To call The Body Shop a mere skin and body care store is to miss half of what makes it special. Late founder Dame Anita Roddick was a pioneer for ethical business practices; upon opening her first store in Brighton, England, in 1976, she developed company values such as "Defend Human Rights" and "Protect The Planet." She somehow balanced principles and profit, partnering in global campaigns with UNICEF, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, and the United Nations, all while ultimately expanding her brand into 2,500 locations in over 60 international markets. After her death in 2007, then-British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said, “She campaigned for green issues for many years before it became fashionable to do so and inspired millions to the cause by bringing sustainable products to a mass market. . . . She was an inspiration.”
Indeed, the Body Shop exhibits an eco-friendliness and social consciousness that's hard to come by in a company of its size. Its products have been fair-trade since 1987, and its Against Animal Testing movement led to an EU-wide ban of animal testing of cosmetics. The products are made from ingredients harvested from around the world: shea butter from Ghana goes into body scrubs and butters, and Indian artisans craft wooden massagers and tote bags that are screenprinted by hand. But all that isn't to say the company's production practices overshadow its final products. Skincare treatments such as the brand’s iconic body butters, facial products, and gift collections often appear in Allure, Marie Claire, Lucky, Seventeen and other national publications.
More than two decades working in finance left Spa Boutique 2 Go owner Shirley stressed and overtaxed, so the single mom turned to massage as a way to transform her life and share her newfound relief with her clients. After extensive study, Shirley obtained her massage and aesthetician's license, allowing her to finally found her haven of a spa, replete with a shop's worth of fragrant body products freshly harvested from local lotion trees. Shirley specializes in integrative therapeutic massage, a modality that hones in on specific problem areas while relieving tension in the entire body. Facials, body treatments, and waxing services join 10 different massage styles to pamper visitors with a varied menu of relaxing, rejuvenating treatments.
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Just Calm Down Spa’s opulent atmosphere permeates every detail of the jewel-like space robed in richly hued art, where aestheticians called royal specialists dote on clients with a roster of luxuriant services infused with precious ingredients including chocolate, figs, and generous pools of essential oils. Inside private treatment rooms, the royal specialists tailor each client’s experience to his or her whims, ensuring the most delectable aromatherapy oils scent raindrop, hot-stone, heated waterbed, and foot massages, and consulting with clients about areas that may need more therapeutic attention. Before skin-perfecting facial services, royal specialists again lend their ears to clients who detail their skin’s conditions and their beauty regimens, helping the professionals select the proper skincare products to achieve glowing, supple façades. Away from the private spa treatment area, a naturally lit nail salon’s parisian details belie decadent manicure and pedicure services, including chocolate-fondue soaks, pumpkin-spiced wraps, and gentle grape-seed exfoliation. Just Calm Down Spa also plies visitors with indulgent daylong spa packages for bodies especially in need of pampering after breaking pogo-stick world records.
The Thai massage and facial treatments at Paul Labrecque Salon & Spa have received glowing praise from New York magazine and the New York Times, respectively, with the latter publication calling one of the salon's aestheticians “one of Hollywood’s best-kept secrets.” A-list celebrities, including Penélope Cruz and Christy Turlington, visit to receive exfoliating treatments and in-depth facials with high-end products from Shiseido, qiora, and La Mer. Founder Paul Labrecque treats his male and female clientele as friends and personally trains his staff in customer service and hand-to-hand combat against split ends. In addition to soothing skin during facials and microdermabrasion treatments, staffers massage muscles in eight different modalities. Their Eastern-inspired healing treatments, such as reiki and rolfing, honor the connection between the mind and body, and the salon and spa’s full list of services puts finishing touches on exteriors with haircare, makeup, and waxing, among other treatments. Each location hosts a separate, private men's salon that's part barbershop, part gentleman's club, and part knitting circle.
Skin Spa New York's seven Manhattan locations all represent the same business, but you wouldn't know it by stepping inside. That's because the spa strives to imbue each spot with the feel of its surrounding neighborhood, whether it's the bustling atmosphere of Midtown or the artsy character of Chelsea. Whatever the address, every studio brims with a mix of pamper-centric spa and results-oriented med-spa services using products such as PCA Clinical Skin Care and glo therapeutics. Private massages and full-body waxing complement the purifying effects of facials, which target individual issues such as blemishes and fine lines. Meanwhile, higher-tech treatments can revamp the entire body without a single incision, thanks to light-based techniques such as the collagen-boosting Laser Genesis, skin-tightening Titan laser, and anti-aging Photolight and Limelight facials, which remove signs of sun damage. A company-wide collection of more than 20 lasers can help clients rid themselves of hair by targeting and destroying the follicles that grow it. A plentiful stock of skincare serums is also available for purchase, allowing clients to keep their skin pristine at home.
To become the perfect spa, one has to think like Perfect Spa. Or at least like its experienced staff, who have caught the attention of CBS News with their vast repertoire of massage, skincare, and alternative-wellness services. The staff tackle an expansive range of treatments, which include ear candling, during which an aesthetician places a waxed cloth in ears and safely lights the end. The flame's negative pressure works to remove years of buildup from ears, leaving them healthier and cleaner.
Organic Ilike, Yonka, and science-based G.M. Collins skincare products are used in the spa's staggering 10 different kinds of facials. The low-fat facial is designed to slim down faces using lymphatic drainage techniques, while the 24-karat gold facial brightens complexions using real gold sheets raided from Cleopatra’s personal stash. In the spa's a hotel-style lounge area, nail technicians beautify digits using CND, OPI, and Essie polishes as well as botanically infused products such as an avocado cuticle conditioner and green-tea mask.