Benefits of Aromatherapy

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Benefits of Aromatherapy

Posted on: August 9th, 2021

Aromatherapy is a holistic type of treatment that is also called essential oil therapy, and it utilizes natural plant extracts to promote the health of the body and mind.  Essential oils are made by pressing or steaming various parts of the plant, which ultimately results in the fragrance.  

Essential oils are used in a variety of ways and for aromatherapy, they are used either by being added to a diffuser or they are placed on the skin during a massage.  Essential oils can also be incorporated into hot/cold compresses, inhalers, bathing salts, facial steamers or clay masks.  It is important to note that the oils are not meant to be consumed.  

There are almost 100 different types of essential oils, but there are definitely oils that are more popular than others, mostly due to their benefits.  Many people see the benefits of aromatherapy since it can help with numerous different symptoms, including alleviating headaches, reducing your stress and anxiety, helping with insomnia, managing pain, increasing your immunity, improving digestion and easing muscle pain.  Your massage therapist can go over the different types of essential oils with you prior to your massage and can help you choose which will work best for your specific needs.  

The most popular types of oils are:

  • Peppermint:  Peppermint is known to help alleviate headaches and tension, and can also be used as a digestive aid
  • Eucalyptus:  Eucalyptus can be used to help with a cough and can help to clear mucus out of your chest, it can aid with certain respiratory conditions, including asthma and sinusitis, and can help control your blood sugar level
  • Lavender:  Lavender is often found to be very calming and can help reduce symptoms of insomnia and stress
  • Lemongrass:  Lemongrass is known to reduce stress, depression and anxiety.  It also has antioxidant qualities and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Sandalwood:  Sandalwood can reduce anxiety, stress and can improve your sleep.  It also can help to increase your focus
  • Tea Tree:  Tea tree oil can help with certain skin conditions, including acne.  It can also help with skin inflammation
  • Ylang-Ylang:  Ylang-Ylang can help to alleviate headaches and can also help with nausea

The quality and purity of the oil are very important and it is essential to work with a massage therapist who has vast knowledge and experience utilizing essential oils.  The effects of the oils can also vary from person to person, and should not be used in place of other treatments.  If you are experiencing a medical or mental health concern, it is advisable to discuss treatment with your doctor and ask if they believe you would experience the benefits of aromatherapy.  

Oily Skin Tips

Posted on: July 20th, 2021

It is hard to feel your very best when you are suffering from oily skin. For many people who suffer from oily skin, genetics is often at play and although we can’t change our genetics, there are things that can be done to combat oily skin. Other causes of oily skin include hormonal changes, weather, stress, and beauty products. If you are constantly touching your face, that can also make the problem worse. When you have too much oil in your skin, it can lead to you having acne or other facial blemishes. Fortunately, there are some great tips for oily skin sufferers!

One of the first things that you can do for your oily skin is to take note of how you are cleaning your face. The best way to wash your face is to use a gentle foaming cleanser when you wake up and before you go to bed. If you are using a harsh soap, it can lead to an increase in your skin’s oil production. This can also happen if you use a washcloth. It is best to use clean hands to wash your face.

If you are already using a gentle cleanser and are not noticing a difference, you might want to try to find a product that uses an acid, such as salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or beta-hydroxy acid. These products are often marketed as being acne products, but they also work very well for those with oily skin. Another great product is blotting papers. Blotting papers are able to remove excess oil from your skin without causing any dryness.

Another way that you can combat your oily skin is to get a facial. There are certain facials that are extremely effective at eliminating excess oil from your skin. During a facial, your skin is lightly exfoliated, which removes the top layer of your skin. This helps to unclog your pores and allow for the oil in your skin to flow better and avoid breakouts and blemishes.

Finally, there are makeup tricks that you can use to alleviate some of the oiliness. First, you can use a moisturizing matifying lotion that will absorb the oil in your skin and it keeps the oil from mixing with your foundation.

If you are using eye shadow, you can apply a dry eye primer first. If you put moisturizer on throughout the day, using a lightweight moisturizer is your best bet. It is also important to drink enough water throughout the day. In doing so, it prevents your skin from producing excess oil.

