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May 11, 201609:05 AM
Bon Vivant

Design, entertaining and good living with New Orleans Bride and Homes & Lifestyles editor Melanie Warner Spencer

Afternoon Delight

Skin and spa treatments made for a weekday lunch break escapade

There comes a time in every active, attractive and in-demand New Orleanian’s life when fitting in a luxurious and lingering trip to the spa is impossible, but skipping that much-needed pedicure or facial isn’t an option. When long-term commitment doesn’t fit in with the current demands of your life, perhaps it’s time to consider a fun, flirty alternative. There are several spas, dermatologists and medi-spas in town with quick, no-recovery treatments that’ll have you in and out of the office in less time than it takes to get a fully dressed poor boy at Parkway. This list of treatments is compiled with the following criteria: Completed in one hour or less, with low or no downtime and maximum results. Whether you’re headed to Gulf Shores for an impromptu weekend getaway and require a swiftly executed pedicure; work, the kids and other commitments have you dreaming of a quick massage to refresh and revitalize; or it’s just time for a little pick-me-up there’s something for everyone on this handy list of skincare and spa trysts. With skin aglow and a little pep in your step upon return from your lunch break, your co-workers will wonder what you’ve been up to while out of the office. But don’t worry, we won’t tell a soul.
   Note: Some services were provided complimentary.

 

Like Water for Chocolate
The Woodhouse Express Hydrafacial is fast and effective and yet feels somehow like you’re sneaking away from work to do something a little bit wicked. Skin is infused with antioxidants, peptides and hyaluronic acid for gentle resurfacing, anti-aging and an instant glow. The treatment is $115 and is completed in a speedy 25-minutes. You will have plenty of time to enjoy a cup of tea in the homey relaxation room before or after your services, or to pop over to Juan’s Flying Burrito for a post-treatment nosh. Do not be surprised if the staff admires the rosy blush in your cheeks. You can thank them with a generous tip, a wink and a coy smile. To quote the French writer Antoine de Rivarol, “It is the dim haze of mystery that adds enchantment to pursuit.”

The Graduate
At Regenesis Medical Spa and Laser Skin Clinic, housed in a cozy bungalow on Toulouse Street in Mid-City, you can select from a variety of efficient and effective treatments from waxing and fillers to microneedling and microdermabrasion. But medical director Dr. Will Hudson recommends the IPL Photofacial, $175 per treatment through the end of summer. “It’s great for color correction, pigment, freckles and age spots,” says Hudson. Short for “Intense Pulsed Light,” the IPL Photofacial is a non-invasive way to improve skin texture and manage sun damage. “No topical is needed,” Hudson says. “It feels like laser skin hair removal. Some say it’s like a rubber band snapping on your skin.” In 30 minutes, pigmentation is zapped away by a hand piece that transmits broad-spectrum light, penetrating tissues and “shattering the cells containing the pigment.” The treatment also can increase collagen production, which coupled with your newly creamy complexion sans spots will shave years off of your face, causing your friends speculate on whether you’re stealing away during the day to rendezvous with a young paramour.

Fifty Shades of Grey (or Red or Pink)
Sometimes you just need a quickie – which must be why some naughty nail tech invented the express pedicure. Spa devotees and no-nonsense types alike flock to nail salons and spas for fast and fresh nail services, but a pedicure, even the bare bones style, still feels a little more indulgent. Slip off your shoes and sink into the chair at Franco’s O Spa in Mandeville for the Express to Impress Pedicure, 30 minutes for $20. If there’s time, include the Express to Impress Manicure, also 30 minutes, for $30. Grab a latte and a pastry in the onsite Starbucks Coffee Lounge to sip and savor during your services, because under the care and attention of a skilled tech it won’t hurt a bit.

An Affair to Remember
So many in Hollywood and Hollywood South seem to have discovered the fountain of youth. We think their secret might be regular medical facials. Dr. Deirdre Hooper and Dr. Sarah Jackson at Audubon Dermatology in the Garden District say this innovative $350 treatment will smooth, brighten and stimulate collagen. “It combines the benefits of Dermaplaning, Laser Genesis and a light Chemical Peel,” the doctors say. “There is no downtime and [it] can be done once a month for excellent skin health.” This treatment is for when you have a little extra time away from the office, so set aside an hour from the time you go back into the treatment room until you’re heading out the door. Consider yourself forewarned that attaining glowing and flawless Julianne Moore-like skin only fuels the flames of your desire, sending you back to relive the experience again and again. Side effects include daydreaming and lack of concentration until your next appointment.

Not-So-Dangerous Liaison
Slipping away from the office for a massage in particular feels not only indulgent, but also a little clandestine. With each of the locations in Uptown, Metairie and Mandeville offering easy parking, Earthsavers is at the top of our list for both its convenience and the simple but inviting atmosphere. Opt for the signature 30- or 50-minute massage ($55 to $75, respectively), which is far from basic due to the incorporation of hot towels and aromatherapy at no additional cost. Massage connoisseurs can choose their favorite between deep tissue, shiatsu and Swedish or an expert mix of all three. For those not sure what to pick, ask your therapist for a recommendation based on your needs that day. Grab a salad next door at Well if you’re at the Metairie location, or at Whole Foods if you’re on Magazine Street, and continue the spa vibes as you nibble at your desk. No one will ever guess your secret.

 

 

This article originally published in the May 2016 issue of New Orleans Magazine

 

 

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Bon Vivant

Design, entertaining and good living with New Orleans Bride and Homes & Lifestyles editor Melanie Warner Spencer

about

Melanie Warner Spencer is a native Kentuckian, but says she got to New Orleans as fast as she could. For more than 16 years, Melanie has covered lifestyle, design and entertainment at various publications, serving as the design columnist at The Austin American-Statesman, a senior staff reporter at the Houston Chronicle and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Houston Brides magazine. Her work also has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, the Huffington Post and Reuters in the United States and across the globe. In her spare time, Melanie is an award-winning fine art photographer and has been honored by the Texas Press Association for her editorial photography. She also has been honored by the Press Club of New Orleans for its Excellence in Journalism Awards and is currently serving as a media member of the board of directors. Cooking and eating fabulous food and taking road trips with her spouse of 16 years, fellow writer and filmmaker Mark Patrick Spencer however, is at the top of her list of favorite pastimes. Click here to like Spencer's Facebook page and follow her on Twitter @MelanieSpencer. 

 

You can reach her at melanie@myneworleans.com.

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