Category Archives: Beauty & Wellness

Hydration – Importance and the Proper Way for an Athlete to Hydrate

Benefits of Hydration, Bene Rullan
A martial artist should be well aware of the the benefits of drinking water, and have the knowledge on how the amount of water affects the body’s ability to function properly. If you are well hydrated, then you will perform better and avoid the dangers when you get dehydrated. Always remember that proper hydration is top priority when it comes to maintaining a body that is to perform well in training and in competition as well.

Proper Way To Hydrate
Properly hydrated means a body that functions properly, fluids in the body have numerous functions and are essential to the physical well being and health of a person. Fluids form blood, aid in digestion, and also prevents the body from overheating through sweat. For a martial artist who trains hard, excessive sweating is a normal occurrence, and needs to be replenished. Sweat regulates the temperature of a person by evaporation. Failing to replenish fluids after excessive sweating, the danger of the body to overheat will lead to low performance and even dangerous consequences. Different levels of sweating differs from person to person and can be influenced by different external factors such as, temperature, clothing, altitude and humidity.

Avoiding Dehydration
Inadequate intake of water is the leading cause of dehydration. Dehydration causes lack of energy, which could further lead to headaches, dizziness and disorientation. It is important to replenish fluids while it is being lost. Replenishing fluids only after a training session is of no use, as it could result in dehydration and loss of performance.

Effects of Dehydration
1-2% – Thirst and weakness
3-4% – Low performance, dry mouth,
5-6% – Increased body temperature, headache, irritability
7-10% – Dizziness, disorientation, heat stroke and even death

The Right Way to Hydrate
Water intake before the training, during the training and after the training should be properly planned.

Before Training – Drink 14-18 ounces of water two hours before the training. The two hour gap is enough to fully hydrate the body and leave enough time for excess water to come out of the system. Plain water is the best source of hydration. Take 5-7 ounces of water just 15 minutes before the exercise to be fully hydrated before the physical activity.

During training – The athlete must constantly keep hydrating the body every 20-25 minutes with 5-10 ounces of water. Sports drinks are also a good idea during exercise as they help also to replenish the sodium lost through perspiration.

After the Training – The athlete should be encouraged to replace all the lost fluid by consuming approximately 20 ounces of fluid for every pound of weight lost.

Electrolyte Considerations for Athletes
Due to excessive perspiration, athletes should consume 1.5 g of sodium and 2.3 g of chloride each day (or 3.8 g of salt) to replace the amount lost through perspiration. The maximum amount should not exceed 5.8 g of salt each day (2.3 g of sodium). Older people and patients who have elevated blood pressure, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and kidney disease should avoid consuming salt at the upper level. Endurance athletes and other individuals who are involved in strenuous activities should consume more sodium to offset sweat losses. The carbonates in the sports drinks also help the muscles perform better. Athletes should also have an adequate intake of 4.7 g of potassium per day to blunt the effects of salt, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of kidney stones and bone loss. Athletes should also eat foods rich in potassium such as bananas.

Caffeinated Drink & Alcohol
Caffeinated drinks must be avoided because they act as a diuretic and works against hydration. A cup of coffee contains 1.5 micrograms of caffeine. Also keep in mind that drinking alcohol has the effect of heating up the body, and also has the opposite effect on hydration.

Food nourishes and food heals.

Geraldine Borromeo, Philippines

Eating for reckless pleasure overlooks the inherent nutritional value of food. Food fuels the body’s the energy needs and nurse’s one back to health. Taking food beyond the sensory experience, allows one to maximize its benefits. Making deliberate choices in what one eats not only provides momentary pleasure but also long term benefits. After all each one has only been given one body and sooner or later, one’s food history will determine one’s health.

For any athlete, foods that build the muscle; make one more energetic and move faster; develop endurance; heal injuries and help restore the over all efficiency of the body, ensure better performance and staying power in a particular sport. What then must an athlete eat? While protein is an important part of an athlete’s diet to build the muscles, excess protein combined with fat slows down one’s performance as the digestive system will use up one’s energy in processing it.

