Archive for September, 2011

SoulCycle Makes Upper West Side Debut

When it comes to fitness, I will be the first to admit that I’m a tricky customer. I don’t like running and I don’t have any rhythm, so finding an activity where I don’t look and feel like a hot mess is difficult. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with spinning, but I have been getting a little bit bored. So when I was invited to test out the latest outpost of SoulCycle in my NYC neighborhood, I will admit I was intrigued. The 45-minute class involved an intense 45-minute cardio workout that combines spinning with upper body toning using hand weights and core exercises. I’m happy to report the new studio is fabulous. Located on the corner of 77th Street and Amsterdam, the 1,900-square-foot, ground-level facility features a 54-bike studio, as well as a 300-square-foot SoulCycle Boutique. The studio also boasts 96 lockers, two bathrooms, and a changing room. I was a little nervous when I arrived this morning to try my first class, but after 45 minutes of fun music, total toning, and cool cardio, I am totally hooked. Can’t wait for my next ride. For more on the new studio or to find a SoulCycle near you, visit

Tea Time with Ole Henriksen

Last week, I had the pleasure of meeting with Ole Henriksen, owner of OLEHENRIKSEN Face/Body Spa in L.A. and the creator of his eponymous skincare line. Upon meeting Ole for the first time, there are two things that are evident immediately: 1. He loves what he does for a living. 2. He has amazing skin.  We chatted for almost an hour about everything spa (his line is now being sold on QVC), and Ole’s enthusiasm for this industry (and for life in general) is contagious. He also dropped off some products for me to try out. So, while watching the Emmys last night, I applied the Feel the Difference Perfecting Mask, which contains African red tea to firm and hydrate the skin. After 10 minutes, I removed the mask, and I must say, my face definitely felt more hydrated than normal. I plan on adding this mask to my weekly skincare regimen. To learn more about the benefits of tea in skincare products, check out November’s In the Mix column.

Massage Envy Joins the Fight Against Arthritis

In recognition of World Arthritis Day, which is on October 12, Massage Envy will join together to fight against this chronic and debilitating disease. Each of the 700 Massage Envy clinics across America will partner with the Arthritis Foundation to host Healing Hands for Arthritis, a one-day national event dedicated to building awareness and raising funds for the disease. For every one-hour massage and facial purchased, $10 will be donated to the Arthritis Foundation, an organization whose mission is preventing, controlling, and curing arthritis. Additionally, Murad, Massage Envy’s skincare partner, and Wyndere, Massage Envy’s retail partner, will donate 10 percent of all sales on this day to the cause. “At Massage Envy, we witness the debilitating effects that arthritis can have on our members and guests every day and recognize that more must be done to help raise awareness and find a cure for the 50 million adults and 300,000 children currently suffering,” says David Crisalli, president and COO of Massage Envy. “I encourage everyone to participate in Healing Hands for Arthritis by calling their local Massage Envy today and booking an appointment for this wonderful event.”

Dermalogica Co-Hosts Glamour Suite for Bloggers

Dermalogica partnered with Paul Mitchell, Stila, CND, and Beautisol to host a glamour suite at Robert Cromeans Salon in San Diego for 50 of the nation’s leading bloggers in anticipation of the annual BlogHer Conference. Each brand had the opportunity to showcase its latest product launches and provide guests with exclusive treatment services. During the event, bloggers experienced Dermalogica’s signature Face Mapping skin analysis and MicroZone treatments, learned about the Dermalogica story, and received the latest skincare news from Annet King, global director of education for Dermalogica.

A New Poll Reveals Facial Hair May Be On the Rise

As much as I hate to admit it, I watch way more reality tv than I should. Truth be told, I shouldn’t be watching it at all. However, it’s a guilty pleasure I’m not yet prepared to give up. One reality show that caught my attention—maybe it’s my fondness for a bit of five o’clock shadow—was Whisker Wars, a seven-episode reality series that debuted last month on IFC. The series follows a group of whisker warriors who travel the country competing for top bearding prizes. In honor of the competitive beard-growing series, the IFC network polled approximately 10,000 Americans online about their favorite bearded gents. Not surprisingly, the Texas trio in ZZ Top took the top honor in the IFC Whisker Wars Hall of Fame with 53 percent of the vote. Other musicians included Jim Morrison (15 percent), Hasidic rapper Matisyahu (12 percent), the Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia (11 percent), and Kenny Rogers (9 percent). In television and movies, Zach Galifianakis (34 percent), Jeff Bridges (23 percent), and Chuck Norris (12 percent) were all recognized. Respondents also shared their thoughts on facial hair. Apparently I’m not alone in liking a little stubble on the opposite sex. Ninety-two percent of respondents said beards on guys are hot. Interestingly enough, I’m in the minority when it comes to the Best Beard for a Fella to Grow. I’m with the 20 percent who preferred “a soft, short dusting of well-maintained stubble.” Forty-five percent opted for “something truly biblical or biker, the longer the better.” As a trend, it looks like facial hair could be on the rise. What do you think? Ninety-six percent of male respondents said they planned to grow a beard in the future. If that’s the case, now might be the time to think about how you’re catering to this emerging demographic.

