Katie Astone and Gina Galante Skillings fused their talents (and names) to create Salon Astante. The style-savvy pair believes that beauty should be a simple, stress-free process. As such, the two remain dedicated to creating stylish looks that merge seamlessly with each client’s lifestyle and personality. They help clients achieve this type of style-savvy synergy through services that range from traditional hair care to advanced facials and chemical peels. They also know how to assemble a team; consider Pam, their seasoned nail technician. A former OPI educator with 13 years of industry experience, she adds flash to every gesture with coats of traditional polish or sturdy chip-free gel solutions.
Crystals, volcanic sulfur, and black caviar extract may not seem like likely spa products, but that's where the "innovation" in Skin Innovations Spa comes from. The staff uses these nourishing products in tandem with clinical treatments to relax and refresh clients. Come in for a Hungarian organic facial or pumpkin peel and stay to have a skin irregularity whisked away through cryotherapy spot removal. These diverse offerings—along with a wealth of products from Pevonia Botanica and Jane Iredale mineral cosmetics—has earned the oasis a slew of awards and honors.
Those looking to acquire an eye-catching 'do or snip out a particularly clingy candy apple from their hair can do so with confidence at La Mirage. One of the staff of experienced snippists begins each appointment with a consultation that considers each customer’s skin tone, facial shape, personality, and time spent around helicopters. Opt for services such as a haircut ($40–$60), blow dry and set ($32–$40), or a classy updo ($65–$90) while enjoying a complimentary shampoo and conditioning. Otherwise, cut down on wind resistance during competitive make-out sessions with a sleek, aerodynamic upper-lip waxing ($12) before obtaining a relaxing 50-minute European facial ($75) that applies a moisturizing sheen and repels nocturnal forest critters.
On the tree-lined, bustling Beacon Street, a stately brownstone located at the St. Mary's T-Stop, three blocks from Fenway Park, and a 10-minute walk from the Longwood Medical area offers sanctuary from the frenetic outside world. Here, Southwest Day Spa cossets bodies and minds with more than 30 pampering spa treatments. Its lava-shell massage brushes bodies with polished shells from the Philippines that therapists have gently heated and combined with minerals, algae, salt water, and essential oils. The desert-heat body wrap, with its zinc compound, helps tone and smooth skin by scrubbing, wrapping, and then rinsing in a four-jet steam shower. The zinc compound is also an effective treatment for painful joints and muscles. Plant-stem-cell facials work to delay the appearance of aging much better than denial, and microcurrent technology fades wrinkles. Spa packages include special options for brides, couples, and those who, like NFL linebackers, just want to be pretty and pampered. Additionally, FDA-approved SmartLipo treatments take aim at stubborn fat cells, while laser hair removal banishes unwanted hair for all skin types.
Mode Spa's staff focuses its skills in three areas, rendering massages, skincare treatments, and nail services. Their massages incorporate Western and Eastern techniques, including hot stone and reflexology. Their skincare can combat acne or remove wrinkles. With regard to nails, the team can revive dull digits with manicures and pedicures, including options for gel and French polish.
Jennifer Lydon has a passion for hairstyling that predates her 22 years of professional experience. “We have pictures of me cutting my brother’s hair in the tub,” she laughs. “I thought I was Vidal Sassoon.” Lydon’s knack for mimicking hairstyling methods built a solid foundation for the skills she later learned in school, but technique is only part of Lydon’s style. Her first employer and mentor taught her the importance of accessible, friendly salons. He eschewed bourgeois ambiance and instead built a highly educated staff of genuinely kind people. “It was just a really beautiful place to work, and that’s what I’m trying to do here,” Lydon says, referring to Q Salon & Spa.
At her salon, Lydon leads a team of stylists in cutting hair of all types and ethnicities. Stylists specialize in treatments that range from keratin smoothing treatments to styling dreads in the beautiful salon with natural light, clean white styling stations, and colorful fine art doling out pointers. When her stylists tackle a new head of hair, Lydon says they make every effort to customize their cuts and colors to individual lifestyles. “When [customers] leave here, how much time do they actually spend [on styling]? You have to start there and build a rapport and, in some levels, a friendship, because there has to be trust there.”