There is nothing really new about the medical spa concept except that — sigh — I should go more often.
Korin Korman, owner of 3000BC, recently opened a clinical (think deep-cleaning HydraFacial meets botanical followed by a citric acid peel) version of her popular Chestnut Hill spa in Washington Square's Franklin Residences.
The 1,300-square-foot space, with its sterile white walls and gold-plated trim that nods to ancient Egyptian beauty regimens, is packed with all manner of age-defying technology.
Among those are UltraShape, a machine that uses ultrasound waves to zap away belly and upper thigh fat, and PicoWay, a special laser that removes acne scars, wrinkles, dark spots, and tattoos, including all of their funky, hard-to-get-rid-of pigment. And like any good medi spa, or dermatologist's office for that matter, you can choose from a menu of injectable fillers, from Botox to Juvedérm. Bye-bye wrinkles.
The hallmark of the modern-day medi spa — other local ones include Sewell's Ageless Skin & Laser Center and Springhouse Dermatology & Dermaesthetics (Life Time Fitness now offers intensive in-and-out beauty services too) — is that the preventive treatments generally take less than an hour. The idea is that schedule-packed women (and men) can now fit the business of maintenance and self-care into their overstuffed routines. We are talking Botox after barre.
"We wanted to create something effective and fast that was customized and tailored to individuals' skin-care needs," Korman told me.
The services are quick, and if you skip a couple of restaurant nights, you might be able to squeeze your anti-aging needs into your budget. Products range from $25 to $60. Services are more pricey, with the most expensive targeting your tummy. A PowerShape session will run you $1,000. The HydraFacial will cost you $159. Korman, however, is offering a 3000BC membership for the committed. So for $129 a month — about the price of unlimited yoga — one can get a HydraFacial for that reduced price as well as discounts on products and other services.
And after your Visia Complexion Analysis, you might want to invest. Before I even had a chance to tour 3000BC's six private rooms, a way-too-up-close-and-personal photograph of my face was snapped. The picture, which used ultraviolet lighting and photography, put all my issues on blast. The only bright side of the service was that it was free.
Years of running outside without sunblock — I know, I know, shame on me — left significant sun damage. My pores are too big. There are wrinkles creeping in at the corners of my eyes (no more squinting!) and hyperpigmentation under my eyes is real. The bottom line is my skin is three years older than I am.
"A lot of people don't want to know the truth," Korman said. "But if we start here, we will know exactly what you need."
The good news is the damage can be reversed. So after a HydraFacial for a down-and-dirty clean and a peel, I left with eye cream to fight the dark circles. I will say my makeup is going on smoother. And maybe it's wishful thinking, but the darkness under my eyes is brightening up. The rest? Time will tell.