Blowdry bars aren’t the only solution to bad hair days. “Air drying is the new blowdrying,” says Mal Strong, co-owner of Goldplaited, Chicago’s first finishing salon. “We’re encouraging clients to air dry, then come in to be styled. It’s better for your hair and you avoid double heat, so hair grows faster.” Choose from beachy waves, curls, buns, braids and ponies — and all dry styles ($30) include a relaxing shoulder massage. 2803 N. Sheffield; Goldplaited.com
In order to lie about your age — and get away with it — good skin care is crucial. Dr. Kevin Pinski recommends DermaSweep to turn back time. Less irritating and more effective than microdermabrasion, this treatment is gentle enough for even the most sensitive skin. Mild suction exfoliation stimulates collagen production and opens pores to drink in customized infusions that treat fine lines, hyperpigmentation, redness and acne. The most popular infusion is a stem cell concoction by NUgene that reverses free radical damage and bolsters healing and cell regeneration. A treatment at Pinski Dermatology and Cosmetic Surgery — the first medspa in Chicago to offer the technology — takes less than an hour and leaves skin impossibly dewy. DermaSweep with NUgene, $250, 150 N. Michigan; Pinskiderm.com
3. MAYA CHIA BEAUTY
Chia is going the way of olive oil, moving from a lauded health food to topical applications in skin care. Maya Chia Beauty extracts pure chia oil for a lightweight facial oil that plumps skin full of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, giving you an angelic glow minus the oily residue ($59; Mayachia.com). That’s not to say chia seeds aren’t still a great health food, too. Add chia to your vinaigrette to make an entrée salad a little more filling. At TWO (1132 W. Grand), Chef Tom Van Lente dresses a salad of arugula, roasted golden beets and sheep’s milk feta with chia seed honey vinaigrette.
4. NEGATIVE-SPACE NAILS
“Negative-space nails are everywhere,” says editorial manicurist Ashley Gregory. “It’s a throwback to a vintage manicure from the ’20s and ’30s, [when women] wanted to show off the half-moon to highlight the health of the nail.” Gregory recommends purple for a winter-to-summer transition color that contrasts nicely with a nude half-moon. As for getting the half-moon shape just right at home, freehand is the way to go — and practice makes perfect. Ashley-gregory.4ormat.com
< 5. Core Fusion Extreme
Exhale is equal parts relaxation and fitness. While its popular yoga, barre and cardio classes appeal to a predominantly female clientele, both guys and gals will love the new Core Fusion Extreme class. This intense hour of interval training includes gliders, plyo box, weights, suspension training and core work, and gets your heart racing. Relieve sore muscles with a deep tissue or sports massage immediately afterward — you deserve it. Classes start at $25, 945 N. State; Exhalespa.com
> 6. IV HYDRATION
Voluntarily sticking a needle into your arm may sound kooky, but hydration therapy is the new cure for hangovers, jet lag and even the common cold. At IVme Hydration Clinic, vitamins and nourishing fluids are injected directly into your veins — more potent than oral multivitamins since these don’t require digestion and are easier to absorb. IVme’s spa-like Old Town flagship fills up during lunch with jet-setting executives who pop in and check emails for 45 minutes while soaking up a one-liter bag of liquid power. If IVs make you queasy, a quick Super B shot ($35) can energize you in a matter of minutes. IV treatments start at $89, 1347 N. Wells and 16 N. Peoria; Ivmechicago.com
< 7. WARM NEEDLING
Combat the yin winter season with traditional Chinese medicine at the Langham Hotel Chicago’s Chuan Spa. Master of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Sharon Viernes counteracts stiffness, lethargy, sluggish digestion and aversion to cold by incorporating moxibustion with acupuncture in warm needling. “Warm needling is a heat (yang) therapy where moxa is burned on the handle of needles after they are inserted into acupuncture points to induce a soothing, warming sensation that travels throughout the entire body via the meridians,” she explains. Viernes selects meridian points for moxibustion based on your five elements and specific needs. Chinese medicine treatments start at $325, 330 N. Wabash; Chuanspa.com/en/chicago
> 8. AROMATHERAPY
For a massage that detoxifies your entire system, head to The Spa at the Ritz-Carlton Chicago. A new aromatherapy treatment blends geranium and juniper essential oils to reduce inflammation, improve circulation and even sharpen brain function. “With less sunshine and increased illness this time of year, the detox massage is great for balancing your emotional and physical well-being,” says Spa Director Patricia Norcross. “The oil combination helps to stabilize hormones and relieve stress, and leaves you feeling refreshed.” 80-minute detox massage, $210, 160 E. Pearson; Fourseasons.com/chicagorc/spa
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