One might think that cosmetic dentistry would give new meaning to the phrase suffer for style. Actually, though, it's a far cry from your average root canal. A range of procedures can brighten smiles, alter facial angles, and plump up pouts in just a few hours and with little recovery time. Until now, the cost has been the part that hurts. Donald Trump, Matt Dillon, Kathie Lee Gifford, and Bridget Hall have all gone to Dr. Larry Rosenthal for an oral makeover -- and paid between $20,000 and $40,000. But in April, New York University will start construction on the Rosenthal Institute for Aesthetic Dentistry, a treatment and research center where a mouthful of porcelain-laminate veneers will range from $500 to $2,000. "In the past, we treated dental disease and gum disease," says Dr. Rosenthal. "Two thousand is the year we treat ugly disease." In addition to improving discolored and overcrowded smiles, the institute will provide patients with soothing music and perk them up with celebrity-guest appearances. And if you're still scared, says Rosenthal, "we'll have laughing gas and everything."
Looking like a million bucks -- 50 million bucks, in today's currency -- has never been so fashionable. The best way to achieve the Palm Beach look, of course, is to be there, but shortcuts exist for those of us who are Manhattan-bound.
Go for the Bronze
Tan skin ruled the runways, and -- in what some fashion insiders are terming "tanorexia" -- models have been heading to tanning beds to liven up their bony frames. Fortunately, you can achieve a healthy glow without exposing yourself to toxic rays. The Spa at Equinox's "Don't Let It Fade" self-tanning series includes exfoliation and application of a fruit-based tanning lotion ($285 for three treatments). To combat leathery skin and add a luxurious layer of bronze shimmer, try Lancôme's liquid gold Huile Pollen (1) on the body. For facial bronzing, Guerlain's Shiny Shine in Touche d'Ambre (2) and Club Monaco Cheek Dew in Blush (3).
Old-school color (think Grandma's coral lipstick) has gone modern -- lucky, if you like to match your lips to your orange Hermès Birkin bag. At L'Oréal, makeup artist Collier Strong created a collection of golden-peach lipsticks and translucent orange glosses -- like Sun Nectar Rouge Pulp (4). "People are looking for some kind of connection to the past," he says. "We're not going to start wearing bouffants, but it's not a stretch to pull coral lipstick out of retirement." Estée Lauder updated its best-selling shade, Frosted Apricot, with a glossy new-century formula to create High Shine Lip Lacquer in Apricot 2000 (5), and Donatella Versace has come out with the ultimate Sunshine State lip color, Versace Wet Lipgloss V2006 (6).
No, eyelashes don't just grow that way. And no, don't try to apply them yourself -- unless you've got a steady hand and a lot of time. At Helena Rubinstein Beauty Gallery's new "Lashes by the Minute," a pro will pile on everything from a modest outer fringe to a full 45-minute dramatic effect, available in fifteen-minute increments at a dollar a minute. (If you'd rather skip the glue entirely, try a lash-builder like Chanel's Maximum Lash Base under your regular mascara.)
Defying gravity, once a science-fiction fixture, is now a firm tenet of cosmetic science -- just ask the women who have eagerly flocked to salons to tone their faces with electronic muscle stimulation. And now two places are pushing the technological envelope -- down. Completely Bare has just introduced the "techno breast lift" to perk up drooping décolletage. The half-hour procedure begins with an application of gel to conduct electronic microcurrents, which are applied to specific pressure points and muscle locations. The ten-treatment, $875 process supposedly plumps and firms breasts and promotes blood flow and skin hydration. In addition, the Four Seasons Hotel Fitness Spa offers a combination face and bust lift ($215 for the 90-minute treatment). How long before the butt lift is available?