Category Archives: Relaxation

Practicing Being Present – An Easter Meditation

Sunrise-MeditationDo you sometimes find yourself suddenly in an unpleasant mood with no idea why? I do. My life is pretty darn amazing and yet right in the midst of it I’ll feel lonely, sad, fearful, angry…and sometimes I’ll swallow it down with something self -destructive like alcohol, junk food, cigarettes, or something else not-helpful. Other times I’ll acknowledge my feelings and make a healthy choice like getting a massage, walking the beach, juicing, or connecting with someone I love and practicing being present.

But despite the fact that my first-born just had her first-born (he is lovely and his name is Dekker) I’ve been oddly out-of-sorts. Well, this morning (Tuesday of Easter week) I listened to a message called Hosting the presence of God. It reminded me of the power of practicing being present, and how I am empowered by His very presence in and around me in every moment! This is my Easter meditation.

See you at the spa!

Hugs, Linda

Body Care Kit – March Product Feature

PRObanner_bodycare

travel kit

BODY CARE KIT

exfoliate. tone. soften.

This month’s product feature was just launched at Eva’s Esthetics, and we ordered it right away so we could double your Rewards and make it a great time to give it a try!

Includes: 2 oz Green Clean Body Wash, 2 oz Triple Splash Body Tonic, and 2 oz Botanical Blast Body Lotion.

“The Green Clean  has been my favorite body wash for years! With pine, to heal, hydrate, and energize; bladderwrack, (sea minerals) to firm, balance, and detoxify; and glycolic acid, to exfoliate, tone, tighten, and brighten.
Triple Splash always goes on my body after I shower or bathe. It’s like a drink of water for your skin. “The Hydrate” for the body. It contains sodium hyaluronate which deeply moisturizes, eucalyptus for congestion, with an antiseptic action, as well as hydrolyzed proteins to firm, nourish, and tone.
Botanical Blast is new to Star Brows. It boasts 15 cold-pressed plant extracts, is essential oil – rich and packed with vitamins to heal and nourish the skin. It gets 5 stars from me!”
See you at the spa!
xo Linda “Brow Boss” Ruberto
 

 

 

Deluxe Facial – February Service Special

facial-square-two

Deluxe Facial

Fully customized facial with special masks, extractions, hand and arm plus foot and leg massage.
90 minutes – $105 (now $99 – plus a back massage!)

Beauty begins with perfect skin, and regular facials – as well as scrupulous home care – are a must. We provide effective treatments and education for home-care using the botanical Tu’el, by Eva’s Esthetics and the 100% vegan product line, OSEA – Skincare from the Sea. Every Star Brows facial includes a deep-pore cleansing, manual and chemical exfoliation, extractions, customized treatment masks, steam and aroma-towels, soothing massage, and a mineral makeup finish.

Facial services at the spa feature the bodyCushion™ by Body Support System, which cradles curves, supporting your body and allowing complete relaxation. Ambient lighting, radiant heat, essential oils and massage, add a luxurious feel to every treatment.

See you at the spa!

New Year – Same You?

goddessEverybody’s talking about New Years resolutions this time of year, but most of what I hear is about what to do (or not do) and less about how to establish and incorporate belief systems that drive our moment-to-moment choices and decisions.

I gave my grandson a butterfly kit for Christmas, and he just called to say that they had finally completed metamorphosis and are flying around ready to be set free! Ahhh, the power of transformation is fascinating!

The Zen Theory of Change is simply noticing! “I free myself not by trying to be free, but simply by noticing how I am imprisoning myself, in the very moment that I am imprisoning myself.”

There are so many ways to seek change, enlightenment, passion, and joy, and many different words to talk about the process.

My life (and work) revolves around growth and transformation; it is in this process that I feel most alive! Below are some suggestions that may inspire you as you continue your transformation journey:

Ask yourself the following questions

What do I want for my health and well-being?

How do I want to look and feel?

If I don’t take care of myself, how will my health be in three, five, or ten years?

After you’ve taken some time to create the vision for your future and are faced with a decision about a self-care issue, you need simply to ask yourself “Does this move me toward or away from my vision?”

