Let’s face it: at times it feels like our lives are so busy and hectic there’s no room left for a little pampering and relaxation. Be it our jobs, families, friends or a significant other, life has become one precarious balancing act. But the pace slows a bit in summer, especially in New Orleans; it’s time to take a step back and take care of you. Facials, massages or even a simple haircut or manicure are great ways
to recharge while melting away the stress of daily life.Whether you’re looking to unwind or are in the market for a real rejuvenation, there are great choices around the city for nearly every budget.
The Mane Event
Humidity can wreak havoc on even the most well-maintained locks. While many consider the chillier months to be the time to deep condition your mane, Salon M owner Dennis Marquette says not so. This adorable salon, located in an updated century-old Mid-City home, recently added a new Keratin Complex service to their concise but well-executed menu.
“It eliminates frizz and relaxes curls for up to three months,” says Marquette. “It’s an absolute must-have for our humid Southern climate.”
Marquette says the goal when he and his wife, owner and stylist Lisa Marquette, opened the cozy salon in 2006 was to create a space where clients could feel at-home in an elegant atmosphere. The salon also boasts a small bistro-style waiting area with coffee and bottled water.
Located “under the clock at D.H. Holmes,” Studio-E is an upscale destination specializing in Kerastase, an exclusive French hair care line, only sold in 1,000 salons nationwide. Brand new for summer, owner E. Earl Joyner is giving customers a shot to experience the line anytime.
“From July 7 through July 31 we’ll be giving a customized Kerastase treatment with any regular salon service,” he says. “It’s a good way
to introduce new customers to their products.”
Joyner, who has 47 years of experience with hair, says he was introduced to the line when European clients would bring it in when he worked at the Ritz Carlton salon. While Studio-E offers all the regular salon services, Joyner emphasizes it as a hair and scalp destination.
“Of course we do cut and color,” he says, “ but we specialize in hair and scalp treatments. It’s not unusual for someone to color their hair one place then come to us for an intensive treatment.”
While this salon owner loves the entire line, Joyner says his favorite product is a nighttime leave-in hair conditioner.
“It’s a night moisturizer, with top notes of lavender, vanilla and eucalyptus, that corrects the damage done to your hair throughout the day,” he says.
For more than 50 years, John Jay salons have offered great services at a reasonable price. With five locations throughout the Greater New Orleans Area and two schools to boot, Jay’s salons are recognized nationally for the amazing work they do. They offer a large list of services, including cut, color, styling needs and even waxing. The price of your service depends on what level of stylist you choose, some masters have been with the salon for more than 10 years while designers have been there anywhere from five to 10 years.
Summer weather takes its toll on our skin. Humidity can suck the moisture right out of it, while the balmy weather can also cause embarrassing breakouts. Instead of reaching for harsh chemicals to clear up skin, take the time to visit an area spa and let them recommend something for you. Plus, a nice massage or exfoliating treatment can melt away summer stresses.
Bamboo on Magazine Street prides itself on offering the best services from a professionally trained staff. It is why owner Teresa Bordes says the customers keep coming back. This spa is all about their attention to detail. For some serious pampering indulge in Bordes’ favorite service, the Red Flower Japan Treatment.
“It’s an application of six refreshing body products that purify, polish, hydrate and deeply soften the skin,” she says. The store is also a retail destination, selling high-end products like Molton Brown and the exclusive Natura Bisse.
In addition to facials, massages and waxing, Bordes says the most popular body treatment they offer is their airbrush tanning, in which they staff applies “a blend of five gorgeous colors to achieve the most perfect and natural tan to suit your skin type.”
If you are more the do-it-yourself type, Bath Junkie is the place to go. Owner Jennifer Badeaux and her incredibly helpful staff can help you choose from more than 200 scents and essential oils, and color, to create a wholly individual experience. Be it a sugar scrub, fizzy cubes, shimmery lotions or moisturizing socks and gloves, this place has it all. You can even complete your home spa day with one of their soft robes, scented candles and adorably themed rubber duckies. Stephanie of their Uptown store says the two most popular items are the salt scrub and Body Dessert, a spray-on lotion and body conditioner.
This summer they will begin offering their popular fortune cookies, now customizable by color, scent and personal message. Stock up on these for a birthday party or bridal shower.
Speaking of parties, treating yourself and friends to a day of relaxing at a hotel spa versus a stand-alone one can be a wallet-friendly way to pamper yourself. Think of it as a mini-vacation: At Balance Spa and Fitness in the Loews Hotel you can hang by the pool, get a hot stone massage or an aromatherapy wrap. Packages like the Head to Toe or the Rejuvenation are both under $100 and include relaxing massages. For a few extra dollars you can amp up the experience with a facial or manicure, or custom-create your own package and get $10 off your service.