Eating the right protein is essential and the sources include lean cuts of meat taken in moderate portions. Red meats contain a higher fat content than white meat, thus, the former must be taken in smaller portions. Fish and poultry without the skin contain less fat and is a better source of one’s regular protein intake. Tofu and legumes are also alternative sources of protein which just like everything else must also be taken in moderation.

Energy building foods are complex carbohydrates from vegetables and fruits that are eaten in a state of optimum nutrition, this means eating them as close to their raw state as possible. Next time one gets a hunger rush, reaching for a banana or apple will fuel one’s energy better than processed wheat or starch based snacks. Even munching on a carrot, cucumber or celery stick will not only do wonders for one’s energy but also for one’s waistline.

Even an athlete needs some fat and the sources of fat must be carefully identified to minimize health risks. Olive and other vegetable oils and fish oils are recommended over animal fat, which includes dairy fat. But oil is still oil, thus moderation is not the key, rather minimization. Total eradication of fat from the diet is not recommended as the body still needs fat to provide insulation and to function properly. Fats not only help store energy, it also transports vitamins within the body and are vital components of the brain, skin, and organs of the body.

Making the right food choices will then allow one to not only enjoy the taste and texture of food, its sight and smell, it will also make food one’s building blocks and injury repair kit for better sports performance. As Hippocrates had famously said thousands of years ago: “Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.”

-Geraldine Borromeo

Age-defying cream proves effective

Written by Reggie Rullan Thursday, 02 August 2012

Hitting 40 is a harsh reality, with telltale signs of wrinkles coming from all sides of one’s face. At 20, wrinkles were inexistent. At 30, it still is not an issue though some warning signs begin to show. At 40, taking care of the emerging wrinkles becomes a daily routine in an effort to look at least a decade younger.

I had recently begun using a wrinkle wand, and as I slid it over the lines I wished the wrinkles away as well. The problem was, come nighttime after I wash my face, the wrinkle wand’s magic disappeared along with my facial wash.

When I met Olay ambassador Tessa Prieto-Valdes up close and personal in an intimate lunch at Stephanie Zubiri’s place in Makati City, she challenged me to a skin regeneration test. As the soup bowl was laid down in front of me, Tessa said that by the time dessert was served, she would show me how the fine lines on my forehead would literally disappear.

Just as dessert was served, Tessa uncovered the New Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream and invited me to apply a thin layer of the mousse on my forehead. A close-up photo of my forehead was then taken, and I went on to eat my peanut butter mousse and mini carrot muffins. Just as I ate the last morsel, Tessa turned her eyes on me and gave me a hand mirror so I could examine my forehead.

The fine lines I had looked at every morning before I applied my wrinkle wand had indeed faded away. I looked closely again and tilted my head to one side then the other. Another picture of my forehead was taken and the before and after pictures were put up on a laptop screen side-by-side.

There was no time for the photographer to retouch my face as it all happened right before my eyes. To see was really to believe. There was a remarkable difference between the before and after shots of my forehead.

The beauty of this cream is that unlike other types, one does not need to wait several days to see results. One application is all it takes to see visible changes in one’s skin, said Tessa. Olay’s breakthrough technology reduces the appearance of wrinkles in a few minutes.

Tessa shares her own experience with the product: “It dramatically and visibly removed the appearance of wrinkles in the same time it took me to put the finishing touches to my outfit. I couldn’t believe it!”

Olay scientists share that repeated temporary expression lines lead to permanent wrinkles. Another study also showed that dry skin poses double the speed at which women develop permanent facial wrinkles. As a result of these studies, the new Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream was created.
When I asked Tessa how is it possible that one application can dramatically redefine my forehead lines, she shared with me that each person’s skin has its own optical signature.

Younger skin diffuses and reflects light evenly since the skin is smoother. In older skin, light gets trapped in “valleys” or the deeper lines and wrinkles, retarding diffusion and reflection.

The new Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream’s claim tof fame is it revolutionary skin care with its ability to dramatically reduce the appearance of wrinkles visibly in just a single application. The micro-filler technology — a combination of three sizes of particles that fill in the different kinds of “valleys” created by skin line creates a smooth surface for the light to reflect. That is why these particles effectively reduce the appearance of facial lines and wrinkles in just one application as the light diffuses and reflects on now smoother skin.

