and CEO of Spafinder Wellness. “For existing Spafinder Wellness users, the experience begins with a seamless transition of their rewards points and account information after they log in to the app; for new users, it’s about an easy connection to their next great wellness experience.”

The Wellness App, developed by Spafinder Wellness’ technology team, with support from Miami-based technology agency YellowPepper, breaks new ground in introducing a first-of-its-kind payment platform and the most advanced universal mobile payments technology for the wellness industry. The result is a single solution that gives consumers a seamless experience across providers.

The Wellness App allows users to:

  • Discover a Global Network of Wellness Providers: Choose a provider based on location, services, pricing or reviews; try a new location or connect directly with a trusted provider.
  • Real-Time Bookings: Make an appointment or reserve a class at select partners (live in May).
  • Pay for Services: Consumers can pay for services with the app, using a secure account with the in-app card and barcode scanner. They can also reload funds with a linked credit card.
  • Earn Points & Rewards: All in-app behaviors are linked to the Spafinder My365Rewards Program, meaning that users earn points for everything from loading their Mobile Wellness Cards, booking classes and treatments, paying for services to even writing reviews. Points can be used toward services at partner locations.
  • Get Location-Based, Real-Time Promotions & Special Offers: With local searches, users also get notification of nearby deals. When they achieve Silver and Gold Rewards levels, they have the opportunity to receive exclusive offers and invitations to special events.
  • View Detailed Provider Descriptions and Service Offerings: Get a snapshot view of an individual location with descriptions and reviews.
  • Rate & Review: App users can rate locations and leave feedback based on their experience (live in April).

“The app bridges the many gaps that have made wellness offerings diffuse and inconsistent, and brings together all types of providers, from large, established businesses to single-location establishments, to offer consumers a unified, seamless experience under one umbrella,” said Ellis.

To learn more about or to download The Wellness App, visit www.spafinder.com/thewellnessapp.

Comphy Launches New Product Lines

Image courtesy of Contento Marketing

The launch includes new towel lines, knit blankets, and a retail baby line.

Luxury spa linen brand Comphy recently announced the launch of additional lines to enhance spa operations and increase retail sales. The launch comprises new organic, cotton and bamboo towels, knit blankets for professional spa use, and a baby line - Comphy Baby, ideal for retail in spas and boutiques.

"It is a big year for Comphy with all of our new product releases, and we couldn't be more excited to be able to offer our clients a full range of products that will meet all of their linen needs," said Mia Richardson, founder and CEO of Comphy Co. "Whether it's sheets, towels or beautiful knits for guest areas, our new lines offer the same famous Comphy softness we are known for and come in a wide selection of sizes, colors, designs and fabrics."

The new towel line offers spa professionals another way to pamper guests, and includes an array of luxurious towels designed specifically for spa use. The line includes Comphy's Bamboo, Essential, Simply Organic, Serenity, Opulent, Salon, Makeup and Fitness towels. Meanwhile, the company's new knits include the Bubble Cable Throw and Damask Blankets, while the Comphy Baby line includes a fitted sheet and quilted baby blanket - in a variety of sets and colors - proven to contribute to a better night's sleep.

For more information, please visit http://www.comphy.com.

Spa News: Aromatherapy Associates Announces New CEO

Image courtesy Levi PCPR

Tracey Woodward has been appointed as CEO of the spa and beauty brand.

Aromatherapy Associates recently announced the appointment of Tracey Woodward as Chief Executive Officer. Tracey will assume the CEO position of the award-winning global spa and beauty brand, Aromatherapy Associates, and the male grooming brand, The Refinery, on April 7th, 2016.

Tracey Woodward brings a wealth of spa, retail and beauty experience to Aromatherapy Associates having worked in the industry for over 30 years. Tracey’s previous successes have included building the Aveda brand in the UK, Commercial Director at Urban Retreat Spa at Harrods and Harvey Nichols, General Manager for Modern Organic Products, Brand Management at Donna Karan Beauty and, most recently at Marks & Spencer where she helped redesign and develop the beauty department. Tracey has also been a retained consultant to B&B Investment Partners since June 2014.

Tracey Woodward commented, “Aromatherapy Associates is an iconic British brand and our intention is to build on the legacy of brand founder Geraldine Howard. We aim to stay true to the authenticity and heritage of both Aromatherapy Associates and The Refinery, and further develop our offering of exceptional services and products.”

