Wandering about the newest tanning hotspot in Cedar Springs-adjacent Highland Park, each turn provides a lightshow spectacle of twinkling lime & lavender beams disguised behind velvet black walls. Shadowy & ethereal, the immediate experience is one that takes a moment to capture.
Distinctive from its neighboring tanning salon counterparts, there are no endless white hallways with hospital-like paleness. To the contrary, the depth and fluvial design is anything but rigid, rather an alluring invitation to enter one of the cavernous pods. All-in-all, the scenery is reminiscent of a Gaga-esque stage spectacle…in a good way.
That’s what LUX is – a high end option for people who enjoy the privileged life in every other aspect of their life.
Developer and owner Paul Hollowell left the comforts of northern California to open the first LUX Tanning Spa in Dallas. Why the relocation? “There are so many options for high-end restaurants, for spas, for hair in Dallas, but there really wasn’t a high-end tanning option,” Hollowell said, adding, “That’s what LUX is – a high end option for people who enjoy the privileged life in every other aspect of their life.”
Beyond the visual aesthetics, LUX delivers an unparalleled powerhouse of tanning equipment. The SunAngel Duo offers a personalized “skin sensor” that calibrates the lamps to match your tanning needs. Other defining attributes include an aqua mist and aroma delivery system, and a 3D-sound system and MP3 player dock-in to jam to your personal beats via iPhone or iPod. In true red carpet spirit, LUX is the only provider of the SunAngel Duo in Texas – yes, the only one in the state.
A colorless Irishman myself, spray tanning has been my personal route to a bronzed body, and for that matter bootie. LUX delivers the most modern spray tan technology in the Versa franchise – VersaPro. With four color levels to choose from (as opposed to the three available in the previous version), this state-of-the-art machine maintains the seamless delivery system (no blotchy spots or missed areas) that its clients have appreciated from its predecessor. VersaPro offers the client the ability to double dip, adding a second layer of tanning serum to either the entire body or selected areas.
It’s little touches that create an experience that customers want to come back to enjoy, as opposed to a chore that they need to get done – like dropping off the dry cleaning.
But it’s not just the most tech-savvy equipment that makes LUX a special plan to get your glow. “I think the main thing that separates us is the consulting experience,” says Hollowell. That may be true, but the deluxe amenities don’t hurt any. Underground parking provides a breezy entrance, and a private elevator that drops you off in the lobby. Hollowell says that several celebrities have already called inquiring about memberships, in part to the “paparazzi-proof” entrance.
My favorite part, perhaps, is the LUXury finish to each tanning session. After tanning, you are offered a chilled eucalyptus towel to refresh and your choice of a complimentary glass of champagne or French spring water. Just when I thought Dallas couldn’t get any more posh, LUX enters stage right…and we welcome them.
To learn more about available memberships, call 214.521.4589 or “like” them on Facebook. Tell them “Shadows” sent you for an extra smile.
LUX Tanning Spa is located at 4411 Lemmon Ave, Ste. 105.
Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to do makeup in a variety of venues, in even more of a variety of capacities. From runways to film, editorial print to personal appearance, I have been blessed to see it all – or almost nearly all. Even through the glitz and glam of the Hollywood lifestyle, what I have always appreciated the most – and what still excites me the most to this day – is painting the girl ready to paint the town red. Outfit carefully selected and hair in rollers, I love making up the girl ready to embrace the night.
While I was living in Washington, D.C., I had the pleasure on several occasions to work with my dear friend and fellow Archer, Erin. Amidst our classroom discussion of world politics and economics, we would find ourselves secretly texting about the latest Vogue covers and what D.C. social engagement we would “make our way into” later that night.
Erin and I bonded from day one because of our shared passion for beauty and aesthetics, and our insatiable desire for all things lovely. While the majority of our cohorts were blinded by a veil of cosmetic ignorance, Erin & I would lose ourselves in our favorite color stories and the potential of what “look” we would try next.
