RALEIGH, N.C. — Spas are more popular than ever, but the next time you go, you may be surprised to see a 13-year-old getting a facial or a 15-year-old waiting for a massage.
Teenagers are pampering themselves like never before.
Kyle David, 18, visits the spa as often as he can. His football coach recommends it to help with sore muscles.
"During the season, I like doing it the Saturday or Sunday after a game, and then in the offseason, I'll just get it in whenever," he said.
David's teammates used to tease him; now they go to the spa, too.
"Once you get in and see what it's all about, most people really end up liking it," he said.
More and more teens are pampering themselves.
Iatria Spa owner Erika Mangrum says kids as young as age 13 come in. Manicures, massages and sunless tanning are in high demand.
Many teens say they visit the spa to relieve stress.
"They're so booked. They are going from event to event to school and everything, and this is a wonderful escape for them," Mangrum said.
Teen facials are also popular, especially for those with skin problems.
"It was mostly for pampering, but also helped to clear up my skin a little bit because I was having acne and stuff," Heather Marslender said.
Dermatologist Dr. Timothy Flynn says facials and other treatments can be good for teens.
"It's a good opportunity to encourage some good health behaviors," he said.
Teens with serious acne may need to see a doctor instead.
"It's a problem for them, especially it if could be leading to scarring, they should go in and see their dermatologist right away," Flynn said.
Teen spa visits cost the same as for adults, but if you ask these teens, it is money well-spent.
Teens younger than 18 must have a parental consent form signed before they visit the spa. Right now, girls reportedly use spas more than boys, but it is gaining in popularity with males.
Mangrum says teenage boys are her fastest-growing client group.