Alora Ambiance Spa owner Patricia Rivas has worked as a licensed aesthetician and skincare specialist for nearly a decade. Along the way, she's picked up advanced certifications in treatments such as cellulite-smoothing ionithermie and IPL hair removal, teamed up with Dr. Thomaso Skorupski, and assembled a staff of talented hairstylists, nail artists, and waxing specialists spread throughout two studios. There, staffers dole out specialty services, including eyelash perms and extensions, exfoliating salt-glow treatments, and facials that infuse faces with more oxygen and nutrients than a granola-filled balloon. Beyond stocking the shelves with aesthetic aids from such brands as Paul Mitchell, Matrix, and Pravana, Rivas is also the creator of the Ayurveda by Alora skincare line, which includes soap- and- sulfate-free cleansers, as well as body creams infused with white tea and vitamins C and E.
Using a phone-based Q&A, Skinprint's cosmetic chemists educate customers about their own skin's structure and functioning (or "skinprint") and help identify products that address personal dermatological needs. The online boutique sells Skinprint products, developed sans animal or sibling testing to power head-to-toe pore purification with natural botanical blends rather than parabens, sulfates, and other potentially harmful substances. Choose from anti-agers like Eyedyllic, a dark-circle-destroying, wrinkle-erasing eye cream ($52.50), protective basics like the Ultra Sheer SPF 20 SunScreen ($29.99), and the Acne Treatment Pen, which reduces the appearance of blemishes, redness, post-Funyun regret, and other inflammation symptoms within 24 hours ($79).
Your hair?s sure to feel silkier once your stylist conditions it?learn why with Groupon?s close-up look at conditioner.
Although human hair may look smooth, each strand's outer layer?the cuticle?is actually quite rough. Under dry conditions, the tiny scales that cover its surface become raised and brittle, causing hairs to tangle and lose their shine. Conditioner aims to correct this problem by bonding a particular class of molecules, called cationic surfactants, to the cuticle. This is possible because keratin, the protein that makes up most of the hair shaft, bristles with negative ions, which attract the positively charged surfactants, coating each thread in a thin film that weighs it down and reduces frizz. (The negative charge of keratin is also what causes static whenever positive ions are stripped from the hair?the static that makes it possible to stick a balloon to the wall or to power a miner's headlamp.)
The other ingredients in conditioner don't always need ions to do their jobs well. Humectants suck in water from the surrounding air, thereby moisturizing the hair, and oils simply penetrate the cuticle. Glossers coat the hair with light-reflecting polymers, increasing shine, whereas other ingredients raise the acidity level of the conditioner, which helps protect the hair's protein structure.
At Alora Laser Spa, the star of the show is appropriately named the StarLux 500. This Palomar laser transforms to conduct a wide variety of cosmetic services. One handpiece turns it into a laser hair-removal machine, and another gives it the power to fade away unsightly leg veins. A third is geared toward treating acne or rejuvenating complexions with photofacials.
Alongside other technologies, such as microcurrent instruments and ultrasonic tools for facials, the StarLux 500 exemplifies the spa's advanced approach to beauty. That being said, the staff hasn't forgotten about classic, nature-inspired techniques. Their body wraps, for example, work to diminish the appearance of cellulite with ingredients ranging from paraffin wax to sea kelp, whose natural slimming properties explain why sea otters can always fit into size-2 jeans.
Pink Salon – Middletown’s staff caters to multiple parts of the body with beautifying salon and spa services. Hairstylists offer cuts, coloring, and relaxer treatments. Massage therapists take on tense muscles and technicians tackle unwanted body hair with hair removal treatments. But where Pink Salon really shines is with its manicures. Instead of keeping things simple with a coat of solid-color polish, their nail artists can paint digits with sparkling crystals, pink breast-cancer-awareness ribbons, and even smiling skulls, perfect for scaring away hangnails.