Taking time for yourself!

time-yourself-novo-spa-toronto-canada-yorkville-relaxOur skin is our largest organ, and it’s the only organ with which we have a special relationship. We do not see our liver every day or touch our kidneys first thing in the morning. Nor do we look at our lungs in the mirror each night to see how they have coped with the day. Our skin is always there, always visible, always touchable. Our skin works hard to keep the good stuff in and the bad stuff out. It’s also our body’s first interaction with the world, and has a sensitive connection to our brain. Whenever we feel anxious or overwhelmed it is reflected in our skin.

We often tell people how well they look, but how did you make that judgment? from their skin!
As a skin specialist, Charlotte Barbosa, I can visibly see stress. Lifestyle choices, hormonal fluctuations, exacerbation of chronic skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis on the skin; especially with my guests that I see on a regular basis, their skin tells me a story: break-outs, dull skin, dehydration can all be tell-tell signs and an indication of stress, anxiety, and fatigue.

As an esthetician I truly feel honoured that my guests trust me to look after them, to help them heal and de-stress. I love performing results driven facials, but I also realize the importance of my touch in treatments.

This was made ever more apparent to me last week. I am like clockwork with my monthly facials (usually hydradermie – I love this facial, for brightening my complexion, giving me a great deep clean without stripping my skin whilst infusing my skin with potent anti-oxidants and actives to address my biggest concern – ageing) but last week I decided, or should I say needed a massage.

I booked with Marcia, a therapists with over 15 years experience, but most importantly for me, someone with fantastic energy, a calming disposition, a touch that is truly magical – she relaxed my tired and stressed muscles and really took me to a place of calm and serenity. I remember speaking with Marcia afterwards and saying how we must never underestimate how our touch effects our guests, yes of course, we all want aesthetic results, but we can never forget the importance of soothing our mind – ultimately this will be reflected and will shine on the outside!

Our lives are hectic, our lives are demanding, our lives are stressful but we must not forget to look after ourselves, we must not forget to take time to relax and unwind.

Be kind to yourself – do not concentrate on the flaws in your skin. We all have them! Do your best to look after yourself and your skin and leave the critiquing behind. Contentment will be reflected in your skin.

8 Ways to Reduce the Effects of Stress on Your Skin
According to WebMd here are some ways to limit your stress,

  1. Don’t neglect your skin. Take care of your skin, even if you’re tired or stressed.
  2. Get regular exercise. It’s good for your skin and the rest of your body.
  3. Prioritize self-care. Take time for yourself to do something you enjoy, even if you only have 10 minutes. Take a bath or read an article.
  4. Take a walk around the block.
  5. Visit a spa or holistic health centre – let someone else take care of you!
  6. Practice stress management techniques, such as breathing exercises, yoga, meditation or visual imagery.
  7. Get enough sleep. Seven to eight hours each night is ideal.
  8. Say no. It’s ok to set limits and boundaries to lower your stress.


Best wishes!

Novo Team Signature

Éminence Leads The Field With Innovation Award

Éminence Leads The Field With Innovation Award


Eminence Balancing Mask Duo, is the proud winner of prestigious award: Best in Innovation 2016 by LNE & SPA’S BEST 2016 and we share this accomplishment with a post taken from the Éminence blog.

We’re incredibly excited to announce our recognition by Les Nouvelles Esthetiques & Spa (LNE & Spa) magazine with the title of Most Innovative Product 2016 for our Balancing Masque Duo. Each year, the top industry magazine chooses their elite list of winners for LNE & Spa’s Best Products and this year, we’re proud to be lauded for our innovation and leadership in the skin care field. Like the ISPA Visionary Of The Year Award we recently won, this new recognition reflects our commitment to leading as innovators in the industry. We would like to extend our gratitude to everyone who voted for us – thank you for selecting Éminence Organics to represent the forefront of the skin care industry as well as the best choice for all spa professionals.

One of the most prestigious publications for the beauty industry, LNE & Spa magazine was first established in Paris in 1952. Over the last 60 years, the magazine has grown its network to publish in 30 countries including USA and Brazil, and is also distributed in 70 other countries. Their annual recognition highlights the beauty awards season with their exclusive selection of the best of the best!

LNE & Spa’s award for innovation brings the focus to our exceptional Balancing Masque Duo, proving that we are continually innovating for our spa customers and end consumers. Because we aim to deliver the latest and greatest for spa professionals, we continue to pioneer products like the Balancing Masque Duo to affirm our commitment to leading the beauty business.