My next question for Tessa was that since wrinkles will become deeper with age, I’ll be on a constant dose of the cream to keep on filling my skin’s deeper valleys. Not so, Tessa said, as the product also addresses chronic wrinkles in 14 days.

New Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream also contains a combination of B3 complex and advanced biopeptides to provide long-term improvement on wrinkles, even the look of deep eye lines in 14 days. Biopeptides stimulate cell activity to help hydrate and repair the skin while vitamin B3 (niacinamide), pro-vitamin B5 and vitamin E fortify, condition and protect the stratum corneum or the skin’s moisture barrier to help it retain its natural moisture.

New Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream also has intense hydrators to prevent frequent expression lines from progressing into permanent wrinkles. This means that one can rely on it to reverse the lines with continued use and enjoy the satisfaction of getting instant results at the same time.

Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream is exclusively available at Watson’s and SM Department Stores.

Published in Daily Tribune Life Style

Get glowing!

by Gabrielle Borromeo
(Manila City, Philippines)

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
January 9, 2012

Breaking free from the city and stepping into a natural enclave is quite impossible without having to take a long trip. Incredibly, The Spa at Fort Bonifacio makes such an escape possible. At the Global City, entering The Spa feels like teleporting. The entrance is relaxing with its nature-themed furniture, greenery and cascading water falls beside the stairs leading to the main sanctum.

Every branch of The Spa has its own design theme, and at the Fort, the different villas have their own names: Villa 1: Rome, Villa 2: Barcelona, Villa 3: Paris, Villa 4: Florence, Villa 5: London, Villa 6: Tokyo, Villa 7: Milan, Villa 8: Frankfurt and Villa 9: Beijing (Sauna only). The Loft is where a small group can enjoy Spa Parties and such.

I was brought to Villa 1: Rome, just the right size for a single excursion. It has its own tub where one could enjoy a soak and a Steam/Shower room. Half an hour for a Jacuzzi splash was a delight in the privacy of a villa. I soaked in my moment of serenity, absorbing it all like a sponge, feeling that this time spent for rejuvenation was more of a need than a want. Definitely one needs to refresh one’s body and soul, cleanse it from all grime and dirt and feel the stresses float away.

To boot, a mega volume of The Spa’s signature bubbles can make the time more playful and relaxing. I had never seen such a load of bubbles than in the Spa – not in any of the five-star`hotels I have stayed in with their luxury toiletries.

Getting out of the tub was really hard especially when staying there just felt so right, but it was all for the best as Rechelle Deontoy, the kind lady who told me to liendown on my stomach for the next round of satisfaction, gave me a full body scrub.

I was told to relax and lie down. I felt her hands like ocean waves filled with sand massaging my body, waves that just kept rolling over my skin as if I were the ocean shore. There was a certain roughness from the grains that cleansed every pore of my body. It was like a bath in bed, and how many people get baths in bed? The sand as it seemed to be was actually jojoba wax beads.

The Spa’s new body treatment Crystalline is a comforting and pampering treatment that starts with an uplifting body scrub treatment by Pevonica Botanica, a natural skincare brand offered by spas worldwide including The Spa Wellness. The Spa is committed to providing effective skincare solutions to teens, women and men of every age. The Pevonia Botanica brand maintains a harmonious balance with nature and it offers natural formulations packaged in fully recyclable and biodegradable materials.

With Pevonia Botanica, skin is renewed and polished with a natural, gentle scrub rich with components that nature has to offer, leaving it livelier, softer and fairer. The delicate jojoba wax beads smoothen and reveal baby-soft skin. The scrub is made with lemon, chamomile, rosemary, aloe vera gel and jojoba wax beads. The components used are definitely pro-nature and feels like the reawakening of the new life of my skin.

Lemon, one of the components, was used because it brightens up the skin, tones it well and has a natural fresh citrus fragrance. Chamomile calms and heals the skin. Rosemary rejuvenates and improves blood circulation. Aloe vera gel tightens and soothes and, of course, jojoba wax beads, a non-irritating natural grain, polishes the skin.

