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Vanilla Hair Spa
Mon-Tue, Thu, 10:30am-8pm; Wed, 9am-8pm; Fri, 7:30am-8pm; Sat, 10am-7pm; Sun, 11am-6pm
Nearby Subway Stops
4, 5, 6 at 86th St.
Having worked the Upper East Side salon circuit since the eighties, Moscow-beauty-school alumnae Roxan Kondrachova and Elena Pchenitchnikova joined forces with veteran NYC stylist and biker babe Linda Pais to create Vanilla Hair Spa in April 2007. This homey, ice-cream colored parlor was the trio’s answer to the neighborhood’s dearth of high-end salons—especially after the closing of revered beauty institution Carmel Hair Stylists. Vanilla absorbed much of Carmel’s clientele—and some of their stylists as well—so their roster of predominantly female patrons is subsequently (and amusingly) diverse, from dewy-eyed strippers to middle-age soap stars to blue-haired society ladies. The space itself is like a trust-fund bachelorette’s living room: Eleven immaculate workstations comprise classic brass fixtures and marble-topped chiffoniers, topped off with flamboyant zebra-print accents. Vanilla offers a menu of walk-in specials (using products by Pureology and Alfa-Parf), and with fifteen-odd stylists, the crew can handle any hairstyle; color-wise, they specialize in highlights and corrective jobs (permanent and semi-permanent). But the salon’s métier is their menu of deep-conditioning hair and scalp therapies: The most popular is the Moroccan Oil Treatment, an almond-oil-based moisturizing serum that repairs excessive damage and leaves hair soft and smelling divine.Girls (about to) Go Wild
Vanilla’s Big Night Out package offers makeup application, conditioning treatments, and blowouts for the party-going set.
Best of New York: Health & Self
Indoor surfing, spinning lovefests, a luxurious pig-placenta facial, and more.