Showcasing two different masks in one, the Balancing Masque Duo uses a unique split jar and targets combination skin types. One half contains our Charcoal T-Zone Purifier which deep cleans the complexion by drawing out oil, dirt and impurities. Charcoal and kaolin clay detoxify the skin, leading to revitalization and purification. The other half features our Pomelo Cheek Treatment which moisturizes the skin with a powerful dose of hydration. Antioxidants and vitamins from pomelo juice and bamboo leaf extract in the Cheek Treatment also help minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

With this breakthrough product attracting the spotlight since its launch, we are absolutely delighted to win confirmation of its success with this award. We want to express our heartfelt appreciation to LNE & Spa for choosing Éminence Organic Skin Care. Thank you for the recognition in our leading edge product development.

You can get this product, and know more about it by clicking here: http://bit.ly/1CVTPAc

Source: http://www.eminenceorganics.com

5 Signs That Sugar Is Aging Your Face

5 Signs That Sugar Is Aging Your Face

sugar_carouselDo you have a sugary donut in your hand? Here’s some news that will make you put down that donut and walk away: sugar ages you.Although there are lots of factors that ruin your skin, sugar is probably one of the worst offenders for outright aging your face and body.

Not only should you be avoiding sugar for dietary reasons (the new US health guidelines recommend you cut way back), you now have the added incentive of protecting your looks from the aging ravages of sugar. You heard it here first: Sugar is the new Big Bad.

Sugar bonds with proteins in your body in a process called glycation. These sugar-bonded proteins produce free radicals which destroy your collagen and elastin, the building blocks that keep your skin strong and supple. They also harden collagen and elastin, and prevent the body from making more. All these effects mean your skin loses its elasticity, lines and wrinkles start to set in, and signs of aging become more visible.

The effects of sugar on your skin are so unique, there are tell-tale signs on your face that sugar is the culprit aging you:

1. The surface of your skin looks hard and shiny.
2. Deep, crosshatch lines appear along your upper lip.
3. Discoloration and hyperpigmentation mark the skin.
4. Deep crevices appear, especially around the laugh line area.
5. Skin around the jowl area is sagging.





The good news is that you’re never too late to prevent the signs of aging. Now you know about the damage that sugar can do to your skin, here’s how you can combat the destruction and look your best:

1. Cut back on your sugar intake, especially food containing high fructose corn syrup.
2. Supplement your diet with vitamins B1 and B6 (Prevention) which inhibit the damage caused by sugar-bonded proteins.
3. Eat food and use products with antioxidants like vitamin C which reduce free radical damage to the skin and body.

Our brand new Rosehip Triple C+E Firming Oil is infused with oil-based vitamin C that fights the visible signs of aging and smooths wrinkles. Its ingredients also work hard in a preventative way and help reduce further symptoms of aging skin.  With regular use, your complexion will look hydrated, firmer and plumped. Target the sugar-fueled signs of aging with this unique facial oil and reveal your most beautiful, youthful-looking skin.


Written By: Karen Young Chester

Source: www.eminenceorganics.com

A year in review!

A year in review!

2015 reviewWell what a year 2015 was, so many fun and exciting things happened!  We started the New Year with some new faces at our front desk and welcomed new staff to our ever growing team of Estheticians and Registered Massage Therapists. Thank you to all our guests for making them feel so welcome, we feel very grateful to have them as part of our team!

January is always a busy month at the Spa, – relaxing from the busy holiday season and warming up from the snowy days; with signature treatments such as our steam bed body therapy or hot stone massage is the perfect way to melt away the winter blues.

In the month of romance, we welcomed many wonderful couples to enjoy our customized valentine packages in our luxury couple’s suite.  It is not out of the ordinary for us to have the honour to be the host for proposals, which is always so special, exciting, and nerve racking for us too! We have already started taking bookings for this year so if you’re looking for something special, for your special someone give us a call and make your bookings now!

Click here to see our valentines packages!

Over the last year we have introduced new and in-demand products form both our Eminence and Guinot lines – Such as Eminence’s Citrus and Kale Potent Vitamin C Serum which is one of your top ten product picks of the year! Also after much research, we launched a new medical grade sun protection line- EltaMD. We have always been passionate about educating our guests on being safe in the sun and we are so pleased to be able to offer you this vast line which offers the best protection for your skin all year round!

2015 was the year of the giveaways, we always want to give back and say thank you to our guests, it has been so much fun running our online bi-weekly product competitions allowing you the chance to try out new products from our skincare lines. We’re taking this into the New Year and its so easy! All you have to do is click and share for your chance to win, check out this week giveaway by CLICKING HERE

And then of course there was November – This was a BIG month for us we celebrated our 10th birthday and we celebrated alllllllll month long, with giveaways and party celebrations it was so much fun and we were so happy that our guests were able to celebrate this milestone with us, so thank you!