If you are still unhappy with your oily skin, you can talk to your esthetician about other remedies that might work for you.

Tips for Those with Oily Skin

Posted on: June 22nd, 2021

Many people wonder what causes someone to have oily skin. For most people, it really comes down to genetics and if this is the cause, you cannot really change that. Other causes include stress, hormonal fluctuations, weather and the skincare products/makeup you are using. Although having oil in your skin is an important part of keeping your skin healthy, when you have too much, it can lead to skin problems. But not to worry; if you suffer from oily skin, there are things that you can do!

The first step to combating oily skin is to use a very gentle foaming cleanser. When you consistently use a gentle cleanser in the morning and before bed, it works wonders to keep your oily skin in check. If you utilize products that contain harsh ingredients, it can actually cause your skin’s oil production to go into overdrive. Using a rough washcloth can do this as well. It is best to use either just your hands to cleanse your face, or a very gentle and soft washcloth.

If you have tried a gentle foaming cleanser consistently and find that you are still having problems with oily skin, the next step would be to find a skincare product that has one of the following acids: salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or beta-hydroxy acid. These products are often labeled as acne products, but they also work really well for those with oily skin.

They also sell medicated cleaning pads that have salicylic acid or glycolic acid, which work very well to get oily skin under control. Another great product to try is cosmetic blotting papers. This product works by removing oil from your skin, without causing any dryness.

Getting routine facials is another great way to keep your oily skin under control. Although anyone can benefit from having routine facials, it is especially important for those suffering from oily skin. You can discuss with your skincare specialist exactly which type of facial will work best for your specific skin type.

There are also some great makeup tips that can help to keep your skin looking fresh and can keep the oil in it under control. Before you put on foundation, you can use a lightweight moisturizing matifying lotion that will absorb extra oil and keep it from mixing with your makeup. Throughout the day, in order to maintain that fresh look to your skin, you can use blotting papers or blotting powder to get rid of the shine caused by oil.

If you are wearing eye shadow, you will have better success if you first apply a dry eye primer or powder to your eyelids. This will help to keep the eyeshadow from clumping together. Staying hydrated is another great way to keep your skin under control. When you are hydrated, your skin does not make as much oil. Plus, staying hydrated has so many other health benefits.

If you are still unhappy with your skin, your best bet is to consult with a skincare professional. They will listen to your concerns and help you develop a skincare routine that will work best for your specific skin concerns and goals.

Understanding Which At-Home Beauty Trends are Right for You

Posted on: June 15th, 2021

So many people rely on the internet for information and especially in this day and age, doing things virtually has become increasingly popular. While there are many tips and tricks that you can obtain from the internet, you need to be careful when you are looking for at-home beauty treatments to use. Although there are many products out there that are completely safe and okay for at-home use, there are also products that can actually cause harm to your skin.

Some people find a beauty brand that they really like and try to utilize products just from that brand, but others like to pick and choose products from different companies. You need to be careful when you are combining different skincare products, because there are some skin types that are more sensitive than others, and certain combinations of beauty products can cause you to suffer from skin irritations. In rare cases, some people can actually suffer from a chemical reaction caused by the beauty products they are using. It is so important to consult with a skincare professional to find out which beauty products will work best for you and prevent you from purchasing something that will cause your skin harm.

At-home face masks are a popular beauty product, but there are some types of sheet face masks that the FDA has not regulated. If you purchase a mask that is not regulated, that may be because the mask contains harmful ingredients that can cause damage to your skin. It is important to pay attention to the beauty products you are purchasing and if you are unsure as to which are safe, consult with your skincare professional.

Charcoal is a very popular ingredient in the skincare industry, but charcoal peels can actually strip your skin of its normal cell growth and cause your face to become extra dry. When this happens, your face can actually become oilier since your skin is working harder to make up for the dryness that has occurred. There are many types of chemical peels that are safe to use, but this should only be done under the direction of a skincare professional.
Skincare professionals should really be consulted before starting anything new with your skincare routine and once you have consulted with one, you can have more confidence that you are not doing anything to cause harm to your skin.

