Each year, hundreds of thousands of people travel to Europe to visit medical spas and weight loss spas, where they take advantage of curative remedies while enjoying the majestic landscape and unique culture found only in Europe. While American spas treat you like a guest and focus on relaxation and beauty, European spas treat you like a patient and focus on medical wellness treatments that improve overall health. Many European medical spas use natural resources as part of treatment.
What is a Medical Spa?
The term “medical spa” is a little misleading. Is it a fancy hospital or a spa for sick people? Turns out, a little bit of both. A medical spa (or “medi-spa”) combines a traditional, relaxing spa experience with techniques and procedures you’d normally find in a doctor’s office. A licensed health care professional is on-site at all times. The staff is committed to improving the overall health of their patients by use of alternative and holistic medical therapies. The use of medical spas and alternative medicine has increased drastically over the past 20 years.
Some medical spas are built around natural springs or have their own source of natural minerals. These spas offer hydrotherapy treatments, which use water for pain relief and treatment. The physical properties of water, like pressure and temperature, are used to stimulate blood circulation and treat diseases.
A thermal spring bath is great for those with circulation disorders, spinal column issues, arthritis, paralysis, metabolism disorders, osteoporosis, gynecological problems, and recovering from surgery. Europe’s hot springs contain lots salt and sulfur (a “universal remedy”). Minerals dissolve in saltwater, which eventually comes to the surface from deep underground. Thermal springs are cooled down from their natural temperature of about 160 degrees. When used for medical treatment, minerals are absorbed through the skin and deposited in certain areas of the body. As you relax into a thermal spring bath, you will find muscle and join pain relieved. You can find a thermal spring at the Hotel Drei Quellen Therme in Germany.
If you suffer from a nervous disorder, joint disease, spinal pain, gynecological issue, arthritis, or simply want to rejuvenate your skin, consider a moor mud bath. Europeans have been using warm moor mud since the 14th century. Also called “therapeutic peat,” moor mud is a combination of organic remains from grass, herbs, and flowers. Deposited at the bottom of a swamp, these materials did not decompose completely due to lack of oxygen. Over time, these remnants slowly become peat. The peat is exposed and removed when moorlands are drained. The peat is then cut into small pieces and combined with purified water, forming a thick paste. When the mud is heated, a combination of acids, minerals, vitamins, hormones and trace elements are released, absorbed into the skin, and deposited into certain parts of the body. You can find this treatment at the Tree of Life Spa Resort in the Czech Republic.
Other popular treatments include water cure therapy, climate therapy, fango mud, Kneipp therapy, thymus/fresh cell therpy, stanger bath therapy, aslan therapy, and cryotherpay.
Some of Europe’s best medical spas:
- Schloss Elmau Luxury Spa & Cultural Hideaway (Germany)
- Viva Mayr and F.X. Mayr & More (Austria)
- LeFay Resort & Spa (Italy)
- Grand Resort Bad Ragaz (Switzerland)
Thinking about the delectable dishes and fine wines of Europe might make your mouth water, but did you know that some people actually travel to Europe to lose weight? Staying at a weight loss spa is pricey, but we guarantee you’ll return home relaxed, rejuvenated, and a few pounds lighter.
Along with traditional spa services, weight loss spas also offer detox programs, exercise classes, nutritional advice, and medical procedures. Personal trainers and nutritionists are on hand for advice, personal meetings, and lectures. Some of these institutions focus on relaxation and detox while others put guests through rigorous exercise.
All of Europe’s luxury health care facilities focus on:
- Long-term lifestyle changes
- Feeling young
What better place for a spa than Europe’s majestic landscape? Both you and your waistline will enjoy vacations to these outstanding weight loss spas:
Clinique La Prairie (CLP) in Montreux, Switzerland
Located right on Lake Geneva, CLP has gained worldwide fame due to its anti-aging technology. Using “CLP Extract” (sheep cells), the institute offers rejuvenation treatments that can be found nowhere else on the planet. These treatments are recommended for guests over 40. Results last for about two years. Just 17-minutes of “Corpotrim” produces results similar to one hour of aerobic exercise. “Corpotrim” was developed to help keep astronauts in shape without the help of gravity.
