“I enjoy my job, and at the same time I’m helping people,” says Christine McKeague, certified massage therapist and licensed esthetician. She “always thought about nursing,” but came to realize how massage and esthetician work allowed her to build her own schedule. “You help people all the time, and sometimes, you fix people.”
In her line of work, McKeague’s talents inspire the name that her services fall under: Helping Heal Massage Therapy and Skincare. Housing three additionally skilled service providers, her business space on Yorktown’s Production Drive is a calming and relaxing space, where pampering and self-care flourish.
McKeague moved to Los Angeles when she was 18 to attend Otis College of Art and Design. After a year and a half, she discovered “that wasn’t going to work,” but a serendipitous experience was waiting for her. “When I dropped out of school, I was going to move home to Boston, and I was waiting for the bus one day and picked up Working World magazine. It flopped open to massage therapy [in] Santa Monica.” McKeague took the bus to look at the school, and she soon wound up committing to the eight-month program.
“I got busy out there from the school. The people followed me after I got out of school, my clients,” she says. McKeague made house calls and worked with a chiropractor, and in the next few years, she moved to Virginia.
She continued her education at the Institute of Health and Healing in Newport News. “While I was there, I thought if I’m going to school for a couple hundred hours to pass the national exam to get certified in Virginia, why don’t I just take esthetics, too?”
There, McKeague’s Chinese medicine teacher recognized her talents for deep tissue massage. With plans to retire, her instructor offered rental space to McKeague, along with encouraging her clients to do business with McKeague.
McKeague obtained her business license in 2007, and her massage magic continues. She has worked within other businesses, including the Spa of Colonial Williamsburg, Animare Salon and Spa and the Institute of Health and Healing. After the COVID-19 pandemic, McKeague chose to focus on “doing her own.”
She moved into her current space around 2018.
McKeague offers massage therapy and basic European facials, while her other three staff members offer services of their own, including cupping, nail services, waxing, expanded massage services and advanced facials. “Sometimes, people get an hour massage and then a half an hour facial, because it’s easy to just remain still and go straight into the next service. And then you can go get your nails done on the way out,” she says.
“When I have neck, shoulder and lower back problems, Christine relieves my aches and pains very quickly and easily,” says Pat Moore, a client of McKeague’s, “She’s been a great help to me over the years. She can adjust her pressure depending on your desires.”
From McKeague’s point of view: “I’ve done this for 21 years, so I’ve seen a lot of things. Everyone can benefit [from massage therapy] because it helps with circulation and reducing stress.”
Client Amy Smith has been seeing McKeague for years and receives weekly massages. “She thoroughly understands anatomy, physiology, ergonomics, etc. and actually listens to her clients’ needs,” Smith says. “She is extremely professional and wants to ensure that her clients leave feeling better than when they arrive.”
Outside of her passion for “Helping Heal” others through massage and esthetics, McKeague says she first went to school for painting, and wishes she had the time to get back into it. She has two children and loves to go antiquing, gathering “all [the] cool pieces” she’s found and arranging them around her office space, creating a well traveled and luxurious feel.
TO THE POINT:
Helping Heal Massage Therapy and Skincare
Address: 101 Production Dr., #103, Yorktown, VA 23693
Contact: Christine McKeague