How to Control Eczema in Winter

Posted on: February 9th, 2021

Eczema is a very common skin problem and according to the National Eczema Association, there are over 31 million Americans who suffer from it.  There are other skin conditions that are similar to eczema, so if you are unsure of your condition, it is best to consult with your doctor or dermatologist.  

Eczema can look a little different for each person, but the most common symptoms are skin that is:

  • Discolored
  • Incredibly dry
  • Inflamed
  • Swollen
  • Leathery
  • Flaky

In addition to your skin feeling and looking a certain way, many sufferers of this condition experience a certain degree of itching.  When your skin does start to itch, it is important that you do your best not to scratch the area directly, otherwise the condition will actually get worse.  Instead, you need to find a remedy, such as a cream or medication.  

Eczema tends to be worse during the winter, since the severely cold weather tends to dry out skin even more.  There are certain things that you can do though, in order to control your eczema during the winter months.  These include:

  • Avoiding soaps with harsh chemicals-you want to find products that are free of chemicals and fragrances
  • Using a humidifier to add moisture to the air-you can have a whole house humidifier, or you can use smaller humidifiers for your bedroom
  • Use creams, lotions or ointments-you may need to have a medicated ointment, depending on the severity
  • Avoid excessively hot and long showers and baths-hot water dries your skin more, so try to keep the temperature “warm” vs “hot”

There are many different things that can cause a flare-up, including:

  • Shampoos with cocamidopropyl betaine
  • Polyester and wool
  • Certain fragrances
  • Household cleaners with formaldehyde
  • Excessive stress
  • Certain foods, including peanuts, eggs, soy and wheat

Although there is not a cure for eczema, there are things that you can do to reduce your outbreaks. 

What is a Chemical Peel?

Posted on: January 5th, 2021

Chemical peels have been around for a very long time. In fact, the very first chemical peel came about in the 19th century by a dermatologist in Australia, named Ferdinand Ritter von Hebra. There are many reasons why people love this treatment, including how versatile it is. Chemical peels work to improve the appearance of your skin and they can be used on the face, neck or hands.

The reasons that people choose to get a chemical peel can vary, but some reasons are to reduce fine lines on the face, help certain kinds of acne, treat sun damaged skin, reduce dark patches or age spots, improve the appearance of scars, and treat wrinkles.

There are three classifications of chemical peels, and they are light, medium and deep. The type of chemical peel you get will depend on your specific skin type and your skin concerns or goals.

After deciding which type of chemical peel is best for you, your skin will be thoroughly cleansed and the chemical solution is then applied to your face. The treatment generally takes around 45 minutes and the amount of peeling you will experience after depends on which classification your chemical peel was. You will also be given some direction as to how often you should come back for another chemical peel.

After receiving the chemical peel, your skin will be a little more sensitive to the sun, temporarily, so you want to make sure to wear sun protection if you are going outside. You should do your best to avoid the sun for a little while though, but if you do go outside, make sure to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen and wear a hat and sunglasses to shield your face as much as possible.

It is important to know that your skin will go through a recovery process following the treatment. If you have a light peel, the recovery time can be anywhere from 1-7 days, but a medium to deep peel can take a few weeks for your skin to fully recover.

Many people suffer from various skin concerns and the chances that a chemical peel will help is very likely, since it is such a versatile treatment and can treat so many different skin concerns. This is also a very popular treatment since it offers people a way to improve the appearance of their skin without needing to have surgery.

After a chemical peel, people can expect to have better texture in their skin and their overall skin tone will be improved. You may also experience younger and smoother looking skin. This treatment often gives people a natural boost in confidence since the treatment results are so positive.

Winter Makeup Trends

Posted on: December 9th, 2020

We all know that this year has been a year like no other. Most people are at home more often and many are not wearing a lot of makeup. When people are home, they tend to wear more comfortable clothing, spend less time on their hair and when they do venture out, they may not be thinking about wearing makeup since half of their face will need to be covered with a face mask.

