Chelsea Health & Beauty
511 W. 20th St., Chelsea, New York City
Beneath the High Line in Chelsea’s gallery district, this yoga studio does spectacular Ayurvedic facials. During the Kalyani treatment, rice poultices—prepared with herbs custom-blended for your skin and soaked in organic warm milk (a source of brightening lactic acid)—are applied to the face for a soothing, smoothing effect. The Deep Clean Facial, which is incredible for the breakout-prone, involves a heavenly marma massage (the aesthetician targets specific energy points on your face to release tension and wake up skin), healing masks, herbal exfoliation, and gentle extractions. Don’t miss the jar of healthy-ish cookies outside the treatment rooms—delicious with the studio’s dosha tea.
127 W. 26th St., Chelsea
Barbara Close studied therapeutic herbal therapies and integrative medicine before founding Naturopathica—so it’s equal parts healing center and spa. There’s an apothecary-like boutique hung with giant glass tincture-dispensers in front where you can sample the brand’s gorgeous, botanical-spiked skincare, health-supporting teas (our fav: the Skin Tea to promote a vibrant complexion), herbal-infused honey, and, of course, said tinctures. There’s a tonic bar serving cold-pressed juices, kombucha (the grapefruit mint flavor—omg), and frothy herbal lattes. The spa itself is a huge, dimly lit, atmospheric sanctuary with a plush consultation space (the wallpaper is unforgettably cool), sound-bath alcove, and absolutely incredible massages, facials, and scalp treatments. The Blue Eucalyptus Energizing Massage incorporates deep tissue and acupressure techniques to counter adrenal fatigue, the Bio-Energy Lift helps revitalize skin from environmental damage, smooth lines, and plump with nourishing sea fern extracts and a special copper-amino-acid complex while The Holistic Facial uses lymphatic brushing and a vigorous sculpting massage to release muscle tension and support circulation.
146 W. 29th St., Chelsea
Erin Telford is an incredible breath-worker, healer, acupuncturist, herbalist, and Reiki master who has spent the last few years developing her two main therapeutic programs: breath-work and guiding light sessions (mentorship and therapeutic counseling). It's worth noting that Telford performs these therapies virtually, with clients in New York and further afield who can participate from the comfort of their own homes. Both the breath-work and guiding light programs are ideal for those who feel stuck and have difficulty opening themselves up to love, or for those of us who hold on to pent-up emotions of grief, rage, and resentment.
237 W 15th St., Chelsea
Valley Nails is a happy, serene, clean (as in nontoxic, 7-free, clean-beauty clean), and cool place to get your nails done. Their nail art is off-the-charts amazing, and the eclectic, spare interiors make you want to run home and redecorate everything, but the waterless pedicure is perhaps their most brilliant idea. It sounds un-pampering, somehow, but it’s the opposite: They use fresh, warm wet towels, eliminating the gallons of disinfectants and detergents necessary to keep even the smallest tub of water free of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and God knows what else. It’s a lot to not have to think about. It’s a lot to not have to think about. In its place, you think about how amazing the massage feels, how relaxed you are, how thorough and lovely the nail technician is, and, when you walk out the door, how gorgeous and perfect your pedicure looks. They also have a location around the corner from the uptown Barneys, and another in Nolita right by The New Museum.
Face Place (Closed)
425 W. 14th St., 3rd Fl., Chelsea, New York City
Don't expect soft music and a gentle massage. Taking a more clinical approach to facials than a typical spa, the space is stark and clean, and the staff really knows what they're doing. The signature facial combines a round of extractions with a galvanizing treatment, which promises to tighten and rejuvenate skin tissue. They also offer some pretty effective peels. There are other locations in Los Angeles and London.
511 W. 20th St., Chelsea
Owner/instructor Nicole Katz, who once ran the business side of Torrisi, started this beautiful studio in Chelsea. Wrapped in a palette of white, light grey, cream, and gold leaf, the classes here never allow more than six people, so you get some great hands on training. Luxurious touches add to the relaxing vice: Yoga mats are laid out for you, tea and ginger cookies are set up in the lobby, and the showers are as nice as they come.
23rd St. and Hudson River Park, Chelsea
Situated on a pier along the Hudson River, this gigantic sporting complex operates out of the "if you build it, they will come" mindset. And it’s true: Here, you’ll find year-round ice skating, a rock climbing wall, gymnastics, soccer, a driving range, and more, all situated under one sprawling roof.
Serge Normant at John Frieda
336 W. 23rd St., Chelsea
Serge Normant is one of the most talented stylists on the planet, and while it is possible to get an appointment with him, his co-workers are no slouches. If they’re not already booked on magazine photoshoots or fashion shows, they’re here giving outstanding cuts, color, extensions, and (formaldehyde-free) keratin and frizz-taming treatments. The spaces—there’s also an Upper East Side location—are gorgeous, with details like glittery chandeliers, plush love seats, and atmospheric potted plants punctuating breezy, loft-like interiors.
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