With all the holiday prep you’re squeezing into your already over-booked life right now, it’s easy to run yourself ragged and lose sight of the most important thing: your sanity.
Admittedly, I’m speaking from experience here – I come from the “you can sleep in January” school of thought – and I was definitely feeling a little frayed when I walked into Christiaan Salon. My skin was dull, my face had signs of stress all over it, my hair was dry and frizzy. When I’m maxed out, me time is the first to go.
I’ve driven past Christiaan a million times, at the confluence of Benefit and North Main on the East Side, but I had never stopped to go inside. When I did, I was amazed at how expansive the place is while still being housed in a historic building. The upstairs, where you walk in, is a hair salon. Downstairs are spa treatment rooms and a nail salon. I was there for a trifecta of pampering: a salt scrub, a facial and a wash and hair style. In short, three hours to a total mental reset. And I was ready.
In the cozy treatment room, Desiree handed me a robe and instructed me to lay down (and, by extension, to forget everything I had been worried about). For the next hour, she indulged me in a Body Glow Salt Scrub. It’s exactly what it sounds like: Desiree went limb by limb, massaging a warmed salt scrub infused with essential oils into my skin. The result is supple, glowing skin that feels toned and looks summer fresh.
When that was finished – and really, I never wanted it to end – I headed to another treatment room for a facial with Tasha. I loved that she addressed my skin’s needs, and gave me a professional assessment without the guilt trip that some estheticians give you for not taking good enough care of your skin. I had been slacking, but she brightened up my face with deep cleansing, masks and an enzyme peel – without making me feel like a bad person. I was finally able to mentally pause (I’ll admit, I had checked my email between rooms) and allow myself to breathe. I felt rejuvenated, and ready to be pampered.
Which is great, because that’s exactly what Carla did. She led me to her styling chair, looked at my hair, and decided to give me a Moroccan Oil Hair Masque for hydration, but instead of a blowout, she decided to let my curls run wild. Every curl is different, but as the masque did its work, Carla gave me some tips to properly hydrate my curls. She suggested skipping shampoos on certain days, and just conditioning instead. She also suggested using a wet brush in the shower to make sure my conditioner hits every strand equally, and using a home hair masque every week – all things that I’ve tried at home, and have made a noticeable difference in how my hair looks. When that was done, she styled my hair with DevaCurl cream, which was a refreshing alternative to my usual mousse: more hydration, softer curls, a looser, more laid back look. For once, my appearance matched my state of mind.
Make yourself a priority this month: at the top of your list (and, if you’re like me, your list of lists) put “I’m giving myself the gift of relaxation.” Then call Christiaan.
4 Benefit Street