However, the holiday season is upon us and this is a great time to break out of your habits and spend a little more time on yourself. You can rediscover your joy of makeup this winter by using these makeup tips from celebrity makeup artists.

Even though life looks different right now and our full face might not always be visible, our eyes are always a feature that you can apply makeup to. A cat eye is a big trend right now since it brings the drama. You can go for a more subtle cat eye or you can be more dramatic. You can also enhance the look by adding shimmer or glitter and you can also play around with color.

Going along with your eyes, your eyebrows are another area that you can get creative with. Fluffy, natural-looking eyebrows are trending right now. You can get this look by using shaping wax or gel and brushing your eyebrows in an upward motion. If you have some areas that look a little bare, you can use a brow pen to fill it in.

Incorporating more color into your eyes is another big trend right now and you can add drama to either your eyes or your lips, or both! You can experiment and play around with color and decide if you prefer a more monochromatic look, or you can choose either your eyes or your lips to take on bolder color.

Lived-in liner is another popular trend right now and is currently a makeup style being used by Lady Gaga. The lived-in liner look is a smudged, smokey look that you can get by using a soft eyeliner pencil. You can use a gel pencil or a gel crayon eyeliner and once you line your eyes with it, you can take a smudging brush to get the final shape you are looking for.

Although the holidays may look different this year, that does not mean that you have to give up the glam. There are creative ways you can celebrate with your loved ones and still express your individuality with your makeup.

Managing Stress is not a Secret

Posted on: September 19th, 2018

Individuals differ dramatically in their response to a problem or a stressor. Some people are born with a temperament that predisposes them to higher or lower levels of tolerance to stress. Your cognitive reaction to a situation plays a role in determining how stressful a situation is to you. This reaction is characterized by your appraisal of the nature, importance and implications of the event, and by your ability to effectively manage or cope with the event.

Your emotional responses to a situation are determined by your appraisal of both the situation and your coping abilities, as well as your temperament. For example, if you tell yourself, “I can handle this,” you will have a completely different emotional response than if you say, “This is terrible. I’m going crazy.”

Experts have developed several explanations for why certain people respond more positively or negatively to stressors:

1. Our genetic makeup, which influences health and behavior. To some degree, it is human nature to feel stressed when we aren’t sure what to do or when faced with making a difficult or frustrating decision. And, some individuals may have a heightened level of arousal in the central nervous system, causing them to react more excitedly to events and adapt more slowly.

2. Experiencing something unusual or surprising causes stress. Researchers studying chimpanzees found that familiar and unfamiliar objects generally did not cause stress. But familiar objects shown in unfamiliar ways scared them. This reaction appeared to be innate; it was not based on a previous experience. In addition, half of all parents whose children are afraid of water report their children always had been fearful of the water; they had not had an initial traumatic experience that precipitated their anxiety.

3. Sometimes stress can lead to “positive reinforcement.” When we are feeling anxious, we may get attention or sympathy from our friends or family, for example. Attention or avoidance can reward us for our negative reactions.

4. Other psychological theories state that stress is born from internal conflicts, such as the struggle between our true or actual self and our ideal self, between unconscious views or needs or between our image of reality and actuality. For example, for the average student who wants to go on to a high-level college, taking entrance exams may be more stressful because he is unaware that he is putting pressure on himself to go beyond his own capabilities.

5. Past experience may color our view and how we interpret events, in turn determining our reactions and feelings. Anxiety, for example, may be a learned response to pain or mental discomfort. If you have one bad experience on a bumpy airline trip and then begin to expect that same level of discomfort on every trip, that expectation can color the future of your travels with a misinterpretation that all air travel is bad, even though it only happened once.

6. More recently, some psychologists have said we actually may “think or imagine ourselves into almost any emotional state.” We are not conditioned by our experiences in life to react a certain way; rather our inner thoughts determine our feelings and generate a sense of stress or calm. Those who catastrophize events or ask “what if” with an expectation of negative outcomes, without the data to determine whether their worries are true, add stress to their lives in situations that may or may not deserve a high level of emotional, cognitive or physiological responses. (


Dealing with life as well as school can be a delicate balancing act. When times get stressful, take a moment to calm down, breath and refocus. We know you can make it..

