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Sophie Elkus

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Best of Beauty: Los Angeles

Nightcap bodysuit (similar here), Ramy Brook jacket, Frame jeans, Schutz shoes, Proenza Schouler bag, Illesteva sunglasses

I receive a lot of questions about where I go in LA for the beauty works: hair, nails, makeup and more.

Considering I’ve been just about everywhere (I love to try new places, but end up sticking with my favorites) I thought I’d put together a quick list for all you Angelenos – or for out-of-towners who travel here and need a pick-up! These are places I’ve thoroughly vetted and frequent on the reg, so take my word for it.

HAIR:

Let’s start with the biggest one. I have a full detailed post coming your way next week on how exactly I get my color (straight from the source: my amazing colorist Kadi), so stand by for that. In the meantime, here’s a cheat sheet of locations. I get color from Kadi Lee at Goddard & Bragg every 4 months, and I get trims from Florent Merle at Joseph Martin Salon every 6-9 weeks. For blowouts, I’ll hit up a Drybar, but I almost always wash my own hair at home before going so it can air dry for 20 minutes while I drive and park. I find that at any blowout salon, stylists never towel dry quite enough, and I can’t stand blow-drying sopping wet hair – why deal with the damage? I know the wash is part of the experience for some, but for me a blow dry bar is more about getting in and out so I can start my day while keeping my hair as healthy as possible.

NAILS:

Manicure & Pedicure: Olive & June. For the best experience, there’s no better spot than this place. The decor is simple, fresh and pretty, cleanliness is a priority and it’s a relaxing atmosphere you’ll want to spend a couple hours in. Also a wonderful place to take your sister, mom or girlfriend for a special occasion. If you’re looking to get in and out and don’t care about atmosphere, this is not the place to spend your money. I also recently tried Ten Over Ten at Platform and loved it! I hear this is an East Coast favorite that is new to LA.

Quick Polish Change: Bellacures.  If I just want to change my polish color but my nails don’t need much attention otherwise, I’ll go here since they can accommodate walk-ins much easier than the above salons. Convenience factor wins sometimes.

EYEBROWS:

Anastasia Salon: I go to Jasmine at Anastasia in Beverly Hills for my eyebrows. I try to go as long as humanly possible in between appointments and just pluck at home if necessary otherwise. I used to go to Anastasia herself, but she has since stopped taking clients and focused on growing the business. It’s expensive, but eyebrows frame your face and they’re easy to screw up. Unlike a blowout or a makeup application, if you’re not happy with them waiting for regrowth takes longer. I say it’s better to play it safe than sorry when it comes to brows!

EYELASH EXTENSIONS:

Madison at Skin Worship is who I go to for extensions every so often. She is great at making sure they look natural and not “too much.” I’ve always thought, what’s the point of getting extensions if people blatantly notice them? I definitely don’t go for the night out look, but a little oomph makes me look rested.  I’m not addicted to them – I prefer to only get them before beach or warm weather vacations where I don’t want to use a lot of makeup, then let them completely fall out and just use mascara on my natural lashes for several months before going back. This way, my lashes stay healthy and full and I don’t depend on the extensions.

Some people ask if they’re damaging to your real lashes. I don’t think so, as long as you take eye makeup off VERY carefully with a cotton pad soaked in remover. I’ve never had a problem until a couple nights ago, when I forgot they were on and rubbed my eye and an extension fell into my eye (ouch). It took ten minutes of Q-tip Operation Game to get it out, but all was fine in the end. Just be gentle.

MASSAGE:

The Now is amazing. Their prices are affordable and the atmosphere is perfect for a Sunday night (think white and airy with succulents and hanging lights). I love to get gift cards for friend’s birthdays here, as I know it’s an indulgence they’ll enjoy but may not treat themselves to each month. I think The Now is revolutionizing the way people see massages as something attainable regularly instead of only on special occasions, and it’s great for stress relief and tending to sore gym muscles.

 

TAN:

I’ve been going to Chocolate Sun since high school and it’s my favorite spot for a healthy, non-toxic, non-smelly spray tan that lasts a full 10 days. They hand-airbrush you with great attention to detail and the studio is set in a beachy bungalow. Wait 6-8 hours, shower and voila. I’ve recommended it to countless friends.

When I don’t have time to wait 6-8 hours, Sugared & Bronzed has an express spray tan that only takes 2 hours to develop a medium color before you can shower. The scent and feel is slightly heavier than a normal tan, but you only have to sit in it for a couple hours. This is a great option before running to a flight or event, and the tan will develop slowly.

I can’t end this post without addressing this amazing Ramy Brook jacket! I admit when I first tried it on I wasn’t so sure I could pull it off – after all it says HAPPY SEXY STRONG in gold sequins across the back – but I loved it and it’s so surprisingly easy to style. I’ve worn it countless times with jeans and boots for a more masculine vibe or with floral sundresses for some contrast. Since the jacket length is a bit longer, pairing it with a minidress about the same length works well. It’s on sale in some sizes here!

I love the idea behind this jacket and the confidence I feel throwing it on. Those three affirmations are a powerful reminder for how I want to feel on my best days, and I love that “Happy” comes first. It’s something we tend to forget, isn’t it? We focus on striving for success and ways that we define success, but at the end of the day, happiness is what matters. So thank you to Ramy Brook for this beautiful reminder.

 

 

Nightcap bodysuit (similar here), Ramy Brook jacket, Frame jeans, Schutz shoes, Proenza Schouler bag, Illesteva sunglasses
Photography by Betsy Newman

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