Posted by Eileen Nardoza '15
Saratoga Springs, New York has been a destination known for its spas and mineral bath/water treatments. For over a century travelers have been coming to Saratoga to bathe and drink in the mineral waters for positive and health beneficial effects on the body and its organs. I felt studying the presence and practice of skincare in an area known for spas and skin treatments was very relevant in understanding the anthropology of skincare and skin. I conducted my research at The Roosevelt Baths and Spa in the Gideon Putnam Resort, Saratoga Botanicals and the Complexions Spa for Beauty and Wellness. The Roosevelt is the oldest spa in Saratoga, still practicing the mineral bath treatments. Saratoga Botanicals, a relatively new, creates their own products from organic and holistic ingredients. Saratoga Botanicals encourages the holistic lifestyle based both on what an individual puts in his or her body and on the skin. Complexions Spa, also a new spa, is both a spa and salon, emphasizing the connection between wellness, beauty and health. Their available treatments incorporate these aspects together to create an understanding in maintenance of the body in a spa setting. By researching these three spas I was exposed to the similarities and differences in old and new skincare traditions in the spa destination of Saratoga Springs.