STEP ONE, LETTING GO: I met Deborah Monroe at the Heavenly Spa by Westin for a makeover and a day of pampering. After touring the luxurious spa, Deborah was given a soft white robe to change into. We met in the lounge where she apprehensively told me that she’d left her phone in the locker.
I thought about that. I would have half liked to leave mine in there as well, but then again… how do we let go? Kids, job, email, Facebook…what if someone needs me? But for Deborah, that was precisely the point, to let go of it all for a few short hours and enjoy being in the moment—a true gift.
STEP TWO, FACIAL: After lounging around in overstuffed arm chairs and sipping champagne, Gizzel Olivera, our esthetician, led us to a private room for a facial. Gizzel explained that as we age and our hormones change, we lose collagen in our skin and we must exfoliate more often. After talking with Deborah about her skincare needs, Gizzel focused on antioxidants and hydration to help firm the skin and smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, using products by Eminence and GM Collin. Next, she treated Deborah to a shoulder, arm and hand massage and then a facial massage complete with moisturizer and sunscreen.
STEP THREE, HAIR: Afterwards, we were off to the salon area where Melissa Warren, cosmetologist and massage therapist, worked on Deborah’s hair, touching up her roots with Goldwell color, adding caramel highlights, and trimming just a little off the length. The color took a bit of time, which gave me an opportunity to get up close and personal with Deborah, but really, it felt more like hanging out and having a conversation with a friend.
One of the first topics Deborah tackled was aging, but not in the way you might expect. “Over 50 is awesome,” she said.
Well, that is great up and coming news for me, so “tell me why,” I said.
When her kids were young, she was focused on everyone else’s needs, but now that they are grown, she is finally finding time to care for herself. “If I could go back and tell my younger self something, I’d say, ‘Take care of yourself mentally, physically and spiritually.’” We talked about how when you take care of yourself, you are better equipped to care for those who depend on you.
Deborah has also started to look at other people differently. She’s learned to look at people’s hearts and take time to listen. It seemed like once she said that out loud, the conversation suddenly got a little deeper and a little wider to include the hairdressers and other clients. One woman shared a story of a spiritual encounter she had with God in the midst of the hurricane. We talked about caring for our aging parents, music recitals, and a daughter who’d returned from her first semester at college with bright pink hair.
I was struck by the ease of conversation among strangers, and it occurred to me none of us were on our phones. I wasn’t the only one who noticed. We all talked about how phones are the “death of relationships.” People often get together and just end up texting and being distracted the whole time.
STEP FOUR, MAKEUP: Melissa finished styling Deborah’s hair using Moroccan Oil hair products, and then Gizzel met us to finish the makeover by applying Jane Iredale Mineral Makeup. Since Deborah isn’t used to wearing much makeup, Gizzel chose to go with all natural colors, using mostly gold and brown tones to match Deborah’s olive skin. She started with concealer and then added foundation with SPF 25. Then she applied Cotton Candy blush, Pure Brow to highlight Deborah’s eyebrows and Beach Plum lip gloss.
STEP FIVE, OUTFIT: From there it was a race against the sun to find an outfit from Copper Penny and still have a few minutes for a photo shoot. Mandy Taylor and Mary Margaret McGaughey were happy to help. Deborah ended up choosing a cold shoulder tunic by Amanda Uprichard, black Trina Turk leggings, a pair of Kork Ease black suede booties and accessories by All Virgins, Saints and Angels.
We raced down to Shelter Cove Community Park, right down the sidewalk from Copper Penny, where we took some final pictures and enjoyed the sunset, the perfect end to a perfect day.
SPECIAL THANKS TO:
Heavenly Spa by Westin: Where all Beaufort County residents receive 20% off their spa experience through January 31, 2017. Oceanfront at 2 Grasslawn Ave. HHI, 843-681-1019 or visit www.westinhiltonheadspa.com. Gizzel Olivera will help with your skincare needs, and Melissa Warren will take care of your cut, color and style.
Copper Penny: 38 Shelter Cove Ln., Unit 123, HHI, 843-505-6252, www.shopcopperpenny.com. Visit Copper Penny for designer collections curated with a Southern eye—delivering sophisticated, effortless beauty.