Founder Ande Akinrele opened i Medspa after spending more than 20 years working in the international health and beauty industry in Belgium, England, and West Africa. Her close-knit staff?which includes physicians, physician assistants, nurses, medical aesthetician, and resident puppet?specializes in FDA-approved laser services such as IPL photofacials, acne treatments, medical weight loss, botox and filler treatments, and laser hair removal. More traditional spa services include facials, diamond-tip microdermabrasion, and chemical peels combining glycolic and salicylic acids. To help clients maintain their results at home, i Medspa sells pharmaceutical or medical-grade skincare lines such as Epionce, Obagi, and Glo-minerals makeup.
Aqua Salon owner Kathy Snyder loves a challenge. When asked what she likes best about her job, the veteran hairstylist told Our South Bay, “So many of us are particular about exactly what we want our hair to look like but haven’t any idea how to articulate it to someone. It’s my job … to ‘get it’ when a customer reaches out for help.” A former employee of celeb-favorite Cristophe Salon, Snyder spent 10 years meeting the often daunting needs of Hollywood’s most demanding heads. Today, she doles out that same level of service in an environment that is decidedly more relaxed, complete with a soothing ocean view and skylights that allow the sunshine to stream in.
As guests sip wine and watch the waves roll along the sandy shoreline, Snyder’s team of master stylists care for hair with cutting-edge cuts, extensions, and balayage coloring techniques. Makeup artists employ the Jane Iredale line of mineral makeup to beautify visages, and spray tans by Infinity Sun provide a golden glow to help prep bodies for the beach or a stint on James Cameron’s mantel.
Beets and sugar cane. The crew at Blink Studio bronzes bodies using a variety of natural solutions concocted with these ingredients, and it lasts 7 to 10 days with proper maintenance. They leverage their combined expertise to highlight clients' natural beauty. Blink Studio is home to a number highly specialized stylists including graduates of the Academy of Beauty in Culver City, certified estheticians and lash-extension specialists, and custom airbrush-tanning artists. Estheticians detail faces and bodies with waxing as well as brow and lash tinting and eyelash extensions. They also lengthen lashes with individual mink extensions.
Patrons who visit South Bay Xpress Spa and Wax rest easy knowing that they've entrusted their skin to expert aestheticians. That's because the staff undergoes continual training in alternative waxing techniques, facial treatments, and lash enhancement procedures. With this knowledge in hand, the staff pampers clients from head to tail with microdermabrasion, brow tinting, lash perms, and body waxing.
Jennifer Corley—a licensed aesthetician and certified medical aesthetician—revitalizes clients' skin with an array of facials and specially formulated peels. Her skincare treatments combine the natural and the scientific to combat skin problems, infusing peels with ingredients such as vitamin A and acne-fighting salicylic acid, and allowing for a controlled and even shedding of dead skin layers.
A bright yellow accent wall lends a sunny feel to Sugar Rays' all-white interior?as does the fact that many customers emerge with fresh tans. Their tans are sunless, however; a product of the salon's organic sugar cane spray tan formula. Imbued with aloe and vitamin E, it nourishes skin while leaving behind a natural, even glow. The salon complements these organic tans with eco-friendly services, from waterless pedicures to nails imprinted with 1,000-word essays on the benefits of hugging a tree.