Beauty Myths Busted

Today we are busting some of the most widely spread beauty myths.

Beauty Myths

Beauty Myths

Myth 1: Your skin will age just like your mom’s…

Fact: Even though the genetics form both your parents play a role in how you will age, it is your lifestyle choices and health that has the biggest impact. You can be blessed with the best genetics, but if you don’t look after your skin from a young age, it will show.


Myth 2: Getting a base tan will prevent you from getting sunburned…

Fact: Any colour darker than your natural skin tone indicates that your skin has been damaged – burned. Even though a base tan will improve the burning sensation, it does not prevent the damage done to your skin. The bad news for you sun lovers is that no tan is the best tan.


Myth 3: SPF tells you how much protection you are getting from the sun…

Fact: SPF is only part of the equation. Looking at damaging UV light it gets separated into two parts: UVA and UVB. SPF only shows the protection level against UVB as it was believed that only UVB is harmful to the skin. Today we know better and it is thus wise to use a broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection, or to couple your sunscreen with an antioxidant to maximize protection.


Myth 4: I can fall asleep with my make-up on, no stress…

Fact: All cosmetic products used to provide colour and illusion leave a toxic film on the skin. Wearing make-up for long periods of time will cause irritation, inflammation, dehydration and clog up pores. Sleeping with your make-up on not only results in the irritation, inflammation etc. but also prevents your skin from healing itself as it has no time to rest and breathe.


Myth 5: Eating chocolates and oily food can cause pimples

Fact: Pimples are mainly caused by the change of hormones. The higher your hormone levels, the more likely it is you’ll get pimples. The reason why we associate the bad eating habits with pimples is because the high hormone levels causing the pimples are the same hormone levels that cause cravings.


Myth 6: You shouldn’t mix different skin-care products

Fact: As therapists we prefer that you use the same product range purely because they are designed to complement each other, giving you the best possible results. The fact of the matter is that you can mix any product ranges as long as you choose the right products to accomplish the right results. Have a look at the ingredients and you should be safe.


Scalp Massages

Even though massages are commonly found all over the world, we can say with certainty that the Scalp massage (Indian Head Massage) found its origin in India. There they have practiced and perfected scalp massaging for over 5000 years as part of a holistic medicine source. Today it is well known in all parts of the world.


Scalp Massaging

Scalp Massaging

Here is why we love it so much:

The extreme sense of relaxation is not just in your head, so to speak. When massaging the scalp, it increases the production of chemicals, including endorphins and serotonin, the feel good hormones that in turn puts you in a better mood, reduces stress and induces relaxation.


The massage also stimulates the nerves and the blood vessels beneath the skin, calming the muscle tension. Combine this with temporal massaging and some good pressure on the base of the scalp and there you have the perfect, long lasting remedy for tension headaches.

It is not just good for relieving tension, though. It is also great for the general health of your scalp and hair. The increased blood flow from the massage in turn makes sure that the skin is healthy as it gets enough oxygen flow. Anybody struggling with dandruff will also benefit from this as the massage movements, combined with grape seed/ coconut oil, removes the dandruff leaving the scalp clean and well nourished. Add all of the above together and you will most definitely get fast growing healthy hair.


Make the most of the time you have available and indulge in a scalp massage the next time you pass by the African Health Spa at Elephant Plains.


Hot Stones or Wooden Dumbbells

We have two great massages on our African Health Spa menu that both include an added factor, which brings a whole different dimension to the massage. I would like to call it an “upgrade”. Let me explain in a little more detail what each one is abbout and how it is different to the other massages.

Our Hot Stone Massage: Here we bring in hot lava stones. The reason we use lava stones and not any other ordinary stones are because lava stones keep their heat for so much longer. It is this heat from the stones that relaxes not only your muscles, but also you as the client. Once the muscles are relaxed they can easily be manipulated without much effort or pain and it is for this reason that we prescribe a Hot Stone Massage. Now, this does not mean that you can’t just book it purely for self indulgence. You don’t always need a reason for upgrading your massage and the heat is a true RELAXATION factor for those who might need it.

Hot Stone Massage

Hot Stone Massage

Our Heart of Africa Massage: This treatment is proudly South African ! We use shaped wooden dumbells that perfectly fits into all the areas where nots tend to hide. As the added heat factor mentioned in the treatment above is lacking, this is the perfect massage for those who are not affraid of some deep, firm, well deserved pressure when it comes to taking care of all your muscle aches and pains. Specially suited for men or anyone who prefers more pressure. Please note that pressure can be adjusted according to personal preference, so that each and every one can enjoy a uniquely South African massage.

Wooden Dumbbells

Wooden Dumbbells

I would recommend both massages to any clients struggling with muscle tension, or who would just like to spoil themselves with an “upgraded” massage.

Enjoy your next pampering session at the African Health Spa!



