Maisie Dunbar feels that she was born to be an artist, though the human body is her canvas and her palette is made up not of paint, but of makeup and quality skincare products. Within her artist's studio, Maisie Dunbar Spa Lounge, she and her staff take a holistic, nurturing approach to everything they do—whether they are smoothing rough skin, massaging stressed muscles, or coating nails in OPI polish. Maisie’s dedication to the beauty industry has earned her numerous celebrity clients over the years as well as appearances at the Grammys and features in O, The Oprah Magazine and the Washington Post, according to the Silver Spring Patch.
Although Maisie’s toolbox contains trusted, high-end products from Essie and Moroccanoil, her continuing search for quality led her one step further than most spa owners to create her own makeup line—BluffaJo Cosmetics. These oil-free, mineral-based products allow skin to breathe normally while still managing to protect it from airborne pollutants and abrasive AM radio waves.
Beers and haircuts might seem like an unusual combination, but they go hand in hand at The Suite Barbershop. After serving guests a chilled beverage, the experienced barbers work to create unique looks. The crew specializes in dramatic, eye-catching looks for men, from throwback styles with side parts and pompadours to high-altitude mowhawks and precision fades.
The shop itself has been designed with a similar mix of the old fashioned and contemporary: the black-and-white wallpaper is dappled with colorful pictures of classic cars and modern paintings by local artists. A mock fireplace filled with candles harks back to Victorian parlors, when all fires were too polite to fully burn.
Downtown’s Grooming Lounge combines the comfort of a classic barber shop with the services of a modern manscaping salon. Yes, you can get the standard haircut and hot lather shave here, but you can also lose the unibrow, sit in for a more substantial wax or enjoy a massage, manicure or pedicure. Don’t worry, the shop’s masculine atmosphere will make sure you can still keep your man card, even as you’re being waxed, plucked and rubbed, you will still feel manly, given the guy-friendly atmosphere and professional aestheticians on hand. The store also stocks a wide range of grooming products, from hair gels to skin scrubs. Beauty doesn’t come cheap at The Grooming Lounge, but that’s the price you pay for looking good.
What makes it great: Paul Mitchell Focus Salon helmed by award-winning stylist featured in the Washington Post, named Washington City Paper’s Best Hair Salon in 2014, and specialty services like hair extensions and Awapuhi Wild Ginger conditioning treatments
To call The Body Shop a mere skin and body care store is to miss half of what makes it special. Late founder Dame Anita Roddick was a pioneer for ethical business practices; upon opening her first store in Brighton, England, in 1976, she developed company values such as "Defend Human Rights" and "Protect The Planet." She somehow balanced principles and profit, partnering in global campaigns with UNICEF, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, and the United Nations, all while ultimately expanding her brand into 2,500 locations in over 60 international markets. After her death in 2007, then-British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said, ?She campaigned for green issues for many years before it became fashionable to do so and inspired millions to the cause by bringing sustainable products to a mass market. . . . She was an inspiration.?
Indeed, the Body Shop exhibits an eco-friendliness and social consciousness that's hard to come by in a company of its size. Its products have been fair-trade since 1987, and its Against Animal Testing movement led to an EU-wide ban of animal testing of cosmetics. The products are made from ingredients harvested from around the world: shea butter from Ghana goes into body scrubs and butters, and Indian artisans craft wooden massagers and tote bags that are screenprinted by hand. But all that isn't to say the company's production practices overshadow its final products. Skincare treatments such as the brand?s iconic body butters, facial products, and gift collections often appear in Allure, Marie Claire, Lucky, Seventeen and other national publications.