3000 BC Beauty Boutique & Spa’s Red Tea
Infusion Essential Facial
605 W. Lancaster Avenue, Wayne; (484) 367-1000, 3000bc.com
The treatment room is just beyond the waiting area’s hanging orange beads. Once the client is settled in, a staffer takes inventory of her day-to-day skin-care regime. Step one: a gentle scrub to slough off dead skin cells, which dull the complexion. Step two: Steam opens the pores.
Next, it’s time to get a closer look at the skin with a bright light. For those who typically tense up and are a bit nervous when their blackhead-prone noses go under the spotlight, it helps to know that any extractions are quick and painless. Finishing things off on a relaxing note, a 3000 BC staffer works a red tea lotion into the face, neck and shoulders as part of a long, luxurious massage. Packed with a host of vitamins, sweet-smelling red tea soothes blotchy skin, helps reduce signs of aging and can strengthen the immune system—and after an hour of pampering, you don’t have to drink the stuff to experience
Avanté Salon & Spa’s Margarita Salt Pedicure
700 Downingtown Pike, West Chester, (610) 429-1800; Avanté on Main Street, 98 Main St., Exton, (610) 363-0600; avantesalon.com
At 4:30 p.m., after a short wait, an Avante esthetician escorts our spa correspondent to a chair in front of a soaking tub brimming with a sweet-smelling stew of water softened with citrus essential oils. She hops up and dips her feet into the steam as lime halves bob on top. Temperature adjusted, she relaxes with a glass of wine and a few magazines (after all, the toes shouldn’t be the only ones having fun). After a brief soak, the esthetician brings the client’s feet out of the dip to look them over. “Are you a runner?” she asks. Apparently not. Unfazed, she promptly goes to work on her client’s callouses. A thorough cuticle cutting is followed by a fragrant margarita salt scrub and even more sloughing. Using nearly every tool in her arsenal, she eliminates the rough patches and blisters to reveal some seriously sandal-worthy tootsies.
The next step (and a treatment highlight): a massage to soothe the fresh, new skin using oils, lotion and steamy river rocks. The final flourish: two shiny coats of a bright nail color called “Tropical Punch.”
After stepping down from her chair and waddling back to her car in rubber flips, our enthused correspondent notes the time on her dash—5:30 p.m. Now that certainly was a happy hour.
Harmonia Healing Arts Spa’s Pearl Therapy Face & Body Treatment
413 E. Lancaster Ave., Wayne; (610) 688-1007, harmoniaspa.com
Diamonds may be a girl’s best friend, but with a little help from Harmonia Healing Arts Spa, pearls can have the same effect on the skin. The treatment begins with a gentle massage using small bags of volcanic energy stones. Next comes an exfoliating scrub made of crushed pearls. The gems—like salt—slowly dissolve into the skin, leaving behind a polished glow. Another layer of shimmery goodness is applied—a jelly-like pearl-wrap lotion slathered from head to toe. Then the client is swaddled in a cocoon of plastic wrap to allow the lotion to open pores and hydrate the skin. A similar process is applied to the face, cleansing the skin before scrubbing away dead cells with the pearls. Both body and face are finished off with an invigorating seawater and marine-based lotion that leaves behind a slight shimmer. Clients emerge smooth and sparkling, just like Venus from her oyster shell. You glow, girl.
Joseph Anthony Retreat Spa and Salon’s Austrian Bathing Experience
243 W. Baltimore Pike, Glen Mills; (610) 459-4663, josephanthony.com
For centuries, water has been known for its healing power. But it wasn’t exactly working its wonders on our correspondent as she darted through the rain and into the shelter of Joseph Anthony’s modern new facility. Inside, however, the marvels of the Chromotherapy Tub Suite were
The treatment begins at the massage table, where a staffer applies a superfine, white clay mask to the skin to draw out the impurities and toxins lurking within. Once the mask is dry, it’s off to the tub, where a warm bath scented with eucalyptus and other essential oils calms and soothes for a heavenly 20 minutes. A makeshift loofah stuffed with chamomile treats the nose as the tub’s colorful flashing lights—which define the popular European chromotherapy treatment—dance before the eyes and jets fire at all angles.
