In anticipation of salons reopening in England on 12 April, we revisit our list of the best beauty destinations, originally published in January 2021 . . . 


Alexandra Soveral, London
Working from a small studio in Maida Vale, facialist Alexandra Soveral’s natural approach to skin emphasises tissue and muscle manipulation via lots of massage, to de-stress knotted brows, tighten jaw muscles and promote circulation. Her holistic approach is coupled with her own line of mostly organic products: try the antioxidant-rich face masks to plump and boost radiance, or the beautifully crafted rose and neroli toning mist. As her loyal clientele will testify, you’ll see the worries lift from your face. Better still, she’s the only facial therapist I’ve met who can magic up cheekbones using only her fingers. Soveral doesn’t often do the therapies herself these days, but a global team are well-trained to use her unique skincare method (facials, from £80; consultation with Soveral, from £250). Kathleen Baird-Murray
97D Elgin Ave, W9;

Alexandra Soveral Floral Rain Hydrating Face Mist, £45
Alexandra Soveral Floral Rain Hydrating Face Mist, £45

Melanie Grant, Sydney
With salons in Los Angeles, Sydney, Melbourne and – occasionally – Paris, the facialist Melanie Grant is almost as jet-set as her clients (Victoria Beckham, Jennifer Aniston, Joan Smalls and Cassandra Grey, to name a few). Skin is prepped with a thorough cleanse by one of her highly trained assistants, followed by either microdermabrasion, a gentle peel, an ultrasound infusion of vitamin C and hyaluronic acid, light therapy or plenty of massage, according to any skin concerns. Don’t even think about getting an appointment in Oscar week – she’s the red carpet’s go-to for glow (Camera-Ready Facial, from $390). KB-M
3 Transvaal Ave, NSW 2028;

Melanie Grant Studio, Sydney
Melanie Grant Studio, Sydney © Elise Hassey

Skin Matters, London
Joanne Evans’ salon in Holland Park is a cosily curated haven, made exceptional by her brilliant team. With more than 25 years of experience, Evans has the hands of a real master and an encyclopedic knowledge of the treatment business. Each facial – from collagen-stimulation therapy (from £260) to cosmetic acupuncture (£180) – is bespoke, while the products she uses are extensively researched. Using state-of‑the-art technology, Evans’s facials leave your skin looking next-level fantastic; you will leave her salon feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. Fiona Golfar 
119B Portland Rd, W11;

We all know of Vanita Parti’s brow bars, which first sprung up in central London locations around 16 years ago. But did you know she was campaigning tirelessly to get all beauty salons open again after lockdown? We can now show our gratitude by paying her efficient salons a visit – and get great brows in the process. They consistently deliver neat but full-looking brows in a speedy 15 minutes, and you could also step it up a bit by adding a tint to your usual threading for a dramatic and instant pick-me-up (£25 for threading; £40 for threading and tint). Parti’s threaders excel – I’ve only ever had good experiences. KB-M

New York Dermatology Group, New York and London
If you’ve had the pleasure of meeting medical director Dr Costas Papageorgiou, you will know he is a total perfectionist – and honest to the point of brutal. From spaces in both New York and London, his clinic offers top of the range therapies from Triad facials – a three-step treatment that requires a 3D scan of your face (a personal favourite) – to light therapy that helps improve wrinkles and skin tone. HTSI editor Jo Ellison is a fan of the Titan laser treatment (from £950) for saggy jawlines (and anything else that’s looser than you might like), and also recommends the Limelight Illumino Rejuvenation treatment (from £500), which uses lasers to zap vascular imperfections and uneven skin tone. Each treatment is based on an individual assessment on appointment – a uniquely bespoke experience. And if needles are your thing, he’s got plenty of ’em too. Flora Macdonald Johnston 
119 Fifth Ave, NY 10003, and Harrods, London;

New York Dermatology Group at the Wellness Clinic, Harrods
New York Dermatology Group at the Wellness Clinic, Harrods

Acqua di Parma Barbiere, Rome
Barbering has a 2,000-year history in Italy – so it’s no wonder that a quintessentially Italian fragrance house such as Acqua di Parma takes the discipline seriously. Tucked at the back of its Rome boutique, the scent‑
master’s Barbiere offers a trim menu of clean shaves and beard tidies in luxurious, lemon yellow-accented surroundings (traditional shave and grooming, €40). The best part? Each treatment is finished with your choice of spritz from the brand’s extensive selection. Perfetto! Nick Carvell 
Piazza di Spagna 27, 00187;

