What is massage and how is it beneficial?

We all like a bit of pampering from time to time and one of the best ways to relax is having a massage! But massage is not only relaxing it can be beneficial in many different ways! 

What are the different types of massage?

  • Swedish massage- A relaxing massage that can help remove some tension and circulation.
  • Aromatherapy Massage- A standard relaxing massage using blends of aromatherapy oils to help relax, revitalise or improve a sense of well being.
  • Hot stone Massage- A massage incorporating hot stones to help sooth and relax muscles and improve circulation
  • Deep tissue Massage- Works on deeper muscles to help improve flexibility. 
  • Sports Massage- A step above deep tissue massage working mainly on manipulation of muscles and joints helping to relieve tension from strains and injuries. 
  • Indian Head Massage- An alternative medicine massage to help balance Chakras. The back, neck, head and face are massaged to manipulate and clear energy channels helping to provide a sense of well being. 
  • Reiki- A healing technique where the therapist transfers his or her energy into the client to restore physical and mental well being. 


So what are the benefits of these massages?

Swedish Massage

  • Relaxes entire body.
  • Increases blood oxygen.
  • Improves circulation.
  • Decreases toxins within muscles.
  • Eases tension.

Swedish massage is best suited to those with slight tension and in need of a bit of TLC. 

Aromatherapy Massage 

  • Extremely Relaxing 
  • Promotes circulation
  • Helps Tissue recovery 
  • Reduces pain
  • Eases negative feelings such as anxiety and stress
  • Calms the mind 
  • Promotes restful sleep 

Aromatherapy best suits those looking for pure tranquillity. 

Hot Stone Massage 

  • Provides relief from muscular pains caused from arthritis, carpal tunnel and other chronic problems. 
  • Reduces stress and tension 
  • Improves circulation 
  • Decreases Muscle spasms
  • Deep Relaxation

Hot stone Massage benefits those with muscular conditions and those looking for deep relaxation. 

Deep Tissue Massage

  • Releases chronic muscle tension especially in deeper muscles
  • Can reduce high blood pressure
  • Boosts mood and relaxation
  • Helps with pain from bad posture 
  • Can help improve posture

Deep tissue is beneficial to those with poor posture and general muscular aches and pains 

Sports Massage 

  • Geared towards athletes 
  • Can help to relax muscles before a sporting event 
  • Aids with tension after a sporting event 
  • Reduces tension from joints 
  • Helps to heal and prevent injury 
  • Reduces fatigue 
  • Promotes flexibility 
  • Reduces knots and tension
  • Relieves chronic pain

Sports Massage is best suited to those who have chronic pain in muscles and joints as a result from a sporting activity. It is also beneficial to those with bad posture and spent a lot of time seated but bent over. 

Indian head Massage 

  • Helps balance chakras 
  • Relieves tension
  • Removes headaches 
  • Releases endorphins
  • Improves physical and mental well being 
  • Deeply relaxing 

Indian head massage is best suited to those feeling strong emotions and in need of relaxation. 

Reiki Massage 

  • Reduces stress
  • Relieves tension 
  • Extremely relaxing 
  • Promotes wholeness of mind, body and soul
  • Helps improve mental and spiritual well being

Reiki Massage is best suited to clients who need uplifting and relaxing. 


There are many types of massage to suit everyone’s needs and concerns. Whether its muscle tension or a sense of well being massage can help improve the majority of problems a client may have! 

We offer all these massages from fully trained therapists with an extensive knowledge of anatomy and physiology to ensure you benefit from your massage! 




CND Shellac Nails, What are they and how do they work?

As a woman we feel the strains as many of us do wanting to have beautiful nails all the time! But when it comes to painting them with polish and having to wait hours for them to dry it can become a real pain not to mention the smudging and chipping straight after spending a long time making them look perfect.

CND Shellac is a power polish that gently sticks to the natural nail bed without causing any damage. The best thing about CND Shellac is that it goes on like a polish, has zero dry time and wears like a gel. Yes i said it they wear like a gel, however the benefit of these not being a gel is that there is no drilling of the nail before or after they are applied. Using acetone we gently soak of the nails taking roughly 10 minutes and straight after they look just like they did before! Nails grow underneath and become stronger as they are protected by the shellac from those dreaded daily chores! 

CND Shellac lasts 14 days and sometimes even longer. I know my toes have been on for a good 3 weeks and other than a bit of growth they still look great! 

So many colours to choose from and being used in conjunction with nail art means there is a style for everyone! Your nails don’t even have to be long to have them applied. If you have weak or brittle nails CND Shellac can help to strengthen and even nourish the natural nails! 

