17 hours ago
How the Other Half Live: The Alexandra Soveral massage
November 20th 2013
Think Alexandra Soveral's facial couldn't be topped by another treatment? Think again, as Christa D'Souza happily undergoes the massage by the same miracle worker
That was really nice of me the other day. To tell you about Alexandra Soveral, the best facialist in the world. I am not exaggerating when I say she is one of life’s white witches. The difference in the mirror before you go in and when you come out, the way she literally lifts your jaw from “middle earth” as my friend Bella Pollen puts it, it really is nothing short of a miracle. Imagine, just imagine, if you could have that treatment on your whole body? But you can’t, obviously, because in order to do that you would have to clone Soveral, so I’m just going to have to dream on….
Except, guess what? You can. As of now, there is such a thing as an Alexandra Soveral body massage, a technique that took years in the making, fastidious perfectionist that Soveral is. To be honest, it could not come at a better time. If it has not been clinically proven that regular massage keeps you not just feeling but looking younger it really should be. If you put a person who had a proper “hurty” one every week next to someone who didn’t you would surely see the difference, I know it. Going out on a limb here, but could massage count as exercise? There’ll be a Daily Mail article on it soon, for sure.
I have no regular masseuse in my life at the moment, and, yes, it is actually beginning to show. If you spend most of your waking life at a computer that’s what happens, irrespective of whether you exercise or not: your shoulders start permanently hunching, your body starts caving into the shape of a C, you literally, get shorter. I don’t want to frighten you young folk, but your parents, your grandparents, once upon a time they looked just like you, maybe even better.
By the time I reach Soveral’s cosy premises in a former dairy, therefore, I feel and probably look a little like Quasimodo. The Alexandra Soveral technique is good, but is it really going to be able to penetrate the wall of concrete that my upper back has become?
Soveral introduces me to her protégé, Sarah Bradley, who has been working with Soveral for several years as a facialist, but has a training in massage. The main focus of the treatment requires creating heat and warmth to the muscles in order to stimulate and revitalise them. By squeezing and manipulating the muscles, the subsequent release of accumulated stress, tension and toxins promotes the body's own self detoxification.
Now, having had the facial (which includes one’s neck and shoulders) I know there’s going to be a lot of crunching involved. What I didn’t anticipate was having it done all over. My GOD! I’m concrete head-to-toe! When I tell you it is painful I don’t want to put you off. It is, but it is also deeply pleasurable. Remember that scene in the Lion, Witch & The Wardrobe when the animals who have been turned into stone by the horrid Snow Queen all get magically depetrified? It feels like that, and after one and half hours, I really do feel like a completely different woman. Younger. Softer. Taller. Nicer. Cleverer. You name it, I’m feeling it, the whole shebang.
Readers, I’m not going to lie. Like the facial it does not last forever. A week later and I am sitting at my desk feeling like poor Mr Tumnus yet again. There’s only one thing for it, I need to have one of these every single week. Just like I need to have one of Soveral’s facials a week. Perhaps Alexandra and Sarah will let me move a bed in there. Well? Needs must.
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