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Unique Hawaiian Spa Ingredients

Anara Spa at Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa on Kauai features treatments using passionfruit, noni, volcanic clay and 'awa root
Anara Spa at Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa on Kauai features treatments using passion fruit, noni, volcanic clay and 'awa root

We like to buy and eat local, but spa local? Absolutely. On Hawaii! Thanks to the Aloha State's unique agriculture, the islands' many top spas offer treatments with ingredients — such as mountain apple or noni — that are uniquely Hawaiian. From sea salt soaks on Oahu to sugar cane exfoliation on Maui to a lava rock sauna on the Big Island, we have rounded up spas that incorporate locally grown natural healing ingredients and local traditions into their menus. But before you embark on your island spa hopping adventure, here are some of the most common items along with their health properties, to help you in your decision making progress.

Despite its name, similar appearance and taste, the Hawaiian mountain apple or Öhi'a'Ai (pronounced oh-he-ah-eye) is not related to apples. The juicy fruit is thought to have been imported from Malaysia by the original Polynesian voyagers. Its purported health benefits are copious, from diuretic and expectorant to liver and brain tonic.

Noni, which flourishes in Hawaii, has been used by Hawaiian Kahunas for myriad conditions such as urinary tract infections, digestive issues and skin problems. Today, people enjoy the antioxidant-packed superfood for its cancer-fighting and immune-boosting properties.

Noni is a powerful super antioxidant
Noni is a powerful super antioxidant

Volcanic mud has high levels of sulfur, which is a mineral that protects the skin against toxins from pollution and radiation and slows down the aging process. Mud wraps also decrease the appearance of cellulite, relieve joint and muscle aches, and hydrate the skin. Hawaiian sea salt, or alaea salt, is enriched with iron and mineral-rich clay that gives it a reddish coloring. A sea salt scrub not only buffs away dead skin cells but it also stimulates circulation, eases muscle cramps and stiffness and soothes overworked joints.

'Awa, or kava root, is a locally grown root that, when massaged into the skin or infused in a mud wrap, relaxes the muscles and decreases anxiety. Lehua honey is a unique type of honey derived from the Lehua plant that works as an anti-aging skin care product, as well as a moisturizer that calms the skin and is suitable for sensitive skin.

Maui's own sugar cane buffs away dry, dead skin while polishing the new skin. Both coconut and macadamia nut oils replenish the skin and reduce signs of aging by rejuvenating saggy skin and tightening wrinkles. Lomi lomi massage is an ancient Hawaiian technique that incorporates the fingers, palms, forearms, elbows and hot stones to achieve muscle relaxation and relieve tenderness.

Now that you are armed with uniquely Hawaiian botanical and health know-how, choose a relaxing, detoxifying or energizing healing modality from the following luxe spas:

Sugar cane buffs away dry, dead skin
Sugar cane buffs away dry, dead skin


At the Kahala Spa at The Kahala Hotel & Resort on Oahu, all signature spa treatments begin with the ritual of Ho'omaka, a cleansing and detoxifying Hawaiian sea salt foot scrub. Hawaiian sea salts are great when you are feeling achy all over or are suffering from minor injuries, sprains or swelling. Hawaiian sea salts help improve blood circulation and reduce tenderness. They also help to relieve minor skin irritations as well as diminish scars and blemishes.

For men, there's the Kane Ali'I, an exfoliating Lehua honey scrub, 'Awa Volcanic mud wrap for legs and feet and a deep tissue lomi lomi massage with a traditional lomi lomi stick and warm Pohaku stones.
Women can indulge in the Wahine Lokahi body treatment, which features a full-body skin brushing and an exfoliating Lehua honey scrub, followed by a lomi lomi massage, which incorporates flower essences and organic massage oils and ends with a refreshing botanical mist. For more information, visit or call 808-739-8938.

Spa Grande at Grand Wailea on Maui
Spa Grande at Grand Wailea on Maui


At Spa Grande at Grand Wailea on Maui, The Maui Sugar Cane Exfoliation features Maui's own sugar cane combined with coconut (an effective moisturizer on all types of skin, including oily and very dry skin) and macadamia nut (lightweight and rejuvenating). The combination of oils exfoliates and moisturizes the skin while lavender relaxes the soul. Sugar cane enzymes gently dissolve dull surface cells. For more information, visit or call 800-888-6100.


Anara Spa at Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa on Kauai offers spa packages featuring special Hawaii ingredients such as the spa's own clay, which detoxifies and delivers essential materials to calm and balance the nervous system. Local 'awa root is polished over one's body with warm stones, inducing deep relaxation. Volcanic clay detoxifies and delivers essential minerals to calm and balance the nervous system. Spa Journeys include treatments using passion fruit (to soften skin), mango (for skin elasticity and regeneration of skin cells) and noni (a powerful super antioxidant). For more information, visit or call 808-742-1234.

The open air Lava Sauna is a unique experience at the Mauna Lani Spa & Salon on Hawaii. Stepping on warm Ili Ili stones, guests are treated with black volcanic clay that smoothes skin. After the mud is dried, guests are guided to a private outdoor rain shower. Volcanic clay is ultra-absorbent and gentle on the skin. For more information, visit or call 808-885-6622.

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