If I could, I would spend every weekend at the spa. What better way to welcome the weekend than a Saturday morning massage and facial? Or have a standing appointment for a Friday lunchtime manicure? It’s a dream that my body loves and my wallet hates. You can tell I’ve spent some time fantasizing about this – which is why I was so intrigued by the concept behind Citron Day Spa, which opened a few months ago in Wayland Square.
Citron is an Aveda concept spa, which means they offer the company’s products and services. If you’ve experienced any of them before, you know Aveda focuses on natural beauty and total relaxation – so I was expecting a calm environment, but I was pleasantly surprised to see natural woods, water features and serene art all combine to create an opulent, chic spa space. Owner Christina Allen brought me into the relaxation room before my services, and handed me a warm buckwheat neck pillow to wear while I filled out my paperwork. On a table in front of me were jars of lemon- and cucumber-infused water, a plate of petite vanilla bean scones and a drink menu, offering tea, coffee, mimosas and wines. (Since I had promised myself a detox weekend, I declined the bubbly... but it took a Herculean strength of will to do so.)
I was there that day for a Green Science facial, and a spa manicure and pedicure. There are a lot of spas that give massages, facials and nail services, but Citron is different. They not only offer these services, but they give you a way to have them more often for a lot less money. Citron has memberships for frequent clients: massage, facial, nail bar and waxing memberships. A monthly fee includes one service, plus 10% off products and 10% off a repeat service later that month. The best part? That monthly fee is lower than the cost of just the one-time service.
First up was the facial. Amanda brought me into the treatment room (which, several days a month, doubles as the medi-spa service room for laser hair and vein removal, and dermal fillers and Botox). I got undressed and onto the table, and the first thing Amanda had me do was close my eyes and take three deep breaths. Little did I know that while my eyes were closed she had put citrus essential oils under my nose. Sometimes it takes a while to settle my brain when it’s supposed to be relaxed and in the moment; the dose of orange aromatherapy cleared my mind and immediately put me in the spa zone.
As she treated my skin, Amanda walked me through the process, using Aveda’s Green Science cleanser, toner and moisturizer. The botanically-derived products smelled amazing, and worked to renew my skin while minimizing fine lines (which, apparently, I have now to the extent that they need to be treated... but that’s a story for another day. A sad, sad story.). While a gentle Perfecting Plant chemical peel did its work, Amanda massaged my hands and feet and applied hot towels to my skin. When the facial was over, I expected to see glowing skin, but I was also pleasantly surprised that I didn’t feel oily or greasy at all, which is common after a lot of facials.
After, I went to meet Kinsey in the chic nail bar. I picked out a bright pink OPI shade for my toes and settled into a Caribbean Therapy pedicure. It definitely felt like a tiny summer vacation: lemon slices in the foot bath, tropical smelling botanicals, a seaweed mask for my sandal-abused feet. As she worked, Kinsey told me about the nail art techniques she’s been doing (like a marbled manicure that involves dropping polish into water) and new products she’s been trying. I was excited to hear that she had CND’s new Vinylux polish on hand. It works like CND’s Shellac (a UV-cured polish that lasts two to three weeks) but air dries in minutes, cures like gel and lasts over a week. We decided to use that in the Stress Fix manicure I had that day, which is every bit as relaxing as it sounds. The Stress Fix lotion and scrub had lavender and rosemary in them, a blissfully aromatic combination that was transportive and calming at the same time.
After a couple of hours at the spa, I felt totally renewed – and the polish lasted an impressively long time afterwards. Remember how I said I would spend every weekend at the spa if I could afford it? Apparently this is how that dream becomes a reality.