Hotel Spa Treatments Go for the Gold, Silver & Bronze

Every hotel spa we’ve ever been to promises the gold standard in treatment, but a few hotels are taking their devotion to precious metals seriously, working them into their spa treatments for that extra layer of luxury per treatment.

The latest comes from Terme di Saturnia in Tuscany, a spa and golf-centric resort that’s a member of the Leading Hotels of the World. The treatment begins with a ginger, chamomile, and silk protein scrub, followed by a caffeine gel treatment infused with flakes of 24-carat gold, meant to draw out impurities. It’s then massaged thoroughly into your skin, and layer of gold dust and ground ginger is applied, and then locked in with moisturizer. It’s also available as a facial, since gold is said to help stop the formation of wrinkles.

That put us in mind of some other treatments as delightful for their indulgent nature as for their result. Fans of silver are generally out of luck at spas (despite its reputation for healing properties, it seems to be too downmarket to feature), but you can satisfy your urge for a cooler metal with the Platinum Rare Facial at the Ritz-Carlton on Central Park (they also offer it at the Beverly Hills Hotel) which uses La Prairie’s Platinum line of products to restore the balance of moisture in your skin and protect cells from damage. Two La Prairie experts will minister to you over the course of 90 minutes, and as generations of the Swiss line’s devotees will tell you, they know what they’re about when it comes to skin.

If you’re looking for a cut above even gold, the Diamond Journey at the Anantara Spa at the Emirates Palace Abu Dhabi is a fitting indulgence in one of the most over the top properties we’ve ever visited. It’s a long and involved process, but we’ll skip straight to the good stuff: the crushed-diamond and mud exfoliating scrub (not as painful as it potentially sounds, we promise), the hot oil massage, the hot stone treatment, and the diamond facial, which uses facial massage and lymphatic drainage to brighten skin.

Of course, if you’d rather not spend your vacation locked inside a spa facility, however luxe, we’d suggest the W Scottsdale’s version of service that will still leave you feeling like you made it onto the winner’s stand. As a part of their Whatever/Whenever concierge service, they’ve introduced a Tanning Concierge to help you take advantage of the local light, by offering expert tips, applications of the best sunscreens and after-sun products, and in-room spray tanning and skin consultations. There’s nothing like a good bronze to give you an excuse to indulge in some spa treatments, after all.

Runway Makeup Your Way

While it’s true that the term “seasonal makeup” is responsible for such anomalies as orange eyeshadow — and my personal favorite, the “Jersey Spray-Tan Effect” — the cooler months provide the perfect opportunity to go a little heavier-handed on your favorite colors and make things a little more dramatic. So where better than the very runways that line your closets and satisfy your cravings to find inspiration for the new you for fall? Our favorites for fall/winter happened to be more dramatic than everyday allows, so we contacted Raychel Wade, the authority on everything beauty and owner of cosmetic resource CheektoChic.com to help us translate the season’s hottest makeup from drag queen to wearable drama using her favorite La Prairie products.

We started with Dior. This outstanding and complex collection was inspired by the outlandish, wildly creative Parisian designer Paul Pioret which allowed Galliano to capture influences see in his gilded brocades, harem pants and Asian flair. The makeup is equally creative with pencil thin eyebrows, extremely fluffy lashes and an Asian-inspired, ruby-stained pout. What I absolutely love about this makeup look is it is La Prairie’s fall collection, Plumage de Nuit, at its best — it’s a kickback to old glamour that play into perfect fall colors like mauve, cranberry and plum. To get a Christian Dior look-type eye, I would use all four colors in the quad “Les Doves.” Start with the lavender/heather purple and apply a generous amount on the lid, from the lash line, blending up towards the crease. Next fill in the upper half of your lid and the inner corner of your eye with the silver shadow. Finally double dip your brush in the blue and brown, and smudge into the top and bottom lash line making sure to leave the inner rim clean. For your cheeks apply Peony powder blush along your entire cheekbone and follow with a small amount of Cellular Radiance Cream Blush in Berry Glow (applied with your fingertips) directly to the apples. For lips, use your finger to dab into the lipstick and pat onto your lips to create a natural stain, rather than a fully covered lip. Our new lipstick in Velvet would be gorgeous!

image At Chanel,the look was right on the money with what couture is all about! It was eye candy for all that is fashion, and of course, it was signature Chanel! Taking cues from Beau Brummell, the famous dandy who lived during England’s Regency period and who was credited with the invention of the modern man’s suit, you can see this inspiration in the balance of mixing masculine and feminine while illustrating the strong trend of clean, tailored lines. In “real life,” this is translated into boots, jackets, scarves. The makeup plays perfectly into a simple fall look that veers away from the warm bronze tones we are used to as staples for the summer months and heads towards something cool and simple. To create a wearable version of the Chanel runway look, start with La Prairie’s Anti-Aging Foundation. At this time of year, it’s common to find yourself between shades, in which case pick the paler of the two OR mix your lighter and darker together for the perfect transitional skincare shade. For eyes, use a dusting of the silver/grey shadow from our Les Doves quad, and apply on the lid. Take the blue in the same quad and create a “<" shape on the outer corner and blend into the gray. To finish off the shadow, apply a light dusting of Pink Opal on the brow bone. The bulk of this look comes into play with the eyeliner, and it's important to do either navy or gray-lined top and bottom and into the waterline so that you get a dramatic look that isn't too harsh. For cheeks, a powder blush like Claret should be applied along the entire cheek bone and fading up into the hairline to create a soft yet sculpted look. For lips, keep it simple and natural with an application of Mauve Glow lipstick and Firefly gloss.

image Miu Miu’s look played homage to the femme fatale with its deconstructed coats unbuttoned to expose flesh-toned brassieres and bare expanses of skin to reveal dustings of iridescent glitter. Colors were muted, but not dark, which was perfectly complimented by the makeup, resulting in a chic and elegant look. There was a focus on the extremely sculpted, edgy face which truth be told is difficult to wear in everyday life. But a simpler version of it is much more feasible. The key is to keep it simple with color selection and more dramatic in application and placement. Begin with an application of La Prairie’s Skin Caviar Foundation to achieve a fuller coverage, and finish with a generous dusting of La Prairie’s loose translucent powder. This will allow you to create a matte finish to your skin without it looking cakey. Next, take a blush brush (or something that is a bit smaller than a powder blush to give your more control), swirl it in our Cellular Treatment Bronzing Powder, tap off excess lightly and apply in the sunken part of your cheeks, right below the cheek bone starting about two inches from the corner of your mouth and curving up to meet your temple, in affect creating a bit of a “J” shape. This will frame your face, while creating dimension and warmth. While you’re at it, use the excess bronzer on your brush and dust across both eyelids. Eyeliner is key for the Miu Miu face. Reach for a creamy black pencil like ours in Noir and apply generously to both the top and bottom as well as inside your lash-line (aka the water line). Squeeze your eyes together and let the product melt to create a perfect, imperfect smoky look. Finish with a Nude lipliner and Cashmere lipstick and you will have a sexy version straight from the Miu Miu catwalk.

imageAnd there you have it, the part of the runway you can afford. The best part is that Raychel is, believe it or not, a real person and available for real-life consultations, so visit our favorite bubbly brunette, always with blush brush in hand, at www.cheektochic.com and make the most of that mascara, honey!