When does a pond become a lake? A wood become a forest? A boy become a man? Hang on, I think we all know the answer to the last one, don’t we, girls? That’d be never. Moving swiftly on when does a beauty salon become a bone fide spa? My hand shoots up again. When it can load treatment charges because it’s got some poxy steam and sauna facilities you probably won’t even use.
Oskia has some of the UK’s the best natural skincare products and has recently opened what it’s calling a spa in Covent Garden…. I’d say salon. It’s only got two rooms, they’re pretty but tiny – and next to a store cupboard. I don’t know what they were doing in there while I was having my treatment but it sounded like Manuel from Fawlty Towers was trying to prop up a dead body. There was no changing area, the relaxation room had a bike in it, and the loos were downstairs passed reception. Did I care? Not one jot. My 75 minutes cost £95, not cheap but I’ve been charged £35 more for facials that weren’t half as good (and 15 minutes shorter), just because the spa had fancy changing rooms with plastic shower caps and hair combs.
The Signature Glow Facial included a fabulous massage using Oskia’s yummy warm candle wax, not one but two thoroughly effective masks and Charmaine Line, a therapist with a serene charm, forensic knowledge of her products and a surgeon’s skill when it came to extraction. (How I long for the day when the therapist declares, “Well I would do extraction but you don’t appear to have a single blackhead.” With me, Charmaine clearly ran out of time rather than squeezables… coughs.) The scoop of fresh passion fruit, emphasising the company’s commendable inside-out beauty philosophy, was a thoughtful final touch. Afterwards, my skin glowed like I’d stuck my finger in a light socket. Keep your eye on this range. The products are very, very good (the standout being the excellent Renaissance Mask, £48.50, left), they are extremely well priced and definitely going places. I’d suggest into your bathroom cupboard right now.