The oversized styling mirrors at Mara's Salon reflect clients growing progressively more relaxed under the spell of the peace-inducing botanical aromas drifting through the studio. Nail techs spike mani-pedis with herbal tea, ylang-ylang oil, lavender salts, or a milk-and-honey blend; meanwhile, guests seated on leather armchairs or sofas gingerly nibble snacks and sip wine between hydrating lotion massages and paraffin dips. Staff supplement generous business hours with flexible off-hours scheduling, letting men and women work haircut, color, or waxing sessions into a tight schedule and meet the birds who come in to collect the salon's discarded hair for their nests each night.
Treat yourself to the glamour you deserve at The Pampered Girl salon in Hayes Valley. Today's Groupon gets you a Joelle mani-pedi for less than the price of a pedicure alone. At The Pampered Girl, you'll feel like a French princess dressed like an English king. The salon's pink and white royal decor includes chandeliers, frilly and comfy overstuffed chairs, whimsical curtains, and Victorian-esque mirrors and wall accents. Manny and Peddy were the best of pals,Always workin’ on each other’s nails, ’Til Manny got drafted in that Revolutionary War, Now Peddy don’t see his friend no more.
Beauty—if not carefully tended, trimmed, and bugproofed—can become so muddled and befuddled that it is barely visible to the naked or turtlenecked eye. Today's Groupon brings clarity to your beauty with $60 worth of waxing, facials, threading, and peels at Lucid Beauty for $25.
For every color of blouse and all sleeve lengths, there's a cosmetic look that completes the overall aesthetic package. Your private lesson is custom-designed for you and your individual facial structure as you learn how to efficiently and subtly apply makeup while caring for your skin. Arrive at your appointment wearing your everyday makeup and with your kit in tow before consulting with Hillary on your general cosmetic likes and aversions. Then your makeup will be removed and Hillary will beautify one half of your face before guiding you through completing the other half and supplying you with before and after photos of how the style complements your natural appearance.
Within a 17th-floor penthouse, Spa J'Adore's wide windows allow rays of sunlight to illuminate Buddha photos, exposed-brick walls, and brilliant orchids. Their décor, a combination of urban chic and zen sensibilities, reflects the massage practice's dual focus on Western and Eastern traditions. To that end, massage therapists are equally adept at deep-tissue and Swedish treatments as modalities from Thailand and Japan. The staff also paints on tans with brushes instead of sprays during body-bronzing sessions, which create a smoother, more natural appearance. After their treatments, clients can lounge on the spa's balcony, sipping herbal tea from heavy clay cups and relaying semaphore messages to hikers on distant mountains.
As music plays, white scrims separate Pure Envy Spa Bar’s pedicure stations, where stenciled portraits of Audrey Hepburn hang on sea-green walls. There, visitors plunge feet into baths of dutch cocoa, milk and honey, or water spiked with floating lime slices and mint leaves. Nailcare services are far from the only treatments available—a variety of facials soothe different skin types, and hot stones and oils facilitate massages. Waxing helps remove undesired hair more efficiently than trying to shave with a vegetable peeler. The spa boutique also sells OPI polishes, Yon-Ka Paris skincare products, and gift cards.
When Earthbody looks to hire new massage therapists and licensed aestheticians, it doesn't consider recent graduates—rather, it's looking for people with years of training and experience beneath their belts, and who still love what they do. It wants people who are healers at heart, able to lavish each client with skillful services and attention. Each detail at Earthbody has been carried out with similar mindfulness—from the spa's own line of organic body and facial products, all crafted in small batches in San Francisco, to little luxuries such as heated and infused foot towels and complimentary tea service.
To set the mood, the staff lights soy candles and tea lights, which burn cleanly so that even those with allergies can breathe easily. Surrounded by this soft glow, aestheticians renew skin with facials or treat bodies to massages that not only make muscles feel great but also uproot deep-seated tension. After each session—be it a couples massage or hot-oil Indian scalp treatment—the staff can compost, recycle, or launder everything used during the sessions. Dr. Shawn Goozh, a licensed clinical psychologist, also offers somatic-psychotherapy sessions that use bodywork to deepen traditional psychotherapy.
The staff's attention to detail hasn't gone unnoticed by the media. "This intimate Hayes Valley spot is more healing center than mere day spa," writes the San Francisco Bay Guardian. "Therapists are trained in several modalities and develop custom sessions for every client, including consultations before and after treatment." In 2010, SF Weekly named Earthbody its pick for best day spa, citing its "ecological sustainability and ancient holistic rites."