CLP isn’t a fat camp. The machine-based BeautyMed program lasts 12 days and is ideal for individuals aiming to lose just a few pounds. Each guest undergoes a daily electro session in which the muscles and skin are stimulated and lymphatic drainage increases. Guests have access to a wide variety of electro and laser therapies. A slew of professionals are available for advice and to help you form a personal exercise routine.
CuisinArt Golf Resort & Spa in Anguilla, British West Indies
This intimate beachfront resort is located in the curve of Rendezvous Bay. The 10-day program is available to only 20 guests at a time. In the morning, participants enjoy a relaxing walk on the beach followed by classes such as aerobics and yoga. There are also many traditional and unique spa treatments available (like Aquatherapy) in the famous Venus Spa. Meals consist of nutritious foods made with ingredients from the resort’s hydroponic farm. In addition to fitness classes, guests will also undergo a health assessment and attend lectures about fitness and nutrition.
Visitors uninterested in spa treatments or weight loss can take advantage of the resort’s championship golf course, fine dining, and of course the beach.
Stobo Castle in Peebleshire, Scotland
Prepare to be pampered. Just 20 miles north of Edinburgh sits a gorgeous castle featuring a Japanese water garden, tennis courts, a unique Crystal Steam Room, and a hydrospa. The indoor, glass-roofed spa offers over 80 different treatments. At Stobo Castle, guests can float in mineral-rich water in the Dead Sea Flotarium. You’re sure to lose a little weight from the haggis-only diet. In case you don’t know, haggis is a pudding-type dish that contains sheep’s heart, liver, and lungs. These ingredients are minced with spices, suet, oatmeal, stock, and onion. Despite the description, haggis makes for a savory meal with a great nutty texture.
Visitors to Europe may be at a loss when it comes to purchasing cosmetics. This article will give you some advice on which brands to look for. London, Berlin, and Paris have the largest selection of beauty products. Keep in mind that each European country sells different brands. International names like Estee Lauder, Body Shop, Shiseido, and Chanel are found all across Europe, but it’s more fun to explore the brands unique to the country in which you’re staying.
If you’re on a budget, drugstores will be more than adequate for your beauty needs. Lots of European drugstores allow you to sample their products. This is a great feature lacking in US drugstores.
Bourjois is one of Europe’s most famous cosmetic brands. With a focus on the particular glamor of 19th century Paris, this brand can proudly claim to have created the first powder blush. If you’re looking for a makeup remover, go for Bioderma Crealine H2O. For a great moisturizer, try Embryolisse.
If you’re visiting Europe during the summer, you’re going to need sunscreen. La Roche-Posay Anthelios AC is recommended for oily skin and those suffering from acne. Unlike sunscreens that claim to be “oil free,” this one really is!
In France, look for Monoprix and luxury brands Galeries Lafayette and Printemps. When visiting Sephora stores (you can find these in France, Italy, and Spain), look for eye shadow and blush by Fred Farruggia. Sephora stores also carry Makeup For Ever products and drugstore brands like Maybelline and L’Oreal. Sephora often has sales on their more expensive products during the summer. Another French brand to look for is Lollipops.
If you like perfume and you’re visiting Paris, you’re in for a treat. Visit a boutique called Serge Lutens at the Palais Royale. Inside you can sample a gigantic array of perfumes.
In Italy and France, look for Kiko stores. Kiko is known for its wide selection of products, great prices, and sales. The Italian store Limoni Perfumeria has a wide selection with great packaging. Look for inexpensive brands Pupa and Collistar.
In London, look for EU-exclusive Illamasqua shades.
