In terms of attractions, London’s got it all, and its beauty scene is no different. From new concept stores and boutiques to luxury spas, blow dry bars and nail salons, there’s no shortage of great spots in the capital for a quick beauty fix. So, whether you’re after a luxury facial, a bouncy blow dry or Instagrammable nails, let us introduce you to to five London beauty destinations you’ll want to visit…
Situated on a quaint street in London’s bustling Covent Garden, Browhaus is unlike traditional, almost clinically decorated salons I’ve (Jem – Blog Editor – Hi!) been to before. Greatly inspired by Bauhaus, Browhaus is the perfect one-stop brow and lash grooming salon. Built for the image-conscious urbanite, expect the highest technical proficiency but with a rather fashionable end result. I opted for one of their most popular and sought-after treatments, the Lash Curl Up; essentially a perm for your lashes. Once you’ve visited for this particular treatment, you’ll want to keep returning.
The treatment takes between 45 minutes and one hour to complete, with a two-step curling solution process. A lash curl-up involves you lying down with your eyes shut (harder than it sounds but a great excuse for a power nap) before the therapist widens your eyes with tape and applies the silicone curling shields to hook up your lashes, and a further pad below your lash line to protect your lower lashes. Once you’ve discussed your desired result with your lash technician, the first lifting solution is then applied to break down the bonds in the hair for around 18 minutes, followed by another fixing solution for a further 13 minutes. After the final treatment has been removed, the tinting process can begin, giving lashes a greater depth of colour.
THE HOUSE OF ELEMIS
This luxurious Mayfair townhouse, where spa meets science meets skin, is the creative heart of the ELEMIS brand; a perfect place for people who are serious about looking after their skin and themselves in a serene environment. The House of Elemis offers couture beauty treatments for the skin and body and is one of my favourite havens to take myself away from ongoing, everyday life stressors. For me, one of the best things about visiting The House of ELEMIS is the fact that the brand’s elite therapists ensure your trip is made personal; they look, they listen and they tune in to you and your needs while taking your desired results into consideration. By performing transformative treatments, personalised to respond to the ever-evolving rhythm of your life and ever-changing nature of your skin, The House of Elemis is the perfect treat for you and your skin.
I opted for the BioTec Radiance Renew facial treatment: a powerful antidote to tired and sluggish complexions for instantly visible radiance. After scanning your face to analyze spots, wrinkles, texture, pores, sun damage and redness, your therapist will use a variety of technologies and techniques, which even after the first treatment, dramatically change your skin’s appearance – It’s quite possibly the best facial I have ever had.
DUCK & DRY
Who doesn’t love a bouncy blow dry? Duck & Dry is our favourite blow dry salon in the capital; it exudes energy and buzz and is the go to place for great hair and a great time – it’s where we kicked off our office Christmas party! Offering a varied menu of blow drys and chic updos, the décor is gorgeous, with a wooden swing poised in front of a flower wall (oh so instagrammable, if that’s what you’re after). Chic, fun and fast with a prosecco bar and a private events lounge, Duck & Dry is a world where the traditional rules of hairdressing do not apply. Not only is the salon heavily relied upon for giving me voluminous locks that I simply cannot achieve solo (trust me, I’ve tried), the brand additionally offers a range of haircare and styling essentials to ensure your hair wows both in the salon and beyond. Each product features their signature scent of wild English meadows, and the two products which stood out for me during my treatment were the Blow Dry In A Bottle, the mane-changer for ultimate root lift, and Fix Your Quiff All Round Hairspray, a flexi-hold hairspray that actually lasts, locks in your style and still gives you natural movement. You can purchase the full range at all salon locations (Oxford Circus, Chelsea and Sweaty Betty on Carnaby Street).
If you’re in the capital, you’ll have noticed London Grace nail salons popping up all over the city over the past couple of years. Launched in 2015, after founder Kirsten Hazell came back from living in NYC where she was inspired by the nail bars conveniently found on every block, there are now 7 salons in Angel, Canary Wharf, Chelmsford, Clapham, Leicester Square, Marble Arch and Putney. Kirsten found that the average salons on the British high street weren’t particularly sparkling, and the luxurious spas were too pricey, so she recognised a gap in the market for beautiful salons offering affordable treatments.
The award-winning salons feature a coffee shop and cocktail bar, turning getting your nails done into a sociable experience, and the opening hours are working women-friendly, open as late as 10pm – it’s never been easier to fit an appointment around busy schedules. We visited the chic Leicester Square last week for a top notch shellac manicure, and our nails are still looking beautiful. Coffee, cocktails and great treatments in beautiful spaces: best nail salon ever.
In my opinion, Indulge Beauty is the UK’s answer to Sephora, and the closest we’re going to get to an actual Sephora any time soon (beyond our dreams, anyway). This evolutionary beauty concept store, located in Westfield Stratford City, immerses shoppers into an interactive experience, making shopping for our favourite products easier than ever. Housing some of my favourite skincare, makeup, haircare and fragrance brands under one convenient roof, Indulge is truly the one-stop haven for all beauty aficionados – not only does it offer products from the likes of Buxom, Beautyblender, MAKE UP FOREVER and Marc Jacobs, you can also gain all the latest beauty product news and information via new collection previews before they have hit the shelves. Trust me, you’re going to want to visit, pronto!
Where are your favourite London beauty addresses? Let us know over on Twitter!