Want To Be A Massage Therapist?

Posted on: April 6th, 2018

Receiving a high quality massage therapy education is not only beneficial for a brand new massage therapist, but also the clientele. With two massage clinics and eleven private treatment stations, USTA is Chicagoland’s leading choice for massage therapy training.

Our 650 hour State licensed massage therapy school curriculum will take students through human body systems with a balanced focus on muscular structure and function, anatomy, Massage Therapy School Chicago multiple massage modalities as well as career planning, client retention and preparation to sit and pass the MBLEx Exam. At USTA, our 9 month day or 11 month evening massage therapy programs offer a balanced study of anatomy, physiology, pathology, kinesiology, Eastern energies, Western techniques and professional development. Curriculum includes trigger point therapy, neuromuscular techniques, polarity therapy, swedish massage techniques, and pregnancy massage.

What is included in our massage therapy program.

  • Tuition includes the initial massage therapy licensing fee for Illinois
  • Free massage table
  • Self marketing and business education
  • Aromatherapy education
  • Internships available
  • Financial Aid
  • Instructors with knowledge of classic and contemporary techniques
  • Day and evening classes available
  • Fitness, Yoga and Meditation rooms

Classes included in our massage therapy curriculum


  • Anatomy
  • Contraindications
  • CPR Certification
  • Client Documentation
  • Massage Ethics
  • Kinesiology
  • Medical Terminology
  • Pathology
  • Physiology
  • Nutrition & Juicing
  • And more!


  • Aryurvedia
  • Body Mechanics
  • Chair Massage
  • Clinical Massage
  • Cupping
  • Deep Tissue
  • Hot Stone
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Lymph Drainage
  • Elderly Massage
  • Disability Massage
  • Pregnancy & Prenatal
  • Reflexology
  • Spa Body Treatments
  • Swedish Massage
  • Sports Massage


  • Aromatherapy
  • Craniosacral Therapy
  • Meditation 4. Polarity Therapy
  • Reiki
  • Yoga

Choose between our 9 month day schedule or our 11 month evening schedule. Are you ready to start a career in massage therapy? Join the growing network of professional therapists and technicians who all started their education at Universal Spa Training Academy. Contact us by calling 630-968-6800 or apply online on our website here. We look forward to working with you!

4 Morning Fitness Tips You Don’t Want To Miss

Posted on: April 1st, 2018

Strive to live have an overall healthier, more productive day? Make sure your mornings get off to a great start! How you spend the first few hours after waking up can determine how you spend the rest of the day. There are many benefits to starting your day with exercise that other times of day just can’t provide. Below are 4 morning fitness tips you don’t want to miss.

4 Morning Fitness Tips

  1. Drink 8 oz of water upon waking up. As soon as we wake up our bodies can be dehydrated overnight. Replenish what was lost and kickstart your digestive system. Spice it up by adding a little lemon to your water.
  2. Eat a healthy breakfast. What you put in your body to start the day can make all the difference in the choices throughout the day.
  3. Stretch. Keep your muscles flexible to prevent injury.
  4. Do at least 20 minutes of activity. Whether you are comfortable with a work out from home, outside for a run or to the gym, get active first thing in the morning!

Benefits Of Exercising In The Morning

  1. Great source of energy. If you feel like a zombie in the morning, exercise can help to create the energy used to tackle the rest of your day.
  2. Helps to kickstart your metabolism. Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumptions (EPOC) is used in the fitness industry.  It means that your body burns more calories after your workout, even when you’re sitting at a desk or driving in your car.
  3. Improved physical and mental clarity. Exercise and fitness are known to help with not only the physical aspect but also the mental.
  4. Promotes better sleep. No doubt your body will be in need of rest at the end of the day. Say goodbye to sleepless nights or having a hard time falling asleep.

At USTA, we promote not only a healthy body but a healthy mind as well. Our massage therapy and aesthetic programs incorporate just that!