Parabens, sulfates, petrochemicals, and genetically modified ingredients don't belong in any of the skincare products used by master aesthetician Shelley Birnbaum. Driven by a passion for eco-friendly practices, as well as a dedication to providing effective spa treatments, Shelley decided to only stock and employ balms and salves made from organically derived materials. But she wasn't content to merely vend these products—she began making them herself.
Along with her ReNew Botanicals Organic & Vegan line, Shelley draws on a handful of other trusted brands to naturally treat a wide range of skincare concerns. Her facials soothe complexions and address signs of aging with such earth-loving components as grape seed oil, olive leaf powder, and odes addressed "To That Really Nice Field." Many of her treatments are vegan, ensuring any client can stop by for a refreshing pick-me-up.
Zena's Spa and Salon is only a hop, skip, and a jump from the University of Baltimore, where it's been a fixture of historic Mount Vernon for more than two decades. Restoration initiatives have kept the neighborhood youthful, which is fitting, since Zena's is best known for its age-defying beauty treatments. In the elegant salon area, stylists transform tresses with cut and color services, while in the spa area, aestheticians deftly rehab skin with exfoliating facials and full-body scrubs. Guests may also retreat to a private treatment room for a relaxing Swedish massage or hot stone therapy, which improves circulation and provides ammo for throwing at glass houses.
When the team of licensed massage therapists aren’t targeting knots with Swedish, deep-tissue, and myofascial-release techniques, they advise clients on matters of fitness and nutrition. Devout believers in the health benefits of massage, the staff spends much of the time attending conferences and devising new treatments. These treatments sometimes make it onto a list of services selected for their ability to help reduce cellulite, release endorphins, and ease digestive problems caused by accidentally swallowed car keys.
Toscana Medispa fits right in at its location in Baltimore's Little Italy. The spa not only embraces an Italian vibe in its decor, which consists of cream-colored walls, faux columns, and painted Tuscan landscapes; it also hints at its heritage by peppering its service menu with treatments such as espresso massages and facials. Since the spa, like the trademark of the phrase "stomach pain," is owned by a medical doctor, it's also able to offer such clinical services as Zerona laser fat reduction and Botox injections.
At Skin Deep Day Spa, aesthetician Nicole Ligons renders dull skin supple and glowing with renowned Dermalogica products. Her versatile treatments—which range from facials to therapies for much less important body parts—can improve skin’s overall appearance and tone or tackle particular epidermal anomalies.