Makeup, as you will often hear me say, has power beyond the physical transformation. Intangible in that it creates a sensation, allowing a woman to feel at her best. More than any highlighter or complexion enhancer, the impression of feeling beautiful gives the most powerful glow to your face. When you feel beautiful, you look beautiful.
On that note, however, I would be remiss if I didn’t share some invaluable pieces of my personal makeup box that always act as helping hands to creating the perfect “stepping out on the town” face. As there are probably a million possibilities to nine o’clock makeup, I will limit this entry to what my dear friend Erin always loved. Particular in her own right, she always wanted a perfect complexion – light and airy, with a soft glow in the only the right places. The first mistake that I have noticed that women make is assuming that they need more makeup when the sun goes down. This is a common misconception and most likely the most important.
A heavy foundation or powder, even in the evening, tends to create a mask rather than a beautiful face. There are two foundations that I tend to work with when your event of choice will be humbly lit. If you have few imperfections, I suggest you try Chanel’s newest foundation, Vitalumiere Aqua (retail $45). As I have described to clients, this foundation is for the woman who likes the idea of a tinted moisturizer, but likes a little more coverage. I love its silky, slightly candescent coverage and ability to let your own skin shine through. Often, women with beautiful skin cover up their own glow with too much foundation or powder, and this option gives the perfect amount of coverage.
For those of you with a few more things to hide – and don’t feel bad as the majority of the women in the world fall into this category – I use HD Foundation by Make Up For Ever (retail $40). This particular foundation is a makeup artists favorite pick and gives amazing coverage and a seamless finish to the skin. With a wide range of color options and rumored to be what Ms. Gaga uses herself, this foundation is sure to set the palette for an evening of complexion perfection.
I differ with a lot of artist regarding evening eyes. Many prefer to use this as an opportunity to apply bolder colors and deeper creases – all of which is fine, just not my personal preference. I prefer to do a soft wash of color to the entire lid and a slightly deeper hue in the crease. For the base lid color, I often times use MAC’s Ricepaper single shadow as it gives a sheer veil to the lid and doesn’t look powdery (retail $15). For the crease I like to blend a subtle deep honey right above the brow bone. Either the single shadow Brule or Samoa Silk – both by MAC – work great to accomplish this soft definition (retail $15). Eyeliner is an essential element for the nighttime creation, and I suggest trying NARS Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner (retail $23).
Lips are probably the most personal feature and I normally prefer women to have a lot of input into this area. Darker lips are ok, but again my personal preference for evening is a softer, high-gloss texture. I love the Mega Shine Lip Gloss by NYX Cosmetics (retail $5.50). My favorites are Sugar Pie and Baby Rose. NYX also makes great, inexpensive lip liners to set the parameters of your lip. I use Nude Pink and Peekaboo Neutral quite often (retail $3.50). Try filling in the entire lip first with the lip pencil, applying your gloss, then retracing the outer edges with the liner.
What women most eagerly ask for when I am painting their evening face is radiance. Every woman wants the “afterglow” appearance, and if I had a penny for every time that I was asked for the J Lo glow, I could retire. This is where I beg you to be cautious. Too much shimmer can ruin a beautiful effect. However, applied in the right areas – with a very light touch – highlighters can create a delicate candlelight luminosity to your overall look. I am in love with the NARS Copacabana Illuminator (retail $29). Its liquid texture allows you to apply a tiny drop above the cheekbones, down the bridge of the nose and on the chin. This will pick up light, regardless the environment, and give a halo to each of those areas.
I have long been a fan of Yves Saint Laurent. I remember clearly from years past watching my drag friends paint the most beautiful faces, from nothing more than a borrowed 5-pan YSL eyeshadow compact and a brush. I would sit, amazed at their ability to create airbrushed lids – a rainbow of florescent colors from lash to brow. Those moments of my first understanding of shading and contour are still vivid today.
