tofino spa - art and science of facials

The Art & Science of Facials

by Kelly Rettinger, Tofino


Facials have indeed come a long way! A much more holistic approach to both health and wellness is reflected in skin care as well. Within a comfortable, nurturing environment complete with soothing music, soft lighting, and enticing aromas, what was once considered decadent (and somewhat clinical) will be the most surprisingly relaxing experience that you will want as part of your monthly regime!

The face is a landscape of our inner thoughts and feelings as well as a map of our internal body. What is happening internally, eventually manifests outwardly. Many Eastern systems of wellness actually "read" the face and use it as an indicator of health or dis-ease. Different areas of the face represent different organ function. The forehead, for example, indicates digestion, the chin shows us reproductive, or hormonal function. The skin may also reveal other health conditions including dehydration, food sensitivities, and even high cholesterol. An in depth consultation regarding lifestyle will also help to put the pieces of the puzzle together and help determine what lotions and "potions" are most appropriate, which is also very important. The science of essential oils and aromatherapy is exactly that, a science and it requires a qualified professional to properly select and use them, particularly on the face. There is also the facial massage, which includes neck, shoulders, arms, and hands. Specific pressure points and massage techniques are not only very relaxing, but also imperative in reaping the full benefits of the essential oils. Every face tells a story, and listening to that story, is key to an effective and truly memorable experience. Knowing which oils to use, and the methodology in which to use them, is the science of the facial, knowing how to apply them is the art. (But rest assured, you are in qualified, caring hands!)

Now, wrapped cocoon-like in warmed blankets, the Art of the Facial is about to become very apparent. The application of the chosen oils, blends and aromas is artfully choreographed. Like a well-executed ballet, with a beginning a middle and an end; every movement is perfectly timed, every touch integrated with the skills necessary to make for a most blissful experience. The combination of soothing aromas, hot towels, and a skilled, compassionate touch will encourage a total departure from reality. This is a facial?! This is not decadent or frivolous: relaxation, whether a facial, or a Hot Stone Massage, is truly the greatest gift you can give yourself. (Or someone you care about.)

Kelly Rettinger is a Licensed Aesthetician, Registered La Stone Therapist and practices Certified Holistic Bodywork in Tofino. You can reach her at the Sacred Stone Wellness Studio at (250) 725-3341 or email her at

Tofino Time Magazine February 2003

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