I was born in Buffalo, New York and one of eight children. We lived in the city but had a wonderful little cottage in the country by a lake that we would go to every summer. I loved being in nature and would spend hours picking flowers, berries, climbing trees and swimming in the lake. Even then I understood how important nature and the environment were. Ever since I was a young girl, I loved creating my own home spa and natural beauty treatments. Later, when I became a fashion model and TV host, taking care of my appearance was a required part of the job. Through my work, I have been so fortunate to have traveled around the world and been exposed to many different cultures. I would make it a point to learn the beauty and wellness secrets of the region. I often spent a few days at a local spa to unwind and gain insights into ancient and indigenous beauty treatments, then go home and create recipes based on my experience. I am writing this blog so you, too, can experience these wonderful treatments from across the globe.While traveling I found that what might be considered beautiful in one culture is quite the opposite in another. For example, the Maasai of Kenya believe that true beauty comes from your attitude toward life, rather than your physical appearance. Asian ideology sees the desire to be beautiful as a natural and admirable pursuit, rather than one associated with vanity. Great beauty is believed to come from the inside as well as the outside, so Asians encourage any treatment that brings about inner peace. And to a young Aboriginal male in Australia, a seasoned older woman is an object of desire, as she represents wisdom and experience.
My travels taught me to think about beauty in a more holistic way. I saw that beauty is not about one’s features or the right lipstick, but rather something that radiates from the inside out. It’s a glow that comes from being at peace with yourself and the world around you. That’s why it’s important to discover within ourselves what truly defines beauty: contentment, sense of purpose, love of life, physical well-being, and spiritual fulfillment. When I was young, it was easier to spend the time on beauty care but now that I am older I have to work harder at it. I now have a young daughter and husband. Between work and family, my time is extremely valuable, but I still take time every day to relax and nurture myself, as I know this is the key to my well-being and leads to deeper wisdom for making the right choices in life.
That’s why I love spas. Spas are ground zero for well-being: a haven of rejuvenation where we can rest the mind, renew the body, and reevaluate our lives. They’ve been around for centuries. In Europe, spa vacations are recommended by medical doctors as a form of preventive care and a way of returning to optimal health. But not everyone has the time or money to drop everything and escape to a spa, so I am offering a top-to-toe revitalizing program you can do in the comfort of your own home using ingredients from your own kitchen just like our grandmother’s did.
As modern life becomes busier and busier, we are now more than ever reaching back to these ancient philosophies and techniques. The at home spa has become part of our health regime, right up there with the dentist, doctor, and personal trainer. In today’s fast-paced world, pampering yourself from head to toe is a way to bring about much-needed peace of mind and deep relaxation.
I hope my book and blog help to facilitate that process by offering simple ways to relax more, easy recipes for home spa treatments that make you look and feel great, techniques for maintaining balance and well-being, and insights into developing a deeper relationship with yourself.