CND Have won multiple awards from Harpers Bazaar to peoples magazine for being the best new product in 2010, 2011,2012 and 2013! 

At Alchemy Therapy Centre we only Charge £20 for our CND Shellac and an added £5 for removal. We drive a great bargain for these because we feel all women should feel like they have beautiful hands! 

Below are a few of our great nail art ideasImageImage


Why Sun protection factor?

The suns rays make us feel good and we are all guilty of wanting a beautiful tan ready for the summer months! Though the sun has benefits to the skin it can also cause lots of problems! Be sure to use SPF factor 15 or higher to ensure your skin is kept safe from the sun.

The suns rays cause the majority of wrinkles and sun spots on the face so to stop ourselves looking old before our time we should apply SPF every day even in the winter months! This is because the sun still sends out rays even when its not shining. UV Rays damage elastin in the skin causing it to become loose and saggy causing wrinkles. We all tend to spend a bit more money than we should on anti-ageing products but your best product to stop you from ageing quickly is one with an SPF of 15 or higher in it. Skin cancer is also one of the main concerns from the harmful UV rays and applying sun care can help reduce this by a long shot.

So how does the sun change the skin? 

  • Stimulates pre-cancerous cells
  • Stimulates benign tumours 
  • Causes wrinkles and uneven pigmentation leading to dark circles around the eyes and liver spots 
  • Freckles 
  • Damages elastin causing the skin to become saggy and loose

We all love being in the sun but to ensure your skins safety make sure you use an SPF.

Environ skin care offers a suncare product named RAD SPF15 at only £19 a bottle. You can use this on top of moisturiser and even mix it in with your foundation to recieve full protection!

Benefits of skin analysis.

What is a skin analysis event?

The salon will offer 45 minute appointments with a highly trained skincare professional, who will undertake a detailed consultation about your skin and your current skin-care routine and will analyse your skin using a state of the art machine. The machine takes a photo of your skin and analyses the depth of the wrinkles and lines, takes a measurement of the depth of the pores, and assesses the amount of sun damage to your skin. Finally it will show you how your skin will look in a few years (if your skin-care and lifestyle stays the way it is.) The analyst will then be able to go through with you why this might be happening and what you can do to prevent it. She will leave you with a suggested treatment plan and home-care prescription to start you off on your skincare journey.

“I always find it quite intriguing to find out what’s really going on underneath mine and my clients skin. It helps me to understand the main areas I need to address and sometimes it is not always the places you can see on the surface. Even as a professional therapist I was surprised by what came up when I had mine scanned.  After following the plan I have noticed even more of a difference in my skin” – Skincare Therapist (Milton Keynes)

The main benefits of having your skin analysed are:

  • We can address hidden sun damage, pigmentation, blocked pores, wrinkles and fine lines.
  • Your salon treatment and home-care is  100% tailored to your needs and will start preventing and treating your skin issues.
  • It will allow you to stop signs of damage before they reach the surface of your skin.
  • You can attend a free skin analysis every 3 months – this allows you to decide if the treatments and products you are using are actually working for you.

If this is something that interests you Alchemy Therapy Centre are holding a free skin analysis event on 18th March 2014.  For more information or to book your free 45 minute slot call 01908 567766.


The minefield that is skincare.

We all have something we want to change about our skin whether oily, dry or combination. So what are all these skin conditions, and what is going to help or get rid of them?

There are so many adverts for different skin care brands and so many different price points it’s hard to know what is actually going to help and what is just going to waste your money. Even as professional skin care therapists we are bombarded with brands that claim to be the next big thing in anti- ageing or the miracle cure for acne. The only way to pick a brand or a product is to know what it is that you want to accomplish and why, and what is causing it.

So what causes each skin condition, and what can improve them?

Acne/ Congested skin:  The over stimulation of the oil glands at the base of hair follicles. It is common during puberty when the sebaceous (oil) glands are activated – the glands are stimulated by male hormones produced by the adrenal glands of both males and females. This is why acne in men tends to disappear after puberty and has a tendency not to return, but commonly stays with women or returns throughout life (because sadly our hormones fluctuate throughout the month and levels change as we get older).This sebum (oil) then gets trapped in the pores of the skin this causes blackheads. If no oxygen can get to it, it will quickly turn into a white head.(LEAVE THESE ALONE! The white part you see is your white blood cells fixing the infection!). The problem most people with this skin condition find, is that when they remove oil from the skin it just produces more. This is because your skin needs the natural oils to hydrate the skin, if you’re removing to much oil your skin will produce twice as much to replace what it’s loosing.  

