When Coral Peters shakes your hand, you know that something is up.
The firm grip of this warm-hearted and smiling woman gives you a sense of how strong and determined she is. And she must be, to have reinvented herself into becoming the multi-talented massage and spa specialist she is today. After 30 years in high-dollar corporate marketing and accounting, she recently teamed up with best friend (and hairdresser) Tari Conrad to open and run the Metamorphosis Salon and Spa in the Killarney Shoppers Mall in the spring of 2009.
“This spa is an extension of who we are, and the products reflect who we are,” said Peters. “We both came up with the name because we were both going through a transition in our lives. It’s all about change and transformation. I had a successful career, if you measure success in money. I had the big house and cars. When my new life started, and I got divorced, I quit my job, and sold all my businesses. I had been running day spas and salons, but I could never work in them, because I wasn’t licensed. Then I went to Toronto to pursue my dream. My mission and my dream now is to make a difference in people’s lives.”
At the Mississauga School of Aromatherapy and Spa, Peters completed an intense study program specially designed for her. When she emerged, she was accredited as a certified holistic massage therapist and certified spa specialist. She also added two more strings to her bow – becoming certified in advanced sugaring hair removal, and mineral makeup formulation. These are services usually only available in the big city, and to find them in a rural town – and at reasonable prices – is a real plus for the small community she loves to serve.
“I feel that I’m making a connection with my clients,” said Peters. “But it’s more intimate when you are doing a massage. I seem to have a sense of what people need when it comes to reactions. I really feel that if people could learn to relax, they wouldn’t need to go to the doctor as much.”
The private, candle-lit massage room is a nice surprise, with its wonderful silk brocade coverlet (also made by the owners) on the massage table, and hot stones heating up for customers who know what they want in a treatment.
Probably the most unique aspect of the spa is the wide array of formulations created and produced in-house by Peters. The beautiful products, which line the decorative walls and shelves of the ecofriendly premises, are all made completely from natural components only. Everything from coconut and grapeseed oil, to pure essences of rose, lavender and tea tree oil, go into making daily-use items such as shampoo and conditioner, deodorants, skin creams and soaps.
“You can actually eat everything we sell,” she said.
Sugaring, for facial and body hair removal, is also something special, as I was about to find out.
“I use white sugar, fresh lemon juice and water to make it,” said Peters, who held a portion of the shining caramel substance between the fingers and palm of her right hand. “It’s better than electrolysis and waxing. It’s a natural substance, and it also exfoliates dead skin. I pull in the direction of hair growth, and it pulls out the follicles. Usually three or four treatments, every three or four weeks, are needed to get started, and then it can last for months.”
To demonstrate the power of sugaring, Peters first ran a strip of the translucent material up and down my mosquito-punctured, scabbed and unshaven lower legs, before quickly rolling it up again, and consequently removing the hair. It was a short, sharp shock each time, but also strangely relieving and calming. A cooling, scented cream finished off the procedure, as she massaged one of the salon’s own formulations into my smoothed calves. For $30 you can have both lower legs done (as she did for me) and the results were pretty cool for this farmer and gardener. If I wanted to, I could even use some of the rock mineral makeup the salon prepares now to disguise the wounds on my now-chic smooth legs. Peters said that of all her products, her favourites were the shampoo and conditioner she creates, and the mineral makeup that she personally customizes for clients. A container of this illuminating substance sells for just $15, and is best applied with a brush for easy and effective coverage. Just about everything a woman needed was on the shelves, it seemed. Especially ones with sensitive skin or those struggling with conventional makeup and personal-care products.
“Our target market is women, but we do see men,” said Peters, who personally suffered from products in the
past that reacted badly on her skin. “Our products are especially
good in keeping skin healthy, and to help people with skin problems
or issues, or makeup needs. We can individualize the mineral powder makeup for you, and customize it for summer or winter.”
For Peters, it’s all about blending natural substances into wonderful products,
and listening to her clients. She is happy she made the move from Winnipeg, and into this small, southwestern farming town. She’s even developed a natural spray-on Skeeter Repellent that fits into a purse, which is just about to hit her salon shelves and the local farmers’ market on Saturdays. It’s made with witch hazel, eucalyptus citriodora, and essences of juniper, geranium, tea tree and lemongrass. It smells rather heavenly. Hopefully the mosquitoes won’t think so, and will leave my sensational legs alone now to recover.
“I love it when people come to me, and pose a question, like, ‘my baby has cradle cap. What can I do?’” said Peters. “I have started out again, with a new life, and have been finding out who I am, how to express myself, and be authentic. It’s all good, and a wonderful journey.”
For more information on Metamorphosis Salon and Spa, telephone (204) 523-4247, or go to www.metasalon.net. – Kim Langen writes from
YOU’LL BE TRANSFORMED:Coral Peters shows some of her natural spa products she makes in-house.
“Mymissionandmydream nowistomakeadifference inpeople’slives.”
– CORAL PETERS