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Mystery Shopping Assignment - Float Culture

18 July, 2016 - 08:49pm by - First Lady | 27 Comments

Being one of our three Superheroes has some perks. The most enviable (other than the cape) has to be the chance to mystery shop a beauty counter, salon or shop.  Oh yes, we give our Superheroes some spending money and send them undercover in the beauty industry.

When it came to choosing a mission for our glowing goddess Koni we decided to do something a little unexpected.  We could have sent her highlighter shopping, but we didn't want to add to her problem...so we went her to experience floating.  In an enclosed pod.  In the dark.  Because we were too scared to try it ourselves.

What was the assignment you were given?

To put on my big girl pants and make my way to Float Culture and immerse my body in warm water saturated with Epsom salt solution inside a float pod - in the DARK!

Describe your first impressions of your experience.

Have you ever done something and then asked yourself “what did I just do”?  This was me and it’s probably the only time I ever wanted to become Riddick (who has night vision and is played by the oh so glorious Vin Diesel). But I digress! Float Culture aims to provide people with the ultimate form of peace and relaxation through sensory deprivation in their specially designed i-sopods.

I booked myself online for the 90 minute “floatation therapy” session in the Lake Room (you can also select Forest, Ocean and Cosmic).  Based on their website and instagram, I didn’t expect to find them down a street of what looks like empty run down offices and garages.  The place is smaller than I expected but clean and the staff welcoming, informative and helpful. The floatation rooms are private and spacious with a shower, toilet, lovely Sukin products decorating the wash basin, a grand looking i-sopod and a bench with clothes hooks and hangers above.  I started to get excited (but hold that thought).

What questions did they ask you before commencing your consultation? What information did you give them

They asked me if it was my first float and handed me a standard form to fill out my personal details and the reason why I was there.  I chose “relaxation” because “I’m a silly human” wasn’t an option.

Describe what happened during your consultation. Talk about the environment, how you felt during the appointment, your consultant’s attitude.

I was taken to the Lake Room and the staff member patiently walked me through the steps for pre-float, float and post-float and then I was left to start my session. In hindsight, it’s very simple but I was battling with my courage to  1. close the pod and 2. *shivers at the thought* turn the lights off in the pod.  I kid you not, if this wasn’t an assignment I would have kept that light on but I wanted to be sure I experienced it all. 

The i-sopod itself is a magnificent thing, it’s your own little sanctuary away from the world!  I had no issues floating in utter silence with my eyes closed and the pod lights on.  However, once the lights are out I found myself apprehensive, my breathing began to quicken and my usually not-so-flash memory was flipping fantastic at remembering The Omen and worse Freddy Krueger.  I learned that opening my eyes (knowing I’m not Riddick) and seeing darkness in its purest form wasn’t pleasant.  I may have possibly lunged for the light button in the pod and in the process confirmed that salt does indeed burn your eyes.  Float Culture thinks of people like me and they have a handy spray bottle of fresh water inside the pod to spritz your face. Once I managed to calm down, I decided to turn the lights on and off for the duration of my session to ensure I got to experience floating with the night fairies.

What did you like about your experience?

I really enjoyed the ambiance and cleanliness of the place and after a few visits I know it’ll be easier to relax. Floating in the i-sopod is a wonderful feeling, my body felt free and light and often I would zone out for a few minutes without a care in the world.  I appreciated how helpful and knowledgeable the staff were as well as the tips they provided.  I also liked trying some of the Sukin products that I would never have otherwise considered such as the shampoo and body lotion.

Anything you didn’t like?

Well I’m afraid of the ocean at night so naturally I’m afraid of being in water in pitch black darkness.  However, now that my assignment is over I can leave the light on – yes shine bright i-sopod! My hair felt dry and smelled of salty solution even after 2 thorough washes so I would recommend a swimming cap or shower cap but it’s something I would suggest checking with the staff.

Were you happy with the outcome from your experience?

Not entirely.  I felt light on my feet but not the type of relaxed state the staff described, however they did advise that most first timers usually take up most of the session getting used to the new environment.

Would you visit this place again, if you were paying for it yourself?

My soon-to-be demoted friends would like to go and insist that I lead the way so yes looks like I will be going back.

Would you recommend this experience to a friend?

Yes but one float will not be enough for anyone to fully reap the benefits of this service.  Now that I know what to expect I can prepare myself better.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

Make sure your head is at the entry of the i-sopod, if you fall asleep and fail to wake up to the music, the pumps will come on and you do not want that!  The pumps are loud but we need not worry, I was fully alert from start to end. Thank you Beauty Review for this amazing opportunity!!

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What a cool and different thing to do!

It was cool for sure (even if my knees were buckling haha).

