What’s wabi sabi?
Many people have tried to explain the meaning of the Japanese term wabi sabi but with great difficulty. In the same way that we can’t “catch” or hold onto time, neither can words hold onto wabi sabi’s meaning. Wabi sabi relates to an understanding of natural beauty that dates all the way back to ancient Japanese tea ceremony practices.
The initial idea of wabi sabi stems from the ancient rituals of Japanese tea ceremony where the purity and simplicity of an objects’ natural beauty were honored. Revering the beauty of a handmade tea cup for its uneven glazing and cracks is a basic example of wabi sabi.
In modern times, wabi sabi relates to all aspects of life from relationships to design to beauty. Since all life is constantly changing, honoring life’s impermanence while revering the imperfections in any given situation or item is also considered wabi sabi. A common misconception of wabi sabi is that it connotes carelessness or frivolity, while in fact wabi sabi is revealed and understood only when putting the utmost care and attention into embracing imperfections and change.
Wabi Sabi Aesthetic
Just like tea ceremony masters take impeccable care of their cracked and imperfect tea cups, wabi sabi aesthetic is about embracing the aging process while maintaining impeccable self care and pampering.
When extending the concept of wabi sabi into beauty, wabi sabi honors imperfections such as freckles and laugh lines over perfectly spotless and smooth skin. Wabi sabi natural beauty acknowledges that while skin care is a constant affirmation of self care, obsessing over changing the way we look isn’t.
Wabi sabi aesthetic encompasses self care and pampering alongside the three realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.
Try adding a little more wabi sabi aesthetic into your self care ritual with a pampering skin care treatment like The Geisha Facial®.
Related blog post:
How Prioritizing Self Care Can Help You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions
India’s newspaper, The Business Standard, reports on the efficacy of Anti-Aging Facials and touts Shizuka new york’s The Geisha Facial® in their article titled: Anti-Aging Facials can Save you from Losing that Youthful Appearance.
“Manhattan’s Shizuka New York Day Spa specializes in the Nightingale facial in which bird droppings, which removes dead cells, are slathered onto a client’s face to give a youthful appearance.”
With a wide range of facials and treatments available to choose from, Shizuka Bernstein advises on the best time to receive an anti-aging facial:
“Basically, anti-aging facials are unnecessary before the age of 25. These treatments are most effective once the skin begins to age, which is generally in someone’s 30′s (depending on their lifestyle, genetics, etc.). With that said, it’s never too late to begin an anti-aging regimen.”
Related blog post:
Click here for more information about Shizuka new york’s Anti-Aging Facials>>
Regular massage therapy treatments can help overcome stress and tension, however, not all massages are created equal. Each massage modality targets something different, so it’s no surprise if you’re left wondering: which massage is best?
Whether you need superficial relief, have chronic back pain, or just need to relax your mind and body, chances are there’s a massage therapy more appropriate over another. We came up with some tips to wipe out the guesswork so you can easily choose the best massage for your needs.
Which Massage is Best
If your back is very tense and feels hard and stiff like concrete..we suggest: Reflexology, Hot Stone, or AromaScape Massage.
Since massage works best the body is already relaxed, excessive pounding may do more harm than good when the body is overly stressed and tense. These gentle treatments will help ease the nervous system to help the body relax.
- Reflexology is gentle treatment applied to the feet and legs to restore balance to the body, mind, and spirit.
- Hot Stone Massage incorporates heated cobble stones to induce deep relaxation. The stones are glided over the body and placed at certain points to literally melt away stress and tension. The heat has a calming effect on the nervous system.
- AromaScape Massage combines aromatherapy with massage therapy to relax and calm the nervous system and entire body. Healing essential oils of your choosing are inhaled through vapors.
If you play sports regularly and have specific problem areas…we suggest: Deep Tissue Massage.
Deep Tissue Massage works to release chronic tension with deep palpating and kneading slow strokes and deep finger pressure across the grain of the muscle to rework stiff tissues that lead to chronic stiffness and tension. It’s corrective and therapeutic treatment.
If you work at a computer all day and your shoulders, neck and upper back are chronically sore…we suggest: Swedish Massage.
