Apr 1, 2024

The evolution of self-care

Self-care encompasses several aspects of overall well-being. Most of the time when we think of self-care, we think of massage, facials and cosmetic services. There are many pieces to self-care to maintain a healthy mind and body. Nutrition, fitness, medical needs, relationships, spirituality, mental health and personal and general hygiene are all equally important. You are the only one who can decide to carve out the time needed and become the very best version of you.

In ancient times, the ritual of self-care began with the Greeks and Romans. Elaborate bath houses were built over natural hot springs, creating a sanctuary of healing, wellness and social gathering. The elite patrons made these first spas a frequent destination. Europeans would travel to different countries that had natural hot springs and were known as “spa towns.” Only the who’s who of this era were welcome in the first generation of bath houses. 

Do you ever wonder where the word spa came from? It derives from the Latin phrase “sanita per aquam” or “health through water.” Water has always been a source of tranquility, relaxation and healing. During the evolution of the original bath houses, any facilities offering water-based treatments soon became known as spas and the name stuck. 

Throughout the 19th century, spas were still only available to the wealthy. Over the last several decades, self-care has become more accessible to everyone of all walks of life and many different services are available for relaxation, beauty, health and wellness. Finding a balance in our fast-paced world is a necessary part of our lives today. Stress and anxiety plague our population more than ever before. Technology makes it hard to turn our brains off and unplug. There is something about human contact through pampering that nothing can ever duplicate. We will always have a need to find rejuvenation. 

Wellness tourism and luxury retreats are more popular than ever. Social media has given all of us a front row seat to sneak peeks of everything from unique facials, makeup techniques, lash and brow services, lasers and injectables. The options in today’s services go far beyond the mineral baths with which they began. Children and adults of all ages are intrigued with extravagant leisure, comfort and beauty services and products.

Although spas have evolved greatly through the centuries, the reason we go has stayed the same — to relax and rejuvenate the mind, body and soul. Do you have your next spa service booked?


Leslie Peck is a local makeup artist, esthetician and lash artist with almost two decades of experience. She has worked 11 seasons of NYC Fashion Week as well as several beauty shoots while living in New York City. Leslie also has experience in TV, film, print and celebrity makeup in Los Angeles. She specializes in bridal makeup, skincare education and was featured on the front page of the Wall Street Journal in 2007.