Back Bay Health & Beauty
31 Newbury St., Back Bay
Like MiniLuxe’s other locations around the country, this spot is known for its soothing, minimalist interiors, a selection of six-free polishes (meaning free from six toxic ingredients, like formaldehyde, found in conventional polish), excellent service, and waxing specialists cheekily called “editors.” Maximize your time and book brows, nail treatments, and waxing, since, as we mentioned, this spot has it all. Trust us and spring for the slightly more expensive performance polish manicure, a forty-five-minute treatment that uses the brand’s in-house polish line that dries in five minutes and wears like a gel (meaning it will last close to two weeks).
38 Newbury St., Back Bay
Bella Santé is a convenient one-stop shop for beauty in Boston—facial treatments, massage, manicures, pedicures, and a full hair program. These are no run-of-the-mill facials, either. Expect medical-grade treatments, like dermaplaning (gently scraping off the top layer of dead skin cells to allow deeper penetration of products) and microneedling (tiny needles are run over the face to induce inflammation—the good kind—that kick-starts collagen production). Both may sound torturous, but they don’t hurt in the least. The nonmedical facials use Skinceuticals products. Moving from the face to the crown, the blowouts are speedy, and the color technicians know what they’re doing; the same goes for the manicures and pedicures. Book in for a full day of pampering with a girlfriend and allow for plenty of time between treatments to kick back in the relaxation rooms in your robes.
Balans Organic Spa
216 Newbury St., Back Bay
The only 100 percent organic spa in Boston (on pretty Newbury Street, no less), Balans specializes in plant-based treatments. This is a full-service outfit with an adjacent wellness center for nutrition, meditation, and exercise needs. The facials are customized entirely to your skin and accompanied by a complimentary nutrition and health consultation (if you like). Aside from the aesthetic treatments, Balans has a flotation tank to help fully relax the mind, the idea being to remove any kind of stimulant—unless you want to listen to music or a guided meditation. This water is Dead Sea–level salty by way of Epsom salts, to permeate the skin with essential minerals, so floating isn’t something you need to think about—it just happens. The massages can be boosted with body brushing, too.
234 Clarendon St., Back Bay
It is impossible to dislike Drybar—the concept just works. Forty-five dollars will get you a wash and blowout, done in a beautiful, calm, yellow-flecked setting in record time. Cough up an additional ten dollars for a scalp massage during your shampoo. What’s most convenient about Drybar is that founder Alli Webb and her team realize that for many, two blowouts a week can save precious hours in the morning. Drybar’s membership options address this need and make that sleek, bouncy crown of hair a weekly reality rather than a celebratory treat. Just ask your stylist to go easy on the products—they tend to have a strong, identifiable scent that some don’t like.