After the scrub, I was given a few minutes alone to wash away any sand-like particles and to feel the smoothness of my new skin. Yes, indeed, it felt like new skin had covered me. The smoothness was like lotion on my body but without the heaviness.

I then stood up go to my very own private shower room right in the privacy of my very own villa. Then Lilibeth Vidal, my masseuse of the day, came inside my villa and told me to lie down again. I relaxed my muscles and sank into a world of calmness as she massaged my skin with crystalline lotion. If I wanted a heavy massage or a lighter one, I was asked to simply speak up.

The Spa’s deeply relaxing classic massages are shiatsu, Swedish, combination or deep tissue. While shiatsu is a relaxing and rejuvenating Japanese-style acupressure massage that works on vital energy points to unlock and balance the body’s chi, deep tissue is for those who seek the profound relief of a penetrating massage. Swedish, on the other hand, soothes sore muscles, increases circulation and relieves body tension because of the special oil that is massaged on the body like flowing strokes.

Combination is a muscle-soothing flow of Swedish massage and a special oil, coupled with the chi-balancing power of shiatsu’s finger pressure. These massages are rendered with Pevonia Botanica’s breakthrough massage oil, a rich blend of safflower, geranium and vitamin E for ultimate skin nourishment, repair, hydration and powerful antioxidant boost.

With the Crystalline Skin body treatment, it’s one’s choice to pick one of the four preferences for the massage. Like all good things, my relaxing and spirit lifting session came to an end. I thought that after a massage, I had to get up and leave, but what a surprise, there was still 30 minutes of stretching plus complimentary cups of soothing ginger tea!

Aside from The Fort, The Spa branches are located at Acropolis-Libis (634-2709, 634-2848), Alabang (850-3490, 850-6836), Eastwood Mall/ Richmonde Hotel (709-6868, 709-7878), Greenbelt(840-1325, 840-1326), Rockwell (470-6868, 470- 7878) and Trinoma (900-8809, 900-8818).

Visit for more information.

Status: Uncomplicated

by Gabrielle Borromeo
(Manila City, Philippines)

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
May 24, 2012

When is a woman at her most beautiful? Most young men tend to think women are at their best physically from the ages 18 to 20. Older men, though, find women more attractive when they are over their 30s.

The world’s standards of beauty have dictated how women care for themselves. Society adores women who have taut bodies and flawless skin that equals “perfect youthfulness.” With such pressure to look youthful, women and even men have gone over the line just to have the best body and the fairest skin ever. When skin experts are questioned: “How can people avoid aging?” The answer is always the same. Aging is inevitable as every year marches in, but there is hope.

The right amount of sleep, water, food, balance and, of course, the products being used contribute to how you age. Managing to avoid looking older has all its own factors, but one of them is using the right product for your skin.

People nowadays aim to achieve the fairer and healthier skin the commercial ads portray. The very young are also hoping to stay young. Who doesn’t want a blooming yet natural image that keeps one look younger? What is the best product that can help sustain youth?

Among the most popular is Cetaphil, a line of skin care products from Galderma Laboratories that has been tried, tested and trusted. It relieves dryness and chapping and has a long-lasting moisturizing effect. “Cetaphil has been around for more than 60 years and is the most frequently used brand of cleansers and moisturizers and recommended worldwide by dermatologists and pediatricians,” according to information provided by Cetaphil.

Trusted by doctors and consumers, Cetaphil is also a brand supported by extensive clinical studies. It significantly improves signs and symptoms of atomic dermatitis. Its daily use will gently replenish vital moisture and guard the skin’s natural moisture balance. The products include cleansers, bar soaps, cream lotions and moisturizers. These are scent-free and oil-free and therefore, non-greasy and safe for all ages and types of skin, even those who have sensitive skin, dry, oily and/or acne-prone skin) because of its non-harsh chemical construction.

Cetaphil is a non-comedogenic product (products that don’t clog pores) with emollient properties (skin softeners). It is pHbalanced so it helps retain the skin’s natural protective oils and softens the skin as you gently use it. The fact that Cetaphil has one formulation per product for all age levels, even babies and may be used by all skin types is quite stupefying. The skin care market is overflowing with products for different age levels and different skin types.