Swedish Massage uses gentle long flowing movements in the same direction as the flow of blood returning to the heart, thereby increasing blood circulation. Additionally, Swedish Massage increases oxygen flow in the blood, releases various toxins from the muscles, stretches ligaments and tendons, and stimulates and soothes the nervous system. We highly recommend this massage for stress management.
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Rekindle romance by candle light with Maddison Avenue Pure Soy Candles. Let the soothing scents and warm glow transform any room into an instant spa.
Open the look of your eye with Revitalash/ Nouriche Eyelash Conditioner. Lashes will grow longer and lusher for naturally gorgeous eyes!
Give the gift of roses. Naturopathica’s uplifting Rose Geranium Soothing Mist keeps skin dewy soft and refreshed.
For sweet kissably soft lips, treat them with these honey-based hydrating lip balms.
Set the mood: Fill your space with these soothing fragrances to stimulate and uplift the senses.
Alora Fragrances are available in 8oz. and 16oz.
BEST SELLER: Due – Jasmine, cucumber, basil and ylang ylang.
Bimbi – Lavender, chamomile, bergamot and rose.
Caldo – Amber, patchouli, sandalwood and vetiver.
Rosa – Rose
Give the gift of pampering and relaxation!
Shizuka new york Day Spa Gift Certificates are available for any service or amount. Our 6th floor spa is the perfect “serenity retreat” from the hustle and bustle of the city streets below. At Shizuka new york Day Spa, we pay the utmost attention to every detail of your visit so you can fully relax during your stay. Check out our current Spa Deals for relaxing and pamper-worthy specials all year round!
Best way to shrink pores fast for flawless skin
Pores become enlarged when they become clogged. Those with oily complexions are more prone to enlarged pores, but no one’s immune! During a spa facial, a trained esthetician will carefully unclog and refine pores through a process of deep cleansing, exfoliation, and extraction.
But facials aren’t the only avenue to pore refinement. Regular cleansing and exfoliation is the best way to keep pores small. Choose the right product for your skin type and apply a chemical or enzyme peel at least once a month to slough away dead skin cells.
To shrink pores fast, Shizuka recommends DCL’s AHA Oily & Acne Solution and Pumpkin Purifying Enzyme Peel. These concentrated products clear skin of micro-toxins that can lead to acne, shrinks pores, and keeps skin clear of build up.
Pore Shrinking TIP: Facial treatments that include scrubs and brush cleansing (think Clarisonic) are meant to open up pores for deep cleansing. Finish with a cold water wash to close pores, and immediately follow with a moisturizer.
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Need a little recovery time from holiday eating and drinking? Spa treatments designed to warm you up and give you a winter detox cleanse may be just what you and your skin craves post-holidays.
Holiday treats like sugar cookies, heaping cups of hot cocoa, and cocktails combined with late nights can actually dry out your skin leaving it fatigued and craving some serious recovery time. Make haste and rest easy knowing these relaxing –and warming–full body detox spa treatments not only relieve you of that winter chill, but also revive and rejuvenate lackluster skin giving you back your healthy glow.
Far Infrared Sauna – Bask in the warmth of a Far Infrared Sauna while your body heats up from the inside out. Meditate, read a magazine, or just imagine yourself reaping the benefits of hot yoga without the yoga.
Coffee Break Mud Wrap – Let the earthy & energizing aromas of black silt clay and coffee arabica awaken your senses as you cozy up in a heated body wrap that exfoliates while drawing out impurities.
Hot Stone Massage – Stones are heated up and rubbed along the body to melt away any and all tension. Combine a Hot Stone Massage with an Infrared Sauna session and a Coffee Break Mud Wrap for the ultimate NYC winter spa treatment package.
AromaScape Massage – Healing essential oils such as Eucalyptus, Juniper berries, Geranium, and Lavender are used together with warmed stones to take your body and mind on a relaxing journey through the senses.
For split or cracked nails, cut tiny strips from a tea bag. This will act as a band aid while your nail grows out. Cover the nail with a clear polish or top coat, place the strip on the crack and cover with another layer of polish. This will seal the crack, allowing you to add a layer or two of your favorite polish over it.
