Lebo has the special touch

WITH the World Cup a few weeks away, beauty spas are getting ready for busier days.

WITH the World Cup a few weeks away, beauty spas are getting ready for busier days.

Lebo Ramorapeli, head therapist at Kievits Kroon, has a huge responsibility on her hands.

Not only does she have to ensure that the 15 therapists falling under her supervision are happy but that every client who visits Kievits Kroon for a beauty treatment goes home with a smile on their face and feeling relaxed.

Ramorapeli, a 26-year-old married mother of one, believes that beauty therapists have a big role to play during this hectic period.

"Beauty therapy is a popular treat for tourists. Many World Cup guests will visit the spa for relaxation and beauty treatments, and it is our duty to make sure they go back to their countries feeling great and highly impressed with the beauty industry in South Africa."

Ramorapeli says that there is nothing more fulfilling to a therapist than seeing a smile on the face of a guest who has visited the spa feeling stressed and worn-out but leave feeling rejuvenated and refreshed.

Ramorapeli, who was the first black therapist at Kievits Kroon, says the team is ready for the challenges the World Cup will bring and has no doubt that the South African beauty industry is on par with First World spa facilities and packages.

"Most foreigners who come to our spa compliment the venue for its world-class facilities. We believe that South African therapists are among the best and most highly-trained therapists in the world."

The Beauty KO graduate, who holds a diploma in Somatology, admits that diligence and integrity played a very important role in moulding her career.

When asked about her success at Kievits Kroon and being promoted to head therapist, she says that when an opportunity to become the first black therapist at Kievits Kroon presented itself, she embraced it with all her heart.

"I did not want to disappoint my employers and my clients, but wanted them to have confidence in my skills."

She says that when she started, there were times when she felt she'd rather be socializing with friends, but when she looks at where she is today, she is glad she persevered. As head therapist, she has treated VIP guests, celebrities, royalty and journalists.

"Ever since I was a child I loved the idea of transforming people. I feel privileged to work in a health spa like Kievits Kroon that is among the highly rated spas in the country," she says.

Ramorapeli, who started her career four years ago, says that it helps to have an upbeat and patient personality because it can be challenging to keep a positive attitude in front of difficult clients who sometimes have unrealistic demands.

"I always tell my therapists to make people feel confident and better about themselves. That has an impact on the world. This is a competitive industry. You need to show that you are active and enthusiastic about what you do."

To young women who are just starting out and mature women who are seeking a career change, Ramorapeli recommends asking around at quality spas and salons to find the most reputable schools in their area. She also recommends offering to help out at spas on weekends, folding towels and cleaning up.

"My dream is to one day be recognised as a leader in the health, beauty and wellness fields. I see myself in the future owning my own beauty spa, mentoring young therapists and contributing to beauty magazines."