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Category : Best of Beauty

Back to School Beauty Overhaul

back to school beauty overhaul makeover

By the end of summer, your skin may be tanned, but the rest of you could probably use a total beauty overhaul. Now that the kids are back in school, you may just get enough time to yourself for a spa day…the next best thing to a beach day. Don’t know where to start? We’ve got some suggestions (of course).

Hair and Scalp Care

During summer, we all want to suck the marrow out of the sunlight hours. If you have kids, bedtime might have become a bit lax in favor of fireworks and franks. If you’ve been sleeping less and not eating as healthfully as you usually do, your hair and scalp may pay the price. If sunburned skin isn’t the only thing you’re shedding, we highly recommend a visit to Philip Kingsley’s NYC Clinic. Whether you need a deep moisturizing treatment or a complete hair and scalp overhaul, book an appointment with Elizabeth and team to get your scalp and strands back in shape.

Also, pick up an Elasticizer. Used 1 – 2 times per week, this award-winning hair and scalp mask is akin to an at-home hair moisturizing treatment. Explore Kingsley’s other award winning hair care products.

Facials & Skin Care

If you have let your skin care routine slide a bit over the summer, now is the perfect time to get back into the groove. Make an appointment at Yasmine Djerradine Institut de Beauté on the Upper East Side. If you live anywhere in the New York Tri-state area, it is absolutely worth the trip. If you can’t get in to see Yasmine, we recommend Lily or Karen. A remodeling facial or power peel are the perfect treatments to wake up the face and slough off the skin that has likely had its share of elemental damage from the rays of the sun. Also, recommit to a regular routine of cleansing, moisturizing and applying an under eye cream and/or serum morning and night. It’s never too late to turn back the hands of time.

Brows And ‘Stache

While you are at Yasmine Djerradine Spa, make sure that you maximize your time by minimizing your facial hair. Your eyebrows really do frame your face and don’t worry, waxing your lip will not strip the elasticity from the skin around it. Word to the wise: you are not fooling anyone by dying your mustache blond. The hair will still be there, it will just be blonde and everyone will talk about you behind your back (Well, we certainly will).

Makeup Lesson

Once a year, its worth it to have your makeup done professionally. Even if you have your routine down pat, you can learn a new trick or two that can kick your look up a notch! For those of us in the New York Tri-state area who can’t get to LA or Scottsdale to see M.B. York, stop in to see Kaoru at Salon Ishi. She will not only do a flawless application for you, but also show you how to create the look yourself and make a list of exactly what she used so that you can recreate the look at home.

Nail Care

There is only one place in NYC that Travel Beauty entrusts with our fingers and *especially* our toes: Celina Nails. Located on the Upper West Side, this mani mecca is the cure for the common pedicure. Celina’s team of Eastern European Pedi Professionals painstakingly care for your feet with surgical precision. A few flicks of their files and these ladies could turn Frodo into foot fetishist fodder. (By the way, if your soles really do look straight out of the Shire after a summer in the sand, you can request the private room on the second floor.)

Visit our RGB Cosmetics collection of five-free nail polishes to see the colors that we are loving now.

Don’t Let Go of Your Summer Glow

Prolong your sun-kissed look with a sunless tanning session at Euphoria Spa in Tribeca. Consistently awarded in Allure’s Best of Beauty, the tans here are always impeccably done. In a few minutes flat you’ll have a natural bronzy glow that we promise will have you add an extra sway to your step. Can’t get to the spa? Try our self-tanning products.

“Bach” To School

We know back to school time isn’t all makeup and manicures. Stress is inevitable in September. The multiple runs to Staples alone are enough to make anyone consider homeschooling! When it all seems too much, be sure to have some Bach’s Rescue Remedy on hand…and/or in purse! Just a few sprays will help you stay cool calm and collected, no matter how many backpacks your daughter says she hates until she deems one “tolerable”.

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The Power Peel Facial for Summer

power peel

The Best Seasonal Skin Care Facial

As we enter the warmer spring and summer months, it is important to stop and recognize that our skin is recovering from the brutal cold and dry weather of the harsh winter we’ve just trekked through (it may already seem like eons ago). Our skin is now in the process of acclimating itself to the warmer temperatures (finally) that accompany this time of year.

The Power Peel: Your Spring Facial Solution

The ideal skin care treatment for this time of year is a non-chemical power peel facial. I recommend undergoing this treatment twice a year. Now, as the weather gets warmer, to not only exfoliate the gift of dry, dead cells that winter so kindly bestowed upon us, but also to eradicate sebum deposits from the dermis. Ideally, you would repeat this treatment again right after the summer, in September or early October. It is the perfect way to care for skin after months of sitting in the sun or simply being outside at a time when we are exposed to sun on a regular basis. The peel will lighten dark spots or discoloring of the skin that may have occurred due to regular sun exposure. It will also help immediately clear up congestion, or clogged pores, often caused by the SPF products you applied daily.

