Sunday, August 22, 2010

How to Live Cheaply in New York: Personal Care

This is part of a series of living cheaply in New York. See previous posts: Grocery shopping, Housing, Entertainment, Transportation, Dining Out
New York is second only to L.A., maybe, in being superficial and focused on how people look. Luckily, you don't have to spend a ton of money to look great.

First, Spa Week happens twice a year (not just in New York!), when thousands of pricey salon and spa treatments are only $50. I usually get a massage, but I've also gotten facials, waxes, teeth whitening, laser hair removal and a number of other services for heavily-reduced prices. Just make sure you tip based on the full value of the treatment!

Shiseido Studio in Soho is a neat place -- you can go play with products and they offer classes on how to create different looks. The many, many locations of Sephora are similar (I like the one on Fifth Avenue -- it's in the original Charles Scribner & Sons building, a book publishing legend! Plus, it's beautiful).

For cheap haircuts, the Aveda Institute can't be beat. Student haircuts cost $20, and these are no beauty-school dropouts.

One of my favorite secrets of New York is Cosmetics Warehouse on W. 39th. Hair dye for $2.50/box. Brand-name lipsticks and eye shadows for $.99 each. I don't know if it's overstock merchandise or fell off the back of a truck, but it's awesome. They also have a website.

Of course, you can also do the coupon games at the many, many drugstores in New York: CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens, and Duane Reade all regularly have deals on personal items which, paired with a coupon, are totally affordable.

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