Along with the joyous holidays comes inevitable holiday stress. Stretch out the holiday shopping over several days to keep the stress to a minimum. But more importantly, stretch out your mind and body to take care of the unavoidable stressors and restore your energy before — and perhaps after —the relatives come into town.
Treat yourself to some holistic pampering to handle the holidays in stride. Take a blissfully balanced break with these five alternative and all-natural treatments:
Relieving sinus pressure
What is it: Ear candling involves placing a wax-coated, slow-burning cylinder in your ear and lighting the opposite end of the cylinder to create a vacuum effect, which is supposed to soothe your ear. This treatment is supposed to help alleviate the effects of chronic headaches or sinus pressure, ear infections, allergies and minor hearing loss because of earwax buildup.
How much is it: $35 for one session; $84 for three.
Where: Sizzors Inc. Hair Salon and Spa, 600 Lawrence Ave., Suite C
Holiday specials: If you spend more than $100 at the spa, you will be entered into a drawing for a free 60-minute massage or a free set of eyelash extensions.
About this facility: Sizzors is a full-service salon offering hair care services, manicures and pedicures, waxing and facials. One of its more interesting treatments (beyond ear candling) include the “Moor Mud Masque,” an exfoliating mask (also comes as a wrap) for the face and body using mud collected from the bottom of a Canadian lake that is constantly circulated by a geothermal spring.
What is it: Reiki is an ancient form of therapy in which the practitioner channels energy into your body with light noninvasive touches to communicate with your body, restore well-being and encourage your energy to circulate in stagnant areas. The word “reiki” is Japanese for “universal life force energy.” In theory, if your life force energy is low, then you are more likely to become sick or feel stressed. If it is high, you are more capable of peace, happiness and relief.
How much is it: $75 for 60 minutes; $115 for 90 minutes.
Where: Elevate, 1403 Massachusetts St.
Holiday specials: Buy three gift cards and get one free. Through the Elevate website, order gift certificates (minimum of $25) and print them instantly or send them directly to the person you have in mind.
About this facility: Self-described as Kansas’ portal to healing, Elevate offers specialized massages, shamanic treatment, classes in tai chi and kung fu, tarot and palm readings, and astrological consultations. Autumn Magiera specializes in “soul retrieval” for those whose who express “soul loss” qualities including feeling disconnected, empty, alienated, depressed or less able to express themselves as a result of trauma. Using shamanic practices and a drum beat, she ventures into spiritual dimensions with her guides to retrieve your “essence” and help you best achieve wholeness. Retrieval costs $125.
What is it: Shirodhara is a 50-minute treatment in which warm oil is poured along the brow in a rhythmic motion that serves to awaken the ajna chakra (third eye), creating balance and soothing many conditions of the nervous system. Recommended for those with anxiety or emotional issues or those with physical ailments like headaches. Guests are often put into a deep meditation, the healing effects lasting all day. It’s best to take pause for the rest of the day. For returning guests, practitioner Laura Martin-Eagle can prepare specific oils to address your issues and body type (dosha).
How much is it: $75
Where: Moon Jewel Ayurveda, call for an appointment at 550-8931
About this facility: Ayurveda, meaning the science of life, is an ancient system of healing from the Vedic Scriptures of India that offers restorative therapies for the mind and body using nature’s nourishing qualities. The popular Abhyanga treatment is a 60-minute full-body massage (for women only) with medicinal oils that restore balance and nourishes deep tissue, releasing toxins in the body ($85).
Chinese trigger-point therapy
What is it: Tui na is a form of Chinese manipulative therapy where the practitioner will focus on specific acupressure points, trigger points, as well as muscles and joints surrounding the affected area to restore correct physiological function as the client lies on a massage table. Acupuncture is often used in conjunction with tui na to amplify the effects.
How much is it: $75 for initial one-hour treatment.
Where: Blue Ginkgo Center of Chinese Medicine, 512 E. Ninth St.
About this facility: Jason Hamm is a licensed Chinese medical practitioner in Lawrence offering acupuncture, herbal medicine, nutrition counseling and tuina (bodywork). Clients receive a thorough evaluation to make a clear diagnosis before receiving any treatment.
Manual lymph drainage
What is it: Tissues in our bodies accumulate waste from additives, drugs and regular metabolic processes, and travel through the body to be cleaned in our lymph nodes. The passageways get blocked, however, making waste accumulate, leading to fatigue, illness and pain. Lymph drainage therapy clears the lymph’s transportation channels, with a gentle massage technique to activate the liquid circulation and stimulate the functioning of the immune and parasympathetic nervous systems.
How much is it: $75 for 75-minute treatment.
Where: Kinetikos Bodywork Therapy, 920 Massachusetts St.
About this facility: The five therapists at Kinetikos is committed to holistic healing offering massage, rolfing (reorganizing soft tissues to realign to your skeleton), acupuncture, neural mobilization, visceral manipulation, craniosacral and lymph drainage therapies.