Sothys Donates to A Prom to Remember Charity

For six weeks, beginning on Oct. 1, Sothys will donate 10 percent of sales of the Beauty Garden product collection to A Prom to Remember charity, which works to provide the ultimate prom experience for teens who have been affected by cancer. The event includes limousine transportation, formal attire, and a red carpet entrance at no expense to the teens and their families.

The Beauty Garden Collection is available at select spas and consists of Make-Up Removing Fluid with Cherry Bud, Floral Water with Angelica and Hawthorn, Comfort Mask with Helianthus and Rosemary, Face Care with Helianthus and Rosemary, Body lotion with Cherry Bud and Lavender, Helianthus and Walnut Shell Scrub, and Nourishing Body Oil with Helianthus. For spa locations, visit

Tips for Scoring a Winning Smile

In recent years, I’ve been hearing more and more about spas offering teeth-whitening services, which makes a lot of sense to me. It’s a great revenue-generating option that can be performed during a facial or makeup application. It easily adds to your spa’s bottom line, and whiter teeth make clients look younger and refreshed. As such, we’re highlighting spa teeth whitening in our October issue in an article called “Show Me Your Teeth.” (Here’s hoping all you fellow Lady Gaga lovers will appreciate the reference). Be sure to keep your eye out for American Spa in October. In the meantime, I thought I would pass some great tips from Dr. Alex Gause, D.D.S., from Smile Design Manhattan, who has some handy teeth whitening tips to help keep your clients’ smiles bright as they move into fall. Be sure to pass along his suggestions.

  1. Replace your normal mouthwash with a rinse that adds a whitening benefit, or carry a whitening pen with you that can be applied after meals or drinks that may cause staining.
  2. Cool those drinks down! Sipping hot coffee leads to this major stain causing agent to sit on your teeth for a longer period of time than necessary. An alternative is to drink iced coffee, or iced tea, through a straw.  This bypasses those front teeth that you use to present your face to the world while still giving you that jolt of caffeine that you need to start your day or keep you going after lunch.
  3. Monitor your eating habits. We all know the idea that eating candy leads to cavities, but the relationship between diet and dental health is more complicated. The simple act of eating causes an increase in acidity in the oral cavity, which contributes to the breakdown of enamel. The good news is that our body, through saliva, naturally counteracts this. Eating more frequently lengthens the time that our teeth are exposed to an acidic environment, putting them more at risk of decay. The take home message—frequent snacking can cause higher risk for tooth decay.
  4. Brush before bed. Don’t fall to the temptation to just fall asleep. During the night our mouths produce less of the saliva that is our natural defense against decay and gum disease.  Forgetting to brush means plaque and bacteria have a better environment to wreak havoc on our teeth and gums.
  5. No Smoking! In our image-conscious society, smoking has recently become popular as an appetite suppressant, or in other words, a way to keep the pounds off. But this approach compromises the beauty and health of your teeth and gums in an effort to stay trim. Smoking is one of the worst contributors to surface staining that we are aware of, and is a recognized risk factor to the development of periodontal disease, a disease that eats away at your gums and bones supporting your teeth. As an alternative to cigarettes, try controlling your appetite with healthy alternative such as fruits, nuts, and water.

Making a Change for a Happy and Healthier You

Like most people, I’m all for leading a healthier lifestyle. However, it’s not always easy to make the necessary changes. That’s why I was so interested to read 52 Small Changes: One Year to a Happier, Healthier You (AmazonEncore, 2011). Written by wellness coach Brett Blumenthal, the book suggests a small, healthy change to make each week, such as taking a multivitamin every day, learning to say no, and starting each day with a nutritious breakfast. When combined over time, these small changes will eventually lead to a bigger change resulting in a happier and healthier life. Today, I’m starting at week one, which is to drink more water. Although it sounds easy, I’ve had the same half full water bottle on my desk for a week. What small changes do you want to implement in your life?

Aesthetic VideoSource Releases Men’s Facial Techniques DVD

Aesthetic VideoSource, producer of educational videos for spa professionals, has released a Men’s Facial Techniques DVD. In this instructional video, Rita Page, an award-winning CIDESCO diplomat, demonstrates a complete professional facial tailored specifically for male clients using a combination of an 8-in-1 facial equipment machine and traditional techniques. She also highlights the personal touch throughout, incorporating an extensive facial massage, aromatherapy, and hot towel wrap. Rita offers valuable instructions and expertise throughout this informative video. For more information or to purchase the DVD, visit

Shortcuts to Offer Effective Leadership Webinar on Monday

Shortcuts Software is hosting the free webinar Effective Leadership in Your Salon on Monday, Sept. 12 at 9 am PST. The webinar will focus on the idea that the success of spas and salons depends on the strength of the team and a team is only as strong as its leader. Attendees will learn techniques on how to be an effective leader, understand the difference between management vs. leadership, and learn the characteristics of a strong leader and the secrets of coaching and mentoring people. To register, click here.

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