I find myself answering that question a few times a week since I started working at Buffalo Aesthetics. Most people when they hear the word “Spa” have an image in their head of a calm dimly lit atmosphere, essential oils defusing and tranquil music playing softly in the background. No one knows for sure where th term “Spa” came from, however there are a few theories one being the word spa comes from a small Belgian village called Spa, where hot mineral springs were used by Roman soldiers to treat aching muscles and wounds from a battle. In 1326, Collin le Loup, discovered the mineral springs in the town of Spa, Belgium. Around these springs, a health resort was built and the term “spa” came to refer to any health resort located near natural springs, associating the springs with the diseases they were thought to help cure.

When you go to a day spa you can expect relaxing facials, massages and other services meant to help their clients unwind, while also treating the clients skin and body. It is unlikely you will find the advanced technology to treat below the first layer of skin that you can find in a medical spa here. If you are looking to treat yourself to a relaxing experience, a day spa is the perfect option for you. Estheticians in day spas will analyze your skin type and can help you find what skin care routine you need to maintain the treatment received that day as well.

If you’re looking for quicker results and more permanent options you may want to consider a medical spa. Medical spas have the technology to dive deep into the world of cosmetics and skin care to be able to provide revolutionary treatments supervised by medical providers. With the guidance of a physician a more comprehensive approach to your skincare is established with prescription grade medications, along with services only a medical specialist can provide. These facilities also have Medical Aestheticians that can still perform traditional facials and skin analysis. MedSpas fuse medical technology with traditional spa services. Medical spas include non-invasive cosmetic procedures such as Botox and Dysport, noninvasive face-lifts, fillers, and of course machine facials that use different types of radiofrequency to reach lower layers on the skin. You can find treatments for acne, acne scarring, aging skin, permanent hair removal, fat busting and more at a medical spa.

Which one is right for you? It depends on what experience you’re looking for and what your end goal is. There is no one size fits all when it comes to your skins health so it is best to do your research, ask your friends, and do what you feel is best for you.