Holiday gift ideas

Holiday gift ideas for everyone on your list!  We know how stressful running around from store to store trying to find just the right combination of gifts for your loved ones can be.  This year we wanted to make it easy on you so we decided to help you out by compiling a short list of holiday gift ideas from yours truly.   We promise that even the most difficult to please people on your list will find something they can enjoy at Written on the Body!

Gift Certificates:

When you give someone a massage, sauna or acupuncture gift certificate you are giving the gift of peace, health and happiness.  Almost anyone on your list will appreciate an hour long vacation to look forward to during these dark and rainy months!  The holiday season means it’s time for our annual Buy One Get One Half Off gift certificate sale!  Go to our online store and use the promo code “holiday” to claim your discount.  Prefer to buy in person or over the phone?  No problem, give us a call at 503-473-8515 and we will be happy to assist you. price range:  varies


holiday gift ideas

If you have ever met us in person you will know that we are in love with our plants and we have A LOT of them:)  Were you aware that almost all the plants around the studio are for sale and they are each a steal!  Stop by and check out our selection at your next appointment or by visiting us at our Small Works Art Show on 12/14 from 5:30pm-7pm!  price range:  $8-$20

Wellness Products:

Spend some time perusing our product lines at your next visit or come hang out with us at our small works show on 12/14 and find what you love for those on your list!

holiday gift idea's

  •  Umay “confections for your body, mind and spirit” are a locally made line of absolutely divine body products (made by   our very own Lise Pacioretty!).  At Written on the Body we carry Umay’s body butter, which I personally guarantee will make your skin feel like winter never existed, aromatic spray’s, I get compliments every time I leave the house, and the decadent sugar scrubs, imagine magic every time you bathe!  If you have a bath and body product lover on your list, Umay products are sure to please! price range:  $18-$25

  • Unkept Secrets is a facial care line designed and created by one of our very own massage therapist’s, Bethany Carder.  She combines her expertise across various fields to offer you the most gentle and lovely smelling products to care for your delicate facial skin.  At Written on the Body you will find Unkept Secret’s entire facial line:  exfoliator, mask, oil, toner, cleanser and meditation oils!  The scent of these products alone will bring serenity to your giftee’s not to mention the beautiful afterglow of using them!  price range:  $1-$20

Handmade items:

We pride ourselves on combining local art and wellness, what can we say-we love Portland and especially the Alberta Arts District!

  • Munio Candela:   Candles, herb filled bath scrubbies and aroma sachets all lovingly made right here in Portland.  Everything about Munio Candela products is beautiful and sustainable, even the packaging!  Another great choice for nearly anyone on your list this holiday season!  price range:   $10-$30

  • Crochet Wears:  Hand crafted crochet hats, sleeves, cowls and scarves  by our very own Carly Rice.  These items are each so unique and skillfully made.  You really have to see them for yourself!  price range:  $20-$25

  • Jewelry: We have unique necklaces adorned with natures best shells and stones, these are truly lovely and are perfect for anyone who appreciates art and creativity!  price range:  $20-$35  *made by our very own Katie Jayne Selin!  We do have a talented team:)

  • Art:  Every year we are honored to host a variety of Portland’s most talented artists.  You don’t want to miss this show filled with beautiful creations all priced at $100 or less!

holiday gift ideas

Whatever you do this holiday season please remember to help create a vibrant economy in Portland by shopping local!  Every dollar counts for small businesses and lucky for all of us you have so much to choose from right here at home:)  Please check out Alberta Main Street’s calendar for local shopping events and other great info anytime of the year!  Now head on over to our website to get your gift certificate’s and don’t forget to use promo code “holiday” to get your deal.  Also let us know you will be stopping by the Small Works Art Show on 12/14 5:30-8 by joining the event on Facebook.  We can’t wait to see your lovely faces this holiday season!

What is cupping?

Cupping seems to be all the rage with athletes right now and for good reason, it works!  I have heard a lot of varying opinions since I first tried out cupping myself, some folks believe it’s a hoax and the benefit is just a placebo effect, others seem confused about it all together, some think it will be painful and others agree that it is absolutely fabulous.  In this post I hope to give you a clear and simple explanation of cupping so that you can go boldly forward to try it out for yourself!

Here we go….


The definition of cup·ping


noun: cupping

(in Chinese medicine) a therapy in which heated glass cups are applied to the skin along the meridians of the body, creating suction as a way of stimulating the flow of energy.

To add on to the dictionary definition cupping is used to stimulate blood flow, bring fresh blood to the area and increase healing. This means it is good for physical issues including injuries, muscle tension, pain, restricted movement and so much more!