Here are six areas to start with:

Self-Study

Knowing yourself helps you become aware of your long-term needs and allows you to access and make adjustments moment-to-moment.

Personally, I am so focused on living in the now. There’s enough of what I need in the moment to deal with whatever is in front of me. It’s kind of like my purse (I need a new one!). I keep the contents low, just what I’ll be needing to get me through the day. I don’t want it to become a burden weighing me down. But I have to stay on it;  it attracts all sorts of things throughout the day that have to be purged.

Integrity and Personal Boundaries

Integrity is simply “walking your talk” and establishing personal boundaries helps you maintain your integrity. Over time, if you sacrifice your values at the expense of your self-care and energy reserves, the scenario will end in depletion or burnout.

One of my favorite quotes is from Dag Hammarskjöld: “Never for the sake of peace and quiet deny your own experience or convictions.” I realize I can’t change anyone, but I can change how I act or react to them. There is so much peace and power in being responsible for myself and not giving anyone the power to control my thoughts or reactions.

Vital Practices

Three universal self-care components are integral parts of daily life: breathing, drinking water, and getting optimal nutrition. 

Seems like I trip up on all three every day, but I am most immediately in need of the constant reminder to breathe, consciously, fully, and with personal awareness. I love a little book called Taming Your Gremlin. Author Rick Carlson contends that every “choice” we make begins with a breath. An excerpt follows:

Step #1 Simply Notice: With each breath in and out we are experiencing a moment in time. It is in this moment that we need to be fully aware and present, because each moment is truly a present, a gift, it is what I like to call “God’s Eternal Now.”

Supportive Environment

“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” Maya Angelou

From your home and work space’s physical environment to your friend groups, colleagues, and even family relationships, you have choices and indeed the responsibility to make each situation work for you. If you choose to stay in a challenging environment, you can create additional supportive relationships that can help you grow and learn in the very place you are planted.

Movement, Exercise and Rest

These three components offer you a way to energize and refuel your body. Movement and exercise improve mood, energy, and sleep. Our bodies run on a cycle of ultradian rhythms: multiple periods of  90-120 minutes throughout the day that our bodies move from higher and lower levels of alertness and energy. When our energy is waning, we feel  signs of  drowsiness, hunger or loss of focus. If we don’t take a rest or pause at this time, little by little the body’s energy is depleted. The key is noticing when you need a rest, and doing what you need to do to feel rejuvenated. 

Self-Care Team

Create a team of professionals to help. These professionals include but are not limited to the following: Physiologist, Accountant, Nutritionist, Personal Trainer, Chiropractor, Acupuncturist, Professional Mentor, Primary-care Physician, and of course, an Esthetician and Massage Therapist!

See you at the spa!

Linda “brow boss” Ruberto

Mother’s Day Spa Package

images (2)We would love to treat you or someone you love to this special collection of some of our clients’ favorite spa services!

Mother’s Day Spa Special

Arrive a couple of minutes early so you can get settled and relax for a few minutes in the quiet environment of the spa, and plan on staying for about an-hour-and-a-half.

When you enter the treatment room, you will feel the warm air provided by state-of-the-art radiant heat in the treatment rooms. You’ll smell calming essential oils and be enveloped by the soft candlelight and music.

As you climb under crisp, clean, warmed sheets your body’s curves will be cradled by special contoured bodyCushions.

We’ll coax your body into a state of bliss and calm with our signature back treatment which combines massage with a deep cleansing skin treatment. 

Next, detoxifying and de-stressing drops of essential oils will be applied along your spine (Raindrop Therapy).

Turn over and the Star Massage begins with Tu’el’s Cleansing Oils and Herbalizers chosen for your skin type. Puffiness, sinus pressure, jaw tension and all signs of stress dissipate from your face, neck, and shoulders – mmm, who knew it could feel this good?

Now the facial begins with warmed towels, gentle steam, and special masks and scrubs designed to alleviate your skin’s concerns.

And don’t forget those hard working hands and feet. They will be meticulously worked out, every finger and every toe rubbed until they are eased and your feet will be wrapped in warm towels.

