I think it's pretty much common knowledge that NYC is made up of dozens of distinct neighborhoods with very different flavor. It's perhaps even more widely understood that many of those neighborhoods' gems are hard to find or simply unknown. That's where we come in.
This time around, we'll be showing off a few of the best beauty shops, salons, and spas in SoHo—a locale filled with some of the city's most alluring spots. Below, find our favorites (both under-the-radar and, well, Sephora), where to find them, and a few insider tips to know when you walk in.
The address: 123 Lafayette Street, New York, New York 10013
The lowdown: Glossier has leveraged cool-girl marketing, gentle skincare products, and barely-there makeup into a full-on phenomenon. Now, it has a permanent showroom in SoHo (and, every so often, product launch pop-ups) decorated with Birch flower arrangements and staffers in pink jumpsuits. Because, as the Glossier site reads, "'beauty' should be fun, easy, imperfect, and personal."
The insider tip: This showroom can often be a who's who of those you follow on Instagram—from Emily Weiss herself to your favorite Into the Gloss and Glossier employees to fashion and beauty insiders alike.
The address: 124 Prince Street, New York, New York 10012
The lowdown: Here, you'll find everything you've ever come to expect from Nars: audacious lip colors, that iconic black packaging, chic décor, and help from knowledgeable makeup artists.
The insider tip: For $100, you can take an hourlong makeup class with a Nars makeup artist. Learn to choose the right foundation shade, re-create runway trends, or finally figure out the "no-makeup" makeup look.
The address: 438 West Broadway, New York, New York 10012
The lowdown: Aesop was established in Melbourne in 1987 and has been doing the minimalist thing for far longer than it's been popular on Instagram. It creates skin, hair, and body care formulas sourced from safe, effective, and sustainable plant-based, laboratory-made ingredients. FYI: Every single product smells incredible.
The insider tip: Each shop features at least one sink so you can try every product offered the way it's intended before purchasing—masks, face wash, moisturizers, hand soap, the works.
The address: 555 Broadway, New York, New York 10012
The lowdown: We don't have to tell you how near and dear we hold Sephora to our hearts. The beauty megastore offers just about every product we know and love, in brightly lit isles with samples galore. "The rumors are true—you can get up to three samples of any product in-store, made for you each time you visit," Sephora pro artist David Razzano confirms.
The insider tip: If for some reason you're not completely satisfied, Sephora will return any purchase (yes, even used items) for a full refund within 60 days of the purchase date. If you decide you're not thrilled with your purchase within 61 to 90 days, Sephora will return your product for store credit. Note: The store can put a temporary ban on you if you make too many returns sans receipt.
5. Osswald Parfumerie + Luxury Skincare Boutique
The address: 311 West Broadway, New York, New York 10013
The lowdown: Boris Dreiding established the Parfumerie Osswald 1921 in Zurich, Switzerland, as a high-end perfumery that offered fragrances and luxe skincare products. Since then, the store has gone international and nestled up on Broadway in SoHo, still selling iconic, fancy beauty offerings and chic unknown fragrances.
The insider tip: If you want to try something before you splurge, Osswald's sample program allows you to try a variety of fragrances or skincare items before you purchase them and have them shipped directly to you for $3 to $9 each.
The address: 375 Broome Street, New York, New York 10013
The lowdown: Daphne is a quaint, chic spa that exclusively carries Biologique Recherche's extensive range of skincare products—including Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen favorite Lotion P50. The menu features clinical, customized, results-driven facial and body treatments.
The insider tip: Go for The Glow—a treatment that combines two of the spa's most popular treatments for a discounted price. It includes an illuminating facial with non-surgical facelift results and a detoxing body wrap (that's said to burn up to 3000 calories). First, a combination of personalized Biologique Recherche masks and peels are applied, followed by a personalized eye treatment and oxygen infusion for an immediate and visible lift in your skin. Next, an infrared blanket is used with Sudatonic creams to flush toxins from your body.
You'll notice an improvement in skin texture, cellulite, bloating, and stretch marks.
7. Bite Beauty Lab
The address: 174 Prince Street, New York, New York 10012
The lowdown: When you arrive, you'll be greeted by a Lip Lab artist and start your bespoke lipstick service. The Lip Lab artists will hand-mix any pigment combinations to create two completely original shades for your lips only. Pair each lip color with your choice of finish (sheer, matte, classic, or luminous) and scent (our favorite is coconut) to complete your new shade.
Insider tip: Every bespoke lipstick remains on permanent record, so you can remake any favorites whenever you want.
The address: 9 Prince Street, New York, New York 10012
The lowdown: Credo offers a lineup of brands that use safe, sustainable, and ethically sourced ingredients. Its mission, according to its website, is to "change the way people think about ingredients and products they put on their bodies." We're here for it.
The insider tip: The shop offers three free samples for every single purchase (!!!), offers a rewards program that will earn you points every time you shop (you can redeem them for travel-size products or in-store services), and hosts events too.
In other words, we have our weekend plans sorted. How about you?