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 our planet." She somehow balanced principles and profit, partnering in global campaigns with UNICEF, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, and the United Nations, all while expanding her brand into 2,500 locations in 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 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 a UK-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 Blue Corn 3-in-1 deep-cleansing scrub mask often appear in Allure, Marie Claire, and other national publications.
At Sunfastic Tanning Resorts, clients don’t just get a tan—they get a dose of vitamin D or an infusion of antioxidants and pure botanicals. Each of the four levels of tanning beds pumps out 10,000 units of natural vitamin D, and lotions from Australian Gold, Designer Skin, and Swedish Beauty enhance tans and keep skin moisturized. The tanning resort also provides airbrush tanning using a custom-blended natural solution made with antioxidants, pure botanicals, and sweat from Solaro, the man who runs the sun. Thirty-minute teeth-whitening sessions keep teeth from acquiring the same bronze shade that skin has. The treatment's light activator, which shines on the FDA-approved hydrogen-peroxide gel to release its whitening power, can be adjusted for people with sensitive teeth.
Smart Tan–certified managers oversee all the comings and goings at each Island Sun Tanning location as staff members help patrons shade shift with bronzing equipment and products by Devoted Creations and Designer Skin. UV beds cool skin with air-conditioning systems and calm the senses with aromatherapy mists. MP3-player docks increase the relaxation potential, allowing bodies to settle into the beds' contoured confines and listen to their favorite music or bedtime stories read by Morgan Freeman.
For patrons seeking sunless options, staffers utter secret passwords that open the doors of VersaSpa and Mystic Tan spray-tan booths, which leave bodies bronzed for up to seven days. Red-light-therapy sessions aim to firm and tone skin, and hydration stations combine steam, radiant heat, and liquid vitamins to extend the life of new tans.
When not reuniting bodies with their ideal shades of bronze, the caring crew has worked to fight hunger in the local community by collecting donated canned goods for Philabundance.
Inside a brick façade lies Touch of Bronze’s brown-hued beauty haven, where shelves brim with tanning lotions awaiting their call to service. Guests follow elegant chandeliers down the salon’s hallway before slipping into rooms outfitted with tanning beds or treatment tables. On these tables, techs sheathe physiques in detoxifying body wraps that aim to shrink fat cells the way jean shorts shrink egos.
Breyer Medspa treats clients to dazzling physical transformations with a stable of professional-strength body and skincare treatments that make use of both medical-grade products and laser technology. Under Dr. Michael Birnbaum, licensed aesthetician Tara pampers and perfects her clients' faces with microdermabrasion therapy and chemical peels that slough away layers of skin to reveal radiant complexions. For a treatment more intense than spa facials and less thorough than chemical peels, the medspa's medical-grade facials deliver skin-renewing results that go beyond traditional facials with deep-pore cleansing and polishing at the hands of an experienced aesthetician. With the use of an FDA-approved Cutera CoolGlide laser, technicians can realize their patients' dreams of hairlessness, vein removal, and wrinkle- or blemish-free skin by simply adjusting the settings on the versatile laser system. The medspa's carefully chosen laser uses longer wavelengths than its competitors to soothe the skin as it works to reduce hair or remake skin texture.
Jacquelyne Rudy and Dawn Kalin, the founders of True Skin, take a holistic approach to beauty, as they combine their knowledge of health, nutrition, and yoga with years of experience in skincare. They hope each client can relax and discover their most radiant self through services such as facials, chemical peels, and microdermabrasion, as well as rejuvenating laser skin-tightening and defuzzing laser hair-removal treatments. Geri Massott, the certified massage therapist and reiki master on staff, kneads away tension with an arsenal of bodywork modalities and an oversize rolling pin. True Skin's spa-like studio instills serenity in guests with deep cherry drapes, soft lighting, and coffee-shaded hardwood floors as they await beautification. The aesthetic haven is located between Chestnut Hill and Flourtown, so GPS users should input the town of Glenside into their friendly driving device or whisper "Glenside" to their flying carpet.
The Tannery Club offers customers a chance to obtain bronze skin no matter the season. UV tanning is available in both standup booths and different levels of sanitized beds, in tandem with tanning lotions and salves. Other services include red-light therapy, spray and airbrush tans, and teeth whitening.