When Skyy Hadley is finished painting, her artwork doesn?t hang on a museum wall?it beautifies the hands of stars such as P. Diddy, Uma Thurman, and Liv Tyler. The celebrity manicurist was once just another young woman who moved from the South to NYC while chasing a dream, but unlike many stories, hers ended in success. With talent and hard work, she landed herself in the pages of Cosmo and Us Weekly and gathered a star-studded client list. After this success, Skyy decided to realize another dream: opening her own spa.
As well as taking its name from a genie?s obsequious words, As U Wish evokes the Arabian nights with an interior of tassled cushions, purple and yellow silk draperies, and light from a crystal chandelier. After walking past a crackling wooden fireplace, guests sink into massive, overstuffed chairs and dip their feet into pedicure baths of milk and honey or ylan-jasmine and violet oils. Then, scrubs with shea butter, mango, and sea salt or wraps made with Baltic mud and peach paraffin wax soothe soles weary from walking in high heels or from running while stuck in bear traps. During manicures or pedicures, toluene- and formaldehyde-free Zoya nail polish brightens appendages while guarding health, and the spa?s aestheticians also evict unwanted facial and body hair with honey or lavender wax.
At The V Spot Nail Spa, clients can sink into massive white armchairs as their feet soak in gleaming silver basins as the soothing scents of the lavender scrub and shea butter waft through the air. While they relax in armchairs or perch themselves at manicure stations, their toe- and fingertips are painted with OPI and CND Shellac polish, which make appendages easy to spot when their owners are rotating atop a baggage-claim conveyor belt. Olive lotion, lavender scrubs, and aloe augment manicures, softening hands as guests look up at the salon?s crystal chandeliers, ornate mirrors, and exposed-brick walls.
Sparkle Salon’s steady-handed technicians clear unwanted hairs from delicate body areas with thorough waxing treatments. After clients retire to a secluded area, a salon staffer discusses hair-removal options, addresses customer concerns, and hypothesizes about whether Mona Lisa was smirking because she heard a joke or had a hamster crawling beneath her cloak. Next, the stubble savant meticulously applies wax to loitering strands and paper strips, and with a quick twist of the wrist removes pesky pelts residing in bikini zones and beyond. Brazilian waxing saves skin surfaces from the irritation of razor burn, the lengthy process of tweezing, and the ineffective gesture of politely asking hair to leave. Waxed surfaces can remain smooth and fuzz-free for up to six weeks.
The licensed aestheticians at Spa Aura don't just specialize in European or Asian techniques; rather, they practice a seamless fusion of both. During manicures and pedicures, for instance, nail techs not only expertly apply eye-catching polish, but also help improve blood flow with massage and acupressure techniques. Patrons then visit the upper level's nail-drying bar, where they can watch retro films or read magazines until their colors dry.
Down in the softly lit lower level, past tiled floors lined with glowing lights, aestheticians incorporate ingredients such as coconut milk into circulation-boosting body treatments. Following one of Spa Aura?s body treatments?as well as facials and massages?clients are invited for a soothing visit to the infrared sauna. The dry sauna, lined with minerals plucked from the mountains of Asia, detoxifies bodies in a more relaxing way than trying to remove pennies stuck up the nose during childhood.
Aestheticians at Spa Martier go above and beyond the call of beauty to create luxurious services that match the spa's lush surroundings. Gleaming crystal chandeliers cast a glittery glow onto nails pampered with paraffin moisturizers and 24-karat gold, and candles cast their own golden glimmer inside private treatment rooms, guiding trained hands as they perform massages with tiger clamshells or chakra-balancing sessions with real diamonds. Supervised by Dr. Amir Farzad Sheibanie, aestheticians perform 18 kinds of facials for both men and women that incorporate elements such as marine botanicals, caviar, and LED light therapy. With 3,000 feet of space, its should come as little surprise that the spa also houses a fully stocked fashion boutique and café, as well as a full-service salon where stylists can perform one of 11 holistic head treatments. Designed to relax, refresh, and replenish hair, these treatments incorporate a blend of massage, aromatherapy, and special products to prime scalps for designer haircuts, coloring treatments, and volunteer work in phrenology classrooms.
At Alfangi Salon on Fifth, coziness couples with luxury in a space decorated with distressed yellow-gold walls, enormous bronze-framed mirrors, and chocolate-hued drapes. After practicing in the cosmetic industry for more than 15 years in the Unites States and Europe, Irina opened the upscale salon with Yolanda, who boasts work on television and independent films, and Rafael, who spent a decade mastering hair coloring by filling out a stack of 3,000 coloring books. The elite trio drew fellow styling stars to its team, including Aveda-certified technicians, a licensed aesthetician, and assorted experts on Japanese thermal straightening and ethnic and curly hairstyling. Together, they pamper clients with fully custom spa services such as massage therapy and manicures. Stylists dedicate their energies to beautifying visitors, tailoring haircuts to suit faces and lifestyles, offering at-home tips to keep hair looking great, and covering new 'dos with scratch-n-sniff stickers.