19th July, 2016 at 6:57 pm

How cool that both our challenges involved water and weird pods. You are braver than I though. I don't think I could have done this one. Were you left alone the whole time? And do you literally float or do you rest partially on something?

I want to try the one you did so I'm on the look out :-) Yes once the staff have walked you through what you have to do, you're on your own in the room. You literally float - you just lie back in the water and voila.

19th July, 2016 at 6:14 pm

I have seen a documentary on these and was super curious to hear an unbiased opinion so thank you for the write up! It sounds like a seriously surreal and strange (but cool), thing to do - good on you for giving it a go!

Thank you Jess, I read almost everything on their website to prepare myself but I failed to keep my scaredy cat fear in check when it came to the light switch :-S

19th July, 2016 at 7:08 pm

Eeek, I felt your fear reading that! It must be a super relaxing experience if/once you get used to the environment though! I love that some of these challenges take you right out of your comfort zone!

I had been pondering booking in for one of these 'pod things' as we had one open up nearby that keeps offering deals but 1) I didn't realise you were expected to lay in them in complete darkness, and 2) I didn't realise it involved salt water - the hair and skin doesn't enjoy it all that much. Thanks for the info, so glad I found out now!

But most importantly, I love your boots! And your face xx

You don't have to lie in them in complete darkness but they do recommend it to fully reap the benefits. I only turned it off because of my assignment but I know that I can easily relax and zone out with the light on :-)

19th July, 2016 at 7:14 pm

Oh yes it wouldn't be too good for right? I knew it had Epsom salt but not once did I think about what it would do to my hair until I laid back in the water (face palm)! Haha you're too sweet BEQ - they're from Novo xx

19th July, 2016 at 7:17 pm

Sounds like a very interesting experience, thanks for braving it Koni but I don't think I'll be putting it on my list of things to do xx

You are so brave Koni! It's always a bit scary stepping out of your comfort zone. Well done for a great challenge and great review.

Thank you Nicole, if it wasn't for BR I don't think I could have turned that light off :-)

19th July, 2016 at 6:32 pm

Lid up - good, lid down - no thanks! You are indeed brave, I could feel my claustrophobia closing in as soon as you mentioned closing the lid. Yikes. Very brave.

Oh yes I agree, closing the lid was tough but the dark tested me the most...eeekkkk.

19th July, 2016 at 6:37 pm

Great review and really brave of you to take that challenge :)

Thank you Krystal :-)

19th July, 2016 at 6:38 pm

Great review Koni. This sounds like an amazing, refreshing experience. I love your review. It is so awesome to read about an experience that had you a bit worried to start with, but now you will be doing it again, how awesome! Thanks for sharing you great experience.

Thank you Kim, I wasn't overly excited when my friends told me they wanted me to go with them haha but I think the company might make it less daunting :-)

19th July, 2016 at 6:42 pm

Float tanks are awesome when you get used to them. I can literally get in one now, close my eyes and then it feels like 2 minutes later an hour has gone by! It's so bad for your hair but awesome for your skin. I hope you try it again to reap the benefits.

How many sessions did it take you to fully relax? I'm heading back next month but keeping the light on haha :-S

19th July, 2016 at 6:05 pm

Second time was heaps better - it's the not knowing what's going to happen that makes the first one more uncomfortable.

19th July, 2016 at 11:09 pm

When I first saw it on facebook I didn't know what it was. I'm all for relaxion type treatments. That cosmic one sounds like me. Sounds like an hell of an experience. I would love to try it one day.

It's definitely an experience I won't forget and I hope you get to try it too xx

19th July, 2016 at 6:45 pm

I think you did really well and I would have felt the same .I am not keen on water and to be in it is the dark does not appeal to me at all. Good on you !!

Thank you, I feel better knowing that I can leave the light on in my next session (sigh) haha.

19th July, 2016 at 6:47 pm

this sounds awesome - I think I could really relax in that environment, just not sure how I would justify 90 minutes away from everything else!

The staff told me that for the regulars the time just flies by (like Ringy above). So you may not even have to justify the 90 mins hehe (which includes the walk through, 5 min shower before and 10-15 min shower after).

19th July, 2016 at 6:55 pm

Well done! Very brave I too would be worried about the water and the dark it scares me hehe but it does look fun once you get used to it! Great review loved reading about your experience:)

Thank you, I'm hoping to do better in my next session.

19th July, 2016 at 7:00 pm

Great written assignment in detail. If I was there I would kept light on...lol. I feel scared of ocean and darkness together. You are breve koni. I definitely agree with you regards of place comfortable. When you first time be there,new place and new people, don't know what to expect. Float looks scary to me...lol

Oh Rajvee you understand my fear of the ocean at night :-) Don't worry it's all lights on next time haha!!

19th July, 2016 at 7:02 pm

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