The Acqua di Parma boutique in Rome
The Acqua di Parma boutique in Rome

Skin Design, London
There’s good reason that Fatma Shaheem is a favourite among the fashion crowd – she’s a deft hand at creating glowing, photo-ready skin. The London-based facialist, who has a residency at John Bell & Croyden in Marylebone, specialises in non-surgical treatments such as collagen‑boosting microneedling (£75) and cheek-lifting radio-frequency treatments (£250), as well as a range of peels (from £85). Shaheem has also developed her own range of skincare – including the bestselling Face Bath cleanser (£80) and C Antioxidant Glow Serum (£115) – which has been snapped up by wellbeing website Goop. Jessica Beresford
50‑54 Wigmore St, W1;

Skin Design London serums, £115 each
Skin Design London serums, £115 each

Brows by Nikki, Dallas
To call Nikki Amini an esthetician would be dramatically understating her talents. Based between Los Angeles and Dallas, Amini (the hands behind Brows By Nikki) is a brow artist beyond compare. Threading is her method of hair removal (from $35) and the results are always full, groomed, natural-looking brows. Amini also makes house calls and offers brow tinting ($20) and lamination ($140). Cherish Rufus
9409 Brighton Way, Beverly Hills, CA; 

Neal’s Yard Remedies, London
Tucked behind the hustle and bustle of Borough Market lies the oasis of calm that is Neal’s Yard Remedies Therapy Rooms. In this cosy upstairs space, a crack team of experts conduct acupuncture and a host of other alternative therapies (from £45). Go for the facial rejuvenation massage, where any tension held in the scalp, forehead and jaw is gently kneaded away with one of the brand’s essential oils. Charlene Prempeh 
12 Stoney St, SE1;

The Neal’s Yard Remedies Therapy Rooms in Neal’s Yard Square, Covent Garden
The Neal’s Yard Remedies Therapy Rooms in Neal’s Yard Square, Covent Garden

KMPSkin, London
Katharine Mackenzie Paterson breaks the mould of cookie-cutter facialists, offering a bespoke service that uses a variety of technologies (microcurrent and LED light therapy are standard) as well as a range of carefully curated skincare brands. “I’m not into trends and fads, and prefer to build a long-term relationship so that we can achieve healthy, beautiful skin,” she says. Her signature treatment in South Molton Street or by appointment in your home varies from person to person, but expect 90 minutes of cleansing, exfoliating “and then whatever I need to do to get the best results” (from £160). If you’re lucky, that will include a massage for the neck and jaw to reduce tension in the face – she’s got the best hands in the business. KB-M 
58 South Molton St, W1;


© H Armstrong Roberts/Classic Stock/Getty Images

Subrina Kidd, London
From pin-straight and wavy to curly and coily, Subrina Kidd is one of the rare stylists who knows how to work with every type of hair texture. With more than 20 years’ experience, the London-based hairdresser has worked with global hair brands such as Aveda, on fashion shows and editorials. You need to be quick to get into her appointment book, but if you can nab a spot, it will probably be the best haircut of your life. CR
Haircut with Kidd, from £105. 16 Marylebone St, W1; 

Hair by Subrina Kidd
Hair by Subrina Kidd © Susan Dale

Massimo Serini, Rome
Full disclosure: I am a diehard Josh Wood girl. But Covid thwarted that love affair when I relocated to Rome, a city where subtle blonde tresses are in conspicuously short supply, and painfully brassy ones all too common. Step forward Massimo Serini, who was recommended to me, separately, by two friends. Senior colourist Antonina (“Nina”) Popa took me to a gratifyingly pretty (and understated) cream-and-honey place with a careful balayage that wasn’t too precise. Serini himself worked one subtle but genius layer into my super-fine locks with a 15-minute trim. He is also one of the sweetest humans alive, and his Spanish Steps atelier a cinch to get to. Maria Shollenbarger
Colour, from €80. Haircuts, from €60. Via Borgognona 2, 00187;