Who can provide cupping treatments?

If you have a complimentary health care provider that you currently see my advice would be to check with them first for a recommendation.  If not you can visit us at Written on the Body!  Both Theresa and Richard offer cupping treatments in addition to Acupuncture to our clients.  Or you can seek out an acupuncturist, massage therapist or naturopathic physician who is trained in cupping.

What happens during a cupping treatment?

After a thorough intake with your practitioner they will have you disrobe the affected area.  Some practitioners might use a tiny amount of oil to prepare your skin for the cupping procedure.  There are different types of cupping, some use glass cups and fire to create suction and others use plastic cups that have tiny built in pumps to draw the air out.  Whichever type of cups used you will feel the flesh being sucked up into the cups, typically this is not painful but depending on your specific issue it can become a little more intense.  If it is too uncomfortable you can always let your practitioner know so that they can release some of the suction.  Some therapists will let the cups sit for a time (seconds to a few minutes) and others will move the cups around similar to a massaging motion.

What happens after a cupping treatment?

After your practitioner removes the cups you may feel some tenderness in the area but it typically fades within 24 hours, you may also feel more tired than usual as your body works hard to heal itself.  You will most likely have deep red or purple marks where the cups have been placed but they do not feel painful.  These marks are caused by stagnant blood and toxins coming to the surface and will fade within a week or so.  You will probably feel better!  You might notice more freedom and less pain in the areas that have been cupped.  If you get regular treatments and have a good self care routine you may even make a full recovery from injuries or other chronic issues.

Cupping in the news:

The Portland Trail Blazers added cupping into their injury prevention and recovery routines:

Floyd Mayweather recently got cupping:


Cupping is an ancient healing practice and this blog post is just a short adventure into what it is all about.  To really understand it you will need to experience it and learn about the philosophies surrounding traditional Chinese medicine.

Have more questions?  Leave them in the comments or email us at  Thanks for reading and we look forward to working with you soon!  Book online today.

Is pain after a massage normal?

Have you ever gotten a great massage only to have pain the next day?  Pain after a massage can be a normal part of healing.

If you haven’t had a massage in a while, are brand new to massage or have a new issue that you are working on the chances are fairly high that you might experience some level of pain in the day or two following a massage.  There are many explanations for this and though the experience and specifics will be unique to each person there are a few standard reasons on why this phenomenon happens:

  • Everyone has muscular patterns that have been created and reinforced over time and sometimes these patterns aren’t healthy resulting in inefficient ways of moving.  The result is an overall imbalance with some muscles being tight and shortened while others are weak and overstretched.  Eventually this can cause pain and/or injury as well as a sort of numbness.  When massage begins to help release these unbalanced muscle patterns, the body has to adjust to a new and unfamiliar way of being, which can feel uncomfortable or even painful for a time.  This is also the reason that regular massage combined with a self care plan is so important. As you might imagine it will take quite some time and effort to undo something that took so long to create.

  • Your massage therapist may move your body in a way that it is not accustomed to and just like a new exercise routine it can cause fatigue or soreness the following day or two.  Staying active, hot baths with Epsom salts, ice therapy or heat therapy can help ease this type of discomfort as your body adjusts to these new feelings.

  • There is a lot of controversy surrounding detoxification and massage, I don’t want to add fuel to this debate in any way.  I will stick to this:  massage increases circulation and stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system which can sometimes cause an overload to your mind and body.  Especially when it hasn’t experienced these sensations before, recently or if your body’s resources are going toward healing another issue such as an injury at the time of your massage.  Drinking water, resting and taking care of yourself in general following a massage is important to lessening the possibility of fatigue or pain response.

Not all pain is created equal and it is always important to communicate with your massage therapist during your treatment.  You should ask your therapist to lighten up on the pressure if you are experiencing pain during your massage that is sharp, shooting, numbing, tingling or 7+ on a pain scale of 1-10 (1 being very little to no pain and 10 being severe pain).  You should always be able to breathe during your massage and if all your muscles are tensed against the pressure it defeats the purpose of trying to get tense muscles to let go.  Good pain is ok but beyond that pain is not beneficial to your health.  If you are experiencing sensations during or after a massage that seem abnormal you should communicate them to your therapist and if you think something is wrong it may be a good idea to check in with your doctor.   In general there is nothing abnormal about experiencing a little pain after massage and it will likely stop happening after you begin to get regular treatments.

We are looking forward to seeing you soon!  Book online today:)