Put down the corkscrew, ladies and gentlemen and enjoy your wine at a more superficial level with vinotherapy. A relatively new spa treatment, vinotherapy capitalises on the anti-ageing properties of the discarded grapes from the wine-making process. Get an exfoliating full-body rub down, feel like royalty and emerge looking radiant. We’ll drink to that!
Vinotherapy involves a vigorous body scrub to remove dead skin and smooth rough patches. At the same time, powerful anti-oxidants from the grape pulp are working to reverse the signs of ageing. Some centres also provide a bath full of sparkling water and grape syrup, juices, pips and oils for you to sit back and soak in, or full body grape seed oil massages.
Mathilde Cathiard-Thomas and her husband, Bertrand Thomas are credited with creating both the World's first "wine spa" -- Les Sources de Caudalie -- which opened in 1999 in the Bordeaux region of France, as well as the official term Vinothérapie®.
It all started in 1993 when the Thomas' met a professor from the Faculty of Pharmaceutics at Bordeaux University. He discovered that the grape seeds discarded at the end of the grape harvest contained powerful anti-ageing properties. These grape seeds contain polyphenols which, once stabilised, have priceless benefits for the skin. The anti-oxidants contained in the grape seed polyphenols have an incredible capacity to fight free radicals, and therefore fight ageing, and also are said to combat water retention. The free-radical protection from grape seed polyphenols is apparently unequalled in the plant world and can also help to heal already damaged skin.
A full body scrub may not be suitable for those with sensitive skin as we hear it can be a bit abrasive! A grape seed facial is a gentler option and after all, the face is the most exposed area of our skin and so could do with a little extra free radical protection. Otherwise there are no restrictions on who can indulge in vinotherapy. If you can face wine being used on your skin instead of topping up your glass and don’t fancy dumping your own bottles of Merlot into your tub (or cleaning up the bathroom suite afterwards), then why not have some fun and give it a go?
Wine grapes out-rank all other fruit crops in terms of acres planted across the globe.