Spafinder Wellness announces 2016 trends

Wellness and surfing, spa and wellness on demand, wellbeing solutions for the whole family and the fusion of high-adrenaline activity and relaxation were some of Spafinder Wellness’ top 10 industry for 2016, released today.

Revealed in a webinar hosted by Susie Ellis, president of Spafinder Wellness, and research director Beth McGroarty, earlier today, this year’s Global Spa & Wellness Trends Forecast was the 13th such report.

The first trend, Surf’s Up, highlighted the growth of surfing as a fitness form, including standup paddle boarding, around the world, and the increasing emergence of resorts offering a combination of surfing activities and wellness solutions.

McGroarty said: “We’re seeing amazing properties that combine surfing and wellness at every price point.” Surfing, Spafinder stated, is no longer the reserve of young men, it now appeals to consumers of all genders and ages.

Parenting Well: Serious Spa & Wellness for Kids addressed the trends of parents extending the wellness solutions that work for them to their children and dedicating more time and money to wellbeing solutions for their children. 

Driven by factors including the global obesity problem among children and too many sedentary hours, we are now seeing more yoga classes for kids, mindfulness sessions in schools and a growing awareness of the health benefits of massage for babies, among other features 

The Adrenaline & Zen Cocktail trend, Spafinder stated, is centred around engaging in high-octane activities, such as zip lining or other extreme sports, followed by spa treatments and other forms of relaxation 

McGroarty said: “This trend is fuelled by our high pace life: extreme is the zeitgeist.” This trend, McGroarty added, draws on the credibility offered by the scientific evidence of the mind-body benefits of “combining an adrenaline rush with relaxation”.

The expectation that everything will be instantly available to us now extends to the spa and wellness realm more and more, as Spafinder highlighted in the On Demand: Uber-izing Spa & Wellness trend.

There are now a growing number of apps and services that allow users to book a beauty treatment or a massage in much the same way they would heir Uber cab.

Susie Ellis said: “More than ever, your health and happiness is just a click away. This trend is consumer driven, it’s something people really want because they are stressed and pressed for time.”

Other trends included Sexual Wellbeing, with more and more sexual wellbeing programmes and courses now found at wellbeing retreats, and the emergence of temazcal, the Mexican healing ritual that incorporates steam, heat, herbs and prayers and which is led by a shaman, as a global trend.

Well-fests, the growing number of wellness-focused festivals around the world; Skincare Gets Seoul-ful, the continued market-leading position held by the South Korean beauty industry; and Healthy Cruising; the prevalence of stunning wellness experience onboard cruise ship that rival anything you would find on land, were also among the trends.

Last but not least, Workplace Wellness Wakes Up highlighted that workplace wellness programmes are no longer enough, it’s now about an entire culture of corporate wellness, incorporating everything from a healthy working environment to offering services such as on-site yoga and meditation and even financial counselling to ease economic worries.

Ellis said: “Just having a workplace wellness programme is not enough anymore, you need to really care about people."

2016 Global Spa & Wellness Trends

  1. Surf’s Up: New Waves in Wellness
  2. Sexual Wellbeing: Taboo No More
  3. Temazcal
  4. Parenting Well: Serious Spa & Wellness for Kids
  5. The Adrenaline and Zen Cocktail: Resetting the Mind & Body
  6. Well-Fests: Festivals Shift from Wasted to Wellness
  7. On Demand: Uber-izing Spa & Wellness
  8. Skin Car Gets Seoul-ful: The Korean Beauty Explosion 2.0
  9. Healthy Cruising: The Ship of Excess Has Set Sail
  10. Workplace Wellness Wakes Up

For the more information, and to download the full report, go to

 *Image: The Liv Nordic spa onboard the Viking Star cruise ship, an example of trend number nine