Chris Britton at B&B Investment Partners, the investors in Aromatherapy Associates, commented, “Tracey’s successful background in spa, retail and product development, as well as her leadership and unrivaled experience in the beauty industry means Aromatherapy Associates and The Refinery will remain true to their origins and missions, while building an exciting future.”

Face & Body Midwest Breaks Record Attendance in 2016

Image courtesy of Y Communications

Over 6,000 spa, skin care and wellness professionals attended the exciting expo and conference event in Chicago.

Produced by Allured Business Media, the 2016 Face & Body Midwest expo and conference continued its run as a top professional event this year. Face & Body welcomed an energetic crowd of 6,431 spa, skin care and wellness professionals — up from just over 5,600 in 2015 — from across the United States. Face & Body Midwest has evolved beyond the traditional expo to become one of the industry’s most comprehensive events for professional spa, esthetics, wellness, massage and advanced education.

Face & Body is known for its diverse exhibitor base and 2016 was no exception. Known as a launch and networking pad for new spa and skin care products and services, this year’s event featured more than more than 140 exhibiting companies. Ranging from international beauty leaders to indie trendsetters, exhibiting brands included Advanced Mineral Makeup, CAILYN Cosmetics, Eminence Organic Skincare, Fake Bake, HydraFacial MD, Image Skincare, Jenetiqa Professional Skincare, LightStim, PCA Skin, Revitalash by Athena Cosmetics, and Satin Smooth.

Face & Body Midwest Show Highlights

Advanced Education Conference Program: The Advanced Education program provided robust, unbiased education that is critical to elevating the knowledge of the esthetician and spa owner. This year, with 280 attendees, education was broken up into a Wellness Track, a Business Track, a Science Track and a Treatment Track. Kicking off the conference was “Lotions and Potions: Deciphering Formulation and Chemistry,” a panel of four chemists that was moderated by Skin Inc. magazine managing editor Katie Anderson and cosmetic bio-evangelist Rebecca Gadberry. The panel guided attendees through ingredients and technologies to help them make better product choices for treatments, as well as make better recommendations to their clients.

New for 2016, Face & Body Midwest was proud to be approved by the Ohio State Board of Cosmetology to provide continuing education for sessions in the Treatment Track. And Illinois estheticians once again had the chance to have one Continuing Education (CE) hour authorized for each one hour session in the Advanced Education Conference program. Face & Body's parent company, Allured Business Media, has been an approved sponsor of continuing education by the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation.

Supplier Classes: Industry suppliers presented their specific products and techniques and conducted hands-on demonstrations and lectures in Supplier Classes. The Supplier Classes were included in the registration fee and proved to be a great way to gain valuable face-to-face time with respected industry suppliers.

Passport to Prizes: With the help of select exhibitors, Face & Body Midwest brought back its Passport to Prizes contest. Attendees who visited participating booths and got their Face & Body passports stamped were eligible to be entered as one of the three prize winners. Announced on the last day of the show, the three winners are:

  • Grand Prize ($500): Beth Satyr, esthetician at Innovative Dermatology in Chicago, Illinois
  • Second Prize ($250): Emily Williams, esthetician at Revive Salon & Spa in Apple Valley, Minnesota
  • Third Prize ($100): Kathy Deaton, esthetic coordinator at Hauser Ross Eye Institute in Sycamore, Illinois

Next year’s Face & Body Midwest will take place January 21–23, 2017 and, due to demand, will be expanding to a larger show floor at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. Face & Body is open to skin care facility owners, directors, managers, estheticians, massage therapists, dermatologists, and other medical esthetics professionals. For additional information and photos from Face & Body Midwest and updates on next year’s show, please visit faceandbody.com/midwest.

Spa News: Essie Announces Revamped Gel Line

Image courtesy of MML PR

The nail brand will be making its iconic shades available in gel form beginning April 2016.

Beginning in April 2016, Essie will be revamping its gel line, renaming the gel shades to match the iconic Essie polishes users know and love. Including cult classics like "ballet slippers," "licorice" and "smokin' hot," the revamping will enable clients to select from some of their favorite Essie hues.

Originally launched in 2013, Essie gel’s state-of-the-art formula is designed to respect natural nail health and deliver 14 days of exceptional color and shine.

