Sunlight filters in through Scandalous Hair Studio & Spa’s two walls of windows, illuminating the intimate boutique so that it stands out amid the other neighborhood stores. Perched on the corner, the all-purpose salon and spa greets visitors with an exposed brick wall that gives way to a row of styling stations where stylists pace around salon chairs as they plan out customized haircuts and color treatments.
Just a few yards away but a world removed from the lively bustle of the salon floor, aestheticians stationed in private treatment rooms cultivate glowing complexions with Wilma Schumann skincare products. Among the most popular spa services, aromatherapy massages melt away stress, and European facials fight signs of aging, acne, and embarrassing face-plant dives off the Eiffel Tower.
Inspired by childhood playtimes spent giving manicures to her aunts and sisters, cosmetologist Madeleine Rajkovich opened Madeleine Salon & Spa to finally realize her lifelong passion for beauty. Continuing education is the backbone of Rajkovich's business, and she regularly attends conferences to stay up-to-date on new techniques, products, and uses for leftover cucumbers. The multilingual salon offers everything from haircuts and highlights to mani-pedis, microdermabrasions, and cellulite-reducing massages, as well as highly personalized facials that begin with an in-depth skin analysis and end with a moisturizing mask.
Inside the salon, geometric cherry-red chairs create a modern tableau among sleek metal tables and white walls. Green walls, fluted glass-pendant lamps, and landscape paintings evoke a sojourn in the country on the spa side of the business, where body betterments are overseen by framed certifications and vintage portraits of Audrey Hepburn taken before photofacials finally cured her colorless complexion.
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.
Beyond Organic Spa's philosophy is that people are a part of nature, and the best solutions for body and skincare woes are natural ones. With that tenet in mind, the staff pampers clients with eco-friendly beauty services fueled by organic products. As an exclusive partner of Éminence organic beauty products, the spa's services use serums and masks designed to safely tend to skin without harming it with additives or chemicals. The spa's filtered water keeps toxins out of the body, and all towels and linens are cleaned with natural products and detergents to keep pollutants and grass stains out of nature.
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.
Among the largest health stores in the country, GNC bolsters bodies with specialized vitamins, protein powders, and diet aids to boost health and battle bodily woes. At an in-store smoothie bar, frozen-fruit wizards help customers sample popular supplements by blending them into robust, nutritional treats blended with bananas, peaches, and berries. The savvy shop staffers chat with customers to find out their health goals before advising them on which supplement combinations will help build muscle and which will help turn legs into pogo sticks. Shelves brim with barrels of protein powders, which aim to boost strength, power, and stamina, along with GNC's signature Vitapaks—daily doses of vitamins geared toward athletes' needs, joint and heart health, beauty, or acing the SATs. On the lighter side, diet shakes and body-cleansing systems mix vital vitamins and nutrients to keep bodies healthy despite lower-calorie diets.