day spa oracleAs creator and owner of a unique destination day spa for the past 12 years I am asked questions daily about everything relating to the day spa and wellness world. I love to continually be researching, reading and learning the answers to the questions and sharing this knowledge with others.

Day Spa Oracle blog came about from clients inspiring me to share my knowledge, experience and advice.

I hope it inspires you too

Under arm detox for breast health
it’s all about the face and no troubles, no troubles
Your favorite bag might be the cause of your tension.
How do you know what massage you need?
Killer Heels
Family Spa time, a trend that has become a popular family experience

Under arm detox for breast health

During October we promoted breast health at ikatan Day Spa by making Under Arm Detox kits which our clients could take home for a donation to a local Breast Cancer Charity. The Under Arm Detox kits were so popular and thank you for the generous donations.

I love how women support other women for a good cause and share information with each other for the good of others.

I had such great interest from women when sharing the information and recipe at ikatan Spa and through social media that I thought I should share the information again here.

In preparing the detox kits I researched a lot of information about clays, detoxing and how it relates to breast tissue and cancer. I am on the board of a local Breast Cancer Charity which is another reason I want to help others, as I understand what women go through with breast cancer and because we see first hand at ikatan Spa how many beautiful women and their families are effected by breast cancer.

Amongst a lot of technical research I also found the best recipe for a simple, practical underarm detox from Wellness Mama blog (who is a Mum in the USA with a wellness interest for everything she does for her family and friends) and her information and recipe is a great simplified explanation, which I have shared with you here.

One quick true story to show you how connected your body is…. my daughter put an “off the shelf” chemist hair colour in her hair when she was 20 years old. She called me and said ‘ Mum the colour I put on my hair has come out under my arms and also in a patch on my stomach near my belly button‘. I used to be a hairdresser and had never seen or heard of this but was well aware of the chemicals in that type of hair colour (as opposed to professional hairdressing hair colour) and as a Spa Therapist, also trained in Vodder Lymphatic Drainage,I knew that the toxic hair colour could only have caused this via transferring through the lymphatics. Efficient lymphatic but pretty scary stuff and one of the other reasons I have an interest in researching underarm detox, as my daughter, 12 years later, still has a stain on her skin like a birth mark!

To me, the story about my daughter (in this blog) is proof in itself how fast and invasive toxic chemicals can travel in our lymphatic system and why I want you to throw away toxic deodorants, do an under arm detox and buy a healthy deodorant.

Conventional deodorants and antiperspirants contain a variety of chemicals and additives. It takes something unnatural to block the body’s natural ability to sweat, and the chemical list in some deodorants is scary. Here are some of the ingredients found in deodorants.

  • Aluminium– some evidence links aluminium to cancer and Alzheimer’s
  • Phthalates– Endocrine disruptors that can cause hormone imbalance and even infertility
  • Propylene glycol– antifreeze, additive in personal care products for the fact that it carries a risk of immunotoxicity and allergies.
  • Formaldehyde- a known carcinogen, guess it kills the germs though.
  • Parabens- Another hormone disruption have been found in biopsied tissue with breast cancer
  • Antibacterial Substances- are endocrine disruptors and can negatively affect the immune system

Why is this a big deal? Ever gotten sick and had a lump in your neck or armpit? That is a lymph node and they are a major part of your immune system. Putting endocrine disruption chemicals directly on top of them is a great way to affect your hormones and suppress immune function.

The skin is the body’s largest organ and what touches our skin can easily enter our bloodstream. With skyrocketing rates of breast cancer, it would seem the only sensible thing to do is to avoid these chemicals until further research is done.

A great advantage to doing an armpit detox, besides that it helps speed up the natural deodorant adjustment period, is that it might help pull some of these chemicals out of the skin and tissue of the armpits. This can be especially helpful after years of conventional deodorant use.

How to Detox Your Arm Pits

  • 1 tablespoon bentonite clay
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 teaspoons of water (to get right consistency)


Mix all of the ingredients in a glass bowl (do not use metal!) with a wooden or non-metal spoon until it is about the consistency of sour cream.

