At Matrix Spa & Massage, a relaxing escape doesn't have to end once you leave the massage table. Helmed by Julieta Hernandez, a former reporter who moved to the United States to learn English but soon discovered her calling for massage therapy, she founded Matrix Spa & Massage in 2001, and has since received many accolades, including from the staff of Salt Lake City Weekly for "Best Magic Fingers" as well as from the government of Salt Lake City for sustainable environmental practices. When clients step inside the walls, the spa is immediately set apart from others by its meditation cave. Here, technicolor sconces illuminate plush recliners within the soothing space. Sessions in the meditation cave can be booked with or without any other service, ensuring anyone can stop by to find a quiet space to read or shout "Echo!"
Though the meditation cave sets the spa apart, the massages have won its loyal client base, who range from professional athletes to federal judges. Available massages include classic Swedish and deep-tissue sessions along with more specialized modalities, such as the expertise massage—a mix of 10 different techniques, including acupressure and Thai massage—and the four-hands massage. And, in addition to its signature muscle-soothing services, the spa also offers a private steam room, facials, and body scrubs.
A teacher overwhelmed with classroom tasks and student responsibilities; a 20-something recovering from the insecurities of teenage acne—Charlie Ward has served them both. Like many who write in his patient testimonials, this pair praises the master aesthetician's professional skill and personal kindness. "Having healthy habits, including good skincare," Charlie writes on his website, "[has] helped me enjoy [life] even more." Charlie pebbles his path to healthier, more vibrant skin with services that range from the technologically advanced photofacial treatment, which uses intense pulsed light to improve sun-damaged skin, to the holistic scrub-and-rub massages, which dose backs and bodies with salt crystals from the Great Salt Lake before hot towels and lotions cleanse and refresh. He also stays up-to-date on his industry's latest trends and technologies, writing on his blog about some of the latent effects of tattoos and new breakthroughs in heat-resistant makeup that prove ideal for soldiers fighting in war zones or chefs cooking in full-body snowsuits.
Part of the venerable Paul Mitchell network, the Salt Lake City school channels its doctrines of style and technique through a squad of students supervised by professional instructors. Inside the school?s 22,000-square-foot facility, beauty-gurus-to-be assuredly snip away during haircuts, each of which includes a five-minute scalp massage, and slather on lactic-acid peels, each of which includes a five-minute memoriam to dead skin cells. Tresses can be smoothed into submission with a flatiron, curled into a hirsute coil, or stylishly swept into an updo. Students complement these many shapes with bold or subtle coloring treatments, sometimes relying on block or dimensional color to add depth.
Paul Mitchell the School trains its students to be citizens of the world as well as ambassadors of beauty. The school sets an example worth following with its eco-friendly practices and support for charitable causes that give back to the local community.
InStyle, People magazine, and Salt Lake magazine’s Best of the Beehive 2010 have lauded the nearly endless collection of girlie products, gifts, and accessories pouring from Got Beauty's boutique salon, petite day spa, and Sugarhouse Shop. Owner Tammy Taylor wants her guests to feel like a kid wandering through a candy store. But instead of cotton candy and gumdrops, she and her team shower clients with beauty treatments, from the full-service Bumble and bumble salon's coloring and hair-extension treatments to the intimate day spa's anti-aging facials and shellac mani-pedis. Amid the facility's boutique shop, an aisle of accessories hand-picked by the owner include Butter nail polishes, Hobo wallets, aromatic Voluspa candles, and books on how to study the Enlightenment without succumbing to its wig-centered hair culture.
Some seek Pilates for weight loss or a toned body, and others for stress relief and overall wellbeing. But Erica Lukes was drawn to the mat to recover from a horseback-riding injury in the early '90s. As her pain subsided and her range of motion returned through her practice, she became compelled to help others reap the benefits of the core-strengthening workout, earning her certification as a Pilates instructor, and eventually helming Total Body Pilates. Now, she guides students of all fitness levels through Pilates, ballet barre, and Zumba classes to achieve their fitness and wellness goals. She helps them to build long, lean muscles through mat- and machine-based Pilates, in which students work on a special machine consisting of ropes and pulleys designed to add extra resistance to each movement, resulting in the lithe limbs and toned muscles of a gym cat, the natural predator of the ubiquitous gym rat.
Expansive, sunny windows illuminate the deep-red walls framing Mid City Salon’s elegant space, where trained aestheticians groom keratin-based parts with a range of treatments. Stylists revamp hair with trimming and chemical services that alter color and texture without attempting high-risk crayon implantation. Manicurists, meanwhile, outfit natural and acrylic nails in decorative swipes of polish, creating long-lasting style with CND Shellac applications or trendy designs such as cheetah print and flowers. Aestheticians can also rework façades with a quick brow and lip wax or a flawless makeup application. For offsite pampering, stylists arrive at homes during salon birthday parties to give girls aged 3 and older a chic updo, a smattering of glitter makeup, and polished nails that make them feel like adults without memorizing tax-return terminology.