So with this in mind you need to find an oil based pre-cleanse and cleanser as, oddly enough, oil attracts oil so it will remove any excess oil whilst leaving enough to keep your skin moisturised. Anything that is primarily alcohol or solvent based will most definitely strip your skin. Use a mild exfoliant to clear out the pores not a harsh one as this will only stimulate sebaceous glands even more. Also use a lightweight moisturiser this will keep your skin hydrated without making it feel greasy. 

Dry/ Dehydrated: The main signs of dry skin is that the skin is flaky and peeling this is normally caused by many factors and is normally a genetic skin condition, however can be worsened by over washing with harsh soaps, harsh weather changes and medication. Signs of a dehydrated skin is an itching sensation, a tight feeling and more visible fine lines on the skin. This is normally caused by the skin not being hydrated enough, or the moisture not getting through the top layer of the skin, or the natural moisture being stripped from the skin. 

The best way to overcome this is to use an oil based pre-cleanse to get rid of the surface dirt and a cleanser that will clean the skin and add more moisture at the same time. I have found a gel cleanser (for the less severe) or a cream cleanser (for the really dry/dehydrated) does this perfectly. Next step is to use a good exfoliator, something with a hard grain or a high level lactic acid as this will get rid of the layers of dead skin. This will then allow your moisturiser to penetrate deeper into the skin. Finally, use a moisturiser which is highly moisturising.

Ageing skin: As we all know ageing is natural and is something we would all like to slow down. Women start ageing slowly from the age of around 25 however men start to age around their late 40’s, although this happens at a much faster rate. The signs of ageing are increased by UV rays and from free radicals that attack the skin. The common signs of age are loss of elastin in the skin (it does not bounce back as easily), the loss of collagen in the skin (its not as plump), duller skin or dark circles around the eyes (normally caused by dehydration) and thickening of the top layer of the skin. 

To counteract these, use a mild exfoliator to reduce the thickening of the top layer of skin and brightening your complexion.This will allow your moisturiser to sink deeper into the skin which will improve the hydration of the skin making those tiny fine lines decrease. Although you can not always rebuild the collogen and elastin the skin has lost, you can protect it by always wearing an SPF no lower that factor 15. 

If you feel you need any advice or want more information on skin care or any of the skin concerns mentioned above call Alchemy Therapy Centre on 01908 567766.

J x

Who are you?

We are three therapist who have come together to start a new venture! We all wanted to create a salon that only took on treatments that we completely believe in and which produce results. We each specialise in different aspects of this vast industry and are passionate about what we do.  So who are we?

Jasmine Wallace: Having spent years studying Beauty and Holistic therapy, I loved doing all the holistic treatments such as massage and Hopi ear candling as it meant my clients left feeling relaxed and contented. However I found my real passion was in facials and advanced skin care, after spending most of my life going through the ups and downs of having laser treatment, to remove a Port-wine Stain on my face, I knew it was a real interest of mine. I spent over a year training to become a skin expert and later went on to do product training with Environ. I found it is currently one of the best advanced skin care brands on the market as it is diverse and treats almost any skin condition. After training in CND Shellac nails ,I also enjoy  trying out different styles of nail art.

Stuart Lovell:  I spent many years as an accountant before the long hours and stresses of office life finally got to me and I decided the time had come for a change of career and a new challenge.  Having been interested in holistic treatments for sometime and in finding alternative ways to treat aches and pains rather than just painkillers, I embarked on a massage course.  Now, several years later I am a qualified Sports Therapist and massage specialist.  I have also spent a few years studying Reiki and am now both a Reiki Master and Seichim Master.  In the salon I specialise in muscle pain, sporting injuries and relaxation techniques designed to help you with back ache, neck and shoulder pains, leg and knee problems as well as relaxation from the stresses of everyday life.

Holly Jenkins:  Having studied beauty at college and spent time training with both CND and Environ, my passion lies in the detailed intricate work such as advanced brow enhancements, eyelash extentions, and nail art as my clients always leave feeling on top of the world as the treatment instantly make such a difference,  although having worked with Environ for sometime I enjoy seeing the results that such advanced treatment brings to my clients.

Alchemy Therapy Centre brings together the elements of earth, air, fire and water in themed areas to help make your time with us even more enjoyable.

we will be using this blog to post about the interesting things going on in our industry, snippets of salon life and pro’s and con’s of any new therapies we come across 😀

J, H & S   x