You would be forgiven for thinking that Spa-ista is not a real job title. But I can assure you that it is, having met a real life one on a spa trip to Tuscany earlier this year, and making her show me her business card to prove it.
Anna Hubbard is one of the chief Spa-istas for the industry bible that is the Good Spa Guide, travelling around the UK and beyond inspecting spas and hotels to make sure they are up to GSG standards. We met in Pisa reviewing the fairytale Bagni di Pisa hotel and she blew me away with her amazing skin and beauty know how.
Anna, 31, gets to try out all kinds of pampering treatments, technology and spas in the name of work, and as an ex-therapist herself is very passionate about the products she uses on her own skin.
FIVE HOLIDAY MUST-HAVES FROM A REAL LIFE SPA-ISTA
1. Caudalie BEAUTY Elixir
Anna says: "I wouldn’t get on a long haul flight without it. Great for a skin pick me up as it’s very hydrating."
2. Decleor Sun Expert Hydrating Milk SPF 30
"My favourite new discovery: It smells like the best kind of spa product, is light and easy to rub in and protected my very fair skin when sunbathing. It’s worth the price tag and I will definitely be taking it on my next holiday."
3. LIZ EARLE CLEANSE AND POLISH HOT CLOTH CLEANSER
"People often think that if they don’t wear make up on holiday they don’t need to cleanse their skin but it isn’t the case. SPF needs to be removed as it blocks the pores and it’s often quite heavy and could make your skin oily.
"The Cleanse and Polish makes your skin feel super soft and remove eyes make up too. Plus the muslin cloth gentle exfoliates the skin."
4. Temple Spa Peace Be Still Body Balm
"I love the lemon scent and milky consistency of this product. It’s cool on the skin so is ideal post sunbathing, and also post flight if you tend to get puffy legs (like me)."
5. ESPA Body Smoothing Shower Gel
"The ginger and lime combination is a true spa scent to take on holiday with you. Tans also stay longer when you remove dead skin cells and the beads in this scrub are light and leave your skin incredibly smooth. "