If you love being pampered as much as we do, there will have been one question on your mind after Boris Johnson's latest lockdown announcement: when will hairdressers and beauty salons reopen? 12 April, if everything goes smoothly. Here are the treatments we'll be getting once they do.
For a great portion of my 20s I’ve actively avoided in-salon facials. Perhaps at odds with the fact I properly love skincare. Cleansers, soothing essences (whatever they are, they sound, and often smell, nice), moisturisers, serums, oils, an LED mask that makes me look a bit like an illuminated Hannibal Lecter. I’ll try anything (as someone whose skin concerns yo-yo between dull, dehydrated, oily and sensitive on a weekly basis, I’m a commitment-phobe when it comes to products). But there’s something about spending hundreds on a facial that has just never fully appealed to me; it felt like the cosmetic version of trying on a great dress, feeling temporarily elated, then leaving empty-handed. That’s all before I was introduced to the HRH of holistic beauty: Sarah Bradden. Ninety minutes in her hands in her calming Harvey Nichols treatment room – she uses a combination of modern and ancient practices including acupuncture, reflexology, reiki and LED light therapy – and I left with both a cherubic glow I didn’t know I was capable of producing and feeling like I had, and not to sound overly dramatic, been reborn. I looked and felt like I’d had 10 hours sleep. (After a bad bout of insomnia this was actual bliss. I also did snooze for about half the treatment, it was that intensely relaxing). My skin – and mind – is crying out for another round.
After a year of WFH, I have more knots in my back than a pair of headphones. In certain lights, I can see them protruding out from under my skin. No surprise then that I am heading straight for a back massage, where I will ask for A LOT of pressure. I will be woefully uncomfortable, wincing under the table, wondering whether to let my masseuse know that I didn't mean that much pressure, but I'll be glad I didn't, when I walk out as loose and languid as one of those inflatable dancing things at the car wash. My salon of choice?Cowshed in Shoreditch, not only because it's conveniently close to my flat, but because the beds are like clouds and everything in there smells delicious. Light relief? I sure hope so.
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I’m not hugely into beauty treatments, but I must confess I had been converted after I tried Kajal Nandha’s dermaplaning facial. I left the salon with the skin of a newborn and was already planning my return for more baby-faced goodness when lockdown struck. Aside from this, I’m quite desperate to get my brows tinted again. After decades spent cultivating a brow that is bushy-but-not-out-of-control, I don’t require any threading or tweezing but I do like the definition a tint gives - especially when I get to spend 10 heavenly minutes getting my head massaged by one of the lovely ladies at Blink’s Liberty outpost.
I need everything. A pedicure, for a start. Specifically a Margaret Dabbs medical pedicure. Then – as a standard facial probably won’t suffice – I’ll get a chemical peel. After that, I’ll go to Waxing Queendom (my local) for an intrepid Brazillian. And to take the edge off? A massage at anywhere that'll have me. What? I deserve it.