Imagine laying out by the pool while having a relaxing treatment that will perk up your face for a big evening out. This summer, Manhattan acupuncturist Shellie Goldstein brings an abbreviated version of her trademarked AcuFacial Facelift to the Hamptons. (She'll come to you, or she has an office at 530 Montauk Hwy., Amagansett).
The Hamptons Express is a 60-minute treatment that combines acupuncture with microcurrent therapy to stimulate sagging facial muscles, brighten the complexion and tighten loose skin. (In her Manhattan office, she adds LED and ultrasound therapies to the mix for a more complex treatment.)
"It's like taking your face to the gym," says Goldstein, who bases her practice on the traditions of Chinese medicine. "It's an inside-outside approach," says Goldstein, because the acupuncture deals with any number of internal imbalances that affect your skin.
COST: $350 or $950 for three; for information and appointments, go to hamptonsacupuncture.com.
Spas in Manhattan tend to be either all-out elegant or somewhat sterile and high-tech. Not so at Lush, the recently opened spa on Lexington Avenue, where the vibe is more "welcome to my English kitchen." In fact, you sit at a kitchen table to confer with your therapist.
The spa's signature treatment is Synaesthesia, billed as a "multisensory massage for the mind, body and soul." It's a customized experience -- before starting you choose from the words written on a blackboard (relax, ambition, confidence) and select one of the bottles of beautifully colored oils.
All of this becomes part of the carefully choreographed, 80-minute massage, done to gorgeous orchestral music written for the spa, with some birdsong and an old favorite thrown in. It's meant to stimulate all your senses -- your chosen word becomes a massage bar, your oil is infused through the room -- into a state of absolute bliss.
COST: $230; information and appointments at lushusa.com.
At Spa Castle in College Point, saunas are more than some place to sweat. Eight options offer different therapies.
The very hot Loess Soil sauna, with beautifully hand-painted walls, is said to be good for medicating (and the smell of the soil and natural herbs is calming and relaxing). You won't shvitz quite so much in the slightly cooler gold or jade saunas (gold is said to comfort sore limbs, jade contains calcium and magnesium for overall well-being.) If things get too hot, you can cool down in Ice Land, where the chill is said to be good for firming and reducing chronic pain.
COST: $40 weekdays, $50 weekends, includes saunas, indoor-outdoor pools and many places to simply chill. Spa options are plentiful and vary in price; the traditional Korean scrub, $80, won't leave a smidgen of dead skin anywhere; spacastleusa.com for information and reservations.