Nails, hair, and skin are primarily made up of the protein keratin. When a diet lack lacks protein and proper vitamins weak or brittle nails can develop. To strengthen nails take B vitamin supplements daily and be sure to include healthy sources of protein into your diet. Expect to see results in three to six months (the time it takes for a new nail to grow).
To prevent already weakened nails from incurring additional damage, opt for an LED Gel manicure or pedicure instead of regular polish. LED gel firmly adheres to the nail’s surface, shielding it from incurring further damage from the environment.
Further prevent your manicure from prematurely chipping by wearing gloves when washing dishes and gardening. Also, moisturize hands and feet daily to keep skin and cuticles supple and soft.
Whether you’re a facial veteran or are about to get your first facial ever—knowing how to prepare your skin for your treatment will help extend the life of the facial keeping your face aglow longer.
Here are a few tips to help you prepare for a facial:
- Know your skin. While our skilled estheticians will let you know the best treatment upon examining your skin, it’s best to already know which areas you’d like to target. For example: Tone down oily skin, target acne prone areas, focus on lifting, deep cleansing with pore extraction, etc.. Communicate this to your esthetician and your treatment will be specially catered to your needs.
- No scrubbing. Skip harsh cleansers or facial exfoliants before your treatment. Your facial will consist of exfoliation and most likely pore extraction as well, so leave the dirty work to a trained professional!
- Save new products for later. Just clean your face following your usual cleansing routine. It’s best not to experiment with new products right before a facial so that your skin can be examined in its “usual” state. Using new products may have adverse reactions on your skin (i.e. over drying, inflammation, etc.), so it’s best to hold off until after your treatment.
- To steam or not to steam. This is a personal preference that doesn’t positively or negatively affect your treatment. Some like to use a sauna before a facial to relax and open up pores. While this is an option, it’s not necessary since your face will be steamed and cleaned for an hour or more anyway.
It’s never too early to start getting regular facials for optimum skin health! Shizuka began getting facial treatments in her 20’s and says “facials have helped keep my skin clear and firm throughout the years”.
What special measures do you take to prepare your skin for a facial?
The holidays can bring with it unwonted stress, causing you to look tired even if you’re not! This happens because facial muscles store tension much like muscles in the body do, so a tired expression can actually start to feel “normal” for your face.
The next time you’re feeling zapped of energy or just need to revive a tired face, try this spa technique (offered in all Shizuka New York Spa Facials) to wake up tired facial muscles and go from Grinch to jolly St. Nick in no time!
At Shizuka New York, a facial massage is incorporated into each facial treatment to help stimulate collagen production and new cell regeneration. It also “wakes up” tired facial muscles making you look more awake by increasing blood flow and bringing oxygen to the skin.
A facial massage works wonders to relax overactive muscles and softens the expression so you APPEAR AND FEEL refreshed.
How to give yourself a Stress-Busting Facial Massage:
Start by applying a moisturizer, cream, or essential oil such as lavender to your face…
1. Begin at the cheeks. Use your fingers or knuckles to draw big circles around your cheeks, be sure to always push the skin upward.
2. Using upward strokes, firmly rub the skin from the mid jaw to the cheekbone. Apply pressure to the cheekbones for a few seconds.
3. Massage smile lines by starting from the corners of the mouth and ending at the corners of the nose.
4. Using your fingertips, apply pressure to the brow bones to lift and open the eyes. Apply light pressure around the eye sockets and out to the temples and up to the forehead.
5. To plump lips, use forefinger and thumb to pinch upper and lower lips to stimulate blood flow.
6. To end, drain lymphatic fluid from the face to the collarbone. Place fingertips under the eyes on either side of the bridge of your nose. Gently apply pressure in a long flowing motion across the under eye area to the temples, down the side of face (along sideburns), and down the neck to the collarbone.
You don’t have to wait until Valentine’s Day to indulge in a relaxing couples massage or couples spa treatment. Instead, schedule your next date night at the spa!
Bring your date to the spa for a fun and relaxing activity to enjoy before or after dinner!
