So, you’re headed off on your dream spa day. Things are great and you’re super excited for a day of relaxation and pampering. Then, it hits you – You have no idea what to do when you get there. Do you take off all of your clothes for a massage? How much should you tip? What if your cellphone rings during a facial?

To find out everything you need to know before heading to the spa, we talked to Julie Lindh, Skin Fitness Expert at JL Skin Fitness. Check out Julie’s answers and get ready for a super relaxing experience. Additionally, if you have any more questions about spa-ing and beyond, let us know in the comments section below.

Arrival Time

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What is the best time to be there for an appointment?

15 minutes for first timer to fill out the consent form, etc. Its good to come on time to get best out of your session.


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To bring, or not to bring, that is the question.
Having a [spa treatment] is about focusing on you. Most customers want to get away from their daily routine so bringing children is not ideal.


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Are phones allowed in quiet rooms?
I tell my clients they should not have their phone on during our session but I understand if they need for special reason.

What about during treatments? Should they be turned off or on silent?


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What are the guidelines?
I don’t force anyone to tip, but for my girls I do ask if they liked the treatment and if they wish to leave tips. Tips usually are 20%.

Is there a difference for spa treatments vs. medical services by a nurse or doctor?
Yes. Spa treatments cost less then medical treatment and often tip is not part of medical procedures.


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Speaking up to preferences, should you let your therapist know if it’s too hard or soft?

A great therapist should always ask the client and communicate for best results.

How can I avoid talking altogether during treatment? Can you tell your therapist you prefer it quiet?

Absolutely. It’s your time and money. This should be mentioned at the beginning of the session.



How much do you have to take off for a facial?
From waist up.

For a massage…?
You may leave the panties on unless the spa provide a disposable.

Can you wear jewelry?
It’s best to remove the jewelry prior to the session.

Now that you’ve learned all that you need to know to have an amazing spa day, make sure to sign up for our newsletter to gain access to exclusive spa gift card discounts and more.

197 Responses

  1. Anne

    I’ve never been to a spa. Just had some physical therapy massage on my back and leg.

  2. Chelsea

    I haven’t been to a spa since my glorious trip to Thailand (AMAZING spa experience btw).

  3. Diana Smith Hill

    It has been years since I went to a spa. I went to an Elizabeth Arden spa for treatments and told them I was allergic to nuts and not to use oils or creams on me that contain nuts. After 15 minutes I was headed to the ER!
    I don’t understand why they cannot use oils like avocado, jojoba, coconut!
    I would love to go for a massage and a facial but worry they won’t take the time to read the labels even when I ask.

  4. Tanya

    Not considering trips for mani/pedi services only, I think it’s been about two years since I’ve been to the spa. However, I intend to visit one for my 40th birthday celebration in March!

  5. Daniela Plume

    it’s been too long but i received a spa certificate for christmas so i’ll have to go soon 🙂

  6. Jairo Garcia

    The last time I headed to a spa was back in 2006 when I was battling acne

  7. Sharday L.

    I last went to the spa two weeks ago. I got a foot massage while I was waiting for my car to be finished at the auto shop. Probably one of the best ways to pass time.

  8. Lynne Meyer

    I’ve actually never been to a spa…but I sure would love to go sometime!

  9. Christine A

    It’s been almost 18 months since my last spa appointment & after taking care of three boys, aging & unfortunately ill family members, could really use a day of pampering so I can better focus on my schedules with renewed vigor.

  10. Amber Stovall

    Last time I headed to the spa I was 8 month pregnant. My son is now 13 months so I think I need some mommy spa time for sure!

  11. Devon Eaton

    It has been about 8 years since I’ve been to a spa and had a massage. Good I need one soon lol

  12. Barbara Lima

    The last time I went to the spa was two months ago. I love getting a facial or a massage.

  13. Elsie

    My daughter and I went about ten years ago, I’d say we are both due! Thanks for this chance!!