Later, plan on relaxing and drinking plenty of water with slices of organic lemons to complete a perfect experience.

Who knew Star Brows was about more than eyebrow couture? Now’s your chance to see! Limited spaces are available for this special offer, so call now – 805-722-8222  – and mention the Mother’s Day Spa Special.

It’s not on the menu and is specially priced at $110 (save $75!). Offer expires on May 31, 2013

See you at the spa!

 

 

OSEA Bath Products: January Product Feature 2013

bathA good soak in a warm bath is a wonderful wintertime ritual 

It really is hard to beat the relaxing, cathartic effects of lounging in a warm tub of water, where the mind can so easily find peace and calm. These simple moments of indulgence are a great way to end the day, as well.

The winter months can be harsh on our skin, regardless of our moisturizing regimens. But when done correctly, a nice bath can actually hydrate and re-mineralize your skin.

Ideally, your tub water is not too warm, as that can dehydrate your skin. Around 100 degrees Fahrenheit is where you want it. Turn off the phone, turn on some soft music, and close the door to the day’s problems.

Here are some of my favorite ways to make bathing (or showering) a spa experience

  •   Undaria Algae Oil – We use this for the body massage during Facials at Star Brows! This lightweight marine-based body oil is rich in organic botanical oils, sea minerals, and antioxidants. This is the ultimate skin repair, loaded with luscious seed oils–acai, babassu, passion fruit, sesame–and Undaria Algae, to deliver powerful antioxidant vitamins and essential fatty acids to dry, sun-damaged skin. Check this out for use with tattoos.

 

  •  Gigartina Beauty Bath – “I wanted to bring the ocean into the home,” says OSEA Skincare owner Jennifer Palmer. “In Patagonia, I took a fresh seaweed bath and really wanted to recreate that experience. Most seaweed baths are either straight powders that are difficult to dissolve and smell like low tide, or they are water-based, diluted and laden with preservatives, or they are nothing more than Epsom salts with fragrance. The Gigartina Beauty Bath performs as a true bath therapy product that is tied to the water and the sea – the core concept of spa.”

 

  • Green Marine Detox Bath – This is a potent bath powder that helps heal eczema and psoriasis and is rich in minerals, enzymes, and vitamins that the skin is able to absorb, including phosphorous, zinc, potassium, and calcium. USDA Certified Organic Undaria Seaweed from the pure waters of Patagonia. This purifying, powerful, antioxidant-rich seaweed helps with hormonal imbalance and water retention.

 

  • Salts of the Earth Scrub – Spiked with certified organic botanical oils from around the globe. Salts of the Earth come from the Dead Sea, the Bolivian coast, the Utah desert and the Himalayas. This exotic blend of the purest salt on Earth contains 84 trace minerals and gets its unique pink color from the rich ores they contain. The ingredients in these salts plump up the skin, enticing it to soak up nutrients and look more youthful.

 

  • Undaria Body Polish – Natural exfoliants feel gentle on the skin while delivering a stimulating scrub action. Small and powerful pumice grains help remove dead cells along with a bio-scrub blend of acai and guaraná. Guaraná is recognized for it’s tonifying and astringent properties, as well as reducing cellulite. Acai delivers a powerful synergy of healthy-aging properties to skin, plus hemp and passionfruit seed oils feed the skin Omega 3-6-9 essential fatty acids.

If you’re new to Star Brows, you may not know about The Product Feature or Rewards yet. To put it simply, 10% of all your product purchases, all the time, go toward free Service Enhancements, like Raindrop Therapy, Lash Tint, Chemical Peels, or Star Massage.

When a product is the Monthly Feature, like the OSEA Bath Products this month, you’ll get 20% back in Rewards.

See you at the spa!

 

Choose Happy

Is anybody ALWAYS happy? No, it’s not natural. What’s natural is an emotional terrain of plateaus, hills, and valleys. So why, when we are in a valley, do we get so bent out of shape? Why not settle in for the ride, knowing there is a mountaintop on the other side of the trial?

I think it’s all in our head: the stories we tell ourselves, what we meditate on, the choices we make based on the stories we tell ourselves. One thing I am sure of, though, is that however we find ourselves, we are there because that place serves us in some way. And if you hang in there, lessons abound.