Cetaphil debunks the myth for different products for different age levels and skin types and shows that skin is skin at any age and needs the same care. Moisturizers play a big role in keeping the skin smooth, healthy and supple. The three important ingredients that a moisturizer should have are humectants, emollients and occlusive agents.

Humectants are water-binding agents and emollients are skin softeners, while occlusive agents block the loss water of the skin. A sufficient amount of moisturizers should be applied four to five times a day or as often as possible. Purposely formulated with a plan to effectively moisturize, Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF 15 contains the three very important ingredients like all the other Cetaphil moisturizers. SPF 15 sunscreen with Parsol 1789 and
Octocrylene helps prevent damage caused by the sun’s UVA and UVB rays (responsible for dangerous sunburns and development of skin cancer).

Our skin being the largest organ of our body consists of two basic layers, the underlying dermis and the outer epidermis. These two are made up of the germinative layer, the stratum apinosum and the stratum corneum or the outer covering that we can see. When new skin cells are formed at the germinative layer, time after time they move through the next three levels of the skin. The skin cells start out round and plump, but later they get older and flatter as they travel. Finally when they reach the outermost layer that’s visible to us, the cells are ready to come off. Some call it shedding, but more likely it is scraped off or exfoliated whenever we scrub our faces or when we simply move around.

Obviously, the skin is an active organ that plays a huge role for every single person. It serves as a defensive barrier against toxins, bacteria, ultraviolet radiation, trauma and changes in temperature. When you wash your face, never scrub it vigorously because it will strip off the skin’s natural oil and moisture. When the skin is dry (most common skin ailment) the reason is usually caused by lack of water and not lack of oil or your genetics.

Simply, what the skin really needs is just to be properly taken care of and the results will be visible in no time. Or all the time!

Sexy is the new drug

(Manila City, Philippines)

Is your lifestyle making you fat? Perhaps you need a drastic ‘intervention procedure.

“I feel like I have my old self back,” Raymond Gutierrez, twin brother of actor Richard and a celebrity in his own right, revealed upon his unveiling as the sexy new body transformed by Cristalle Belo-Henares’s Sexy Solutions. It was no secret that the television host and magazine editor was several pounds heavier than his brother, and though it did not seem as if it mattered, Raymond’s statement shows that, just like anyone else, he also desired a slimmer version of himself.

The same sentiment is shared by his best friend Georgina Wilson, model and TV personality, whose confession that she “had problem areas,” and that she once went to a Belo clinic before appearing in an underwear show because she wasn’t confident about her body, may seem shocking to many.

The two friends, however, candidly share that unhealthy habits were making them gain weight, and they never thought they would “get there,” that is, achieve the kind of body they wanted – in Georgina’s case, a 25-inch waist! The truth is, Cristalle says, everyone wants not just to look their best, but also to “feel” their best. This is where Sexy Solutions comes in. A subsidiary of the Belo Medical Group, this one-stop shop aims to achieve this goal in as little time as possible, for as long as possible.

The enterprising daughter of beauty industry magnate Vicki Belo thought of creating the perfect haven for those who wish to have a perfect body. Sexy Solutions, therefore, offers not just high-tech solutions like non-invasive slimming machines, but a holistic approach that aims to improve one’s diet, as well as incorporate exercise into one’s lifestyle.

What makes Sexy Solutions so effective, as Raymond attests, is its slimming programs tailored-fit for every individual. And one of the perks of enrolling in a program are the instant results.

“I was shocked — on my first visit, I lost 2 inches from my midsection,” he shares, adding that it was because of Georgina that he came to Sexy Solutions in the first place. The Sexy Solutions team also gave Raymond a diet plan courtesy of renowned Biggest Loser Philippines nutritionist Nadine Tengco, as well as an exercise regimen to help him maintain the weight and inch loss.

“Sexy Solutions made the process of losing weight a breeze! The treatments are painless because of the amazing new technology they have. But more than anything, it’s really the people behind it. It’s so easy to lose momentum when you’re trying to lose weight. However, the staff really took care of me and encouraged me. I feel like I’m part of this new family and I’ll be forever grateful,” states Raymond.