Hershesons, London
This family-run salon – boasting two flagship locations and three blow-dry bars in London – is a hot ticket for editors and supermodels (anyone who looks after Claudia Schiffer’s hair…). Each salon has the signature green marble, glass and steel interior, and even the own-brand styling tools have Instagram appeal. On booking, you’ll be assigned a technician who best suits your needs, or you can make an appointment with founder Daniel or his son Luke. FMJ
Classic blow-dry, from £17.50. Appointments with Daniel or Luke Hersheson, from £360. 29 Berners St, W1;

Hershesons, Berners Street, W1
Hershesons, Berners Street, W1

Church Barber & Apothecary, San Francisco
Ryan and Beatrice Gonzalez opened their botanical barbershop in the vibey San Francisco neighbourhood of Hayes Valley in 2017. Since then this sleek outpost has gained a devoted following for its plant-based products and in-house playlists (search “churchbarber” on Spotify). First-timers should book a Sunday Service, which kicks off with a full skin and hair consultation, followed by a cut and the signature grooming regimen, Church Ritual. Praise be. NC 
Haircut, $60. Sunday Service, $90. 524 Octavia St, 94102;

Church Barber & Apothecary, San Francisco
Church Barber & Apothecary, San Francisco © Brendan Mainini

Shin Salon, Santa Monica
Set in a quaint bungalow in bustling Santa Monica, this salon draws fans so devout they’ve been called “Shinheads”. They flock to stylist Shin An for her precise dry cuts, incomparable sun-kissed highlights and a signature purifying scalp treatment that tames the most tired hair. The studio offers a Zen atmosphere with bamboo scrolls and screens and a patio for (Covid-friendly) outdoor styling. Christina Ohly Evans
Dry cuts, from $200 (from $300 with Shin An). 1025 Montana Ave, 90403; 

Joe & Co, London
You might not know barber Joe Mills by name, but you’ll have seen his work on the red carpet: Paul Mescal, Taron Egerton and Martin Freeman regularly call on his services. Mills has passed this expertise on to the team at his chilled Soho barbershop, who can tackle and style, fade or cut. Kick back with a beer and relax in the knowledge that, whether you need a trim or a total transformation, you’ll be getting a cut worthy of a world premiere. NC 
From £48. 22 Peter St, W1; 

Joe & Co, London
Joe & Co, London

Nicola Clarke at John Frieda, London
Tucked away just behind Oxford Circus, you’ll find the discreet salon of arguably London’s best hair colourist. Although it’s her way with natural-looking blondes that has made her famous – Kate Moss, Cate Blanchett and Kate Winslet have been clients for many years – Clarke is also adept at transformational rock-star colour, recently turning Madonna pink, two-toning Dua Lipa and taking actress Rose Victoria Williams from brown to Mae West blonde. Loved for her support of new talent (see her protégé Jasmin if you can’t get an appointment with Clarke herself), she was instrumental in unifying the lockdown process among West End hairdressers – no mean feat. KB-M
From £150 for a tint with Clarke. 58-59 Margaret St, W1;


© Claude Jacoby/Ullstein Bild/Getty Images

Nails by Mei, New York
When it comes to nail art, New York-based Japanese manicurist Mei Kawajiri is a virtuoso. She’s worked on fun, maximalist designs for Marc Jacobs and Alexander Wang shows, as well as creating looks for the Hadid sisters and Ariana Grande. She also does the odd pared-back and elegant manicure. There is nothing she can’t do, and it keeps her in high demand. CR 

DryBy, London
When this stylish, modern-looking nail and hair salon first opened in Mortimer Street a few years ago, every other nail bar had to up its game considerably. Those in the know ask for Andrea (although all the technicians are exceptionally well-trained), who is just as skilled with classic manicures and pedicures (from £42) as nail art and extensions (from £90). Look out for regular design collaborations with the likes of beauty influencer Alex Steinherr, which are subtly eye-catching and sophisticated. KB-M
74 Mortimer St, W1;

Herb House Spa, New Forest
The spa at Lime Wood Hotel boasts a hydrotherapy pool overlooking a forest, a mud house, a large sauna and eight treatment rooms. It is easy to while away the hours spotting deer and dipping in and out of the outdoor hot pool. All this effort can be hard on the feet, so the full pedicure (£50), starting with a hot soak and ending with a massage, is exactly what’s needed to finish the day. CP
Beaulieu Rd, Lyndhurst, Hampshire;