In South Africa our summer is in full swing, the days are hot and the sunrays dangerous. While on holiday at Elephant Plains Game Lodge, some of you will enjoy sunbathing by the pool while for other,s the exposure during game drive is more than enough. Here is how to prevent sunburn during your holiday.

1. Keep in mind that the South African sun is very strong and that you should at least half the time that you would normally spent in the sun at home.

2. Always wear a trusted sunlotion with a high SPF factor and re-apply often, especially once you’ve had a dip in the pool (even if it is waterproof). Take special note to cover the arms, the back of the neck and the ears. These areas are constantly exposed, without us even noticing.

3. A hat is a must. A wide rim that covers your face is ideal. If it can cover the neck and the ears, even better.

4. When spending time in the sun, keep an eye on your skin, it will tell you when it’s had enough. Any red spots are a clear indication that you’ve already burned and should move to the shade


Cover up with a large sun hat

Cover up with a large sun hat

Now, it can still happen that even if we do our best, the sun still gets the better of us and we somehow end up getting burned.

Here are some basic tips on how to treat sunburn:

1. Prevent any further exposure. Stay indoors and cover up with loose-fitting clothing when heading outside.

2. Take a pain reliever such as aspirin. It not only eases the pain, but also helps with the swelling and any minor fever that might occur.

3. Drink lots of water and rehydrate yourself. It will help take care of the headache, as well as aiding the skin in its recovery process.

4. Regularly apply a cool, soothing cream in an attempt to keep the skin moist at all times. Taking care not to use strongly perfumed products on your already irritated skin.

5. Take regular, cool showers. The cold water might burn at first, but if you can bear it, it will relieve any discomfort and improve any swelling due to the heat.


Manicure – Looking after your hands

A good Spa Manicure should cover all the “must do’s” to make your hands look their best at all times. So what exactly are those “must do’s” and why?

No 1 Preparation – Always start with a good soak. The soak causes the dead skin to soften in order to be easier to remove. Note: Make sure not to soak them for too long as the extra moisture being absorbed will in turn cause the nail polish to chip faster.

No 2 Exfoliating – Getting rid of all the dead skin that builds up on the hands not only makes them look younger, but also feel softer. Very importantly, it also allows any product applied afterwards to penetrate deeper.

No 3 Mask – Feeding the skin, hydrating it and adding loads of minerals. It is the boost that your hands need. A paraffin wax is also a good option, and no, there’s no waxing involved. Paraffin wax, being a byproduct of petroleum, is extremely hydrating and leaves your skin feeling as soft as a baby’s bum.

No 4 Cutting the cuticles and the nails – Both equally important, it gives your hands a clean, fresh and neat appearance. Tip: To make sure that only the needed cuticles get removed safely, push them back with an orange stick and only cut those parts of the cuticle lifting up from the nail bed.

No 5 Buffing and filing – No rough edges get left behind so as to protect the nails from splitting at a later stage. Also make sure that you tell your therapist what shape you prefer as this plays a big role in the overall appearance.

Nail shapes

Nail shapes

No 6 Painting This is always the final step, the finishing touch being done with one of our stunning colors out of the OPI range. Long lasting results can be expected. Tip: Make sure you have enough free time after your manicure to allow your nails to dry completely, without rushing yourself. You can even replace your jewelry before the therapist starts painting in order to avoid smudging your beautifully manicured nails.











Your type of pampering

On a day to day basis most of us do not have ten minutes for ourselves, not even to mention time to set aside for some pampering. When visiting us at Elephant Plains, you have the perfect opportunity to do both and even more – the opportunity to receive the right kind of pampering, to suit your every need.


For some of you, being spoiled might mean taking care of the basic things like doing your hands and feet, things that you can actually do at home, but would like someone else to do instead. Try our Manicure, Pedicure or even our African Foot Soother while enjoying the beautiful view overlooking the dry Manyeleti riverbed. If you’re lucky enough, you might spot some elephants or other animals at the watering hole.


Others think of pampering as getting rid of all the stress and tension knots that come with it, preferring a strong massage that really works the muscles. Maybe you are one of those who prefer drifting away to dreamland with a slower, more flowing massage. Whatever your preference we have a unique list of indulging massages to choose from, each one adjusting the pressure to suit your every need. Be a bit more adventurous and give our Heart of Africa Massage a go: the wooden dumbbells give a whole new meaning to relaxation.

Dumbell Massage

Dumbell Massage

Then there are those of you who would like to pamper their skin after it has made its first encounter with the harsh African sun. If your entire body needs some pampering, book in for our Ultimate Body Experience. If it’s just your face that needs some TLC, choose between a 30min and an hour long facial where we make use of the unique range of Decleor Essential oil blends, leaving your skin feeling totally rejuvenated.


No matter what you are looking for, you are sure to find the perfect pampering option to suit your every need on our African Health Spa Menu. If not, please ask me. I will most definitely assist in putting together the perfect pampering treatment just for you.