1. The Stories We Tell Ourselves

We all have a huge history behind us – zillions of experiences and interactions that are woven into the cloth called Us. When something happens or someone says something, it automatically gets filtered through all our other experiences.

What if we consciously chose to decide for ourselves, each time we experience something unsettling, to view it from a neutral place of reference, and not link it to the big picture, at least not right away.  

Here’s an example from my own life:  I had a regular, longstanding, darling client yesterday who is getting married. Great, I’m thinking, I’m doing weddings now. I can do her bridal makeup! Wrong. She’s looking online for makeup artists in the area, and they’re not me.

Here’s the back-story: I’m expanding  my business into this new arena, and moving out of what’s comfortable and familiar.  I’m feeling all kinds of angst and insecurity about it all. Everything is new. There are different skill-sets required, new tools and supplies needed, and a battery of marketing efforts to undertake.

So I tell myself this story: I’m working like crazy to establish myself as the go-to makeup professional in the area and my own client, who I do makeup on every month, isn’t even considering me? Must mean something is wrong with me or my work.

What if I choose to tell myself this story instead: For whatever reason this particular client has chosen a different direction. Period. Next.

2. What We Meditate On

If I look at the thoughts I’ve been thinking everyday around the whole wedding-thing/business-expansion, I see negativity, insecurity, and fear at every turn. Odd, huh? Seems like I’m generally pretty self-assured, confident, and optimistic. But this business growth-spurt is happening at a time when there is lots of upheaval in my personal life (and my family’s life) in general.

What would it look like if I decided to fix my mind, my thoughts, on good things, uplifting things. What if I choose gratitude for what is working? How would it feel to remind myself, when these feelings come up, of all my experience  qualifications, and talent? Why not put all that “extra energy” into the workings of this  project so I can produce the positive results I envision?

Walt Disney said, “If you can dream it, you can do it. ”

3. The Choices We Make

Those of you who read me regularly know I love the book Taming Your Gremlins. In fact I recently wrote a post called Your Financial Success-O-Meter just as I was preparing to launch into this growth phase on April 16th, 2012. I was much more optimistic then! What I talked about in the beginning of this expansion was Clarity, Focus, Ease, and Grace. What have I chosen? None of that. :/

Instead of letting automatic pilot take over, why not decide and choose how to think and act? I know this will inevitably change how I feel.

4. The Pay-Offs

This is the tough part of this post to “flesh out.”  It’s based on my belief that we attract to us, or manifest in our lives, that which we think about and invite by the choices we make. Sounds new-agey, I know, but it’s actually a  spiritual principle: “For whatever a man sows, that he will also reap” and  “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.”

Sometimes we have to Choose Happy, because our internal drivers, set on auto-pilot, have another agenda. And it isn’t always what will produce the best, or desired, results.

See you at the spa!

 

Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover

The Susan Magdalane Boyle story is so inspiring, and her rendition of “I Dreamed A Dream” is mesmerizing. Here is an excerpt from her web page: “For one brief moment, vanity itself collapsed. As that ancient maxim, ‘never judge a book by its cover,’ clanked around the globe with speedy viral intensity, it was as if the world was about to offer its first unspoken apology for prizing beauty above all else.”

Lately this whole idea about the judgments we make has been clanking around in my head. Everywhere I turn, I’m seeing and learning about what judging others – and ourselves for that matter – does to us.

Growing up, I was sometimes called “stuck-up.” I wasn’t sure if the judgments people made were based on the fact that my family was wealthy or that I was a dancer and my carriage reflected that image, if it was a protective facade I had fashioned to cover the pain I felt, or if I was just, well, unacceptable in general.

As the years went by, I thought I’d shed that image. After all, I’ve lived a modest lifestyle, have retired from dance, and have really lived a relationship-based life of connection and increasing understanding of others and myself.

But the other day someone told me that I had a very off-putting look about me, or way of carrying myself. (It’s a blur what she actually said, and I’m not going to call her for a direct quote.) 🙂 It brought me back emotionally to the hurt of those days of being labeled as something that didn’t resonate with what I felt on the inside.