Additionally, Essie gel will now feature a new base coat. Formulated to prime and protect nails while promoting color adhesion, this advanced base coat with reduced odor provides easier application and a flawless finish.

Essie gel’s renamed shades will be available in April exclusively at select salons nationwide.

SpaRitual To Introduce New Mindful Brush

Image courtesy of SpaRitual

Beginning May 1, 2016, all SpaRitual bottles will include the new patented brush.

SpaRitual, the 5-free, vegan and cruelty-free beauty brand, has launched its new Mindful Brush. Currently present in a few lacquers from the GOLD collection, the Mindful Brush will be officially included in all SpaRitual lacquer bottles beginning with the Summer 2016 Empower Collection, to be released May 1, 2016.

SpaRitual's new Mindful Brush utilizes over 600 bristles that fan out for maximum control and the precise application of the brand's nail lacquers and treatments. This one-of-a-kind brush has the highest bristle count in the professional industry with a new shape that delivers beautifully smooth and even coverage on the nail. The Mindful Brush is the perfect complement to SpaRitual’s patented Plum Cap. The ergonomic design of the cap, plus the new Mindful Brush, will elevate manicures to the next level.

SpaRitual continues to show their commitment to supporting the spa professional with the new Mindful Brush, which elevates precision and was designed with innovative technology to provide easier and faster application.

SpaRitual is committed to creating spa and nail care products that nourish the mind, body and spirit connection, which are also environmentally kind. The Mindful Brush will be used as an applicator for all of SpaRitual’s products, which are always vegan and formulated without DBP, Toluene, Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin or Camphor.

For more information, please visit www.sparitual.com.

ISPA Conference & Expo Announces Opening and Closing Keynote Speakers

Image courtesy of ISPA

Dr. Brené Brown and Simon Sinek will serve as this year's opening and closing keynote speakers.

The International SPA Association (ISPA) welcomes University of Houston research professor, Dr. Brené Brown and leadership expert, Simon Sinek, as the opening and closing keynote speakers for the 2016 ISPA Conference & Expo at The Venetian in Las Vegas, Nev. from Sept. 13 – 15, 2016.

“With Brené and Simon we have great bookends to the Conference that will allow us to develop ourselves personally and professionally. Brené will encourage us to look at ourselves inwardly with openness to vulnerability and courage. Simon will challenge us to look at how we manage and lead people that will result in employees who are motivated to go to work each day,” said ISPA President Lynne McNees.

The opening keynote speaker for the 2016 ISPA Conference & Expo, Dr. Brené Brown, is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, New York Times bestselling author, and CEO and chief learning officer of The Daring Way. The Daring Way is a training and certification program for professionals who want to facilitate her work on vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. She will speak the morning of Tuesday, Sept. 13.

The 26th annual event will close with Simon Sinek, the New York Times bestselling author, motivational speaker and TED Talk participant. Sinek teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire people. With a bold goal to help build a world in which the vast majority of people go home every day feeling fulfilled by their work, Sinek is leading a movement to inspire people to do the things that inspire them. Sinek will present the morning of Thursday, Sept. 15.

The second day keynote speaker will be announced at a later date. More information about attending the 2016 ISPA Conference & Expo can be found at attendISPA.com.

BioPhotas, Inc. Announces Additional FDA Wrinkles Clearance for the Celluma

Image courtesy of BioPhotas, Inc.

The clearance will allow for the Celluma to be used in the treatment of facial wrinkles.

BioPhotas, Inc. recently announced the clearance by the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) of the Celluma, its patented biophotonic medical device, for an additional indication-for-use in treating facial wrinkles. The FDA has previously cleared the Celluma for seven separate indications-for-use, including the treatment of acne, muscle and joint pain, muscle and joint stiffness, muscle spasm, arthritis and compromised local blood circulation.

Commenting on the FDA clearance, Patrick Johnson, President and Chief Executive Officer for BioPhotas said, “The Celluma has really created a new category of Low-Level Light Therapy device, one that combines the power and efficacy of large panel devices and the affordability of small hand-held devices, into a single product that is FDA-cleared to treat the broadest range of muscle, joint and skin conditions on the market. In the Celluma, we have created an extraordinarily versatile product that is effective enough to be used in a professional setting and affordable enough to be used in the home.”

