Back in Time

Understanding ancient healing practices in today’s modern spa

We live in a modern world that seems to fast forward through time. Days come, and they go, and not many people out there have the time to stop, breathe, and just be. When clients come to you to enjoy a spa day, they want an escape from all that is modern and a chance to hit the pause button. Looking back at ancient civilizations, their lack of modern medicines and technologies meant they had to find other ways to heal, using ancient methods of aromatherapy, bathing, and massages.

To give your clients that ultimate escape, why not transport them back in time? Evidence shows that many rituals of ancient peoples healed ailments like tense muscles and mild illnesses and helped keep queens, goddesses, and princesses young and ageless. While many spa rituals have been adapted over time, understanding the tradition of these rituals and sharing them with your clients will allow them to reap the benefits and make them feel like royalty in your modern-day spa.

The Beginning of Ancient Healing Rituals

Hippocrates, a Greek physician around the 4th century BCE, believed that the body and mind are one-acting harmoniously in healing. When the mind and body were out of sync, the belief was that disease would take over, giving birth to healing rituals. Different civilizations practiced different rituals, evolving when they fused together thanks to trade routes along the silk roads. What resulted was a whole new way of caring for the body, including hygiene and beauty as practices evolved. While healing rituals are abundant throughout history, three have kept nomadic throughout the passage of time, perfect for modern-day salons and spas.

Ancient Aromatherapy Rituals

The practice of extracting oils from aromatic plants dates back to the earliest civilizations. The Egyptians used concentrated oils in mummification rituals, and the Chinese and Greeks deemed essential oils a critical part of their healing practices. As civilizations mingled, the process of extracting oils improved, and their use expanded into beauty and hygiene. Romans would use them in baths and for their fragrance to leave behind a lingering sweet smell and later even began to burn the oils in their homes.

Today, aromatherapy is still used for its fragrant properties and also for healing. Essential oils like lavender are known to melt away stress and promote a good night’s sleep. Chamomile is a proven antidepressant and boosts mood and positivity when inhaled or rubbed on the skin. Eucalyptus relieves tension in the body, loosening up tight muscles around the neck and temples for instant migraine relief.

Healing Tip: Because of the diversity of oils and the variety of benefits, offer your clients different sessions for their needs. Stress relief, help with depression, decreased tension, or just a wake-up call for the brain are all possible with aromatherapy. Add it to any massage, hair service, or even mani-pedis for an instant ancient healing treat.

“When the mind and body were out of sync, the belief was that disease would take over, giving birth to healing rituals.”


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Aurora Solis

Aurora Solis is a former Licensed Esthetician and Makeup Artist turned beauty and wellness writer. With 15 years of experience in the industry, she never grows tired of the beauty industry's ever-changing landscape. Her passion is helping other beauty professionals grow and be confident in their business ventures while putting them in touch with the latest trends and education.