I know I’m not alone. No doubt you’ve experienced the judgment of others, have been characterized unfairly, misunderstood, and likely still are by some. I’m also sure that you’ve stood as judge over someone else, just as I have. And to be fair, we do need to make certain judgments in order to navigate life successfully.

But I’ve come to understand that I must be merciful toward others in order to receive mercy. I like to remember to be in the questioning-space when I’m tempted to judge, but I am often not quiet enough, or in-the-moment enough, to navigate to that place.

I’ve been studying a method called “Buying Facilitation®,” pioneered by Sharon Drew Morgan. In fact, I recently wrote an article for Skin Deep Magazine and did an interview with her that I planned to include in my piece. But she said things to me during the interview like, “Is this question about the article, or are you just trying to get free business advice? I do charge for consulting you know.” I was so put off by her attitude and telephone demeanor that I decided not to include the interview in the article.

But I kept receiving her blog posts by email every couple of days, and was still gleaning some good info. Then the other day I got a post from her that included this excerpt:

“I suspect I’ve done a bad job helping mainstream sales understand how Buying Facilitation® offers sellers tools to help buyers navigate through their behind-the-scenes decisions and why it’s a necessary part of the sales process. I’m guessing that it might have taken a non-Asperger’s person less time (with more success) to get the thinking into the field. Maybe someone less pushy, or less obnoxious, less direct, or less annoying – all traits of my Asperger’s that I’ve spent decades learning to contain (sometimes successfully, when I’m aware), but are impossible to eliminate.”

So, there you have it. I’ve been judged and I’ve judged. Her back-story is that she has a disease that affects her social interactions. (Who’d have guessed?)

A while back, I listened to a CD by Dr. Wayne Dyer with co-host Byron Katie. She is a hoot! And the truth she tells has changed my thinking in so many ways:

“Our job is unconditional love. The job of everyone else in our life is to push our buttons.”

Mother Teresa says: “If you judge people, you have no time to love them. ”

Can you believe the sermon title at church this week was “Judging Others,” and one of the key scriptures used was from Romans, which says this: “Every time you criticize someone, you condemn yourself.”

Sometimes it’s important to remember that inner loveliness and well-being are just as important as physical beauty and wellness.

Thanks for reading. See you at the spa!

 

 

 

Cleansing Oil and Herbalizer – May Product Feature 2012


Tu’el Cleansing Oil and Herbalizer by Eva’s Esthetics  is my favorite way to cleanse the skin. It is like having an at-home  spa experience every night. This innovative two-step cleansing system features natural elements like fresh smelling mandarin oil, calming chamomile extract, healing extracts of arnica, and purifying grapefruit extract. You can experience it all in the Mother’s Day Special Offer this month!

Nothing cleans the skin like hydrophilic oil. Oil cleansers balance your skin and prepare it for exfoliation, hydration, absorption of nutrients, and protection.

As skin cells die, they lose moisture, flatten, and migrate to the skin’s surface. The face excretes a very sticky substance known as sebum that bonds to dead skin cells. In order for these cells to be released, this oily sebum must be dissolved.

When hydrophilic oil is massaged into the skin, it bonds with the sebum and releases the dead cells. This release of the dead layer of skin achieves exceptional pore cleansing and decongestion and a more refined skin appearance. Adding the correct Herbalizer, a sugar-based extract with essential oils, creates a custom cleansing system. This unique method balances the skin and eliminates the need for astringents or toners.

There are four custom formulations of Cleansers and five Herbalizers based on this cleansing system to ensure that, regardless of your skin type – dry, combination, oily, impure, or reactive – your skin will feel the profound difference of cleansing with Tu’eL.

If you’re new to Star Brows, you may not know about The Product Feature or Rewards yet. To put it simply, 10% of all your product purchases, all the time, go toward free Service Enhancements, like Raindrop Therapy, Lash Tint, Chemical Peels, or Star Massage.

When a product is the Monthly Feature, however, you’ll get 20% back in Rewards! The Cleansing Oil ($28) and Herbalizer ($23) duo are  $51 with $10 in Rewards.