Georgina, for her part, adds, “I saw results immediately. Consequently, I became hooked instantly too! Areas that I had practically given up on were immediately smaller. I actually couldn’t believe the measurements after the first time I tried it because they were so drastic! I loved it right away.”

Sexy Solutions, she stresses, has been “a partner (she) needed to get that push in the healthy direction.” She enthused that, “Sexy Solutions has been a large part of my commitment to fitness. I’m so happy because I feel like I have a partner in losing weight and maintaining my ideal body. It doesn’t all happen in the Sexy Solutions clinics (exercising and dieting are integral to the program), but I definitely feel like we’re all working towards the same goal― a body that I am happy with. Sexy Solutions is my secret weapon to getting sexy and most importantly, staying sexy,” Georgina says.

Three-in-one solution

According to Cristalle, it is possible to lose 4 inches in as fast as one and a half hours. Today’s machines enable aesthetic clinics to design treatment programs based on a client’s needs. What distinguishes Sexy Solutions is its use of only non-invasive procedures.

As Dr. Vicki Belo explains: “There are many ways to eliminate fat. Liposuction removes the fat cells (which one may imagine as balloons with fat inside) so that fat cannot return. Fat cells are in the third level of the skin. To eliminate fat, we have many ways. To remove 100 percent fat, there is Smart Lipo with Body Tite, which are available at Belo clinics. To remove 80 percent fat, you can use Smart Lipo only. To remove 60 percent fat, there are the Sexy Solutions procedures (Lipo Cavitation, Multi-Firm, Body Sculpt and Tite FX). To remove 30 percent fat, you have Radio Frequency (RF) treatments.”

In other words, Sexy Solutions offers one the benefits of immediate results afforded by its four different procedures “target fat cells using heat, ultrasound waves, and mechanical pressure: Lipo Cavitation, which uses low frequency ultrasound to break down stubborn fat cells in common problem areas like the abdomen and thighs; Multi-Firm, which uses radio frequency to melt fat, tighten skin and improve the appearance of cellulite through heat waves; Body Sculpt, which uses a muscle energy pulse that contracts the muscle layer, causing a “squeezing” effect of the fat layer and accelerating the liquid fat drainage; and Tite FX, the newest and most innovative non-invasive body contouring and fat-destroying machine in the market — the non-surgical sister of Belo’s BodyTite.”

Coupled with what nutritionist Nadine Tengco calls “the anti-plateau diet,” as well as a fitness program that sports science specialist Edward Mendez describes as “easy enough to do at home,” the Sexy Solutions program can help one attain that ideal body.

As the people behind Sexy Solutions state: “Sexy Solutions is a holistic fat-reduction initiative that harmonizes science, nutrition and exercise together, aids in changing one’s lifestyle inside and out. No matter how much time you put in eating right and working out, getting rid of those last few inches is the hardest. Breaking through the fat loss plateau, the Sexy Solutions’ first class treatments make tight abs, firm thighs and toned arms easily achievable. Paired with an effective diet plan by renowned Biggest Loser Philippines nutritionist Nadine Tengco and expert consultation from fitness and sports science specialist Edward Mendez, getting to and sustaining that healthier, fitter, and sexier you is no longer a dream, but a reality.”

For more information, call 810-SEXY (7399) or visit

Two branches are located in Makati (Suite 912 Medical Plaza Bldg. Amorsolo Cor. Dela Rosa Streets, Legaspi Village, Makati. 0917-8605120; and Unit 23 G/F South of Market Residences, 26th Cor. 11th Ave., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. 0917-8671329). Branches in Il Terrazzo, Tomas Morato, QC and Bonifacio High Street, Bonifacio Global City.

Hair We Go

by Geraldine Rullan-Borromeo
(Manila, Philippines)

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
22 October 2012

Our writer discovers that she can take years off her appearance by having the right cut and color

Hitting 40 meant a race to the last 10 years of my youthful life, 50 being the marker that brings me closer to senior citizen status. Realizing that, I wanted a hairstyle that I could pull off as a young-looking, 40-year-old gal.
Not willing to risk a hair disaster, I could only go to a reputable salon that services professionals who want to look as stylish yet as credible as their careers demanded.

