TIME OUT CHICAGO

May 31, 2012

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Timeout chicago mera naturals lincoln park acupuncture press

– Elizabeth Jochum

“Inner Balance Outer Beauty Service at Mera Naturals”

Mera Natural Hair and Body, a new space in Lakeview, mixes up your relaxation routine with its Inner Balance Outer Beauty service. The small studio’s signature treatment combines acupuncture, hand reflexology and a scalp massage that make for an über-relaxing 60-minute session. The salon/spa is run by two sisters, Meredith and Sara Jackson (Mera is a combination of their names — hey, if Brangelina can do it…), who also administer this service together.

After offering me a glass of refreshing cucumber-infused water, Meredith leads me to the shampoo station and starts a gentle hand massage. My paws are dipped in paraffin wax and wrapped in plastic while she performs the scalp massage using Simply Organic shampoo. Meredith’s touch is a little more firm during this portion, which is very welcome at the end of a stressful day.

My temples and the back of my neck are very relaxed, and the eucalyptus scent from the shampoo and conditioner is soothing. After that, it’s time for the acupuncture.

Sara applies needles to my temples, between my eyes and near my elbows. I have cucumber slices on my eyes, so I can’t see the action, which is fine by this acupuncture newbie. Within minutes, a wave of relaxation washes over me—it feels as if I’m sinking, but in a good way.

Sara removes the needles after about ten minutes, then I’m led to a salon chair, where the session ends with Meredith trimming the back of my neck and sideburns. (Women who book this treatment get a blow-out and style at this point, which is what I’ll probably request next time — my hairstyle is too high maintenance to leave wet.)

The salon promises an internal glow by the end of the session, and that’s exactly what I’m feeling.