So here we all are, living through the stress and anxiety brought on by the global pandemic. At the start, you may have managed to convince yourself that there’s beauty in isolation. We’re talking about clay masks, basics of reflexology, and possibly even bangs at some point.

But the frequent bubble baths and scented candles don’t quite cut it anymore, do they? You’re probably more than ready to have someone’s expert hands ease the tension with a bone-melting massage.

But reintroducing yourself to the world of pampering and relaxation may not be as straightforward as you think. With thousands of spa destinations in the US alone, finding the best one might take more than just a few minutes of idle research.

We’ve rounded up five tips to help you find the best spa vacation for you.

1.  The 3 Rs: Recommendations, Referrals, and Reviews

Your friends, family, and colleagues likely know what you want and don’t want. So, if they recommend a particular spa retreat for you, then that might be worth checking out.

But don’t just end your search there. Take some time to go through online reviews about the place as well.

Tip: the spa’s website will likely reflect only the glowing reviews. Be sure to take a look at other review sites—including Google and Yelp—for more candid and honest reviews.

Don’t know where to start in your search for the best spa getaways? Check out 2020’s best spa destinations from Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards survey. Spa-goers have shared their opinions on the matter, and they collectively agree that The Pearl Laguna in Laguna Beach, California is unrivaled in terms of accommodations, facilities, and treatments, and overall value.

2.  Special Treatments and Services

The wellness industry offers a wide range of special treatments and types of massage therapies. This means that whatever you may be in the mood for, you’ll likely find an establishment that specializes in it.

Options are good. Too many options, however, can be downright overwhelming. So, before you book your spot at a spa, be clear about what you want to achieve from this retreat first.

Relaxation is obvious, but do you also have any special preferences that you want to be addressed?

Do you want to try out the latest therapeutic water treatments? If so, then Kohler Waters Spa might just be your dream getaway.

Do you simply want to indulge in a luxurious spa experience? Then, the Beverly Wilshire spa, with its diamond dust and 24-karat gold products, could make you feel like a movie star.

Once you know what you want, you can then check out a spa’s website for their listed services or speak directly with one of their representatives.

3.  Price Range

Sure, you want to relax and forget about your worries for the duration of your spa retreat. But you also don’t want to empty your pockets when you do so—that’s one surefire way of negating all the relaxation that you’ve just had.

So, before anything, determine your budget and find a spa vacation within that range. Be sure to check what your program includes also. This way, you can prepare how much extra money you should bring with you.

There is a spa retreat for every budget. But if you want to de-stress without breaking the bank, then a restorative retreat in The Peaks Resort & Spa could be just what you need.

4.  Customer Service

Of course, it goes without saying that customer service in your spa vacation matters. Reading customer service reviews online is helpful, but what else can you do to ensure a positive experience for you on your vacation?

How they will handle your questions and request for information can be telling. If it’s a positive experience overall, then you might have just found yourself a winner.

5.  Hygiene and Health Protocols

As much as we’d like to turn our backs on the reality of the global pandemic—even for just a few days—health protocols still matter.

Before the threat of coronavirus, cleanliness might have been the only consideration. But now, you also want to make sure that the facility follows strict health protocols. As cumbersome as this may be, this is for your own protection.

Call ahead to ask about the facility’s disinfection measures and safety protocols.

Still want to go on a spa vacation with minimal risks? The Carillon Miami Wellness Resort has a range of hands-off treatments that you can try.