photo-service-bridal 300x300By Gerilyn Flaxman
This time of year my skin just cringes at the sound of the flame lighting up in my furnace! The weather outside might be frightful but the fire inside (my furnace) is de-hydrating!  Cracked lips, brittle hair, and flakey skin, are not the best look to have when you’re standing next to your super model-esque 25 year old assistant at the holiday party group photo! Although all of the glossy magazines in the checkout lines will have you thinking that this month’s cover girl just threw her look together with a flip of her hair and a dab of lip gloss, we girls know better.  It takes an entire glam squad to raise your style game. So until I hit the lottery I’m going to rely on some great express beauty services to make me look like a million bucks while only spending fifty and having me in an out in less than an hour!

Raising the Bar:Beauty Bar of Buckhead
This new addition to Buckhead sits on Peachtree Street about 2 blocks south of Piedmont Rd. and it is worthy of stopping traffic!  With salon and spa offerings, you can find just about everything you need in one stop.  I found 3 outstanding express options:  Blow out and a make-up (touch-up) for $35 offers a blowout with a shampoo, mini scalp massage, and style, followed by a make-up artist to “ zhush” up your existing look with a touch up.  Even quicker is the hair touch up and eye application This is a “dry style” where a skilled stylists puts a look together using just a flat iron and a curling iron without washing and blowing your hair.  The look is finished with a complete eye makeup application and it’s all for $45 (if you mention this blog- reg. $60). But if you’re planning on showing up to a party in a little strapless number, than you are going to love the VersaPro Spray tanning both!  In just 15 minutes you get a three step tanning process for just $35 and if it’s your first time visit, The Beauty Bar of Buckhead is offering buy one get one free!

Stop and Glow:GlowDry
Located in north Buckhead/Sandy Springs area is a self-proclaimed beauty and blow-out mecca. This chic spot not only offers friendly stylists, but also fresh juice drinks from a drink bar while you’re pampered, and each station has a mini iPad loaded with any magazine you could imagine reading! I found 2 great express services being offered here.  The first is the “executive” package that includes a dry style where hair is curled, braided or flatironed and a full face make-up application for $50.   Want to skip the hair and just put your “best face forward?”  You can get a full face makeup application for just $40 or just concentrate on our eyes with eye make-up application for only $20.  Either way, GlowDry will have you ready to “face” the world in about 35 minutes!

Natural Woman:Natural Body Spa and Shop
Natural Body is a natural choice because they have 9 locations covering both inside and outside the perimeter.  There’s bound to be one near just about everybody.  Natural Body goes the extra step at providing a natural soothing environment.   Walking into this spa is like walking into a Zen den because they give much attention to providing an ecofriendly environment from the recycled flooring, to the energy star appliances, to the LED lighting and photosensitive dimmers, particularly at the Brookhaven location.  A great way to go au natural is by combining two mini services to create a head to toe mini package with a 20 minute foot/leg message and a 20 minute Power Enzyme Peel. The two services will have you in an out for $55 and just under an hour.

On the Nail:Aveda Institute of Atlanta
The Aveda Institute of Atlanta is a cosmetology school where the stylists are in training before they land in a full time position.  With that being said, you will have to be a bit patient during your service since you are working with an esthetician in training.  But on the upside, you can get a full spa service at a deep discount.  The one area of service that I recommend from Aveda is a Manicure. The Aveda Institute offers a 45-60 minute “spa” manicure for only $15 and this is definitely above the run of mill manicure you get from your neighborhood spot.  This manicure offers grooming and filing of nails, a hydrating mask, an exfoliating scrub, and polish. Aveda uses a line of polish called Spa Rituals and an added bonus here is you actually get to keep the polish you use!  They take appointments and can honor walk ins when available.

Worth the money:AYA Medspa is located inside Phipps Plaza in the main mall near Nordstrom’s.   Aya is a rare find.  The spa is a small quaint space with a friendly knowledgeable staff.  They not only offer some great tips on how to care for your skin, but once they get to know you, they can advise you on how many days to wait to text a blind date, or where to go for the best mojito!  These girls know everything!  Aya is a full service med spa offering injectables , laser resurfacing, and chemical peels among other services.  The spa is offering a light customized peel for $75 that will have you back on the street in 30 minutes.  An Aya esthetician can customize the peel for any skin type using glycolic acid.  This peel rapidly and safely resurfaces your skin and promotes cellular renewal.  You immediately see softer skin and a reduction in the appearance of fine lines.  Now, that give a whole new meaning to keeping a straight face!

A healthy glow is a must this time of year but heading to the spa can be so expensive.  So before you throw on your LBD and head out to this season’s best parties try these express beauty services that will have you putting your best face forward in no time flat and keeping a couple of dollars in your pocket to tip the valet.  – See more at: http://www.b985.com/news/lifestyles/express-yourself/ncKd6/#sthash.QmYgwMq5.dpuf

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