A certain hominess shines through at JoBella Salon and Spa. The shop is named for the co-owner’s children, Joe and Bella, and the Branford location is nestled inside a two-story house surrounded by trees and green grass. Skilled stylists and aestheticians at both locations tap into an arsenal of elixirs from Arrojo and skincare products by Aveda. When they aren't beautifying clients from the neck up, they primp nails, knead sinews, and leave legs wrapped in seaweed like a sleeping sushi chef.
The talented tress trimmers at Salon Refuge fashion follicles into stylish shapes using fresh techniques and an in-depth knowledge of current trends. During the Brazilian keratin treatment, stylists wrestle down unruly curls by applying formaldehyde- and aldehyde-free Cadiveu products to smooth cuticles and resolve long-standing squabbles between hair and combs. Clients can also trade a hairdon’t for a new hairdo with the cut-and-color combo, which begins with a customized shampoo and conditioning treatment, followed by an expert cut and style (a $50 value) and a professional color retouching (a $50 value) to add a fourth dimension of dazzle to any look. Groupon customers who choose the first option will also receive 20% off any post-treatment products purchased on the same day.
Glow Face & Body’s 90-minute antioxidant facial aims to exile fine lines and wrinkles from façades with a slew of topical treatments. A soothing moisturizer tangos with antioxidants across the facial dance floor, softening skin, encouraging collagen production, and collecting high marks for footwork from judgmental eyebrows. Meanwhile, a vitamin C laced serum and an all-natural herbal cleanser join forces to hunt down free radicals with an aim to stymie the aging process. Each epidermal hero comes to patrons’ rescue within one of the spa’s warmly hued treatment rooms, where aestheticians also cosset clients with complimentary consultations, product samples, and symbolically melting clocks.
The brow specialist at Studio B Brow Bar and Body Studio crafts sleek looks by creating simple arches to frame clients' eyes. The technician also can wax unwanted hair from cheeks, upper lips, and underarms, and a massage therapist treats muscles aches with six different modalities including hot-stone massage and myofascial release. In addition, manicures with regular or long-lasting Shellac polishes add a burst of color to fingertips or help nails camouflage against the cottage-like studio's lemon-yellow exterior.
A seven-circuit labyrinth sounds like the setting for a Greek myth, but at Branford River Resort and Spa, it is a concrete place patrons visit to practice meditation. Relaxation is not reserved for the labyrinth, though—it pervades the spa and resort as a whole, helping to earn the establishment one of 2012’s Patch Readers’ Choice awards. Visitors can bask in the healing milieu of its infrared sauna, lounge in the onsite gazebo, or unwind during diverse spa treatments.
The spa’s treatments encompass a vast array of facials, which can combat acne or aging, soothe with warm stones, or draw on the healing power of crystals. Massages range from traditional Swedish effleurage to the Shiradora indian head massage, which incorporates kneading upon the back and herbal oil conditioners, just like a cat clinic held in a soap shop. Body wraps ensconce physiques in materials from Dead Sea mud to mylar foil, and a complementary suite of salon services beautifies visitors with custom haircuts, highlights, and nail services.
The beauty experts at Makeup by DiLieto take the stress out of primping for weddings or other special events. They give skin a flawless finish with high-definition, silicone-based airbrush makeup and assemble hair into dramatic updos. The team also conducts weekly makeup courses, in which they detail the tools and techniques needed to create stunning looks at home.