September 1st, 2015


In today’s competitive spa environment just performing a good service may not be enough. All therapists must be fully informed, trained in spa retail and prepared to offer the full range of products and services to make your guest’s experience extraordinary. Retail education and training is critical for ensuring that the correct products are selected.

Dr. Bryan K. Williams of BW Enterprise tells us why sometimes just giving the customer what they want isn’t enough.

August 29th, 2015

Why Massage Therapists Don’t Want to Sell


For many therapists in the spa industry, retail selling has negative connotations.
Some massage therapists consider their vocation to have roots based in spirituality. They don’t think that commerce should enter into the process. “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s….” Others have expressed discomfort with the idea that as health care providers, making a product recommendation may be crossing their line of authority. Want to read more of my blog published on Huffington Post? CLICK HERE

August 26th, 2015

The Shocking Truth About the Global Spa Industry

Bangkok_980x571I haven’t been on this site in a while. My focus has been on creating a training system for the spa community called “Increasing Your Retail Selling“.

So why am I now back on my site? Quite honestly it’s because my husband told me that I was still getting hundreds of views each week  even though I wasn’t actively posting. The need for information about ethnic skin and issues which pertain to people of African descent is not easy to find. I realized this. I never wanted to disregard this site; it was always a labor of love. Read the rest of this entry »

May 31st, 2015

Lasers and Black Skin-2015 Update for Spas

laser“I’ve come close to getting laser treatments three times. The first, when I was in college, was after a friend’s older sister announced that it was “the greatest thing ever.” She explained that hair-removal treatment was expensive but worth every penny, especially since she never had to worry about a messy bikini line ever again. “I’ve read that black people can’t use lasers,” I said, hoping that her esthetician might have mentioned it to her, though I knew that was unlikely because my friend was white. But all she said was, “Yeah, you should look into that first.”

To read the complete article Why Did It Take So Long to Make Lasers for Black Skin? click here>>


Linda Harding-Bond is a Philadelphia native, currently living in Bangkok. She is an educator,  author and principal of Moontide Consulting, a spa retail training company which designs bespoke retail training video programs for spas and new product developers. For more information contact her by e-mail,

May 16th, 2015

Ten Favorite 90’s Movies Every Fashion Girl Should Watch

robin 2Harper’s Bazaar just released their list of  THE ’90S FILMS THAT EVERY FASHION GIRL SHOULD WATCH.

Now, I’ll admit that I’m not a “fashion person”  per se but as a spa and beauty professional I’ve been influenced for my entire life by the cinema . Also because American cinema is not as readily available to me in Bangkok, I tend to appreciate it more. Read the rest of this entry »

April 28th, 2015

Ten Ways to Please Your Global Clients

benettonSocial media and news outlets are bringing us closer together minute by minute. Air travel is faster and more frequent; few areas of the world can’t be accessed within 24 hours. Opportunities to conduct business with a global clientele are increasing exponentially. So what can therapists do to help build a brand which attracts and maintains the attention of  a treatment lovers from around the world? What’s guaranteed to work every time and garner rave review on social media? Check this out-

Smile. A smile is a universal welcoming signal that crosses all boundaries and immediately puts your client at ease. Engaging with the guest is mandatory and serves to benefit the therapist as well so make sure that the charm is dialed on high.

Interview your client. Use that intake form to begin your conversation. Everyone’s situation and reason for visiting the spa is different. Give men the same time and respect for discussion as women, their needs are often just as pressing.You can’t assume anything, ask questions and listen well.

Don’t categorize your clients. When it comes to skin care having knowledge of the  Fitzpatrick Classification Scale is not enough.  Multi ethnicity is everywhere and creates some very interesting characteristics that probably weren’t covered at your skin care academy. Ask questions, information gather to provide a stellar service.

Make the client comfortable. People come in all shapes and sizes. Have a plan in case a plus sized or small person walks into your spa. Be sensitive to the hairstyles of your clients. If she has a lot of hair offer her two headbands rather than one. Don’t assume that the hair is all hers. Ask if its ok before you plunge your hands into her mane to perform a  head massage.  If you are working on a bald man give his head some love too. It’s exposed to the sun and needs care.

Cleanse, remove and check.  When I worked as a makeup artist for a spa, I would frequently have to remove leftover makeup on my client’s  neck or traces of masque from their nostrils, post facial. If a man has facial hair, masque may cling to his face. Check your clients in the daylight before sending them back out in public. They’ll  appreciate your attentiveness.

