Over the last 10 years, Skin Essentials Med Spa & Hair Salon owner Kelly Davis has prettified more than 1,000 faces with the SofTap permanent-makeup technique. She sidesteps the racket and pain of traditional tattoo-machine methods to gently apply the pigment with a hand tool, giving her absolute control to craft a subtle lip shape or a seductively arched brow. Guests can find similar attention to detail in the spa's repertoire of other beautifying services, from simple mani-pedis to advanced exfoliation peels that obscure signs of aging. Injections of Botox or Restylane keep skin surfaces as smooth as a pancake, and full-body scrubs and masks treat the whole physique to ensure that even your Achilles' heel embodies a beauty that belies its vulnerability.
Visions Salon and Spa's owner Shirley Manulak arrives at work each day determined to fulfill her customers’ cosmetic needs. “We just wanted to have a relaxing, friendly atmosphere. We want to shampoo away some of your stress,” she told Y.C. Orozco of the Pasadena Citizen. Armed with 35 years of experience as a cosmetology instructor and a skilled staff, her salon offers an array of aesthetic services, including manicures, pedicures, and hairstyling in a salon renovated after Manulak bought it two years ago. Like jazz bands that are serious about their craft, the staff steam cleans all of their instruments with autoclaves and medical-grade disinfectant.
A license in cosmetology isn't enough for a stylist to hit the floor at T'nT Concept Salon—they also have to go through the salon's own training program. After that, they have all of the skills necessary to perform the services on the salon's menu, which include haircuts, conditioning treatments, beard trims, extensions, updos, permanent waves, and smoothing keratin treatments. The salon also houses a color bar, where the staff mixes hues for highlights and all-over color treatments and where many Crayola crayons mistakenly go for a drink.
With Paul Mitchell Awapuhi deep-conditioning products in one hand and Babyliss European flatirons in the other, Salon Accente’s stylists reshape tresses with precision cuts and de-frizzing treatments. They’re also able to add length to locks via feather extensions and dimension to monochromatic manes with full and partial sets of highlights. Salon Accente’s beauty technicians wax unruly brows into graceful arches and tint lashes to frame peepers beautifully without the help of solid-gold sunglasses.
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.