Connecting Point Grad Opens New, All-Natural Business
by Martinique Davis
Sep 30, 2010 | 3241 views | 0 0 comments | 29 29 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The treatment room at Elyse Rothschild's new business, Amala. (Photo by Brett Schreckengost)
The treatment room at Elyse Rothschild's new business, Amala. (Photo by Brett Schreckengost)
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TELLURIDE – All is quiet except for the serene sounds of ukulele music and the muted hiss of a steam machine sprinkling a warm mist over my face. Tucked beneath layers of white sheets and down comforters, eyes closed, I fall into a sort of spell as esthetician Elyse Rothschild immerses my senses in a series of treatments that both innervate and relax, through the conduits of both scent and touch.

At some point, between spells of botanically-charged cleansing and exfoliating, then bouts of neck and hand reflexology, my thinking mind surfaces long enough to observe that this is not any old facial. In fact, I ruminate, this is more like a decadent whole-body vacation than a results-oriented beauty treatment.

It seems too good to be true: A facial that uses only truly natural, non-toxic products, that delivers results in addition to an hour-and-a-half of holistic serenity. But, as my unpolluted complexion (and equally clear mind) substantiates days later, Rothschild’s facial does deliver results – in more ways than one.

“I really do believe that it can be an extremely relaxing and centering experience,” Rothschild says of facial treatments, which all too often rely on harsh chemicals and laborious procedures to draw out clear and healthy skin. Yet therein lies a paradox: How can skin do its job of filtering out toxins, if it is barraged with toxins?

Rothschild not only believes that natural, organic products can produce sought-after results, but also that a skin care regiment that relies on paraben-free, non-toxic products can actually pave the way for truly healthy skin. It was her all-natural philosophy that spurred Rothschild to open Amala, a new business specializing in truly natural and organic facials, this summer.

In Sanskrit, Amala means “most pure,” a name befitting of Rothschild’s business model. First, she uses only organic and what she calls “truly” natural products from Chae Organics, a Colorado-based cosmetics company that uses only botanical and certified toxic-free ingredients. Founded by Linda Chae, who lobbied for the passage of the California Safe Cosmetic Act, Chae Organics products provide the basis for Amala facial treatments.

But an Amala facial isn’t just about all-natural cleansing and exfoliating. As Rothschild says, the best facial is one that helps “put you into another place.” Rothschild lights candles (all natural, of course, from local candle company Bluecorn Naturals) and uses essential oils to help clients relax through aromatherapy. Her workspace is dressed in soothing shades of white and slate blue, the room exuding a simple coziness.

“I honestly find great joy in making someone feel good,” she says.

It was, in fact, the experience of total relaxation and tranquility she felt while getting facials with currently Ridgway-based esthetician Melanie Law that pushed Rothschild to pursue becoming an esthetician herself. “I fell in love with the whole experience,” she says. Just after her youngest daughter started elementary school last fall, Rothschild saw an ad in the paper for an esthetician training program through the local Connecting Point School of Massage and Spa Therapies. She completed the program last April, and opened Amala this August.

“I feel lucky to be doing something I really love, and lucky to have all the support I’ve had along the way,” Rothschild says of opening her own business after eight years of full-time motherhood. Her two children, Anthony, 8, and Marcella, 6, have in fact been her greatest supporters; “I’ve done a million practice facials on them,” she says.

The Amala basic facial starts at $50. Rothschild can be reached for appointments at 729-0382.
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