The sauna at Herb House Spa, Limewood Hotel, Hampshire
The sauna at Herb House Spa, Limewood Hotel, Hampshire © David Garcia

Nuka Nails, London
Kaddy, one half of the nail duo behind this salon, is a ray of sunshine. Within the Ladbroke Grove space, which blasts R&B and house music, Kaddy specialises in hand-painted nail art and gel manicures, and is so in-demand that she recently collaborated with Nike and Depop. Although you could get a plain gel mani, have some fun and try her nail art, which ranges from piano keys to tongue-in-cheek Ikea logos and “Burberry” checks (from £50). “I’ve got the eye for different,” she says – and it’s true. FG 
144 Ladbroke Grove, W10;

Nail art at Nuka Nails
Nail art at Nuka Nails

Bastien Gonzalez, Paris
If you want deluxe-looking feet, with toenails as naturally pink as the inside of a conch shell washed up on a beach in the Maldives, Gonzalez is the original and the best. A skilled podiatrist, he uses diamond-dust drills to buff nails, and leaves your feet baby-soft while also addressing more serious niggling concerns such as ingrown nails. He’s based in Paris but has locations around the world – get on his email list to see when he’s next visiting one near you (from £140). KB-M
8 Véro Dodat, 75001; 


© Karen Radkai/Conde Nast/Getty Images

Naoshima Bath House, Naoshima
Arriving in Naoshima is to become part of a town-wide art installation: buses splashed with Yayoi Kusama spots and buildings with mind-bending Turrell pieces. In the middle is Naoshima bathhouse, a sanctuary created by artist Shinro Ohtake. Here, speakers play the minimalist tunes of Roger and Brian Eno as you sink into the heat of the water. CP 
Admission, ¥660. 2252-2 Naoshima, Kagawa 7613110;

Ayasofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam, Istanbul 
This hammam is often described as one of the most beautiful in Istanbul – a feast for the eyes, as well as a space to relax. In a heated white-marble tiled room, you are scrubbed from head to toe, doused in relaxing bubble wash and then led to join the small groups dotted around in white robes, drinking Turkish tea and gossiping. CP 
From €55. Cankurtaran, Ayasofya Meydanı No:2, 34122;

Ayasofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam, Istanbul
Ayasofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam, Istanbul

Bamford Wellness Spa, Cotswolds
Lots of spas talk about getting back to nature, few are located in the middle of an organic farm. But despite its very English setting, it’s the expertise – with many treatments devised by practitioners whom founder, Carole Bamford, discovered in India – that always makes the Bamford Wellness Spa worth the trip. A new and much bigger extension this year sees the addition of a wellness space for everything from yoga (£18) to crystal healing (£150). Nicola Moulton
Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucs; 

Bamford Wellness Spa, Gloucestershire
Bamford Wellness Spa, Gloucestershire

Mandarin Oriental Spa, New York
A great massage is thrilling enough, but this quite literally takes the experience to new heights, thanks to the Mandarin Oriental’s location on floors 35-54 of the Time Warner Center above Columbus Circle (from $250). With a massage bed by the window, there’s something enchanting about lying facedown and watching little ant-like people and teeny yellow taxis busying themselves below. NM
80 Columbus Cir, 10023; 

Monverde Spa, Amarante
Just outside Porto, set in rolling green hills, is the Monverde Wine Experience Hotel, which offers tastings, bike rides and picnics among the vineyards. After a day of activity you can retreat to the spa, where treatments range from black caviar protein facials (€65) to standard pedicures. A highlight is the Devine Grapes Body Ritual (€120), a process involving a gentle exfoliation with grape seeds, a cool body wrap and an aromatherapy massage with vine-leaf oil. CP
Quinta de Sanguinhedo 166, Castanheiro Redondo, 4600-761 Telões;

Espace Vitalité Chenot, Marrakech 
Unlike its stablemates, the Marrakech outpost of this spa at the five-star Selman Hotel offers an out-of-this-world traditional hammam. The 75-minute treatment (about £100) includes a thorough and rejuvenating black-soap scrub followed by a mind-melting massage. You will float out the door feeling renewed, cleansed and pure. CR  
Km 5, Route d’Amizmiz, 40160;

Selman Spa, Espace Vitalité Chenot Marrakech
Selman Spa, Espace Vitalité Chenot Marrakech
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