With just over two decades in the spa industry — working not only in spas, but in environments from medicinal offices and corporate wellness centers to residential holistic programs and yoga in schools — Stephanie Graber has helped a plethora of people navigate their wellness journeys. Being a longtime health advocate, as Stephanie built relationships with clients, she always made an effort to refer people to holistic practitioners she knew could assist with their healing, so they could get back to living a life they love: one that’s healthy, and free of stress and pain.
When Stephanie moved to Humboldt County in 2010, she decided to start a business completely focused on wellness. Her dream? One door, with a team of holistic practitioners who offer various services to support clients. This is how Essential Elements Spa was created — with a mission to inspire and serve the community through spa and wellness programs that educate and support clients in their lifestyle goals.
We talked with Stephanie about what she’s learned since starting her one-stop wellness sanctuary and what beauty from within means to her:
What's one thing you wish you knew about starting your own business that you didn't know at the time?
In my previous business, I had only worked with independent contractors. Opening Essential Elements Spa was an entirely new adventure for me. I wish that I had known more about what I was stepping into as an owner. It is a huge responsibility to have your employees' livelihoods in your hands. Managing people, achieving the profit margins to keep the business thriving, filing the tax reports with the state and federal government, and working the business was a huge undertaking for me.
I am so grateful for the experience. I’ve learned so much, but I wish I would have known prior to opening the business the additional workload and personal sacrifices it would require to create a successful business.
We love that we share Humboldt roots with you! What is one of your favorite things about having a business in Humboldt County?
Living in Humboldt County is a true blessing. We get the best of nature — the ocean, the mountains, the rivers, and the gorgeous redwoods. It brings a peacefulness that allows our community to prioritize self-care and take the time to care for themselves. Owning a spa allows me to provide the services that help our clients take care of their bodies to pursue their passions and hobbies.
What's one piece of beauty or wellness advice you wish everyone knew?
I believe that wellness and beauty are really about the choices that we make on a daily basis. Taking care of our skin and bodies allows you to live the life you love. It instills confidence from feeling good, inside and out. This is what self-care is really about.
What's your favorite way to relax?
My favorite way to relax is taking a hike in the redwoods, getting on my yoga mat, or walking on the beach and feeling the sand in-between my toes. When I need some serious downtime, it’s enjoying a good book to step into another place and time.
What's your go-to 707 Flora product and how do you like to use it?
I love the 707 Flora line — I don’t know if I can choose just one! I love Core Cleanser — I also use it as a body wash. 707 Balm is always in my purse or pocket. I use it for lip care, wound care, and just recently used it as a healing salve after my chemical peel recovery. But, my new favorite is the CBD + Turmeric Tincture in Berry Bliss. I use it everyday and feel the difference in my body. It is my daily “go-to” product!
What does the phrase "Beauty from Within" mean to you?
Beauty is not superficial! When we do not feel like our best selves mentally or physically, it shows on the outside. Just think about when you are in pain physically, how do you show up in your life? Other people can not see that pain or stress, but they feel it through your communication and body language. I believe that “Beauty from Within” is when we are feeling your best inside and then your beauty will radiate outside, too!
Learn more about Essential Elements Spa in Humboldt County, CA. Follow Essential Elements on Instagram and Facebook.