Throughout her time accumulating medical experience, Nichole Ruffin had dabbled in such a wide range of disciplines—phlebotomy, cardiovascular health, and emergency medicine, to name a few—that she never anticipated a foray into massage therapy. But when a friend studying the technique massaged Nichole's arm as part of a homework assignment, she instantly felt a wave of relief run through her. After years of immersion in a notoriously laborious field, Nichole found her calling in just a few minutes.
Today, Nichole is a certified and licensed massage therapist, merging her considerable medical background with holistic-healing methods to devise powerful custom treatments. Her diverse arsenal includes deep-tissue massage, hot-stone therapy, and the raindrop technique, a noninvasive method of relaxing physiques and psyches with essential oils and bodywork. She taps further into her medical wisdom during craniosacral-therapy sessions, which delve deep into the nervous system to disentangle chronic tension between star-crossed synapses from feuding axons.
Barking orders for more than 20 years, The Sergeant's Program's head sergeant Chuck Dyson and his dedicated troop of more than 50 sergeants and personal trainers transform figures with military-style fitness sessions. The program provides a knowledgeable instructor to lead recruits through cardio, core, flexibility, stabilization, and resistance training while creating camaraderie amongst fellow fitness platooners. Though each day is fueled with running drills and calisthenics, Mondays and Fridays will be focused on increasing lower body and flank strength and Tuesdays and Thursdays will be geared toward upper body workouts. Cardio-intensive Wednesdays are solely dedicated to getting the heart pumping, sweat streaming, and reshaping rumps flattened by years in stagecoach-driver seats. Although the sergeants utilize a tough-love approach to push clients to their fullest fitness factor, the atmosphere is kept personable by their injections of light-hearted humor and giggling quartets of chipmunks.
The talented therapists and aestheticians at Forever Young MedSpa peacefully negotiate between clients and their troubled exteriors. Aggravated muscles can submit to the classic Swedish massage to alleviate aches and tame tension. During 60 minutes of body kneading, mitten-fillers frolic about backs while targeting specific sore spots with smooth, gliding strokes and massage lotions. With a 60-minute stress-relieving facial, clients can transport faces to a place as still and calm as a British Royal guard after a glass of warm milk. A thorough cleansing rids skin surfaces of dirt and toxins before a custom mask smooths over complexions and territory disputes between pores and their surrounding skin. A facial, hand, and shoulder massage, along with finishing skin products, provide a kindly coda to the relaxing treatment.
Working in the medium of ink and skin, the artists at Black Lotus Tattoo Gallery create custom works of art in a squeaky clean shop. Led by owner Halo, whose portrait-style and freehand work can be viewed here, this crew sends clients home with indelible, one-of-a-kind designs and expertly inserted body jewelry. For those sporting outdated or botched ink, the studio offers Tatt2Away tattoo-removal procedures, which diminish old tats without the use of lasers or giant pink erasers.
When Dr. Caryl Mussenden was six years old, she knew she wanted to become a doctor. After studying at Howard University's College of Medicine and holding residency at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, she realized this dream. Beginning as a board-certified OB/GYN, Dr. Mussenden taught young women the basics of self care, eventually transitioning into opening her own gynecological and med spa practice, Liposculpture by Design.
In 2006, Dr. Mussenden created the Medi Spa division to welcome clients looking for spa services and laser work. And today, along with her dedicated staff, Mussenden helps men and women achieve their aesthetic aspirations through customized dermal filler injections, chemical peels, laser hair removal, body wraps, and Jade therapy.
Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Nia Banks and her team of trained beautifiers offer an eclectic array of appearance-boosting services. Surgical options to fulfill patients’ Christmas wishes include tummy tucks, liposuction, and rhinoplasty. For a lighter touch, nonsurgical treatments include injections of Botox—the wrinkle-fading serum that tricks muscles into thinking they are bears that must fall into deep hibernation for months.