Over the years, through trial and error, you’ve probably sifted through myriad cleansers, creams, toners, and serums in an effort to find “the one.” Some products undoubtedly go on to become must-haves that you dare not go a day without, while others just didn’t make the cut for one reason or another.
A day at the spa is always a nice treat, but the benefits of going to the spa visit extend far beyond the relaxation that comes with a luxurious massage or much-needed pedicure. Take a closer look at the benefits of a few popular spa treatments. If you’re on the fence about this self-care investment, this might just change your mind about going.
Due to freezing temperatures and inclement weather in Texas, this week has been unimaginably tough, cold, and painful, but we sincerely hope that you are safe, warm, and slowly resetting in the midst of many still-present challenges.
We’ve compiled a list of how-tos and valuable resources within Austin, Houston, and Fort Worth to share and utilize as needed.
After weeks of planning, protocol training, and implementing enhanced safety measures that exceed state and federal regulations, we are slowly reintroducing services at all milk + honey locations this week.
I’d like to provide in-depth detail about our reopening phases. I hope this transparency equips you with the necessary information to make the decision of when returning to milk + honey feels right for you.
First, I’d like to highlight some critical aspects of our employee requirements:
- At this time, we are recalling employees on a volunteer basis. It is not mandatory that service providers return to work.
- We have updated our paid-time-off policy to include an expanded sick leave benefit. This benefit is for all employees to use toward sickness, disability, medical appointments, or if a doctor has recommended that they self-isolate due to coming into close contact with a person who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19.
- We have partnered with Remedy, a fleet of open-air, drive-thru COVID-19 testing sites in Austin, Fort Worth, and Houston, that is available 24/7, 365 days a year. This partnership provides our team with free COVID-19 evaluation and testing.
- All milk + honey employees are required to certify they have not been in close contact with anyone who is/was COVID-19 positive to their knowledge.
- All milk + honey employees are required to have their temperature checked with a non-touch thermometer when they arrive to work. Any employee with a temperature of 100ºF or higher will be sent home.
- Employees will continue to follow strict sanitation policies before, during, and after each service and/or client interaction.
- Upon arrival at any milk + honey location, there will be additional safety and sanitation measures noted throughout the space. We will have visual social distancing markers in the retail and lobby area as well as the lounge to ensure physical space is kept between individuals.
We’re calling this current phase our “soft opening.” During this phase, we’re only offering salon treatments with reduced capacity and staggered appointments to allow for optimal social distancing. All hair-dryer/blowout and keratin services are suspended until further notice. At this time, we are prioritizing clients on the reservations waitlist as well as those who had appointments canceled due to our closure in March.
Phase 1 of our reopening begins on June 1 and we will expand our service offering to include massage, esthetics, and nail treatments. This phase is also voluntary for our employees. All services will be offered in a reduced capacity, in staggered appointment times, and with necessary modifications. In addition to blowout and keratin services, all Body Treatments, Couples Treatments, and the Warm Oil Head and Neck Massage and Hair Masque enhancements will be suspended until further notice. Any steam elements received in facial services will be replaced with hot towel compresses. Select online appointments will be available to reserve, but we will continue to primarily contact clients who have joined the reservations waitlist. If you have not done so already, you can join here.
In Phase 2, we will continue to adhere to all of our enhanced sanitation and safety protocols that were put into place during our soft opening but will also increase our capacity to provide services. During this phase, we will open up additional shifts and invite more of our employees to return to work.
The following phases will be contingent upon feedback from employees and clients, our own and expert risk assessment of the spread and danger of the virus, and further monitoring of the COVID cases here in Texas. We will provide more detail around later Phases as we know more.
Throughout every phase, we will exceed COVID-19 regulations provided to us by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation and ask that the following precautions, listed below, be met by our clients. If they are not, we will kindly ask you to reschedule your appointment to a later date.
- Clients are required to wear masks upon arrival and throughout the duration of their reservation. There will be minor exceptions, which include facials, facial waxing, and changing from a personal mask to a disposable one for haircolor services.
- Only the client receiving the service is permitted to enter. Additional guests, including children, will not be permitted. We apologize for the inconvenience.
- Social distancing will be enforced — with the exception of the service provider that a client is scheduled with.
- All clients will be asked to arrive 15 minutes prior to their reservation to allow time for an extended check-in. Check-in will include taking the client’s temperature with a non-touch thermometer. If the temperature is above 100ºF, we will ask the client to reschedule.