In Germany, look for brands Astor and P2. Both brands can be found in common drugstores. Their products are inexpensive and of good quality. P2 makes great lip products. Catrice (a little more expensive) and Essence (a little less expensive) are two more great drugstore brands found in Germany. Catrice has a reputation for wonderful nail polish. You can also find hair treatment tools, serums and creams there, wonderful for post curling or straightening treatment.
Germany is known for its focus on organic makeup and skincare. In Denmark, visit stores Matas and Magasin to find a great selection of products. If you see the name Nilens Jord, check out the mascara and eye shadow. All Nilens Jord products are free of paraben and perfume. The Danish brand GOSH is not recommended.
In the Netherlands, drugstore Kruidvat en Etos is recommended for beauty supplies. They carry aforementioned brands Catrice and Essence. They also carry MNY. Essence can also be purchase in Switzerland’s drugstores.
In the United Kingdom, visit House of Fraser. Look for brands Illamasque, Butter London, Sleek, 17, Models Own, and Barry M. International travelers often say that in regards to makeup, the UK is similar to the US.
In Spain, look for Agatha Ruiz de la Prada perfume and try out some skincare products from Instituto Español de la Piel.
An Effective Anti-Aging Tool?
While it is true that everyone looks to live many years, the actual process of aging is dreaded around the world. But old age is not the only dreaded stage in life, puberty with all its awkward changes as acne and skin spots can be just as devastating while middle age has more than a fair share of troubles which manifest themselves in wrinkles and fine lines. And with appearance coming at such a premium these days, we are every day confronted by promotions touting all sorts of magical remedies for skin defects on mainstream media as well as online. After trying dozens of them with little to show for it, many people have given up altogether in their bid to reverse signs of aging and skin damage. However, there is a product that calls for more than just a second glance: the Derma Roller.
The derma roller (or microneedle) is an innovative skin care device designed to stimulate the production of collagen underneath the skin which rejuvenates the skin resulting a smooth, youthful appearance. The small , handheld devices are not so impressive when you look at them first. Indeed, the fact that they have a roller on which there are dozens of tiny microneedles can be intimidating especially for those who are queasy. Treating your skin with a microneedle is easy. All you need is to roll its microneedles over your face, tummy, thighs or other affected areas of the skin for about 10 minutes, all the while ensuring that you repeat the motion for about a dozen times over particular problem areas.
It is recommended that microneedling (the process of rolling the device on the skin) is carried out at night or when one is not required to appear in public. This is because often microneedling leads to puffiness or redness of the skin. Some users in fact experience mild bleeding. However, all these symptoms are temporary and will disappear within 6 to 10 hours.
Using the Derma Roller to Remove Acne Scars
One of the more popular applications of the microneedle is in eliminating scars left on the skin as a result of cystic acne. Even where other remedies have proved ineffective in getting rid of the redness and the and the unsightly scars resulting from an acute case of cystic acne, microneedling proves effective all the same. To begin with, the rolling stimulates the skin to produce collagen which then aids in the healing process and gradually the spots, scars and skin discoloration are no longer evident.
As is the case with other cosmic solutions for skin defects, patience is of essence when using the derma roller. However, some improvements on the skin such as a reduction in discoloration can be noted within days of beginning microneedling. There are no universal standards as it all depends on how acute the case of acne scarring is as well as the brand of microneedle used.
Microneedling and Stretch Mark Removal
While the effectiveness of derma rolling in the removal of acne scars has been well documented, not so much is known about the device’s effectiveness in getting rid of stretch marks. This is something of a mystery since so many women(and a significant number of men too) have to grapple with the problem of these unsightly body marks. As it is impossible to always keep the stretch marks hidden away under clothing all the time, their presence can cause a loss of self esteem for both men and women. However, with the rise of skin needling, this predicament needs not be a cause for concern anymore.
