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Hermès .... lipstick?

Plus: Radical Anticurl at Red Salon

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Smooth Sailing
Remember those eighties-era sensory-deprivation tanks, where floating in a water-filled egg-shaped capsule was supposed to relieve stress and return you to the peace of the womb? Unfortunately, the struggle to keep your neck afloat and the claustrophobia caused by the coffinlike capsule often produced more anxiety than it alleviated. But for those who still yearn for the tank, there's hope. The Sports Club/LA's new spa has devised an updated version, which, it claims, not only is relaxing but also helps reduce headaches and cramps. You get a weightless sensation by lying on a plastic cushion that fills up with hot water, engulfing you like a zero-gravity Snuggli. And all this without ever having to get wet. (330 East 61st Street; 212-355-5100. $100 including massage.)

French Kiss
Hermès, maker of those coveted $5,000 Kelly bags, is about to introduce its first cosmetic: lipstick, in a single shade of red. The ruby hue, called Rouge Hermès, matches the color that has been used to dye the company's leather since the thirties. Why lipstick? The company is launching a new scent by the same name next month, and, explains a spokeswoman, "it's our most sophisticated fragrance -- the one you would wear with a sexy evening dress and the deep-red lipstick." But, she adds, don't look for other makeup to follow. ($25; available in January at Hermès boutiques, Bergdorf Goodman, and Sephora stores.)

Italian Vogue
In a way, it's no surprise that the makeup at the Madina Milano store, which opened on Spring Street over Thanksgiving weekend, is a remarkable mix of high-tech and high style. Madina Ferrari was formerly creative director for La Scala, while her husband owns Intercos -- one of the largest cosmetics manufacturers in the world -- so she has what amounts to a giant workshop. Holiday lip glosses contain bits of glitter and images of Christmas trees and Santas; vivid eye shadows are mixed into mosaic patterns and sprayed with gold dust. The store has about 1,500 items (no fragrance or skin-care yet), and it promises to debut at least one new product a month. (151 Spring Street; 646-613-0838.)

Curl On Up
If you don't have curly -- really curly -- hair, then you can't imagine what those of us who do are up against: an ongoing uphill battle fought with blow-dryers, pomades, and hot irons. But the three-step Radical Anticurl treatment at Red Salon is a new addition to the arsenal. Whereas traditional chemical relaxers were essentially reverse perms designed to burn the curl out, Red Salon's treatment "just softens the curl pattern, it doesn't straighten the hair," says owner Brad Langtry. His remedy is gentle enough for color-treated locks, and won't fry your 'do like the old relaxers. In other words, you look like yourself -- just better. ($125-$195, depending on hair length and thickness; 323 West 11th Street; 212-924-1444.)

Pick of the Month
Chanel's Aqualumieres Water Palette
"Makeup artist" takes on a whole new meaning with this watercolor-kit-like compact. The eight shades work equally well on lips, eyes, or cheeks, and can be applied dry, or wet for more intense color. The compact, hitting stores January 1, comes with two brushes and a tiny reservoir for water. ($60; available at Chanel Boutiques, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Barneys New York.)


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