- Our concierge will verbally screen clients upon arrival and inquire about the following symptoms:
- Shortness of breath
- Muscle pain/headache
- Sore throat
- Loss of taste or smell
- Feeling feverish
- Known contact with a person confirmed positive for COVID-19
- A temporary sanitation surcharge will be added to each ticket.
- We will make every effort to make payments touchless. The same card used to schedule the reservation should be physically shown to the Concierge at the time of checkout.
- Clients should bring minimal personal items to their reservation.
- Our amenities in the locker room are temporarily unavailable, including showers, robes, sandals, and styling products.
- We encourage clients to bring their own water bottles but will provide water upon request in single-use cups.
- We recommend that our Concierge handle all retail and ask that clients refrain from touching the products on the shelves. If a client would like to try something, they may request a sample in a single-use container.
As a business owner, mother, and fellow human navigating these murky waters, I know that reopening is a big step — one that will undoubtedly spark questions and concerns. While I feel confident that our team has done (and will continue to do) an exceptional job in addressing every aspect of employee and client safety, I welcome any and all questions you have regarding our reopening. The best path forward is to continue the conversation honestly, openly, and together as we move into these next phases.
We look forward to seeing you soon.
We made the tough, but right, decision to close our location doors earlier this week. Since then, we’ve been working tirelessly to support our incredible service providers and support staff, who are not currently able to perform their daily schedule of treatments and tasks due to this unprecedented situation, by providing ongoing healthcare and paid time-off benefits, daily communication regarding resources, and an employee assistance fund. This fund includes an employee relief stipend, opportunities to earn income outside of their normal job functions, as well as the efforts listed below.
Here’s how you can contribute:
- Join Our Reservations Waitlist. We can’t wait to see you. Click through to join our waitlist and you’ll be the first to be notified of our locations’ reopening. We’re following federal, state, and city policies to ensure everyone’s safety, but we’re hopeful that within several weeks’ time, we’ll have the opportunity to care for you once more. Join the list now.
- Donate to milk + honey’s Virtual Employee Relief Tip Jar. 100% of the proceeds go directly toward employee assistance. If you’d like to donate a tip to our service providers and support staff who have been impacted by our spa location closures, please click here now.
- Buy Gift Certificates and Treat Your Future Self. Purchasing a milk + honey gift certificate directly supports our employees and allows us to continue operating our business locally. Now through April 3, 2020, 20% of proceeds from all gift certificates purchased on shop.milkandhoneyspa.com will go directly toward employee assistance.
We appreciate your kind words and outreach greatly. We’re all in this together.
“I’m happy to share that we are opening our first spa and salon in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, slated to open this winter. The newest location will be located in The Shops at Clearfork and will feature 14 treatment rooms, eight salon chairs, and four mani-pedi stations.
Over the years, we’ve been lucky enough to have thousands of Dallas/Fort Worth clients join us in Austin and Houston, so when the opportunity to expand into The Shops at Clearfork was presented to us, we knew it would be a great fit.
We’ll keep you updated as we near our opening date in Fort Worth. In the meantime, you can follow us at @milkandhoneyspa for sneak peeks along the way.
Thank you for your continued support!”
It’s that time of year again. Pool parties and beach vacays can often mean one thing: waxing bikini lines and beyond. Though many favor rocking body hair these days, (you’ve gotta do you!) we’re sharing some pro-tips to make the most of your next waxing appointment. We caught up with the ever-glowy (and incredibly kind) milk + honey esthetician, Jessica H., for her hair-removal best practices.
Everyone knows your skincare regimen needs a little TLC during the sunny, summer months, but have you ever considered your hair routine? Personally, I find myself stepping up my hair hydration game between May and Octoberish. (That’s summer when you live in Austin.) I prefer to let my hair air dry, but Texan summer heat + my natural waves = an often frizzy, not super chill look on my part. I’ve tried Lee From America’s famous #cocobun, of course, but I needed insider info. During a blowout at milk + honey, I found the answers c/o Kate Allen, a very knowledgeable stylist.
Whether it’s protecting against the harsher heat or showing off that new swimsuit, there are many reasons to bid adieu to dry skin and uncover your greatest glow this summer. We encourage creating a plan for healthy, hydrated skin with these three preliminary skincare tips.
As a female-founded company, milk + honey strongly supports gender equality. We celebrate International Women’s Day by looking to our very own employees’ stories of inspiration. Vianey Valenzuela, milk + honey Lead Reservationist, shares what this day means to her.