  • Spread in an even layer over the armpits and allow to sit for 5-20 minutes.
  • I suggest starting slowly and working up to a longer period of time once you see how your body adjusts. If it hurts at all, remove immediately.
  • This may cause some redness as it will increase blood-flow to the area, but it will go away quickly.
  • Wash off in the shower or with a warm, wet washcloth.
  • Repeat daily or as needed until under-arm odour goes away and natural deodorant is non-irritating.

Thanks to the Wellness Mama blog for sharing this information and recipe.

put your hand up for detoxing under arms and better breast health.

Katrina Thorpe – Day Spa Oracle

Owner of ikatan Spa 

it’s all about the face and no troubles, no troubles

Why facials can be more relaxing than a massage

Facials are also about creating ‘inner peace’ which reflects a serene appearance on your face immediately after a facial. Beauty is skin deep and it shows in a person’s skin how you feel within yourself, especially when you are stressed.

Decades ago, facials were all about extractions, steaming and purging skin, leaving skin looking blotchy and bruised after a facial. Facial products, training and techniques used today have changed compared to what was used years ago and now are all about desensitising, calming, hydrating, balancing and nourishing your skin.

While the skincare products used today are all about achieving results to attain beautiful skin, relaxation and knowledge of a professional Therapist play a great part.The magic that skin Therapists work with their soothing hands while using advanced skincare products and specialised aroma oils to deliver effective anti-ageing treatments are all combined in one facial at ikatan Spa to offer immediate stress relief. Skin Therapists can feel you slipping into deep relaxation, while your breathing slows and you drift to inner peace, releasing facial muscle tension as well as your mind and stress.

Sounds good, I need that, so how does it work?

During a facial Therapists use a lighter, softer touch in repetitive rhythmical patterns over the peripheral nerve endings on and around the face and scalp. The peripheral nerves are important structures in the body that carry information from the brain and spinal cord out to the muscles to initiate movements and then to also carry sensory information back from the extremities and other tissues to the spinal cord. This brain and sensory touch exchange from soft repetitive movements simply sends a message of calm to your mind and it shows in your face.

You know how people have a different look about them when they are in love, pregnant or just back from a holiday? When those relaxed, happy vibes are just too good to hide. Well, facials can give you that look too.

Any time is a great time to have facials or skin treatments but cooler months are particularly good due to less chance of sun exposure and it’s snugly to be cosy and warm on a soft treatment bed relaxing while you enjoy a rejuvenating treatment that leaves you looking and feeling as if you have no trouble in your life.

We use and recommend Environ cosmeceutical 100% vitamin skincare for anti-ageing and for those who love organic products we also offer Uspa Australian Botanical skincare for all facial treatments at ikatan Spa.

Try a facial next time you need some inner peace


Day Spa Oracle

Your favorite bag might be the cause of your tension.

Do you have neck and shoulder tension? 

Do you fill your bag and sling it over your shoulder, taking it everywhere you go just in case you might need something?

Tight neck and shoulders are just some of the the problems heavy handbags cause.

The over-sized handbags, Termed by medics as ‘Poshitis‘, (after Posh spice being responsible for this trend) and it refers to women spraining or tearing muscles and tendons due to heavy bags. Most of us carry and love our big handbags as it seems to make life easier and more sense if we carry everything we might need and it’s convenient to carry our everyday requirements with us at all times.

Is your Handbag worth it's weight?

Some handbags are as large as a small child and just as heavy. Did you realise that carrying a large heavy shoulder bag can cause long term damage to your neck, shoulder, back and hips.

The weight of a heavy bag will drag your shoulder downward, straining the muscles on your neck and shoulder and at the same time as it pulls your shoulder forward. When you carry a bag, your neck leans away from the weight to help your body stabilise the load from your bag.

Or you hunch (raise your shoulder up and forward) to hold the weight of the bag which contracts the muscles in the neck and upper shoulder creating a lot of tension while your body tries to counter balance this weight by adjusting the back and hip in a raised position on one side to cope with the weight in the handbag.

Symptoms that your bag is too heavy:  Have you ever experienced constant pain in the shoulder and neck or tingling in and around the neck and shoulders or an isolated dull or cold feeling in the shoulder or neck when carrying your bag? Ever noticed pins and needles, numbness in your arm and hand or headaches that are persistent? These are the signs that it may be time to down size your bag or carry less weight  (ideally, the weight of the handbag should range between 2-3% of the person’s body weight) and an excuse to buy a new handbag!

