A treatment for the frugal oenophile but with a twist; adding a whole new dimension to wine consumption, vinotherapy is for the parts where your regular tipple just can’t reach. By Sherley
The rapidly fame gaining vinotherapy is also referred to as Oenotherapy, Veno-terapia and Venotherapy in different parts of the world. In India it’s simply known as “Wine Therapy”, a crème de la crème extravagance for those who want to pamper themselves.
Wine therapy is a detox treatment that takes the health benefits of wine to a new level. Many are aloof from what the therapy has to offer. Amongst the other enticements your spa has on its list, ‘chardonnay peel’ and ‘sauvignon massage’ are the latest epidermal inducements. Adding a new definition to the French irony of healing the body with wine, vinotherapy is certainly a signature treatment in the spas.
We’ve known the age old benefits of wine
• It helps in reducing cardiovascular health risks if taken moderately.
• Grape skin has a chemical called resveratrol known to have cardio and chemo protective effects.
• A small quantity of wine is also known to decrease the risk of lung cancer and Alzheimer's disease.
Now add anti ageing properties to the ever growing list of benefits. Wine remains a favourite drink holding a lot of historic importance. From a social drink to a limerick to camaraderie, a complement to scrumptious cuisine or another cup for the winebibbers, wine has its own standards to hold. Lots of researches confirm that besides being good for health it also holds a plethora of benefits to regain youthful looks.
Having originated in a chateau in France where tons of grape skin and seed were simply discarded from grape crushing led to Joseph Vercauteren, a local pharmacologist, coordinating with the Cathiard family and starting spa vinotherapy. European spas are capitalizing on wine-based products for anti-aging treatment. Besides the traditional Red, wines concocted locally from fruits and herbs like fennel seeds, cardamom, apples and apricots are also used as innovative and alternative wine facial treatment.
Theoretically, the fundamental nature of the therapy lies in the essence of the grape. The phytochemicals present in grapes detoxify the body, augment improved blood circulation and reduce water retention apart from warding off those wrinkles. The myriad treatments offered by any wellness centre under vinotherapy pack quite a punch.
• Grape seed oil or grape seeds are rich in Vitamin E and polyphenols. These are precious for the skin as they help maintain low cholesterol levels and act as a natural defence mechanism against pollution.
• Grapevine is rich in resveratrol which protects the grapes from the harsh UV rays making them look healthy. These grape vines when used in skin treatments work wonders in restoring skin elasticity and increasing cell multiplication. They help increase collagen production to sagging skin.
• The therapy is believed to exert more antioxidants than that of Vitamin- E, resulting in younger looking skin hence, topping the chart of anti-aging treatments.
• The polyphenol rich, red grape virgin juice is used for antioxidant effect in spas.
Believe it or not, grape must led to patenting of wine by-products. The richness of acid and sugar in grape must acts as an excellent moisturizer.
• Wine acts as a revitaliser and in a facial, helps improve blood circulation and reduce wrinkles.
• A wine bath for muscle relaxation is like a whole course meal.
Why not vinotherapy?
Being the latest and loaded with benefits the therapy is more recognized for its anti-aging effects. However be prepared to have deep pockets to shell out on this luxury. Any service under vinotherapy could vary from 90-150 euros calling for two sessions a month depending on the extent of damage to the skin. The metros in India have these services offered only at exclusive spas or select star hotels. The mid segment salons offer Vinic treatments with commercially prepared cream base, so the cost could be as low as 1500 – 3000 for a facial or body massage. This however makes the service as just another option on the menu card, depriving you of the complete effects of the real therapy.
What you should opt for
Vinotherapy has a huge platter of offerings. Considering the huge price tag grape treatment carries, wine therapy has its range of rip offs too, so beware:
• Wine bath - do not worry, non-alcoholic or dessert wine is made use of for this soak, along with grape must, so you do not look like caramelized beef. Complemented with a resveratrol pill or a glass of wine (pill is not used in Indian spa however complemented with in-house drinks). Of course, each spa maintains its secret ingredients to go along.
• This is a complicated procedure so it’s best left to the professionals. A service at the spa could cost you at least 150 euros ( 10,000). It also depends on the quality of grapes used (red or green)
• A vinic facial- A completely relaxing treatment complemented well with flower essences and grape seed oil for smoothening your skin, followed by exfoliants and mud packs will leave you looking younger.
• A vinic facial would cost you 80 – 90 euros ( 6,000) depending on the type of wine used. Merlot wine has caught the imagination of the ever-growing female clientele as a potent therapeutic these days.
• Body exfoliation- A full body exfoliation would be a sixty minute long soak in grape skin and seed pip. Unless your whole body needs repair and polish this is not a highly recommended service or treatment. An hour long seating on crushed and sharp pips is not for delicate darlings.
• It’s mostly an add-on treatment clubbed with facials or bath.