Popular Couples Spa Treatments include:
Couples Swedish Massage
Couples AromaScape Massage
Couples Shiatsu Massage
Spa Pedicure (Basic, Bamboo Scrub, Sakura)
Start your date night side by side with a relaxing couples massage in our serenely decorated treatment room. Whether it’s with the long flowing movements of the Swedish massage, soothing scents of the AromaScape massage, or the healing pressure of the Shiatsu massage, you’re both sure to relax and feel pampered together.
After your treatment, decompress in the Tranquility Lounge or head over to our NYC Nail Spa for a deluxe pedicure of your choosing. Sit side by side while sipping Japanese green tea or houjicha, and breathe easy knowing you’ve achieved date night glory!
What other tried and true date night activities have you discovered?
DaySpa Magazine featured Shizuka New York Day Spa in their December 2013 issue:
Setting the Scene, Design Tips for Smaller Spas !
Foot reflexology is the practice of applying pressure to areas of the feet, using specific hand techniques, to relieve ailments and keep the body aligned and balanced.
Japanese reflexology is a derivative of Chinese reflexology with only a few modifications. Japanese reflexology differs from massage in that it works to activate nerve endings whereas massage is pressure applied to the body’s soft tissues and muscles.
With reflexology, areas of the foot are mapped out to correspond to certain organs and bodily functioning. Trained massage therapists apply precise pressure to these areas together with specific and correlating hand movements. As a result, the entire body will feel rejuvenated and awake.
Upon stimulating the nerve endings in your feet, the corresponding body parts get stimulated too. Some opt for “walking reflexology” by wearing sandals with stones, rubber prongs, or wooden pegs. These sandals can be worn for as little or as long as possible to stimulate and massage nerve endings in the feet.
Though reflexology sandals are a convenient way to wake up your feet, it doesn’t compare to the precision and relief a skilled therapist provides during a foot reflexology session.
NYC Spa Gift Certificates make the perfect gift for everyone on your holiday list.
Our Shizuka New York Day Spa online gift certificates are available for any of our popular NYC Day Spa services or dollar value. Browse our new holiday designs to find the best fit for your recipient!
Give the gift of a pampering spa day or a deluxe salon treatment like our Eyelash Perm. Check out our Spa Gift Certificate page for more popular treatment suggestions such as The Geisha Facial® and Spa Package deals such as the Total Spa Package.
Spread some holiday cheer with everyone on your list with a Shizuka New York Gift Certificate!
Israeli magazine, Shamenet, names Shizuka New York Day Spa’s The Geisha Facial® as one of the most unique spa treatments in the world!
HEAPS, a Japanese online magazine, featured Shizuka in their “Successful Women in New York” cover story!
There’s always the Geisha “bird poop” facial for $180 at the Shizuka NY spa in Manhattan. Throw in an eyelash perm. Top lashes only: $90. Add the bottom lashes for an extra $30.
Shizuka New York Spa Gift Certificates make the perfect gift for everyone on your holiday list!
Check out our current Spa Deals here>>
Our NYC Men’s Spa offers a variety of services specially catered to men’s skin care and spa needs.
Since 2005, we’ve been offering men’s services such as manicure and pedicure, massages, facials, eyelash perm, eyelash and eyebrow tinting, waxing, IPL hair removal, and more.
We are conveniently located in the heart of Midtown Manhattan across from Rockefeller Plaza, making it an ideal place for a lunchtime spa break or to wind down after work.
Our goal is to provide a memorably relaxing and rejuvenating experience for all.
Here’s an example of what to expect during a visit to Shizuka New York Day Spa:
Once stepping out of the elevator and into our tranquil “zen-like” spa setting, clients are immediately greeted by the sound of flowing water and the faint scent of jasmine, cucumber, and ylang ylang in the air. After checking in with our friendly staff, clients are invited to change into a Japanese robe and slippers for facials and massages or are escorted into the nail spa or tranquility lounge to await treatments. Fresh flowers and traditional Japanese items enhance the spa’s neutral décor helping you feel relaxed and miles away from the bustling city streets below. After treatments, clients are served a special blend of Japanese tea and rice crackers to further relax and regroup before departing.
Here’s what a few of our clients are saying about our NYC Men’s Spa:
“I had severe neck pain for the past 3 weeks and she totally cured me [with a 50min. Deep Tissue Massage]! I’ll definitely be back!”