When I heard of Elevation Salon along Pasong Tamo Extension in Makati City, with a reputation of servicing ambassador’s wives, expatriates and high-profile professionals and celebrities, I knew I could put my head under their care.

My hair was finger-combed to ascertain its texture and test its tensile strength. What I wanted was a digital perm after I got bored with my rebonded locks after only six months. A digital perm after a rebond raised many an eyebrow at many other salons. At Elevation, they only had to check the capacity of my hair strands for yet another chemical procedure before it decided that each strand was thick enough to withstand it.

What Elevation refused to do was to give me a color change at the same time. I was told that to do two chemical procedures at the same time may be too high a risk, apart from the fact that we would be unable to determine the cause of any problem should any complications occur.

My digital perm gave me the Hollywood look with all the bounce I wanted, and for a corporate look, all I had to do was tie my hair in a bun or a sleek ponytail. For an event after work, I loosed my curly waves and my hair was back in vogue. That the digital perm set so well even when the procedure was applied to rebonded hair was an amazing feat in itself. That my hair remained lustrous and shiny even without a hair treatment was another wonder to behold. I couldn’t wait to go back for my hair color after a few weeks!

With Elevation’s success with my digital perm, I was again at their salon for a change of hair color with conservative but playful highlights. I also raised my issue with the grays under my temples that needed to be camouflaged along with the highlights.

To do this a skillful combination of a base color and several highlights would pull this off. As not to damage my very processed hair, the rebond and the digital perm, Elevation had to ensure that the coloring process did not dry or kink my hair out.

A reverse process was decided upon to cause the least damage and two hair color technicians started sectioning my hair for two kinds of highlights that matched my skin tone and my preference for a playful but professional look. An ashy blond highlight and a brownish blond color were applied carefully to thin sections to create more highlights. As my hair is very thick, the highlighting process took an hour and a half.

After, a base color was applied to the unsanctioned parts of my hair, preventing a double coloring of my strands, protecting it from unnecessary damage. All throughout, the hair technicians would liberally apply the colors that a color specialist in her color corner mixed right there in a salon. Everytime more color was needed, a fresh batch would be mixed until the hair technicians were satisfied that they had applied the right amount to my voluminous hair.

The color effect on me made me look 15 years younger, as all my friends who saw me with my new hair would say. When the rays of the sun hit my hair or when flashing light reflected the highlights, a subtle yet lively ash and brown blonde created a warm kaleidoscope that reflected the brown of my eyes. Thankfully, too, the color left me looking professional yet feminine — just the effect I wanted.

Throughout the long process, I was offered iced or hot tea, iced or hot coffee, an iPad to play with and a laptop table should I want to work while having my hair done. The ultra clean salon, the comfortable salon chair, the posh bathroom and the cool cement grays that gave off an industrial but avant-garde feel all made for enjoyable and exciting afternoons having my hair done.

The most exciting part after hours of anticipation would always be the reveal after my hair is blown dry and styled and the new me faces across the mirror. The new me walks out of Elevation, giggly as a schoolgirl inside, but as stylish and cool as the young professional I want to be.

For more information, call Elevation Salon at 830-3030 or visit them at Building 3, Jannov Plaza, 2295 Pasong Tamo Extension,1231 Makati City.

Like their Facebook page at Elevation Salon

The benefits of reflexology are experienced in one healing and relaxing session at The Spa

by Geraldine Rullan-Borromeo
(Manila, Philippines)

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
September 17, 2012

When I first heard of reflexology and saw the picture of the soles of the feet with the nerve points indicated, I did not know what to make of this newly introduced treatment. Skepticism was mixed with the desire for a method of treatment devoid of artificial chemical intervention. Having grown up in an environment where alternative medicine was the primary form of treatment, I leaned toward new methods of treatment, but was wary at the same time. When I met Grandmaster Doc Fai Wong of the Plum Blossom International Federation during his visit to the Philippines at a meet-up with fellow Choy Li Fut Kung Fu martial arts practitioners, I was amazed that his first order of business was to treat his fellow martial artists and their families through acupuncture. Kung Fu masters have traditionally been referred to as “medicine men,” and I was surprised to see the practice alive and well to this date.