However, before anyone resorts to the use of rollers to treat stretch marks, there are few factors one needs to consider. To begin with, just about every user posting reviews on the effectiveness of the roller on stretch marks the device is good in making the stretched skin lighter but cannot remove the scarring entirely. As such, the remedy is only satisfactory for individuals with light skin. It is also worth considering that compared to fine lines and acne scarring, stretch marks take more time to develop and show on the skin.
Derma Rolling and Hair Regrowth
While it is true that fine lines and scarring are the aging issues which cause the most concern in women, for men it is hair loss that is more dreaded. Considering that the same principle of cell regeneration applies to healing scarred skin as in growth of hair, derma rolling has been tried and found marginally effective in treating premature hair loss. The efficacy of microneedling stems from the principle that it encourages the body to produce collagen which is crucial in the process in which the body grows hair. One needs to note that derma rolling on its own may not prove much of a solution though. For the best results, it makes sense to apply the process needs to be combined with application of a proven hair growth serum as a topical application. The microneedling helps the active ingredients in the topical application to penetrate deep and encourage growth of hair from the follicles.
Scientia Derma Roller
This specially designed microneedle is manufacture in the UK. It is effective for all the skin treatment solutions for which microneedles are famous for including:
Acne induced scars
Fine lines and wrinkles
First time users of this roller invariably report improved results compared to other treatment options they tried in the past. A good number of these users report considerable changes after just a single microneedling treatment. For others, it may take a couple of treatments before they observe any changes. Moreover, users have remarked on the effectiveness of the roller across all categories of skin problems. The most popular of the Scentia range is the one with the 192 1mm microneedles. The roller is safe enough to use even up to five times a week. For the best results, the manufacturers recommend the roller be used alongside certified anti-aging creams and facial serums.
According to a select number of user reviews, applying more force than is called for can cause skin damage. However, for consistent users, any swelling or bleeding was minimal and disappeared within a matter of hours. Indeed, after careful scrutiny it is obvious that any worrying side effects did not result from poor design or ineffectiveness of the roller but rather as a result of poor usage by the consumers themselves.
Derma rollers represent an innovative approach to the treatment of skin defects. Despite their novelty, they have come to be widely accepted due to their effectiveness and convenience of use. Part of that popularity has also ridden on the fame garnered when these devices were featured on such TV programs as the Rachael Ray Show. While the wide range of applicability of microneedles is without question, people who bleed easily may need to forego their use. the same applies to those who have a low pain-tolerance threshold.
However, if a little pain is not a big deal, then the use of derma rollers is a highly recommended skin defect remedy. It is a solution which is certain to deliver marked results for problems like acne-induced scarring, fine lines and hyper-pigmentation. For the best results, users are advised to microneedle regularly and also apply topical anti-aging creams and serums. If you still need further information on how to find the best dermarollers, Aquilah.com’s review of dermarollers is a resource you might want to check out.
More and more people are combining the fun of a well earned vacation, with much needed medical or beauty treatments. This is a money saver and has the added benefit of leaving you with cherished memories. Hence, medical and beauty tourism in Europe is becoming increasingly popular.
A common destination is Hungary. Well known for it’s very distinct and beautiful architecture, it has long been a destination for tourists wishing to partake of it’s rich historical heritage and culture. Hungary also has the largest thermal lake in all of Europe, Lake Heviz.. State of the art health care facilities and beauty rejuvenation centers, have made Hungary one of the top choices for travellers from all parts of the world. One of the first attractions for international tourists are the thermal spas, bath pools supplied naturally with warm soothing waters containing health improving minerals and salts. Cosmetic treatments are hugely popular, as many seek a safe and more affordable country for elective surgery. Basically every kind of beauty treatment is offered, from liposuction to face lift surgery and everything in between. As with most medical practitioners, a cosmetic surgeon must be board certified to practice, which demands rigorous training.Also attractive are the high quality health care available at a fraction of the cost in say, the United States. Other treatments offered include:
- chemical peels
- radio frequency facials
- tummy tucks
- vericose vein surgery
Many visit this central European nation for dental work, especially cosmetic procedures. The trend started in the eighties when patients from Austria would visit clinics in Hungary for high quality dental work at a very affordable price. Mostly limited to border towns at the onset of this trend, the focus has now shifted to bigger, well known cities like Budapest. The huge popularity of dental specialists in this country is due to the application of highly sophisticated dental techniques, thorough and comprehensive dental training schools as well as strict enforcement of credential verification. Hungarian regulatory bodies are widely accepted as being among the most demanding across the globe. Also, most clinics make use of the latest equipment and procedures in the their treatment. And coupled with many years of professional experience will assure the dental tourist that his experience will be a pleasant one.