  14. Lucy

    Unfortunately, I have never been to a spa yet! 🙁 the closest experience was a couples Thai massage with my boyfriend about a year ago, it was wonderful and followed similar guidelines to this 😀

  15. cyndi gagliardi

    I haven’t had a true spa day for a while, but did have a massage last week, which was wonderful! I always tip my therapists well!

  16. Marie Byrne

    I went to a thermal bath in Budapest last year which was an amazing experience

  17. Sharon

    I have never been to a spa due to all extra money going to doctors after a serious car accident. I could sure use one.

  18. toni v

    I went 4 times in December to treat myself with massages during the busiest month of the year…I only fell asleep during 1!

  19. Laura Royal

    I went two days before Christmas to make sure I was relaxed enough to handle all of the chaos.

  20. Julie

    Oh goodness, the last time I was at a spa was probably 10 years ago, if not more! If I ever do get to go again, it will be like I’m a first-timer. So thanks for these tips!

  21. Tarra

    The last time I was at the spa was less than a week ago! My amazing husband got me a hydromassage for my aching back from being 37 weeks pregnant 🙂

  22. Dana L

    The last time I went to the spa was right before Christmas. To get a facial and a haircut 🙂

  23. Christa

    I have not been to a spa for over 5 years. I loved it when I went but I just have not been able to pamper myself….too busy taking care of everyone else. A mothers work is never done!!

  24. Christa

    I have not been to a spa in over 5 years. It was wonderful when I went just haven’t been able to pamper myself.

  25. sally R.

    The last time I was at the spa was when my daughter purchased a spa day for me on my birthday last year, time just flies.

  26. Ro

    The last time I went to the spa was about 2 months ago. Would love to go again soon.

  27. Amy

    It has been 2 yrs but received a partial gift certificate so will be heading again soon !!

  28. Kay

    Just two days ago. Much needed massage after a very stressful time leading up to and following my mother’s death.

  29. Elisse

    The last time I headed to the spa was in November 2015, when I was working in South Carolina and had a day off in Charleston. I had an hour of reflexology, and it was GRAND!

  30. Rhonda

    I’ve never been but I’ve got a gift card to go and just need to schedule it! 🙂

  31. Dana

    I was lucky enough to get to a spa for a massage about a month ago. I have since hurt my shoulder (again) and could use another trip to get into the muscle.

  32. Lacey McBride

    The last time I went to the spa was last Mother’s Day! I am so ready to go again!! I need it to be a more regular thing! 🙂

  33. Melanie Hawk

    it’s been a while. I am scheduling an spa day with a christmas gift card I received. 🙂

  34. Kat

    Last time I was at a spa was in May 2015 in Scottsdale. I had a wonderful massage!

  35. Sandy Weinstein

    last time was in december 2015, will probably be going again in jan or feb. 2016

  36. Kaylin Bruce

    I cannot even remember the last time that I headed to the spa. If I had to guess, I say 2009? (when I was pregnant with my 2nd child.)

  37. Tara McClenic

    I have never been to a spa for any treatments, only to buy a product once that is only sold in spas. I truly do need to have some ‘me’ time at a spa though.

  38. Jess

    I haven’t been for a massage since the fall. I’m overdo! I could use a facial soon as well.

  39. Lorena Pauline

    I’m not sure if having just nails done is considered going to a spa, however I was on crutches in December and went to get my first Shellav manicure as a pick me up.

  40. Katie McBride

    The last time I went to a spa was five years ago for a full body massage. It was sssoooo nice.

  41. PhyllisGee

    Oh my I feel that there’s a spy cam since I just came back from the spa.

  42. Andrea Darst

    I haven’t been to a spa for years, but my hubby bought me a certificate for a massage so I’m really excited about that!