The sinful soak is followed by an application of a silk-like lotion to replenish the skin. Later, clients can slowly revive themselves with some time in the Brine Therapy Suite, an airy room full of over-stuffed chaise lounges facing a salty waterfall. The briny air calms as it clarifies the nasal passages while more lights entertain and soothe.
Prefer not to go alone? Tub and brine treatments are available for couples looking for a unique—and truly colorful—experience.
La Difference Salon & Day Spa’s Ionithermie
830 Paoli Pike, West Chester; (610) 429-1808, ladifferencesalon.com
Watching the informative pre-treatment video describing Ionithermie can be a little unnerving even for experienced spa-goers. It does, after all, involve electrodes. Thankfully, the staff at La Difference calms our correspondent’s jitters, explaining the process: Ionithermie uses a combination of gentle electrical stimulation and all-natural products to extract toxins and smooth the skin’s appearance.
After a quick exfoliation, toner, a vitamin cocktail and algae lotion are massaged into the target areas—in this case, the stomach, legs and glutes. The skin is covered with conductive clay containing natural plant extracts. Then the main attraction: Positively charged electrodes are placed on top of the legs, negatively charged on the bottom; by sending charges through the body, toxins presumably head south and are expelled while muscles are toned and cellulite dissolved. Before the client can even ponder the thought, a La Difference staffer flips the switch and her legs shake in response. For 30 minutes, she experiences an unusual sensation as muscles repeatedly tense and relax on their own accord.
The result? As our correspondent wobbles back to the treatment room feeling like she’s just done 200 squats, she learns she’s shed 4 inches—a full inch of that from her waist. The staffer shows her the brown discharge clinging to the negative electrodes—expelled toxins, she’s told. So while Ionithermie is somewhat uncomfortable, with visible results like these, you may want to send your own thighs a-twitching sooner than later.
Millennium Hair & Day Spa’s Great Wine Wrap
50 E. Wynnewood Road, Wynnewood; (610) 649-4977, millenniumhairanddayspa.com
It’s early in the morning when our correspondent checks in at Millennium Hair & Day Spa, and she hasn’t had her coffee. No worries. She’s got more serious beverages in mind. After sloughing off any dry skin with a brush, out comes a warm potion packed with red-wine goodness. A combination of pinot noir and other skin-friendly antioxidants, the mix is painted onto the arms, legs, stomach and back. Then the client is wrapped in foil and a heating pad while a soothing scalp massage distracts her from the rather toasty sensation of being cooked. Regardless, the aroma is delicious.
After a bit, the foil is removed and a quick washing cleans the spent scrub. Continuing the libationary theme, a staffer calms warm skin with champagne oil.
Relaxed and yummy smelling, our correspondent walks out sniffing her arm and suddenly craving a glass of prosecco. Unfortunately, it’s only 10 a.m. A drink for the skin would have to do.
Ilona Day Spa & Wellness’ Stress-Relieving Treatment
820 Lancaster Ave., Devon; (610) 687-4444, ilonadayspa.com
As she rushed through the door at Ilona Day Spa’s new location, our coorespondent was already stressing after hitting unexpected midday traffic. Thankfully, within an hour, she’s cured.
First, she’s welcomed into a room where she is asked to lay on a heated bed and relax. But instead of doing what she’s told, our flustered coorespondent is thinking about what she needs at the market, work deadlines and whether she remembered to turn on the dryer this morning. In a brief moment, all that is meaningless. With a combination of aromatherapy, reflexology and massage, her brain is quieted and her muscles un-tensed.
An Ilona staffer starts at the root of the problem – the head – pouring scented lavendar oil on pulse points and gently messaging it in. The hands are spoiled next, followed by a pair of tired feet, tough shoulders and a sore neck. Finally, a series of oils is slowly dripping along the spine, allowing plenty of time for the aromas and sensations to work their magic.
By the end of the treatment, most clients don’t want to open their eyes and face the real world – but at least they’ll do so revived and reinvigorated.
Other First-Class Treatments
Adolf Bieker Spa/Salon’s Hydrotherm Facial
508 W. Lancaster Avenue, Strafford; (610) 687-4750, adolfbiecker.com
Squeamish about the pain of extractions? At Adolf Bieker, you’ll forget about those pesky pores while suspended on pillows filled with liquid. It’s like a massage and facial all in one.