Polishing the Skin

Keep in mind, this is a non-chemical, non-invasive procedure. Micro aluminum crystals are applied to the skin to exfoliate it. Think of it as a gentle sand paper that vanquishes dead cells, irregularities, acne scars, sebum and even fine lines. A new, radiant, fresh layer of skin is instantly revealed, with none of the downtime that comes after a harsher chemical peel.

Out With the Old, In With the New

The Power Peel device actually reveals a before and after effect. You can see, in one glass tube, the white color of the crystals that will be used on the skin, and in the other tube, the color of the dead skin cells that have been exfoliated from the face (usually a sandy skin tone). You will feel and look refreshed, like you have finally shed the heavy burden of winter and can look forward to a glowing summer.

Take-Home Facial

power-peel-facial-machineCan’t make it to the spa or need a quick touch up in between treatments? Try Elemis’ Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Gel Mask. It contains retexturizing enzymes that exfoliate and smooth out the surface of the skin. You can feel it activate immediately upon application causing a tingling sensation. Juvena Pure Lifting Peeling Powder is an effective exfoliating cleanser, perfect for daily use, that will polish and refine skin texture to leave skin smooth and luminous.

Your Smart Summer Skin Care Routine

Make sure to take care of your newly polished skin over the summer by using a protective sunscreen, like Institut Esthederm Bronz Repair SPF 20 for Face and Adaptasun Sea and Tropics Body Lotion SPF 20. Always make sure to apply a serum under sunscreen applied to the face. Serums like Cosmetics 27′s Essence 27 and Emma Hardie’s The Midas Touch Face Serum are light, making them perfect for warmer months. On top of all the anti-aging benefits these serums have, they will also help prevent congestion, namely blackheads and sebum buildup, that can occur due to applying sun care products directly onto skin.

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A Trip to the Philip Kingsley Trichological Hair Clinic

philip kingsley scalp treatments

My Scalp Gets the Pinnacle Clinical: Part II

My visit continues…if you haven’t yet, read all about the first part of my visit here.

After getting my hair and scalp mask rinsed out at the Philip Kingsley Trichological Hair Clinic in New York City, I was given brushes, Philip Kingsley styling products, a blowdryer and my own little station at which to dry my hair. I was sent home with my own set of Philip Kingsley clinical products, chosen to treat my specific hair and scalp ailments. These were pro-grade products, not for general consumption. This included a shampoo, conditioner, scalp toner, scalp mask and the famed Philip Kingsley Elasticizer.

My instructions were to:

  • Shampoo every day, massaging shampoo into my scalp only. I was told to think of cleaning the scalp the way one would clean the face, with a massaging action and for longer than ten seconds
  • Condition every day by running conditioner through the bottom half of hair. Do not apply conditioner near scalp
  • Apply scalp toner every day to clean scalp and throughout the day whenever scalp feels tight or irritated, or in need of a refresh
  • Recreate scalp and hair mask treatment at home once a week with scalp mask, Elasticizer, plastic shower cap and self-massage

Directions From the Philip Kingsley Trichological Hair Clinic

I followed these rules religiously for the 6 weeks between my visits. I made sure to eat a protein rich breakfast every single day and up my overall protein and iron intake. I also made a concerted effort to get to bed as close to 10:30pm as possible. As someone who frequently battles insomnia, this wasn’t easy, but I forced myself to do it! 10:30pm is the magic bedtime as far as stress levels are concerned; stay up later and you get another rush of cortisol in your system, leading to less sleep and more stress. For me that could mean more shedding, so to-bed at 10:30pm I went.

My Follow up Visit

I was a big ball of nervous excitement when I returned for my follow up visit to the Philip Kingsley Trichological Hair Clinic. I knew I felt better…my improved diet and sleep habits were affording me new energy and a higher stress threshold. When Liz took a look at my scalp she was very pleased to see how much calmer and less inflamed it looked. She even started to see some regrowth! The important thing now, she said, was to keep up the good work and nurture these new, fragile hairs, so they would mature into full strands. During my treatment, Stephen echoed Liz’s excitement at the improved state of my scalp. I made plans to return in February, to make sure my new hairs were indeed continuing to grow.

The Long-term Results of My Philip Kingsley Clinic Visit

Here I am, about 6 months after my initial clinic visit. The improvement in my hair cannot be understated. When my hair loss was at its worst, I had to stop parting my hair a certain way because so much of my scalp was visible. Now, with my fledgling regrowth thanks to the Philip Kingsley Trichological Clinic, I can part my hair that way once more. My hair is not 100% restored, but there’s noticeable improvement. I can wash my hair everyday without it looking like a chipmunk has gotten stuck in the shower drain. The most exciting thing, though, is looking closely in the mirror to see all the little baby hairs sprouting up on my scalp.

