HeadCases Salon & Spa, which makes its home in Serenity Salon Suites, states its mission plainly, but puts it into practice with memorable, nuanced touches. The goal: "To provide premium customized hair and skin care therapies at affordable prices." The reality: a diverse roster of services, elevated by thoughtful therapists and aestheticians that aim to advance the experience of each patron. Full-body exfoliation pairs with a sunless tan, helping to ensure that the sun-kissed color lingers. Children who visit HeadCases to have their ears pierced waltz out the door with ice-cream gift certificates, helping to halt tears and cure waffle-cone phobias. Facials designed for teenagers go beyond cleansing and acne treatments to introduce young patrons to the basics of skincare and blemish prevention, while therapeutic massages help address high-school sports injuries. A lengthy list of haircare services has a finishing touch of its own: free bang- and neck-trims with blow-dry sessions between cuts, which help keep coiffures sleek, well-maintained, and unattractive to balloons.
A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas—its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries—Planet Beach is a futuristic relaxation station where state-of-the-art machines administer all the spa and tanning services. These friendly automatons sometimes replace familiar treatments, as in the Luminous facial, a light-based service that delivers blemish-busting results similar to those of a conventional facial. But other equipment maps out new spa territory entirely: the Hydro-Derma Fusion chamber moisturizes the whole body with nutrient-rich steam in order to offset the effects of a dry climate or a rear-end collision with a salt truck. Other machines whiten teeth, spray tan skin, and massage muscles.
Planet Beach operates on a gym-style membership system, meaning that members purchase packages or pay flat monthly rates. As members spend more time at the spa, they get to know the helpful assistants who are always on hand to demonstrate how to use the equipment without activating its ability to cry.
Visitors who pass by the prominent stone fountain in The Skin Suite's lobby can be forgiven for momentarily wondering if they've found the fountain of youth. That's because owner Kimbra, an aesthetician and laser technician with more than a decade of aesthetic experience, has assembled a skincare lineup heavy on advanced anti-aging treatments. During microdermabrasion sessions, she uses a DiamondTome skin-resurfacing system to exfoliate skin and reveal the healthy complexion beneath the surface. She also incorporates DermaQuest Skin Therapy and Tizo3 Protection products into four types of salicylic- and glycolic-acid chemical peels and five types of facials, one of which uses seasonal ingredients and natural fruit enzymes to leave skin smoother than a velveteen rabbit in a smoking jacket. For an extra edge in the fight against Father Time, Kimbra turns to resurfacing tools such as dermaplaning blades and microrollers.
The beauty gurus at Spa DG Couture enhance their clients' natural beauty by augmenting features with technologically enhanced treatments such as permanent makeup or by making skin, hair, and nails radiate health with traditional spa and salon services inside a shop with racks laden with boutique apparel. A trained cosmetic tattoo artist outlines eyes, brows, and lips in a permanent layer of pigment to define sparse brows and keep patrons from having to apply lipstick in the middle of rush-hour traffic or breaking pogo-stick records. Stylists use hair and eyelash extensions to thicken natural manes and lashes, and aestheticians can accent clients' shining hair with facials to make visages glow and treatments to whiten teeth. After leaving the spa's treatment rooms, guests can peruse the selection of Juicy Couture, Chanel, and Xoxo clothes and accessories that add high-end flair to complement hair newly swept into a bouffant updo shaped like Louis XVI.
Though housed in an expansive 1,500-square-foot facility, Jimmy Joseph Lux Spa is an intimate, stress-free oasis—one where aestheticians and massage therapists slow time and dissipate anxieties with long, flowing strokes and renewing scrubs. Before entering one of six private treatment rooms, guests cool down with a drink from the complimentary-beverage bar and can let their senses guide them to the aromatherapy-relaxation room, where flower and essential-oil scents pervade the air.
The cross-sensory revelry continues in the treatment rooms, whose soft lights and plush massage tables set the stage for facials, sea-salt scrubs, and couples massages that call a truce to thumb wars over the TV remote. The spacious spa also houses a clothing-and-accessories boutique where a strong dose of retail therapy further calms the mind as eyes peruse chic jewelry, handbags, and candles.
Bloom Salon's diverse, experienced team of stylists and beauty techs led by husband-wife team Scott and Tricia Young performs beauty services in a serene 3,000-square-foot facility. Team standouts include Brandy Hendricks, who has been clipping coifs for 18 years, and Samantha Young, a member of Scott’s family of hairdressers. In addition to expertly executed cut and color services, stylists accent manes with hair extensions and tame unruly head gardens with keratin smoothing treatments. Nail tech April Marhsall adorns fingers with polish, shellac polish, or acrylic nails, and therapist Lydia McDonald helps to relieve tension during deep-tissue, Swedish, or stone massages, untangling knots as quickly and efficiently as a blindfolded Eagle Scout.