My facial was absolutely wonderful. It was relaxing and deeply cleansing. I left feeling completely relaxed and polished for a dinner that evening”.
“I come in for a men’s pedicure at least once a month. The staff is always so accommodating and the service is exceptional”.
“Best eyelash perm in the city”.
Are you a NYC Men’s Spa client? If so, how was your recent spa experience? We love hearing from you!
Soaking in a tub of hot mineral water relaxes the body and soothes nerves, and is also believed to heal diseases, as well as common aches and pains.
Balneotherapy, or treatment of diseases with baths, has been enjoyed by Japanese for centuries as evidenced by the thousands of onsens or bath houses that exist there. Traditionally, most onsens occur outdoors on top of naturally occurring hot spring water reserves. Outdoor onsens allow the visitor to have a quiet soak while communing with nature with views of mountains, forests, or the sea.
Japanese and foreigners alike flock to onsens year-round as places of refuge from a hectic city life, a way to spend quality time with family and friends, or just to feel rejuvenated by the water’s active mineral content.
You can create your very own onsen experience at home by adding onsen bath salts to hot bath water. Salts can be purchased at any Japanese grocery store or market and may be lightly scented to resemble a region’s onsen experience.
Read our related blog post for more bath ideas: The Art of the Bath
Don’t forget, Daylight’s Savings is right around the corner which means an extra hour of beauty sleep awaits!
It’s the perfect time to rethink your bedtime routine for a more restful and naturally beautifying sleep. While you sleep, your skin is actually undergoing a deep restorative process, expediting the skin’s natural healing and rejuvenating process. When you’re sleep deprived you’re more likely to wake up with under eye bags or a tired complexion. So the more restful your repose, the better the morning will be for you AND your skin!
Here are some tips to help promote a more restful (& beautifying) slumber:
- Light an aromatherapy candle at least 30 minutes prior to bedtime. This will ensure the essential oils have enough time to warm and permeate the air. Let the soothing scents guide you to dreamland.
- Lavender is a popular aromatherapy scent due to its calming and soothing properties. Mist your face, pillow, and/or eye mask with a lavender mist before going to bed.
- For a dull or tired complexion try using nighttime serums to promote cellular renewal:
Apply Shizuka New York’s Nighttime Anti-Aging Repair 1 & 2 to clean skin on alternating days. These products work together to even out skin tone and texture while targeting fine lines and wrinkles.
- Anti-Aging Night Repair 1 contains retinol and Vitamin C to retexturize and brighten skin while you sleep.
- Anti-Aging Night Repair 2 contains a powerful blast of vitamins, antioxidants, and hyaluronic acid to smooth, plump, and firm skin.
- Target sagging skin by using Plant Stem Cell Serum (signature product of the Natural Face Lift Facial). This potent product utilizes active plant stem cells to plump and firm skin.
- For tired eyes, try a firming eye cream such as DCL’s AHA Revitalizing Eye Cream to moisturize and firm the fine skin around your eyes.
What’s your restful bedtime routine?
Back in 2010 Shizuka appeared on ABC News Now to demonstrate The Geisha Facial® on a segment called “Bizarre Beauty Secrets”. The segment also included other services (NOT sponsored by Shizuka) such as the Fish Pedicure where tiny garra rufa fish literally nibble the dead skin off your feet.
Since the show aired, we’ve received plenty of phone calls asking about this pedicure, but our spa never has nor ever will offer Fish Pedicures—sorry!
The treatment, also known as “Dr. Fish” is banned in NY State primarily for sanitary reasons. Because the fish are very much alive, it’s nearly impossible to fully sanitize the water in which they swim (and produce bio-wastes!) And then there’s the matter of the fish themselves. It’s just as impossible to sanitize the fish between treatments. So while it may seem unlikely, the fish can actually become vehicles to spread fungal infections and other diseases between other customers.
When it comes to pedicures, we recommend keeping it clean and simple. A good exfoliation and thorough callus care will slough any and all dead skin away. Next time you need a good scrub, reconsider sticking your feet in a fish tank, and opt instead for a pedicure treatment like our Bamboo Scrub Pedicure.