I know now that any slip up in my diet or scalp/hair care could mean a trip back to Shedsville. But the difference in how I feel after visiting the Philip Kingsley Trichological Hair Clinic and looks are more than enough motivation to keep me on the right track.

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My Remodeling Facial Treatment at Yasmine Djerradine Institut de Beauté Spa

best facial NYC

First Impressions

Your first trip to Yasmine Djerradine Institut de Beauté can be a curious thing…a bit like entering a secret club. You walk through a building lobby to a plain white door that in no way belies the oasis waiting for you behind it.

A Beauty Haven

But an oasis it is. The Moroccan-themed skin care mecca is a lush, intimate space filled with hanging lanterns, exquisite tile work and some of the best facialists in town. I saw Lilly for a 90 minute Remodeling Facial, the spa’s hallmark treatment. In the immaculate treatment room I was given a stylish pinstriped robe to change into, a welcome departure from the plush housewife-type usually given at spas. Lilly pulled my hair back in a headband and got to work.

The Treatment

A staple of spa facials is steaming to open pores and ready skin for extractions. Yasmine Djerradine Institut de Beauté skips the steam, though, as it can be too much for more sensitive or reactive skin types. Instead, Lilly cleaned my face and then applied Biologique Recherche’s purifying Mask Vivant to my face, mixed with a bit of baking soda. Can a mask adequately replace steaming, you ask? Oui! Mask Vivant is a probiotic mask packed with live yeast extracts, amino acids and Vitamin B. It deeply cleanses pores and dissolves blackheads. A few minutes in the mask and my pores were open and extraction-ready.

A Note On The Top Notes

A personal preference that was pleasantly appeased during my treatment was the overall olfactory experience. I’ve long abhorred super perfumy-flowery scented skin care. I’ve always felt that putting fake-smelling schmutz on clean skin was akin to dirtying my skin up again. The scents of the products used at Yasmine Djerradine Spa are the antithesis of that fake-floral. They smelled clean, earthy…almost medicinal. This may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I loved it. Even the lotion Lilly used for my shoulder massage (more on that in a bit) was very lightly scented.

Ex-Squeeze Me

Lilly’s extraction technique was gentle yet thorough. She used lancets, a comedone extractor, and of course her fingertips. However, when she squeezed a spot, it wasn’t the usual long, hard squeeze that many facialists use to get all of the gunk (technical term) out. Rather, she administered several small, quick squeezes. This gentler approach left my pale skin less red than it usually is post-facial. As I mentioned, Lilly also gave me a wonderful shoulder massage. This is always welcome as I hold nearly all of my tension between my shoulder blades.

Electric Youth

With the deep cleansing done, it was time for the remodeling. If you’ve never had a remodeling facial, it is thus called because it uses electric current to revitalize, reshape and tone the muscles and skin of the face, as well as activate circulation. It’s totally painless; in fact, this portion of the facial was so relaxing I fell asleep for most of it! Unlike the metal prongs used in other microcurrent facials, the machine Lilly used was equipped with thick, round sponges. Lilly massaged my face continuously with these, concentrating on the contour of my jaw, around my eyes, etc. Because she was constantly massaging my face with the pads, it was very soothing…hypnotic, really! The result was more pronounced bone structure, reduced puffiness and a youthful glow. Magnifique!

Imparted Wisdom

While complimenting me on the overall condition of my skin, Lilly did say I was “congested” around my nose and chin. Go tell it on the mountain – I’ve been dealing with that for decades! She offered some new advice on this old problem, however: Don’t use a moisturizer with SPF in it as the first layer you put on your skin. The SPF will clog your pores, leading to congestion. She advised applying a moisturizer without SPF first, so it would lay between my skin and the sunscreen, therefore preventing the SPF from clogging my pores. Good to know!

Parting Gift

Though she asked me what products I currently use on my skin, there was no hard sell at the end of my treatment. Though I appreciated this, I’ve yet to leave a facial empty-handed, so I made sure to pick up the Biologique Recherche cult favorite, P50V. This is the toner to end all toners that skin-savvy sisters across the globe are gaga over. I already love mist toners like Vine’s Care Water and Institut Esthederm’s Eau Cellulaire, so I thought it wise to add a more astringent-type toner to my collection.

If you are looking for a special treat for yourself or another, or a solid surgery and injectable-avoidance strategy, the Remodeling Facial at Yasmine Djerradine Institut de Beauté will not disappoint.

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