The Celluma uses three discrete wavelengths of light energy simultaneously, modulated with proprietary electronic algorithms, to effectively treat a variety of skin, muscle and joint conditions. The Celluma is distinct from other light therapy devices given its patented flexible design that molds to the body to allow the light to be absorbed more effectively, leading to higher efficacy and more predictable outcomes. In a clinical study reviewed by three board certified dermatologists, the Celluma was shown to have produced a lasting and quantifiable reduction in facial wrinkles 12 weeks after the completion of a 4-week treatment regime.

In support of the new FDA clearance, BioPhotas has announced the launch of a new website, which explains in great detail the health and wellness benefits of Low-Level Light Therapy (LLLT), and specifically of the Celluma. The website highlights the use of the Celluma in treating acne and wrinkles, as well as aches and pain. The scientific foundation for LLLT is presented,from the seminal research conducted by NASA to the research sponsored by BioPhotas at the prestigious Beckman Laser Institute at the University of California, Irvine.

Visit the new website at www.biophotas.com.

Burke Williams Brings Innovative Spa Concepts to New West Hollywood Location

Burke Williams Day Spa's West Hollywood facility will move to a new location on La Brea in August 2016.

Burke Williams Day Spa's popular West Hollywood day spa will be moving to a new location on La Brea Ave. just south of Santa Monica Blvd. in August 2016. The new spa facility will be a larger footprint than the former location and will introduce multiple new innovative spa concepts not previously offered at the West Hollywood spa.

The new spa will boast expanded common areas for guests to relax and enjoy mini massage services while they wait for their full service. Nail care will be available in the new location and will include the spa’s newest eco-friendly steam pedicure service.

An innovative Custom Blend Bar will allow guests to consult with an expert aromatherapist and personalize their service in up to 10,000 ways, spanning every option imaginable including aromatherapies, herbal blends, lotions, massage oils, bath salts and more. These personalized blends will be available for use in services and also for sale for use at home.

In addition to the traditional vanity area, the spa will offer a full-service blow dry bar called Style where guests can select their perfect hair design and leave the spa looking fabulous. Style will accept walk-ins and appointments.

Many of these new innovative concepts were first introduced at Burke Williams’ tenth spa location that opened fall of 2015 at The Village at Westfield Topanga.

“We value our relationship with the community of West Hollywood and greater Los Angeles very much,” commented Burke Williams Founder, Bill Armour. “The new West Hollywood spa location is going to present multiple advanced amenities that will bring the ultimate sanctuary for relaxation and rejuvenation to the area and our loyal guests.”

[Image courtesy of Burke Williams]

10th Annual ISPA Foundation Scholarship Opens

Last year's winners, Taylor Toreno and Anne-Liise Verpson, were presented with their certificates as co-recipients of the 2015 Mary Tabacchi Scholarship during the ISPA Conference & Expo/Image courtesy of ISPA

Students can apply for a chance to receive $5,000 USD to offset their education expenses, as well as a chance to attend the 2016 ISPA Conference & Expo.

With the help of the International SPA Association (ISPA) Foundation and a wealth of donations, students interested in pursuing a spa management, leadership or entrepreneurship-related career will be able to achieve their dreams. Scholarship applications are now being accepted for the 2016 Mary Tabacchi Scholarship.

“The scholarship continues to uncover many bright and emerging leaders in the world of spa,” said Frank Pitsikalis, chairman of the ISPA Foundation.

The scholarship was created in 2006 and later named in honor of Mary Tabacchi, Ph.D., RD, Associate Professor, Hospitality Facilities and Operations at Cornell University. Dr. Tabacchi is a beloved spa industry veteran and pioneer in spa education.

“This award was created, ten years ago, to encourage and inspire those joining the spa industry,” said ISPA President Lynne McNees. “We are pleased it continues to give back to our community and nurture future leaders.”

The scholarship will be awarded to a junior, senior or graduate student enrolled full-time in a bachelor's or master's program. The recipient will receive $5,000 USD to offset their education expenses, a complimentary registration, travel stipend and hotel accommodations to attend the 2016 ISPA Conference & Expo, a one-year ISPA student membership and will be assigned a one-year mentor to help navigate their career aspirations.

The ISPA Foundation will present the award at the 26th annual ISPA Conference & Expo at The Venetian in Las Vegas, Nev. from September 13 – 15, 2016.

To learn more about eligibility requirements and to access the scholarship application, visit http://experienceispa.com/about/ispa-foundation. The deadline to apply is April 29, 2016.