Health and Beauty

We’ve all heard that beauty is only skin deep and is in the eye of the beholder, but that doesn’t mean we can’t help it along a bit. Here are a few top spots for healthy pampering and a few of our favorite products.


Sausalito resident Kayse Gehret did not come up with the concept of massage at affordable, accessible prices, but she is working to perfect it. Her first Soulstice Mind + Body Spa location in Santa Rosa employs the same folks as the big-name wine country spas at half the cost to the client, and now, at her Sausalito location therapists have already created their own followings. Membership starts at $69 a month for a one-hour massage whenever you want it — if you don’t use it, the hour rolls to the next month and can even be gifted to a friend. 415.729.9121


Andalou Naturals is not just the best-selling natural skin care brand in the nation — sold in more than 11,000 retail locations and in more than 22 countries worldwide — it also started right here in Novato. Husband-and-wife Marin natives Stacey and Mark Egide, the co-CEOs and founders, have made it their mission to raise the bar in the natural beauty industry for the past 30 years and counting. Andalou products are Non-GMO Project verified, certified organic, fair trade, gluten free, cruelty free, and certified vegetarian and vegan … and 100 percent good for you to use daily.


Cavallo Point's Healing Arts Center and Spa.

Modern life is complicated. There’s always a bill to be paid, car maintenance to be done or a relative’s birthday you forgot about till a Facebook reminder popped up. And maintenance extends beyond vehicles and yards; we require it, too. Lots of different kinds. Fortunately, Milvali salon — in, you guessed it, Mill Valley — does a good job of simplifying that process. Here myriad beauty needs are met: hair styling and waxing, facial and lash treatments, tanning and makeup application. Operating for more than a decade, Milvali has also amassed numerous awards (including this one), most notably for hair extensions. Truly a full-service spot for a complete tune-up.


No one said beauty comes cheap — but it can come easy. And with the opening of International Orange Spa at Marin Country Mart, it just got even easier. Besides the large new space offering facials and massage, here you can buy Preserve Pads, the brainchild of IO estheticians Jennifer Gallegos and Jennie Hearn. The duo created these easy-to-use disposable pads to encourage their busy clients to wash their faces — apparently an important step in maintaining the benefits of a facial. And for those worried about waste, these pleasant-smelling discs are 100 percent biodegradable and made with natural ingredients. A jar of 45 pads retails for $38; refill packages are $31.

Take the Day

Splurge on your well-being at Cavallo Point’s Healing Arts Center and Spa (pictured above) in Sausalito. The 60-minute signature facial will set you back $165, a chakra cleansing and balancing $250, and a two-hour Thai massage $350. But it’s money well spent, especially if you take advantage of the day-use amenities, which include a heated meditation pool, eucalyptus steam, fitness room and morning yoga class. Alternately, you can buy a day pass for just $65 — it doesn’t cover any spa services but does provide access to the amenities. Not a bad way to spend the day.

Color Me Healthy

Evo Spa, pronounced “eh voh,” as in evolution, belies its strip mall exterior. For more than two decades, Gail Ann and her crew have treated Marin’s tired, sore and weary with a variety of modalities. The Mill Valley spa offers unique treatments such as a Far- Infrared Sauna, said to not only remove heavy metals and fat-soluble toxins but burn up to 600 calories per session; BioMat, included with every massage and developed by NASA, which employs negative ion therapy to vitalize cell metabolism and an amethyst quartz crystal to detoxify; and for the face, the multihued LED light treatment, intended to rejuvenate, stimulate collagen production, address bad acne and promote a more vibrant and youthful complexion.

Noteworthy Nails

The tip of your finger is a great place to show a little style. Here are five places that will keep your nails looking their best.

DOLLS & DANDY This new Mill Valley salon offers services for men and women (as the name implies) as well as a monthly membership where unused services roll over and don’t expire.

FAIRFAX NAIL SALON Whether it’s a manicure, a pedicure or a gel manicure, the quality of work here is first-rate. With an expansive polish selection and rose-petal footbaths, you can’t go wrong. 415.456.9701

NJ NAILS SPA Pricing is competitive at this Novato salon, but no corners are cut — all the tools come in wrapped sterile packages. High standards, plus catering to clients’ needs and a winning hospitality, make NJ Nails tops. 415.717.9775

POLISH NAIL SALON Offering gel extensions — a less toxic and longer-lasting alternative to acrylics — Polish is one of San Rafael’s best salons. Expect water, tea and courtesy. 415.258.9218

SAUSALITO NAIL SALON At this establishment you’ll find a professional and friendly staff and an even better quality of service. The cleanliness and the skill of manicurists are also exemplary. 415.332.1689