The mid-nineties is the timeframe I am speaking of, where pastels had reminded us of our whimsical selves. YSL’s 2011 Fall Color Collection is, if nothing, a reminder of those days so fruitfully reminiscent of my budding makeup artist self. I was at the YSL counter at Neiman Marcus Northpark in Dallas when the boxes to the newest collection were opened. Eyes glazed over, I was once again 19 years old carefully trying to capture every stroke of Denise’s brush. Vivid yet coy, each item out of the box was it’s own wonderland of happy.
The most impressive piece of the collection is the limited edition 5-pan eyeshadow compact, No 11 Midnight Garden. An assortment of greens and lavenders all laid underneath a sheath of pixie dust, the possibilities are endless. Soft to the touch, as are most of YSL’s shadows, the colors in this compact could easily be applied delicately on top of existing shadow colors you already have to give a much needed “winter-is-coming” sparkle to your look. This compact is sure to please! (Retail $56)
Second in line to the Midnight Garden compact are the eagerly anticipated new Blush Radiance blushes. Available in six carefully chosen colors, these blushes are a softer approach to cheek hue than their predecessors. Panning the spectrum from angelic pink to muted coral, they deliver with just a hint of color. Unbelievably user-friendly, it is hard to apply too much to your desired location. Many women shy away from blush in fear of creating a look of costume rather than nature. Fear not with these blushes as they apply with ease and delicacy. My favorite would have to be No 5, as true red blushes are difficult to come by. I know many an artist who will make sure to add this to their personal creative boxes. (Retail $45)
YSL chose to add some new single eye shadow colors to the collection, No 18 Deep Night Purple and No 19 Velvet Green – both perfect to use wet as a top liner or dry underneath for a softer smoky effect. (Retail $30)
Make sure to take advantage of another limited edition piece to this collection – No 20 Midnight Blue Faux Cils mascara. YSL has always been known for the brilliant separation and lengthening of their Faux Cils mascara line, and this abysmal blue is sure to be no exception. A deep blue mascara has the ability to brighten the white of the eye without the risk of appearing too dramatic. Many times, the mascara doesn’t even show up as blue, but a softer black. Artists often times lean in this direction to get the definition needed of the mascara without going over the edge. (Retail $30)
All available online at the YSL website or at fine retailers.
I was very impressed with the Fall 2011 collection by NARS. I was able to play with the colors before they launched on the counters while we were painting the models for the Neiman Marcus Conclave gathering where all the cosmetic lines preview their colors to the Neimans buyers and cosmetic gurus. Although some pieces of the collection are subdued, in true NARS spirit, they delivered with a blue single eye shadow as charasmatic as the name suggests.
The Delphes trio reminds me of underwater mermaids – glowing in the ending light of the day. Softly iridescent, these muted sea-tones give variety. Gentle enough for the business gal, yet playful enough to spark some attention. I suggest adding the palette on top of Mousson. This will maintain the integrity of the shadow hues and give some longevity to the eye makeup. (Retail $45)
The Grand Palais due is subtle to the touch but has some star potential for the girl not quite ready for the smoky eye. Laying the deeper rouge-colored “dusty rose” in the crease, and popping a soft layer of the “silvery taupe” on the base of the lid will gives some radiance to the normally sallow eye. Be careful, however, as too much pink-undertoned shadow can bring attention to dark circles. This duo is the 21st century approach to the classic Marilyn Monroe eye. (Retail $33)
The star of the collection, as is normally the case with NARS, is the “true blue” single eye shadow Outremer. Bold and unapologetic, this single shadow makes for a great liner. Wetting a flat or tight-line brush and dragging a thin line up to the outer crease will give a clean awake visual to the eye. For the professional – or the drama queen – the shadow could be laid heavy on the entire lid, most likely on top of the Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base. I don’t suggest using cream eyeshadows underneath the placement of a chroma-bright color as it tends to look heavy and at times the color isn’t seamless. This is certainly one to have fun with!
All available online at the NARS website, or fine retailers.