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Want Fries With That?

Is this the aftermath of a Three Stooges pie fight or just the latest spa trend?

Why are consumers binging on the $5 billion spa industry's newest thing: food baths and massages? To find out, I went for the "Champagne Wishes & Caviar Creams" treatment at Verabella Skin Therapy Salon in Beverly Hills. Created by Verabella owner and 25-year industry veteran Vera Kantor, the service uses real champagne and caviar extracts to combat the signs of aging. I admit I wasn't too excited about the idea of wrapping my face in caviar and a freeze-dried collagen sheet at first. Ah, me of little faith. I floated out of the place glowing and exuberant, vowing to return once a month, even if it meant hocking all my possessions to be able to afford the $150 treatment.

Food-themed treatments are catching on in spas nationwide. The Spa at the Crescent, in the Hotel Crescent Court in Dallas, offers a specialty body treatment that features being slathered with barbecue sauce, while Aroma-Listic Day Spa & Salon in Agoura Hills, California, touts a "White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle" service. "Clients can get a European wrap and facial anywhere," says Monique Moore, 32, who co-owns Aroma-Listic with twin sister Monette Moore. "If you're more original with your ingredients, you draw in more people."

What's my prediction for the next hot spa trend? Four words: peanut butter and jelly.

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This article was originally published in the July 2001 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Want Fries With That?.

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