In 2001, the first iTAN Sun Spray Spa opened its doors. It had a simple goal?to make clients feel and look lovely with professional tanning services. Today, the spa has more than 30 Southern California franchises, each offering a slightly different assortment of teeth whitening, tanning beds, spray-tanning booths, and self-serve spa offerings.
The Smart Tan?certified staff prioritizes keeping up with tanning technology by stocking state-of-the-art tanning beds such as the Sun Angel, which uses sensors to customize a blend of UVA and UVB rays, practically eliminating overexposure. Many beds come equipped with stereo sound systems, misters, and fans. Just down the hall from these beauty gadgets, Mystic and airbrush machines bronze limbs without UV rays, and self-administered spa treatments dispense relaxing red-light facials, infrared-heat bodywraps, and aqua massages.
Formally trained in Europe and licensed as both a cosmetologist and electrologist, owner Sophia Brodsky has snipped hair, polished nails, and hydrated faces for nearly 40 years. Under her direction, Sophia?s team uses high-end instruments, such as the Bella BD II-ASP, during microdermabrasion treatments. To help clients keep their faces smooth enough to attract handsome pizza-delivery people, Sophia dispenses products from lines such as Dead Sea Premier, Shira Esthetics, and Dinur.
Over the course of 18 years, husband-and-wife team Justine and Tim Frazee has mastered five massage modalities in the pursuit of inspiring well-being holistically. Trigger-point-therapy techniques work in tandem with aromatherapy oils to realign the body's energy pathways, and therapeutic deep-tissue massages aim to detangle buried muscle knots. Justine is also a licensed aesthetician and augments her muscle-mending skills with skin treatments, such as anti-aging and acne facials. Her body shampoo scrubs clear away dull skin cells, excess oils, and shrapnel from glitter fights.
Once Victoria DeJohnette became a licensed aesthetician, she immediately set her sights on her sister, who battled ever-worsening rosacea for years. "Her rosacea was at the fourth stage—the point where you get welts, a lot of acne, and a lot of congestion that gets out from the skin," she says, adding that many people never reemerge from that stage. Drastically, she decided to try resurfacing treatments. The progress was gradual, but the change was dramatic. Today, Victoria says, "you would never even know that she had rosacea."
That experience fueled Victoria's interest in the medical side of skincare, focusing on rosacea, aging, and acne. Though her pale green room tucked inside JDM Salon is serene, especially with its billowy curtains and flickering candles, she says her treatments are a far cry from spa facials. "It's more like coming to a doctor's office, only in a salon atmosphere," she says. She focuses on resurfacing skin with peels and diamondbrasion—a skin-resurfacing treatment using a microdermabrasion machine that's modified with tiny, diamond-cut bumps on its nozzles. She uses only pharmaceutical products during her procedures and hosts detailed consultations that include advice on what kind of diet is best for skin.
As her clients come back for treatments, Victoria notices the lines on their face softening, the size of their pores shrinking, and their skin's tone evening. She says that though it may not happen overnight, with a combination of home care and professional work, skincare transformation is possible. It's these transformations, like her sister's, that make her job worthwhile. "That's why I'm in business," Victoria says. "That's why I'm satisfied."
When Vanessa became an esthetician, she started out by working at a laser center, where she discovered the healing benefits of microdermabrasion. Vanessa has applied her skincare passion to help open a specialized spa inside The MediSpa as the owner of SkinFIT by Vanessa. Though Vanessa still offers microdermabrasion, she's added facials, chemical peels, and waxing to the menu. She also highly recommends Dr. Schwab's herbal foam cleanser and Revision's Intellishade moisturizer. The latter hydrates the skin and defends against sun damage.
Spa director Marie Monet, an industry veteran with more than 30 years of beautification experience, begins each facial with a skin analysis so she can customize treatments to individual skin types. Oxygen facials infuse the skin with oxygen harvested from astronaut suits, inspiring cellular renewal and boosting collagen production, and sunless-tanning sessions cover bodies with DHA-infused Fantasy Tan airbrushing products. Herbal body treatments harness the power of natural botanicals such as seaweed to help slim and detoxify bodies. The herbal cellulite body cleanse blends 27 minerals and herbs to help boost the lymphatic system and facilitate disposal of excess fat cells for slimmer, smoother silhouettes. Massage modalities such as thai massage with acupressure help relax muscles after an afternoon of playing catch with a bowling ball.