My Biz: Coralville spa helps cancer patients, survivors

Business owner holds only oncology esthetics certification in Iowa

Tracy Lacina, owner and certified clinical oncology esthetician at Skin Deep Salon & Spa, offers services designed for o
Tracy Lacina, owner and certified clinical oncology esthetician at Skin Deep Salon & Spa, offers services designed for oncology patients' more sensitive skin, including gentle massage, exfoliation and moisturization using products designed for oncology patient and a full-spectrum infrared sauna (at right) for detoxification after a patient has finished chemotherapy treatment. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

Tracy Lacina can empathize with her customers.

A cancer survivor herself, Lacina understands the importance of treating the whole body when she works with a client.

“Obviously we have to have our medical oncologists,” she noted, “but we want to treat the person behind the disease. You’ve lost your hair, and now you have acne or an irritating rash from the chemotherapy — or you have radiation burns and you are fatigued.

“Where do you go to get a safe, quality treatment that is going to help you feel a little better?”

In 2010, Lacina completed her certificate in oncology esthetics and expanded the usual cosmetology services she offered at Skin Deep Salon and Spa, which she opened in 2009 to include services designed especially for individuals with or recovering from cancer.

“Currently I am the only person in the state of Iowa to hold this certification,” said Lacina, who worked as a dental assistant before changing careers.

“Oncology esthetics has only been in the United States since 2010,” Lacina explained. “Other countries have recognized and been employing it for many years already.”

Clinical oncology esthetics training “explores how those are further compounded by various medications, as well as the importance of proper sanitation to support weakened immune systems. Understanding how to safely and effectively treat the skin, particularly when it is challenged by cancer is paramount to the psychological and physical care of the client.”

Skin care products on the market for cancer patients are limited, and Lacina said that products by tecNiche Therapies are what she mainly uses for cancer patients.

All services provided for Skin Deep Salon and Spa oncology clients are designed to compliment traditional health care and aid in whole body awareness.

“I don’t let a client come in for a session until I’ve had a note from their doctor saying it is OK for them to receive oncology massage or any kind of skin care,” Lacina said.

  • Owner: Tracy Lacina
  • Company: Skin Deep Salon and Spa
  • Address: 2771 Oakdale Blvd., Coralville
  • Phone: (319) 936-1319
  • Website:
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