Acupuncture and reflexology are both feet focused and their slow but sure acceptance as modes of treatment has placed a foothold among Filipino and Chinese communities over the years. To date, many acupuncture and reflexology centers have opened all over the metro. The website of the International Academy of Medical Reflexology, a Pennsylvania State Board licensed private school in the United States, has its own patented definition for medical reflexology which states that “reflexology is a complementary, biological, integrative, blended health science, through which an exercise pressure is applied to reflex areas, formed by 7,200 nerve endings in each hand and foot, encouraging improved instruction to each and every specific organ, gland, and part of the body, thus persuading the body to biologically correct, strengthen and reinforce itself, to reach balance, normalization, and homeostasis.”

Citing the term paper of student Julia Pomeroy, RN, the Web site posted that: “Thus, by working on one part of the body (foot area) there is an effect on another. The goals of reflexology are to re-educate, re-pattern and recondition the nerves through the neural/electrical system of the body. The sole purpose of the nerves is to instruct the body (simply put, to tell the body what to do), when the nerves improve, the instruction improves, the body must improve, thus, an overall health enhancement therapy program of medical reflexology.”

According to the paper, the application of a reflexology treatment causes four reactions. One, it relaxes the targeted part of the body through the application of a highly specialized relaxation technique. Two, it improves nerve, blood and lymphatic supply throughout the body. Three, it influences the body to biologically set in motion its self-healing capacities. And four, it permits the body to reach a state of equilibrium.

Thus, the medical benefit that one may receive from a reflexology treatment is no longer speculative and anecdotal, but rather based on the science of the body in relation to the nerves in one’s foot.

Reflexology at The Spa

The Spa, one of the most distinguished pioneers of professional spa treatments in the Philippines, introduces The Spa Reflexology. At The Spa Wellness, one can experience healing and relaxation in a tranquil sanctuary complete with five-star hotel-like amenities of a sauna, steam bath and a Jacuzzi.

The Spa Reflexology is a combination of three Asian techniques —Japanese shiatsu, Thai massage and Chinese reflexology — all in one treatment. When I lay down on the customized chair convertible to a bed, I was asked what kind of movie I preferred to watch on the big screen LCD
TV, if any. I felt like I was in a private theatre with relaxation, healing and entertainment in tow.

The first step was a hot foot soak that immediately put me in relaxation mode as the warmth spread from my feet to my calves then my upper leg.
The slow but deep massage of my lower limbs was a treat I savored as I watched my romantic comedy movie.

The next step was a healing massage focused on particular “pressure points” of the soles of my feet, and I was surprised how my sensory nerves began responding to the gentle pressure on my feet. The therapist said that these pressure points were connected to specific internal organs that respond to the treatment.

The therapist’s hands, fingers soothed my feet along with a wooden stick that touched the pressure points. After the customized chair was converted to a bed and I lay on my stomach and my back, shoulders and neck were massaged with deep relaxing strokes that took away all the aches and pains of my upper body. The over-all feeling of wellness was unexpected as I thought the reflexology massage would only focus on my feet. The complete upper body treatment completed the treatment just as my movie began winding into its ending.

The Spa Reflexology took care of the pain and stiffness in my whole body relief caused long hours on the computer chair and over-exertion of my muscles. My stress and headache melted away throughout the session as I gave in to the healing and relaxation treatment which boosted my blood circulation.

When the therapist left I felt languid and utterly relaxed as I sipped the lemongrass ginger tea in a ceramic cup. I finished the movie with a complete sense of what a spa treatment should be like.

The reflexology massage is available in The Spa Wellness branches in Acropolis, Alabang, Trinoma and Greenbelt (Alabang, Trinoma and Greenbelt soon to open). A reflexology sparty can also be organized in any of the branches. The Spa is part of The Spa Wellness group of brands. For more information, call 656-5790 local 115 or (+63) 0917-8392517.