Last and most definitely not least in addition to all this, we were awarded TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence – only the top-performing 10 per cent of businesses listed on TripAdvisor receive this prestigious award and we are so happy to be ending the year as your number 1 spa and wellness choice.

We hope that these changes and updates over 2015 have allowed our guests, both returning and new to have a better experience, and enjoy the unique offerings we take pride in sharing with guests at Novo. Speaking of benefits… one of the great things you can do while staying with us, is take advantage of our steam coloured therapy saunas, relax in our tranquil and Zen lounges with a warm herbal tea.; also don’t forget our pre-booking rewards, referral programme and facial series package’s.  Ask any of our staff members for all the special offers we have for you!

We have a jammed packed year ahead and we can’t wait to share new and exciting promotions, giveaways and events with you.  We are just starting to plan our charity event for May and can’t wait to fill you in on all the exciting things we have planned. We promise as always to deliver you with the best products, most active and effective ingredients and best treatments that are out there. We will continue to train and learn with the best so we bring you the best, for your best 2016!


Your Top Ten Skin Care Products

  • Citrus and Kale serum
  • Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant
  • Longue Vie Cellulaire Moisturizer
  • Longue Vie eye Cream
  • Bamboo Firming Fluid
  • Calm Skin Moisturizer
  • Elta MD clear SPF 46
  • Radiance Renewal Cream
  • Calendula Oil
  • Artic Berry Peptide Cream


Your Top Ten Treatments

  • Hydradermie Facial
  • Registered massage
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Eminence oxygen rejuvenating facial
  • Hot Stone Massage
  • Shellac Manicure
  • Dermaroller collagen induction Facial
  • Beaute Neuve Facial (peel)
  • Steam bed body therapy
  • Eyelash extensions


Heres to another fantastic year of health, welnness and beauty


Novo Team Signature

It’s your skin danger-free on winter?

It’s your skin danger-free on winter?

WInter-Novo-810x405Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr It’s getting cold outside but UVA rays which cause wrinkling, pigmentation and loss of elasticity are not affected by weather or altitude and are present all day, every day of the year, so remember to apply your broad spectrum SPF everyday to protect your skin!

As always Novo Spa have you covered. We carry, EltaMD, Eminence and Guinot SPF all Paraben free!  We are excited to announce we now carry the EltaMD “clear” SPF 46 formulation, great for acne prone and combination skin types.

Oil-free EltaMD UV Clear helps calm and protect sensitive skin types prone to breakouts, rosacea and discoloration. It contains niacinamide (vitamin B3), hyaluronic acid and lactic acid, ingredients that promote the appearance of healthy-looking skin. Very lightweight and silky, it may be worn with makeup or alone.

NEW! Also available in a tinted formula to even-out most skin tones.

  • 9.0% transparent zinc oxide.
  • Antioxidants help absorb free radicals.
  • Calms and protects acne-prone skin.
  • Leaves no residue.
  • UVA/UVB sun protection.
  • Fragrance-free, oil-free, paraben-free, sensitivity-free and noncomedogenic.


Novo Team Signature

Birthday celebrations all month at Novo!

Birthday celebrations all month at Novo!

We are so excited to be celebrating our 10th anniversary and we are delighted to have reached this amazing milestone and everything we have accomplished over the years. We want to thank each and every one of you who have supported us through this amazing journey, to all our aestheticians and registered massage therapists who are so passionate, to the front desk staff who keep everything running smoothly and to our hardworking spa attendants who keep the spa looking impeccable. There are so many people that have been involved in our success so thank you, thank you THANK YOU!!

Just to give you a quick overview of how it all begun and how a dream became a reality!

Owner of Novo Spa, Nora Londono, always dreamt to open her own business when she emigrated from Colombia to Canada with her husband, Gabriel Fernandez. She was finally able to transform her love for well-being and beauty into reality: now known as Novo Spa. Starting with a small team of Estheticians and Registered Massage Therapists, Novo has grown to now having a team of 14 talented estheticians, 16 dedicated Registered Massage Therapists, 5 exceptional multi-tasking front desk coordinators and 4 spa attendants who match their star signs of being perfectionists.

Over the years we have introduced new products and treatments to meet the lifestyle choices of our guests that are both effective, provide value and that work with our guests busy and hectic schedules and most importantly be tailored specific for every guest. At the same time we made sure not to change up our guest’s all time favorite treatments like our one-of-a-kind steam bed body therapy treatment!  We love to hear from you and appreciate all your feedback so we can grow and evolve and most importantly know what you want so you can to lead a healthier and more relaxed life!

