ATLANTA, Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ — Recessionistas listen up — the economic challenges are not an excuse to let your stress build up while the care of your skin, nail and mental health goes down. There are plenty of deals to go around at spas and 17-year spa and wellness industry expert Mindy Terry has done the digging so that you can savor the relaxation.

"People need the spa experience now more than ever and the slow economic times present great opportunities for spa lovers," said Terry. "As consumers become increasingly discerning about how to spend their discretionary dollars, businesses are looking for ways to enhance the value of the spa experience, while rewarding and incentivizing their loyal customers. It's a great time to score a deal on relaxation!"

With current projects spanning the globe from Egypt to Washington, D.C., Terry's globetrotting lessons will help you stretch your dollar at the spa:

— Capitalize on Slow Times — look for the best deals between Monday and Thursday when business levels are lowest.

— Buy Local — your small day spas and nail salons are great for manicures and pedicures, and while you probably won't lounge around in a robe and slippers while sipping tea, you'll still leave with great looking nails.

— Massaging Massage Costs — there are cost-effective ways to find the perfect rub. With locations throughout the United States, Massage Envy offers a membership program where you can receive a massage every month, build them up or even transfer them. No frills here, but if you are worried about your checkbook, it is a great alternative.

— Bundles of Joy — many day spas offer price breaks on treatment "bundles." For example, buy 10 massages, get one free, or buy three services or more in a day and receive 10-15 percent off.

— Education on Wheels — when staying in urban hotels, Terry likes to hop in a cab and ask the driver where to find the best spas. She has been pleasantly surprised with the recommendations, particularly those found in New York, Chicago, Barbados and Lima, Peru. And, for those resort and hotel travelers who don't mind missing out on a comprehensive spa experience with large wet areas, access to fitness, meditation spaces, etc., they will save a dime or two by checking out local day spas where they can have a great experience for up to 25 percent less.

— Ommm Online — spa Web sites and e-mail blasts offer last-minute deals on products and services as well as monthly specials, so be sure to sign up. Blogs, e-letters and webinars also provide great tips and techniques for coping with stress and dealing with the pressures of daily life.

You may also want to opt for creating a spa-like living environment at home. Sure, it's not as glamorous and you have to do the work, though it's convenient and free …

— Raid the Pantry — Terry has the perfect recipe for creating your own scrub. Take some sugar in the raw and mix it with honey (honey helps moisturize and calm the skin). After reaching a consistency that you like, put a couple drops of essential oil in the mix (Terry loves orange). Microwave for five seconds and take it into the shower with you. Use your hands to slather it all over and rinse. Don't worry; the shower's steam will help the honey become less sticky.

— Take a Breather — when you feel stress or anxiety coming on, disconnect from the world for a few minutes with this exercise: Close your eyes and take in a long, deep, belly breath. As you inhale, visualize fresh oxygen flowing through your nose and filling your lungs. Then use your diaphragm to push out the air and, while doing so, imagine all stress, tension and impurities being forced out. Try this ten times and you'll be enveloped in calm.

— Yoga on the Cheap — yoga cards provide excellent tips for those who want to do it themselves. Check out "OM Yoga Flash Cards" by Cyndi Lee or "The Yoga Deck: 50 Poses and Meditations for Body, Mind & Spirit" by Olivia Miller.

— BlackBerry Massage — take a break from the electronics and give yourself a quick hand massage to increase circulation and lessen fatigue. You will be surprised at how much tension the palms of your hands hold and how much better you feel after this quick rub.

— Cuticle Coaching — nice nails don't always require money. While in the shower, push back your cuticles while the skin is softer because of the water and heat. Keep a nail file in your purse for shaping while commuting on the train or sitting in traffic (though, don't attempt while driving!) In addition, always have a clear polish on hand to keep nails looking clean and well-groomed.

— Living the Spa Lifestyle Every Day — mix Epsom salts with a couple drops of your favorite essential oil for a great and inexpensive way to enjoy a therapeutic relaxing bath. Need to lift your spirits? Focus on your favorite piece of art or photograph while practicing deep breathing techniques. Have extra facial moisturizers lying around with only a few drops left? Don't throw them out, instead use as a quick hand treatment.

About Mindy Terry

Mindy Terry is the President and Founder of Creative Spa Concepts, a leading full-service spa consulting firm specializing in every aspect of new development and ongoing spa operations. Pulling from her 17 years of experience in the spa and wellness industries, Mindy is a respected presenter and educator for her diverse expertise in the spa industry. In addition to leading Creative Spa Concepts, Mindy is also a licensed cosmetologist, aesthetician, yoga instructor and certified infant massage instructor. Additional details are available on http://www.creativespaconcepts.com.

SOURCE Creative Spa Concepts

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