Spa Aria at Hotel Monteleone is also a great hotel destination. They carry luxurious lines such as Pevonia, Spa Ritual, Mario Badescu and the locally-loved Orleans Candles just to name a few, all of which are also for sale. They offer eight varieties of massage, or “body rituals,” from traditional Swedish to intensive, to Reflexology and paraffin can customize your experience for only $20 more. They a have three “synergy” aromatherapy blends for $10, and intoxicating options include stress relief in the form of sandalwood, lavender, orange and geranium rose.
Spa co-owner Cindy Cocke says they have two great summer specials, in addition to their locals’ discount of 10 percent off or validated parking.
“This summer, we’re doing Tea Cake Tuesdays,” she says. “We serve assorted fun teas and cakes, to make it a very social day. And 20 percent of the proceeds from Tea Cake Tuesdays go to Pennies for Peace, an organization supporting the education and building of schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
“Also on Tuesday and Thursday nights will be doing a waxing happy hour of sorts. We will serve complementary wine, to take the ‘whine’ out of waxing service.”
If you’re looking for value, Cocke says your best bet is the Malie body ritual. At $140, it includes a thorough scrub, the 12-jet shower and a 45-minute massage.
Put Your Best Face Forward
Summer heat and humidity means one thing for many of us: breakouts. Even those with generally flawless skin can have experience myriad problems, ranging from enlarged pores and oily skin to acne flair-ups. If you’re more concerned with non-seasonal problems such as fine lines, wrinkles or uneven skin tone, then take the time to talk to your dermatologist now.
Esthetique Facial Spa co-owner Elise Davis describes her store as “an intimate facial spa that customizes skin care for all over the body.” They only opened a bit over a year ago, but they already have a strong client base due to their approachable prices and exclusive services. Davis says their Signature Facial, which utilizes antioxidants and retinol, is their most popular offering while the staff loves their Back Facial, which is especially important in our warm and humid climate.
To help keep skin looking picture-perfect, this summer the spa is offering monthly Microdermabrasion Parties, which cuts the cost of a session nearly in half as opposed to a single regular session.
The spa is also the exclusive retailer of Skincando’s Combat-Ready Balm. The 100 percent organic salve is crafted by Sara Damelio, and soothes everything from dry skin to razor, sun or wind burn.
Between their two locations, in Mandeville and Metairie, About Face stocks close to 20 different makeup and skin care lines. The store, which offers makeup application, lessons, airbrushing and facial waxing, sells Freeze 24.7, Fusion Beauty, Smashbox, Skyn Iclenad and Paula Dorf among many, and is the only retailer in the state to sell Joe Blasco. Owner Natalie Cogan says this store was always a dream of hers, and indeed it was the first of its kind on the Northshore to sell these upscale lines. The store was a resounding success, and a Metairie store followed soon after.
Cogan wants her customers to know how important they are, and as such the two stores offer ongoing customer rewards programs of 10 percent off of their purchase.
Says Cogan, “We pride ourselves on being experts on the lines we carry and creating a very welcoming, non-intimidating makeup experience.” The two stores also offer up-dos and hair for bridal parties.
If you’re looking for more serious results, consider a board-certified dermatologist. Procedures like Botox, Restylane and other fillers are small investments with big results if going under the knife isn’t for you. Dr. Patty Farris of Old Metairie Dermatology also offers laser treatments, various chemical peels and microdermabrasion.
Farris was also influential in the development of the “cosmeceutical” Natural Advantage skin care system. The three-part system includes a gel cleanser and day and night moisturizers. Utilizing pure retinol and alpha-hydroxy, the system is clinically proven to reduce the signs of aging common for most women: fine lines, crow’s feet, skin discoloration and wrinkles.
In addition to offering surgical body enhancement, Dr. Penelope Treece of Southern Aesthetics is a board-certified plastic surgeon offering a wealth of facial procedures. Her staff also includes certified aestheticians and massage therapists. Cosmetic consultations are complimentary here, and if a serious surgery with serious downtime isn’t for you than consider one of the non-surgical services she offers. The Titan facelift works through a series of non-invasive treatments over a period of four to six weeks, and comes with a much smaller price tag than a traditional surgical one. The Titan facelift targets and treats sagging, loose skin, much like a four or five-figure surgical procedure with weeks of recovery and downtime.
Dr. Treece’s office also offers light cosmetic procedures like permanent makeup, collagen fillers and the new Radiance, a filler that can last for several years and is effective against deep wrinkles, laugh lines and acne scars, and can even enhance lips and cheeks.
Whatever you decide to do this summer to improve you hair, skin and body, the main goal is for you to feel better about yourself. Remember that pampering yourself is well worth it for you to look and feel your very best.
214 Royal St.
Balance Spa and Fitness Center
300 Poydras St.
Dr. Patty Farris
Old Metairie Dermatology
701 Metairie Road
4112 Magazine St.
4336 Canal St.
Esthetique Facial Spa
5702 Magazine St.
3815 Hessmer Ave.
For locations visit
819 Canal St.
6071 Magazine St.
3313 Severn Ave.
3258 Severn Ave.
3441 E Causeway Approach # C,