Plastikos originated as a cosmetic- and reconstructive surgery center, but board-certified plastic surgeons Dr. Susan E. Kolb and Dr. Julian Gordon wanted to make a place for their clients to just relax. So they decided to expand their clinic with the Plastikos Medical Spa, a tranquil studio that serves up a range of spa treatments. To combat signs of aging, the TCA-based Obagi Blue chemical peel lifts away dull layers of skin and revitalizes cellular regeneration. Antioxidant-rich variants might include botanical ingredients sourced from blueberry, pomegranate, or pumpkin.
Meanwhile, expert massage therapists might use deep-tissue or reflexology techniques to excavate tension and undo stubborn knots. Alternatively, an Endermologie lipo-massage aims to disperse fatty tissue with focused kneads and rolls. The med-spa also uses advanced know-how to beautify clients with noninvasive medical treatments. The Ion Magnum, for instance, uses analog waveforms to trigger neurons that mimic physical activity, thereby building muscle and joint strength. The beauty haven also offers cold-laser LiLa body-contouring and Latisse eyelash-lengthening treatments to ready bodies for swimsuit season or a winking competition.
Unlike some salon owners, Spencer Malay isn't content to just sit back and watch as his stylists have all the fun. The 15-year hairstyling veteran, beauty consultant, and makeup artist grabs the scissors and works alongside them, doling out the salon's signature razor cuts and conditioning therapies and offering hairstyling advice dubbed "perfect" by a reviewer for the July 2011 issue of Allure magazine. On the spa side of the studio, massages and facials provide a welcome dose of relaxation for busy clientele, and med-spa treatments erase years from the face and body with dermal fillers and spider-vein treatments performed under the supervision of a doctor, nurse, and the occasional haunted painting.
Patrons looking to bring a touch of the salon's glamour home with them can peruse a collection of Spencer Malay jewelry or add a pop of color to everyday makeup routines courtesy of Spencer's own line of mineral-based cosmetics. The salon also specializes in providing and fitting wigs for patients with medical hair loss and curates a large and stylish collection, with options recommended by medical and beauty professionals as well as past clients.
Lyn Ross wrote the book on skincare. Or at least one or two of the books, cumulatively. She's authored numerous articles and textbook chapters on the topic, spreading the knowledge she's gained since opening her first natural skincare clinic in 1975, when most dermatologists still advised moisturizing with a rich crude-oil blend. In 1989, she established Institut’ DERMed—at once an Atlanta med-spa, a line of cosmeceutical products, and an aesthetician-training center.
Today, Ross and her staff make clients’ skin glow in a 3,000-square-foot facility filled with 11 private treatment rooms. At the College of Advanced Aesthetics, also headquartered in Atlanta, they train estheticians, cosmetologists, and doctors in product use and skin-treatment plans. Perhaps the element most central to Lyn's practice is her range of natural skin-care products crafted from concentrated but non-prescription active ingredients. The cleansers, serums, and exfoliants are formulated not just with carefully selected ingredients, but with carefully selected molecules—the company’s chemists reconfigure the very atoms of active substances so that the compounds will better penetrate the skin.
Buckhead Nail and Toe Spa's staff have spent more than two decades helping others keep their skin and nails looking sharp. Inside the spacious salon, rows of extra-wide orthopedic pedi thrones—each outfitted with heat and massage features—line the floor, and gauzy white fabric hangs above pedicurees as they ease toes into large basins of water heated to their preferred temperature. Joining the spa's nail care services and large collection of polishes are plenty of skin-care options—custom facials and massages, eyelash extensions, and waxing treatments with low-temperature, anti-irritant wax—that serve to summarize the rejuvenating possibilities. To ensure a safe and bacteria-free experience, the staff of Buckhead Nail follow strict sterilization guidelines and wear special bacteria-vision goggles to locate any trespassing microorganisms.
Jamaican-born Sophia Johnson, owner and master stylist of SoKai Salon, became enthralled with tendrils as a child, immigrating at age 14 to New York where she began working part-time at a hair salon. Her part-time passion turned to a full-time career and, after training in New York City, earning a business degree, and snipping strands as a master stylist at two salons, she relocated to Atlanta to open SoKai Salon. Since then, Sophia has integrated her love for artistic expression—the name SoKai stands for a “community of artists devoted to their art”—with her knack for taming strands, enlisting a team of stylists, makeup artists, and massage therapists to beautify and relax the masses. SoKai Salon supplies its diverse client base with everything from standard cuts and color services to more alternative cosmetic treatments such as colon hydrotherapy and ionic footbaths.
Most city dwellers hardly have time to tackle their long lists of responsibilities, let alone make time for themselves. But Yelena at Skin Logic Atlanta believes it's this hectic metropolitan lifestyle that makes regular spa visits so important. At the tranquil studio in upscale Buckhead, guests can kick back and forget their worries during one of seven customized facials, each of which begin with a thorough skin analysis to tailor the techniques to each complexion's unique issues. For full-body relaxation, a slate of body treatments—including the slimming and detoxifying Lay Down and Dream Body Wrap, which uses infrared energy to flush out impurities—both relax muscles and brighten exteriors. The spa also offers waxing treatments to sculpt brows, banish facial fuzz, or smooth body areas to cut precious seconds from grocery-shopping times.