Treatment Review - 'Cleanse & Release' Ear Hopi Facial
When it comes to spa therapies, I always like to feel like something is properly ‘working’. I like a massage that gets rid of those knots, or a reflexology session that I can feel working its way around my body. So, when Lucy asked if I’d like to try out Menevia’s new ‘Cleanse and Release’ Ear Hopi Facial, I was keen. It sounded like one of the most satisfying treatments out there.
I had never tried ear hopi candles before. I have a vague memory of my Mum lying on her side in the living room with a candle sticking out of her ear, and my health and safety conscious mind thought that it looked very stressful and a tad dangerous. So, I felt a tiny bit apprehensive about the treatment. That apprehension wasn’t helped by the fact that I was totally oblivious to what ear hopi candles actually do. In a thought process that clearly had taken no time to think through how the human body works, I had envisaged the candle ending up with a big ball of ear wax on the end, a bit like a hoover. I was wrong.
Sue gently put me right as I arrived at Menevia Spa for the treatment. Rather than sucking out the wax, the warmth of the candles helps your sinuses to drain, and promotes the wax to come out of its own accord after the treatment. This drainage is why a facial works so well with ear hopi candles – get ready for the science-y bit! Your lymphatic system deals with the excess fluid that our tissue produces, but it doesn't have its own pump, so relies on movement. This isn't a problem in most of our body, since we move around throughout the day, however when it comes to your face, it's important to massage out and downwards regularly to promote drainage of that fluid into the lymph vessels in your throat. So the candles and the facial work in tandem to leave you feeling like you've had a proper clear out.
As with every facial at Menevia, Sue used Conscious Skincare products, which are Welsh, organic and vegan – triple win! She asked me about my skin type before she got started, and used the Oil Control range, including cleanser, a gentle exfoliant, moisturiser and serum. Most of the facial happens first, and is so relaxing that I almost forgot that I was about to have a candle stuck in my ear! The cleansing routine and the facial massage was just beautiful.
Then it was time for the candles. I laid on one side, and Sue showed me the candle. It was reassuring to see that they are made from bees wax paper and not, as I had feared, normal wax that runs down the sides! This means that all you risk is some cool, papery ash dusting your cheek, which was actually quite pleasant. What was especially gorgeous though was the noise. The crackling of the candle inside my ear sounded like rain on a tin roof, or a log fire. It was so intensely relaxing that I almost fell asleep. Sue stands out of sight and gently holds the candle in place, so no worries there either!
Once both ears were done, Sue finished off the facial with the face serum and more massage. By this point, my nose had started to run and I felt a lovely warmth from the neck up. I left feeling the most relaxed I had done for a while, and by the end of the day my sinuses felt, well, cleansed! I really felt as if something had shifted, and will most definitely be heading straight for this treatment next time I feel a cold coming on.
To book a 'Cleanse and Release’ Ear Hopi Facial, click here.
Disclaimer: I received a free treatment and payment from Menevia Spa for this piece, on the understanding that I would give my honest appraisal of the spa and its treatments.