Brazil Bronze Glow Bar owner Sally Blenkey-Tchassova knows how difficult it can be to get pale skin to cooperate. She spent her childhood in England applying self-tanning creams to her naturally ivory skin, trying every formula and label she could in her ongoing quest to find the perfect, long-lasting solution. It wasn't until she moved to New York City and found a passion for the highly competitive––and very tan––world of ballroom dancing, that she gracefully stumbled upon the concept of airbrush tanning. From that moment on, she decided to learn everything she could about airbrushing, daring to dream about a world where every pale person could instantly transform herself into a Brazilian goddess whenever she pleased. However, her first attempts with highly perfumed, commercial-grade formulas left her feeling sick, so she took it upon herself to build a better bronze, eventually perfecting a 95% organic product, as well as a sculpted application designed to add subtle definition to curves, décolletage, and the body's natural pinstriping.
According to New York magazine, Blenkey-Tchassova now divides her time between "the West Coast for celeb regulars and awards-season appointments" and the New York City salon, which has blossomed into an international operation recognized by numerous media outlets, including Allure magazine, which noted, "Her spray gun creates streak-free color that fades as evenly as the real thing." Salon technicians even travel to bring the airbrush experience to homes, offices, or subterranean doomsday bunkers, and further boost clients' self-confidence by planning flirty boudoir photo sessions.
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.
Former sculptor David Groshen knows how to bring a creative vision to physical fruition. He now applies the skills and attention to detail he developed while molding clay to his current occupation of styling hair. While rooted in this work ethos, his signature approach to salon services also revolves around client empowerment⎯educating and collaborating with his customers to achieve the best possible style. David has articulated his philosophy not only as a stylist at and owner of award-winning New York salons (beginning in 1991 with Salon East in Manhattan), but also as a hair-advice columnist and contributor to 101 Hairstyles and other industry magazines. He earned his respected spot in the realm of haircare through a stint as a regular stylist and infrequent eye roller on the popular television show Ambush Makeover. Not one to let the cameras change him, he gives back by participating in Hope Cuts, a charity for which upscale hairstylists donate their talents to raise awareness about cancer, HIV/AIDS, and other life-threatening diseases.
Though Major Model Management and celebrity clients frequently seek out David's expertise, he still finds time to develop at-home maintenance routines for his regular customers. His hard work has culminated in his 7 Methods series of tutorials, which includes “7 Methods for Great Perms” and “7 Methods for Your Perfect Wedding.”
“My stomach actually grumbled several times during the treatment,” a Time Out New York reporter confessed after indulging in the “whirl of euphoric bliss” that is the Strawberry Sweet Cheeks facial. There’s little cause for embarrassment if guests’ stomachs interrupt—using ingredients including poppy seeds, mango, and lime (all blended by Éminence), the aestheticians at White Tea Med Spa are well aware of their appetite-inducing properties. Each treatment on the boutique spa's menu is designed to mimic the healing, relaxing effects of white tea without the time and expense of filling a bathtub with it, and after each treatment, guests are rewarded for their stomach’s patience with a cup of white tea itself served in an English-style tea house.
In addition to nine types of facials, the spa offers higher-tech treatments, such as VelaShape body-contouring procedures. Perched on the border between Chelsea and the West Village, White Tea has often found itself at the forefront of beauty trends—its new services have been tested and demonstrated in the pages of OK! Weekly and The Tyra Banks Show, among other outlets.
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.
In honor of Women’s History Month, Groupon is celebrating an inspiring group of women: business leaders whose companies and brands enrich their communities. Thanks to the dedication and ingenuity of these leaders, local communities across the country are stronger and more diverse.
Shop the Women in Business collection.
From within Queens' Club Fitness, Infinity Spa Salon strikes an effective balance between natural skincare and advanced aesthetic treatments. Located a short distance from New York City, aestheticians clear and brighten complexions with seven types of facials infused with vitamin C and hydroquinone-free lightening ingredients, and they also use the exfoliating powers of mechanical microdermabrasion. Unwanted hairs can be effortlessly removed using an all-natural, beeswax-infused formula from GiGi or the advanced technology of an Alma Soprano XL laser, which permanently removes hair from any skin type including ghosts' see-through complexions. In massage treatment rooms, therapists rely on 10 different modalities, including the ancient techniques of Thai massage and shiatsu, to release tight muscles and improve circulation.
Infinity's focus on harmony is also apparent in the salon and spa's interior design, which melds contemporary decor with natural earth elements, such as bamboo plants and warm brown walls.