Allure Medi-Spa’s Deluxe Chocolate Wrap
30 Darby Road, Paoli; (610) 648-0468, allure-medispa.com
Sweet tooth added a little more to those hips than you realized? Well, here’s a chocolate fix that might actually help—a cellulite-depleting wrap that uses the caffeinated boost of cocoa to firm the skin.
Antoinette Day Spa & Salon’s Face For Him
85 Darby Road, Paoli, (610) 647-6618
Facials aren’t just for the ladies. Men can put their best face forward with this simple treatment, which soothes razor burn and moisturizes for an attention-getting glow.
Bluemercury’s Fast Blast Facial
42 St. James Place, Ardmore; (610) 642-5400, bluemercury.com
Get a quick pick-me-up before a big date or special event with this quickie treatment. A simple cleansing, glycolic peel and vitamin oxygen blast will have you out and shining in just 30 minutes.
Calista Grand Salon & Spa’s Reiki
1211 Wilmington Pike, West Chester; (610) 399-6677, calistagrand.com
Rediscover your yin and yang with this holistic approach to stress relief. Calming motions and an emphasis on both body and soul will leave you relaxed and rejuvenated.
Changes Salon and Day Spa’s Reflexology Pedicure
30 Greenfield Ave., Ardmore; (610) 649-3773, changessalonspa.com
Foot massages can be twice as heavenly when they go beyond the tootsies to soothe other trouble spots. By focusing on parts of the foot that correspond with various areas of the body, headaches and neck and back pain can be eradicated. Then treat your relaxed feet—and body—to a traditional pedicure.
Chuck Thayer Salon & Spa’s Seaweed Wrap
595 E. Lancaster Ave., St. Davids; (610) 687-6004, chuckthayersalon.com
Detox after a heavy weekend with the purifying power of seaweed. The wrap draws out those stubborn impurities and moisturizes while the Vichey shower soothes and calms.
Currie Hair, Skin & Nails’ Glorious Skin Facial
585 Wilmington Pike, Glen Mills; (610) 558-4247, curriedayspa.com
Looking to get rid of those laugh lines without a needle? Loose the pain and the side effects with a hexpeptide-packed facial that reduces wrinkles and gives skin a plump, fresh finish.
Joseph Anthony Retreat Spa and Salon’s Butter Crème Melt Float
243 W. Baltimore Pike, Glen Mills; (610) 459-4663, josephanthony.com
This signature treatment slathers you head-to-toe in an ultra-rich Swiss Goat Butter Crème and nourishing oils as you float on a pressure–free cushion of water. A beyond-relaxing scalp and facial massage completes the experience. Guaranteed to be an hour of pure bliss.
MaryAnne Christopher Salon Spa’s C-Esta Facial
3618 Chapel Road, Newtown Square; (610) 359-9080, maryannechristopher.com
Your mother made you take your vitamins for good reason. Indulge in a facial oozing with beneficial vitamin C that will leave even the most sensitive skin smooth and firm.
Nicholas Anthony Salon & Day Spa’s Sinus Relief Treatment
696 Unionville Road, Kennett Square; (610) 444-7222, nicholasanthonysalon.com
Do more for your allergies than pop pills and dry out that poor nose. Head to Nicholas Anthony’s for a tantalizing eucalyptus, peppermint and lemon peel that opens nasal passages while acupuncture erases the pain.
Polished Fingers & Toes’ Perfect Pedicure
221 Conestoga Road, Wayne, (610) 688-4181
Pass by the strip-mall in lieu of this mini-spa dedicated to your smallest extremities. With Polished’s state-of-the-art chairs (that boast serious massage strength) and super-sized whirlpools, even the simplest primping becomes posh.
The Day Spa at Skin Deep’s Pfrimmer Deep Muscle Therapy
1024 N. Providence Road, Media; (610) 565-0886, dayspaatskindeep.com
If basic massages just aren’t cutting it, give the cross-fiber technique a try. Created to help patients with muscle damage, this intensive therapy works deep into problem areas to increase circulation and relieve pain, stress and discomfort.
Toppers Spa Salon’s Hot Stone Manicure
745 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne; (610) 989-9660, toppersspa.site.dejazzd.com
Take your weekly indulgence to a higher level by adding the relaxing warmth of a hot stone massage. Essential oils—plus a classic file and polish—will leave your digits downright dainty.