Unload the load but keep everything you need with you? Get another bag and balance the load by carrying in your hands or, as I often do have a small bag inside my big bag and just take the small bag with you, leaving the other bag behind. In the car I have a basket in the boot (yes you need to buy a cute vintage basket) where I unload what I don’t require when I go to the Supermarket, shopping or to meetings. Alternatively dump the big handbag and grab the empty basket instead.

When I travel I always have a small shoulder bag (like a big purse with a shoulder strap) with the basics and then place that over my head and across my body because caring a bag this way is a little kinder on the body. I then spread the load of necessities like my laptop, iPad, travel size day spa products, kitchen sink and the pantry, oh and a few wardrobe items, like a wrap, just in case I get cold or have to sit on a chair that leaves a pattern on the back of your legs! (who designs those chairs???). Carry-on luggage restrictions are actually a good thing as I unload into my pull along but still have to take the big bag to have by my feet during a flight, just in case I need anything when travelling.

Most women have tight neck and shoulders and during pre-treatment consultations at ikatan spa, upper body is by far the most requested area that needs the attention. I like to tell women that this is because ‘we hold the weight of the world on our shoulders’  but it seems it’s the weight in our handbags being held on our shoulders and us being fashion victims or carrying our world with us that is causing major issues with neck, shoulder, back and hip problems as a contributing factor.

Working with bodies for a long time, I have seen that issues and imbalances are common in most people and it is not hard to work out the repetitious action that causes the problems but it is harder for people to break a habit and it takes a long time for the body to restore or repair the damage that has been caused, however not impossible as the body is incredibly self sufficient at healing.

Regular Stretching the area of concern is easy and effective and something you can do yourself. If you go to a gym, pilates or yoga ask the trained staff to show you some stretches to balance your neck, shoulders, back and hips. Weight training, Pilates or Yoga will help to balance your body and stretch the areas that are tight as well as strengthening the areas that are weak.

Massage is always great for relaxing muscles but don’t expect your tension to disappear with one or two massage treatments as it usually takes consistent massage over a few months to make a difference to your body. General rule is ‘it takes the same amount of time to fix an issue as it did to create it in the first place’ unless it is caused through trauma.

Happy shopping for a new smaller bag and basket!

Katrina, Day Spa Oracle

Owner ikatan Spa

How do you know what massage you need?

chi massageDo you love to have a Massage?

Do you know what massage to ask for when you book?

 If you prefer a certain pressure tell the reception staff so they can book the appropriate spa Therapist or tell reception staff the reason you need a massage, when your’e booking they can help you chose the best massage for your needs.

 These are all very important things staff need to know for you to receive the BEST MASSAGE for you.

Did you know that having a medium to lighter pressure massage is far more beneficial for stress, fluid retention, anxiety, lack of energy,  feeling tired, run down or over worked.

Majority of people think they need a firm massage or it is a waste of time, when in actual fact it really depends on what you are having a massage for as to the style and pressure to achieve results.

Firm massage is best suited to athletes or those that suffer from tight areas that cause imbalances. Firm massage is also beneficial when you have areas of congested muscle as it can release the tension however it depends on what has caused this tension and how often you have a massage.

Read More

Killer Heels

Are you a victim of high heels, ballet flats or thongs (that’s Australian for flip-flops)? 

Who doesn’t love their heels and thongs but they can cause long term postural side effects in your body? 

We all like our favourite heels and usually find them comfortable once we have worn them a couple of times and the same goes for our flat shoes or a pair of thongs which we have in every colour. Who would have thought they would be a fashion item and cause postural problems?

Read More

Family Spa time, a trend that has become a popular family experience

Do you come to the Day Spa to escape your kids?

Or do you want to bring your kids with you to have a family spa experience? 

Family at the spaRelaxation and time together is the main reason for a family holiday and we see a growing number of families booking for spa treatments because it is the best way to combine relaxation and family experiences. Over the past couple of years of chatting to parents as to what inspired them to book the family for spa treatments, we realise we have entered a whole new family spa market that is a pleasure to be part of.

Read More

Copyright © 2014. Powered by Acura Multimedia