With dedication and hard work from ALL team members; supported by owners who are equally passionate about the health and wellness of our guests. We pride ourselves on continual training and education which enables us to keep up to date with all the newest technologies and treatments, pushing boundaries to bring you the best experience in the city!


Below are a few messages from some of our staff members on Novo turning ten years young!

“The key to Novo’s success lies in the way we treat our guests. Our goal is for everyone that comes into the spa to feel relaxed, spoiled & rejuvenated. Every Novo team member knows this and is committed to giving the best service possible.


What I enjoy the most about Novo is the amazing group of people that make up our team. Everyone is different, unique but special in their own way.  We are all respectful of each others differences and beliefs. There are no “superstars”; everyone is equally important”

Gabriel Fernandez – Spa Owner


Once again a big heart felt thank you to everyone who has supported us over the years and choosing us for your place to relax, unwind and rejuvenate. It truly is an honour.

We look forward to opening our doors to you for the next ten years!

Best wishes!


Novo Team Signature

We’re celebrating our 10th Anniversary, but the gifts are for you!

Portada Facebook8

WIN an incredible Eminence basket with products worth over $300!

Novo Spa is celebrating its 10th anniversary and we’re giving you DOUBLE the chance to win. We have 2 gift baskets full of the very best in Eminence products, valued at over $300 for 2 lucky people*

Giveaway 1

Every time you have a service with us in November, we’ll give you the chance to WIN. It’s our way of saying a very big thanks to all of you for supporting us (can you believe it’s been 10 years? because we can’t!) It’s that easy! Simply stop by for a service at Novo, and you could be the lucky guest walking away with this fantastic gift!

Good Luck!

Giveaway 2

We’re giving all our Facebook followers the chance to WIN. Just follow our page www.facebook.com/novospainyorkville And you’ll automatically be entered to win! Here’s to another 10 wonderful years keeping you feeling and looking your best!

*Both giveaway raffles will be done on December 1st – 2015

Study Says Sugar’s Harm Is Not About Weight, It’s Just ‘Because It’s Sugar.

Study Says Sugar’s Harm Is Not About Weight, It’s Just ‘Because It’s Sugar.

SugarThis has certainly been the decade of jumping the sugar ship – and largely with good reason. The studies to illustrate what excess sugar can do to the body keep rolling in. And a new one in the journal Obesity goes a little further by trying to tease apart the difference between cutting out sugar and losing weight. It argues that sugar isn’t bad because it makes you gain weight. It’s bad because it brings about other, more sinister changes to the body – metabolic changes that are distinct from weight. Though this may be true, in part, weight certainly plays a role. So for the purposes of most of us, there may not be much reason to split hairs, since the takeaway hasn’t changed: Sugar is bad for us for multiple reasons, and cutting down on it is usually a good thing.

“This study definitively shows that sugar is metabolically harmful not because of its calories or its effects on weight; rather sugar is metabolically harmful because it’s sugar,” said study author Robert Lustig. “This internally controlled intervention study is a solid indication that sugar contributes to metabolic syndrome, and is the strongest evidence to date that the negative effects of sugar are not because of calories or obesity.”

The researchers studied the effects of sugar-restriction on 43 obese children, aged nine to 18, who had at least one other metabolic problem, like high blood pressure or high triglycerides (blood fats) or markers of fatty liver. For nine days, they ate a sugar-restricted diet, but their calories were kept as constant as possible, by substituting in starches and carbs for the sugars. The goal was to reduce sugar content in the diet from an average of 28% to 10%. But the team did not want the kids to lose weight – they wanted to keep weight constant while simply subtracting sugar from the diet, so see what would happen when this variable to changed but nothing else was.

At the end of the nine days, the kids’ metabolic parameters did shift significantly: Their average diastolic blood pressure decreased by 5 mmHg; their triglycerides were lowered by 33 points; their LDL (“bad”) cholesterol went down 10 points; insulin levels were reduced by a third, and fasting glucose and liver function tests improved.

“All of the surrogate measures of metabolic health got better, just by substituting starch for sugar in their processed food – all without changing calories or weight or exercise,” said Lustig. “This study demonstrates that ‘a calorie is not a calorie.’ Where those calories come from determines where in the body they go. Sugar calories are the worst, because they turn to fat in the liver, driving insulin resistance, and driving risk for diabetes, heart, and liver disease. This has enormous implications for the food industry, chronic disease, and health care costs.”

The study certainly confirms that reducing sugar can make a difference metabolically – and in a short period of time.