Use your loupe. Don’t trust your lying eyes. Examine the skin closely under a loupe and report your findings to your client.

Be gentle. You will never go wrong if you treat the skin with respect. Also, there is a commonly held belief that the darker the skin tone, the more aggressive products can be. The opposite is true. Here’s the rule of thumb: If you are causing pain to your client, you are probably causing damage. This will get your name on TripAdvisor and not in a good way.

Avoid extractions.   A good rule of thumb is to focus on providing clients with skin that is polished, luminous and smooth to the touch. No one on vacation wants their skin to look damaged. If your client returns to you often you can then focus on in-depth cleaning and extractions.

Make Product Recommendations  Almost no one travels a distance and gets a treatment to not take a product home with them. If you have a product  that you really believe in or that worked incredibly well, share the knowledge with your client. Recommend that they buy another for gifting, especially if it’s unique to your spa.

Make Care Recommendations   One of the ways to show true interest in your client is a final written recommendation for body and skin treatments once they return home. Create a three month schedule for them to follow, include a sentiment thanking them for visiting the spa. Send it to their email address. They will  appreciate the reminder to take care of themselves and likely follow your expert advice.

March 13th, 2015

From Ethnic Skin Aficionado to Moontide Consulting

portraitTraveling, moving across hemispheres, going to different places and spaces and can be so enlightening. Sometimes what you thought was specific to a certain place or ethnicity or economic class, you find to be completely false. Read the rest of this entry »

January 4th, 2015

What’s Your Plan for 2015?

PonderingEvery year preferably before year’s end, my husband and I sit down together and write out our goals for the upcoming year and up to three years thereafter. This time, (blame it on Bangkok’s NYE celebrations) it got away from us a bit so we did it on 1/2/2015. Read the rest of this entry »

December 7th, 2014

Moving To Bangkok cont…

prawnsWhen I arrived in Bangkok it was very late at night but the Six Senses organization had sent a driver to pick me up from the airport and I was made to feel very comfortable immediately upon arrival. I was starving and decided to order something light from room service. I figured that I couldn’t go wrong ordering shrimp which in Bangkok are called prawns. A silver tray arrived and when I removed the cover 4 tiny eyes were staring at me. Alrighty then! Read the rest of this entry »

November 29th, 2014

Moving to Bangkok-The Truth and Nothing But

My last entry for Ethnic Skin Aficionado was in July. I have literally been unable to write because I have simply not had the time to do so. I cannot even begin to describe the exhaustion of learning a new job in a new place where a different language is spoken. Almost everything is a challenge. So now on November 30, 2014 the rose colored glasses have come off and I sit at my desk in my apartment on Soi (street) 8 Sukhumvet in Bangkok and I begin to write again.

Bangkok_980x571For me, if I am going to put pen to paper I will always tell you the truth. Some of my experiences are being documented in book form as everything may not be “bloggable” (is that a word?).

But no matter what the medium is, the truth must be told. As Jay-Z says “I do this for my culture”. I don’t know a lot of Americans, African or otherwise or beauty professionals  who have taken this particular road so it is important to let you know the real deal.

Moving to far flung places is glamorous for sure. But don’t get it twisted-leaving my family and husband was more than a notion. I will tell you that in the last weeks of preparation my mind was excited to make the move from Philly; but my body was telling me a different story. I began itching and breaking out with what I thought were mosquito bites. Honestly I was checking our sheets and furniture to see if a family of tiny bugs had infested out home but that was not the case. My husband was not itching. It was purely nerves. The body doesn’t lie and mine was telling me that part of me was very upset.  It became so bad that my friend Nikki (fabulous nail technician at Rescue Spa) sent me to Chinatown for acupuncture and herbs. Nikki is Asian and a huge advocate of Eastern healing as am I. The doctor refused to perform acupuncture, he told me that it was not a quick fix but he did prescribe herbs and a cream to help purify my blood and calm my skin.  They worked, long enough to get me on the plane without my people seeing me scratching like a junkie who needs a fix. But when I arrived in Bangkok, well, as they say here- “same same”. The itching began again. To be cont…..

Linda Harding Bond is a licensed esthetician and Manager of Spa Training for Six Senses Resorts. She may be contacted at


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