If medical and beauty tourism in Europe sounds good to you, consider the beautiful country of Hungary. Low cost, high quality medical and beauty care is readily available, and you might make some time out for sightseeing. It is well worth it. On the other hand, just as beauty tourism is taking off, more and more individuals are also opting for at home beauty treatments like microdermabrasion and high frequency facial therapy. Take the specific example of radio or high frequency facials for example. It used to be that a session of this type of treatment cost upwards of a $100 when done in a beauty spa or at the dermatologist’s. Nowadays, at home DIY versions of this treatment is accessible via handheld devices. Other popular treatments that have been brought to the home include microdermabrasion and chemical peels. There are a variety of chemical peels – the most popular ones include lactic acid
and glycolic acid peels. Compared to chemical peels conducted at spas and dermatologist offices, home chemical peels are typically milder. For example, while you may receive a 70% glycolic acid peel at your local spa, it is recommended not to use a solution that exceeds 50% when doing it yourself at home.
The last treatment we will cover is microdemabrasion. Nowadays, there are many handheld microdermabrasion devices and microdermabrasion machines that allow you to access this treatment without having to pay exorbitant prices at a spa or dermatologist office. Just like chemical peels, do not expect home treatments to match the strength you receive at a professional office. Generally, home machines operate at about 70% or less of the strength of professional machines.
One of the top luxury spas in Europe is in Germany at Baden-Baden, situated on the edge of the Black Forest in a lush green valley on the Oos River, it has been a popular spa destination since Roman times. Being close to both Switzerland and France it is the perfect location for those who maybe taking a tour of Europe and want to have some time out for relaxation and regenerating.
The Brenners Park Spa Resort a five star complex which provides everything that today’s demanding traveler could possibly want. With a full medical spa and a team of experts on hand they will put together the perfect wellness plan for you. The center specializes in dentistry, gynecology and physio for those who require medical treatments at a fraction of North American prices. For those travelers seeking total peace and solace then why not consider booking one of the exclusive spa suites which include a Japanese blossom baths and personal Finnish sauna with a large secluded private terrace overlooking the mountains and forest it is the perfect location to unwind. There are lots of treatments on offer the massage menu is extensive and includes Thai massage which will help boost your energy levels. Shiatsu which concentrates on pressure points. Lomi which is also known as a Hawaiian massage and is a mixture of grip and deep tissue. You can also indulge in sports and aromatherapy massage.
Other treatments on offer include facials, again there is a large menu and there are now facial therapies for men. For those seeking a complete spa package you could opt for one of the specialist programs which includes various treatments tailored to your needs. For example, you could opt for a microdermabrasion or high frequency facial treatments sell at home microdermabrasion machines that you can bring back for DIY treatment) Fitness along with diet are all part of the packages. The head chef works along side the nutritionist to provide delicious organic meals which will suit all dietary requirements.
Baden-Baden could easily be combined with one of the spa resorts in Switzerland, France, Italy or Austria who all have their own unique spa towns. Or you could consider one of the stunning spa resorts that can be found in the UK, one of the most luxurious being in Bath, England. People have been bathing and enjoy the spa since Roman times and this could be combined with a visit to Stonehenge and is very close to London. There are so many possibilities and options available for anyone searching for the perfect spa vacations in Europe.