See you at the spa!

Your Financial Success-O-Meter

Lately I’ve been itching to expand my business. (What’s new?) I thrive on new projects, on change. Not that I want to do away with the old, but rather to enhance, add to. After all, isn’t that the purpose of life here on earth – to grow? What do we plant that we don’t expect to grow?

I can hardly believe Star Brows has been in its new location for one year!? I’ve gotten busy and I’m loving it, but one thing good ole dad taught me is that what remains flat will head downhill eventually. Like water, which finds the lowest ground naturally. “Oh, you are so happy now. Your business is thriving. Why not bask in that – let well enough alone?” they say.  That kind of thinking reminds me of a person saying “I’m in such great shape, why don’t I just take a break for a year and enjoy it?”

Let’s talk about growing in the area of financial success.  According to Maria Nemeth, Ph.D. author of The Energy of Money, financial success is doing what you said you would do with money consistently with:

ClarityBe clear about what is important to you and has meaning for you. This takes thinking, looking at your values and what you want your legacy to be, and real honesty. No one else can determine what success is for you. If you are going to succeed, you need a road map. Did you ever try going to MapQuest and getting directions somewhere without a destination address?

FocusYour energy and attention need to be focused where they will do the most good. I’ve never been diagnosed with ADD, but some of my behaviors fit that disorder. My mind is a big-whirling-dervish of thoughts, ideas, and feelings. That’s why I’m writing this post – to focus. Focus and how to keep it is a whole different subject. Suffice it to say for now, you don’t need to dance with every random thought that floats by. If you do, you will never get anywhere.

EaseDo things the easy way, taking small steps instead of running headlong, getting exhausted, and then being too tired to enjoy your accomplishments at the end of the day. The opposite of ease is struggle, not working harder. This is a tough one! Peace, joy, and gratitude all require a state of ease, and yet ease is as slippery as an eel.  The conundrum is how to be “in action” and still at ease.

GraceThis is linked to your capacity to experience gratitude, to be grateful for what is in front of you right now. That’s it – end of subject. It all boils down to this very basic, fundamental premise: Be grateful – in the moment – for what is now. This state is like a launching pad into change and growth.

I was telling a friend the other day that my Success-O-Meter was at about a 4. “What?” she said, “You’re so hard on yourself. You work harder on your business than most people I know.” It got me to thinking about what success means to me and how I can redefine it so I feel ease instead of anxiety about it. So I ask myself – and now you – these questions:

1. Know yourself. What are you passionate about? What are your talents and gifts? What brings you joy and gives you energy?

2. Treat work like your life – not as separate from it. Are you tapping into your natural gifts to make a living? If not, it makes me wonder how happy eight hours (more or less) of your day are.

3. Change is the unalterable norm. If you are doing what you are passionate about, ask yourself – are you treating it like a living, breathing entity that changes and grows as you do? You may  be doing exactly what you want to do, but you’re not making enough money or it’s getting stale and you are bored with it (or don’t feel the energy needed to keep at it).

4. Don’t listen to the negative “voices” within. In the book, The Energy of Money, the author refers to the Monkey Mind, like the Gremlins in Taming Your Gremlin, or the Stoicheion in Greg Boyd’s video sermon. This force, entity, mindset, can prove destructive.  That critical, negative, nagging voice inside you that hates growth, enlightenment, change or happiness is always buzzing. We can’t stop it, but we can choose to ignore it, or even have a conversation with it that may look like this: “I know you see my efforts as below average and not good enough, and in some ways I think you’re right. But overall I choose to look at my efforts in this endeavor as successful and I’m patting myself on the back right now for all the hard work I’ve invested!”

5. Don’t be afraid to cross the border.  If reality as we know it were divided into two parts, the top part could be called the physical reality (objects, stuff) and the bottom, the metaphysical reality (intangibles like hopes and dreams).  Between these two realms is a border, and guess who guards it? The entity in #4. Turning your ideas, hopes, and dreams into reality requires that you cross this border, negate or defer the voices of opposition, and set to work step by step toward realizing your dream.

See you at the spa!