  43. Joanne L

    I am embarrassed to say that it has been years. I use to go all the time and reap the many benefits, However, since my illnesses, I had to go on disability and they do not support any sort of spa/natural/remedies/treatments. Spa treatments would help me get more healthy and relaxed. Also, anything in skin care would help while needing to stay on medications. My skin suffers as well. The things I suffer do benefit from many treatments offered thru spa’s. I would be grateful for any wins to get me started . Thanks Spa Week.

  44. Charu Nagarajan

    I haven’t been to a spa in a long time. I have had massages for my back spasms in my Chiropractor’s office

  45. Tammie Manis

    I have been to a “spa”..BUT it’s been such a very long time, in other words I cannot exactly tell you when. I use to get monthly facials, massages, and hair done..till MONEY became the issue!

  46. Stephanie Upton

    The last time I actually made it to the spa was so long ago that I can’t remember exactly how long!! At least three or four years!! Lol #sosad Thanks for the chance!! :)))

  47. Meena nichani

    It’s been a while as I have a one year old. I would say about 1 year ago.

  48. Laura Royal

    I went to the spa two days before Christmas to make sure I was relaxed for the holidays 😀

  49. CL Chin

    I went to a spa in mid -December for a microdermabrasion facial and massage.

  50. Marissa Grill

    The last time I went was in September over my bachelorette weekend!

  51. amy stonger

    Its been almost 4 years now. As a single mom I dont get the chance to go to the spa very often.

  52. helenlam

    I went yesterday but only to treat a friend. Next time hopefully it’ll be for me!

  53. Lester Soper

    Last time I was at a spa was the last time in Vegas, at the Golden Nugget. It was glorious, go if you get a chance.

  54. Neida Aponte

    The last time I went to the spa was 3 years ago when I was on a cruise. I definitely need one asap.

  55. Linda P

    I haven’t been in about 2 years! Health issues have kept me sidelined. But now, hope to make up for it. Need a good facial and peel.

  56. Lucy

    I have never been to a spa, the closest thing I’ve ever come to is the hot tub in my apartment complex!

  57. Sarah Thomas

    It’s been months since I’ve been to the spa! I really need to make time for it

  58. Colleen

    The last time I was at the spa was in April. Right after my Mom passed. We had booked it months in advance and it was a much needed break for my BFF and I.

  59. Kim

    I was at a 5 star spa in December before the Holidays, & at a different lovely spa in October

  60. Lisa M

    Its been over a year , in fact I had a gift certificate expire b/c I didn’t take the “ME” time to go 🙁

  61. Kay

    I think spa treatments (in particular) massages are very healthy and necessary. Also pedicures – for looking after feet is very important.

  62. Jennifer J.

    It has been way too long since I went to a spa (several, as in 5 to 10 years)!!! I am long over due and in need of a treatment and some quality me time. Would love to win!!!

  63. Nancy H.

    Got the hot stone and oil massage in Japan. Absolutely amazing way to detox and must say the masseuse was so good! Oh I NEED TO GO GET ME SOME NOW!

  64. Rebecca B

    I haven’t been to the spa in a couple years and it is killing me lol! Definitely need to schedule more me time this year!

  65. Cathy Thompson

    Oh my this sounds like a little bit of heaven the spa! I actually have never been but would love to and thanks for the tips, may take my Mother soon! That would be great quality time for us!

  66. Sarah

    Ive never been to a spa before I always wanted to but was never able to afford it

  67. Susan P.

    The last time I headed to the spa was a long time ago, maybe 10 years ago.

  68. Lorena Grande

    I cannot recall the last time I’ve been to a spa! That’s how long it’s been. 🙂 I guess that makes me due.

  69. Emily Geary

    The last time I went to the spa was before my aunts wedding! I would love to go again to try a facial.

  70. Heidi

    Went as a belated birthday present in June! My mom bought me a gift certificate to a spa that included a facial and manicure – so nice!!!

  71. Stephanie V.

    mid December – had a wonderful DNA facial and massage!!
    tvollowitz at aol dot com

  72. Kim B

    I’ve never been to a spa! But it has been 6 years since my last massage by a massage therapist 🙁


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