“Reducing the prevailing excess of sugar intake is associated with health benefits,” says David L. Katz, founding director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center, who was not affiliated with the new study. “That is shown here, and I certainly believe that to be true.”

But there’s a caveat. The researchers couldn’t keep the kids’ weight a stable as they’d hoped. There was an average trend to lose just under a kilogram over the course of the nine days.

“The researchers intended to keep weight stable, and could not,” says Katz. “Why? Presumably because sugar makes food more palatable to those habituated to the high levels that prevail in our culture, and replacing sugar with starch makes food less palatable. Many of the health effects seen here may as much a product of weight loss as they are a product of reduced sugar intake.”

But it may not matter why the kids got healthier, metabolically. That they got healthier, and by many measures, from cutting out sugar is the takeaway. “Whether reducing dietary sugar leads to health benefits mostly directly, mostly indirectly by means of weight loss, or both,” says Katz, “it leads to health benefits just the same.”

The researchers who conducted the study point out that even the kids who didn’t lose weight showed the same trend in metabolic measures. Though this may certainly have been the case, there are probably multiple ways in which cutting out sugar benefits health.

“When obese people lose weight, metabolic improvements occur with the weight loss, no matter what is causing it (even illness),” adds Katz. “But again, that means at worst that reducing sugar in the diet may help get kids to eat less and lose weight, and benefit accordingly. It may mean they benefit directly from the reduction in sugar, independent of calories and weight change. Personally, I think it’s a combination of both effects.”

So keep cutting down on sugar, especially added ones – and help your kids do the same. Whichever way it works, and there may be many, it does seem to work.

Source: http://www.forbes.com

Very A-peel-ing

adab_arcticberryadslickIt only seems like a moment ago that we were writing about protecting your skin in the summer months and now the colder months are here. Fall is a fantastic time to repair and rejuvenate the skin after summer, and it is the perfect season for peels.
“Peel” is probably the most intimidating word in the beauty dictionary. But honestly, it isn’t as scary as it sounds.  Chemical peels have been used since ancient times. It is said that Cleopatra applied sour milk containing lactic acid to her skin making her among the first to appreciate the benefits of chemical peels. There are many different options when it comes to peels, many different actives that treat certain conditions better than others.
Peel solutions most typically contain either alpha hydroxy acids (an AHA such as glycolic acid), beta hydroxy acid (salicylic acid, also known as BHA), tricholoracetic acid (TCA), or phenol as the exfoliating agent. At Novo we use a wide range of AHA’s, BHA’s and Enzyme peels to treat varying conditions and concerns.
When applied to the skin these acids interact with proteins causing exfoliation and peeling of the skin.  Different acids cause peeling at different depths. Chemical peels can be used to improve acne, pigmentation, wrinkles, skin tone and texture.  They are an excellent way to freshen up the skin and to maintain skin’s health.
Bottom line: The purpose of a chemical peel is to erase imperfections and improve skin tone and texture by removing layers of damaged skin.
Keep in mind that each of these treatment benefits will depend on your skin, the strength of the peel, and the number of peels you get. You will usually need more than one peel to achieve your desired skin results.
Peels are great for everyone but there are some contra-indications so we always do a thorough consultation to make sure it is the right treatment for you and will give you the results you are looking for.
On a side note there are some great at home care peel products and treatments to do in between your spa treatments. At Novo all the estheticians are in love with the results from the Arctic Berry Peel & Peptide Illuminating System from Eminence this is a 10% at home care peel treatment which contains 6 different types of acids (mandelic, lactic, azelaic, glycolic, citric and pyruvic acid)  It is great for this time of year and will last through to Christmas to keep your skin glowing and looking it’s best!
You too can and should think about chemical peels!
Best wishes

Novo Team Signature

Fall season, one of the most important seasons in skin care

Fall season, one of the most important seasons in skin care

As we must restore our skin health after the summer sun and dehydration exposure.

What to do?

Maximum hydration and nutrition
  • Moisturize and nourish your skin with creams and products that are characterized by their extra hydration and emollient properties.
  • Use creams containing hyaluronic acid because it is an element that helps protect and maintain hydration.
  • It is a good time for serums, because its action is more powerful and concentrated.
  • Do not forget the driest areas of the body: legs, knees, heels, elbows, feet. They need more than ever to recover lost moisture.
  • Exfoliation is one of the fundamental actions after the summer, as we must eliminate excess dead cells that summer caused.
  • Creams and vitamin C serums are great allies to end and prevent both sunspots as those caused by age.
  • And do not forget to drink plenty of water and a healthy diet to help restore our skin!


Novo Team Signature