Skin Care

By Irene Fogarty

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When you write articles about products and interview the people behind them, you expect them to use the opportunity to tell you everything. How they started, how they developed the line, etc…It’s their chance to “sell themselves” right? Not so with Susan Ciminelli.

To say I went for a “facial” would completely minimize my entire experience on a busy Tuesday afternoon at work. What I will say is that my skin has never looked so good and I think, or rather know, Susan is on to something that’s going to change the way we look at beauty and health. And that’s big.

Getting Under Your Skin
Before I delve into my “SC experience,” let me give you an idea of what I’m talking about. This is not a skincare specialist who’s looking to create the magical potion to dissolve your wrinkles or makes promises that’ll never happen. There are plenty of those already out there on the market. You know the ones made by Norwegian monks and used to heal the wounds of fighters as far back as Troy – and so are justified to be priced at $300 a jar.

Forget that. Susan has been doing this for some time now. (But believe me, you cannot tell from her complexion – it’s so clear and fresh looking in a natural way, she looks 15 years younger than she is.) She works holistically with clients because after all her years of experience, she sees what is actually causing the skin problem and then addresses it with her products and lifestyle solutions. She goes much deeper than what’s on the surface.

Written All Over Your Face
Susan looks at your diet, lifestyle, and emotional and stress levels to evaluate your skin. Her theory is rather simple. The skin is a mirror of your internal environment. And so Susan’s custom tailored programs are based on how she “reads” your skin.

For example, she knew looking at my skin that I eat too quickly! Sorry, but when lunchtime becomes crunch time, you just don’t have time to chew slowly – let alone chew! But how you digest your food is very important to your complexion. (I’m now the slowest eater… can’t say the same about red wine!)

She makes you realize that conscious nutritional changes and stress management choices are not just good for your health – they’ll do wonders for your vitality and longevity too.

Make “Peace – Your Skin Will Be Thankful
Even more refreshing is Susan’s attitude. Of course she believes 100% in her products, but as she says, “I am in THIS business to help people look inside and make peace.” And it is that sense of “peacefulness” that makes you cherish the Ciminelli vibe.

And I can vouch for that. As I mentioned earlier, having ran out of work claiming I had a “doctor’s appointment” instead of going to a client presentation (Dear Lord and American Express, please forgive me), I was under a lot of pressure to clean my pores, learn about Susan’s spa and get all the info I wanted to write this article in less than 1 hr and 15 mins.

I got nothing. In other words, I got everything but that. She wanted me to “enjoy” the time with her without talking, so I could completely take my head somewhere else. I did – the Caribbean! So I came out feeling like I had the most beautiful skin in the world, not caring about the deadlines and wondering if anybody at work would notice my inner “glow” too. (The New York Times calls it the “SC Glow!”)

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The Ciminelli Chambers
Heading up to the 9th floor from the hustle and the bustle of Bergdorf’s, I walked straight into the SC spa. The first thing you see? Smiling faces. Not plastic ones, but people who look as if they really do enjoy what they’re doing. How rare is that in New York? Cynthia, Larissa (take a look at her skin – one word, FLAWLESS!), are knowledgeable, nice people.

To confirm this genuine “down to earth” atmosphere, the design of the spa is not over the top. It’s simple. Nice music in the room, a robe, low lighting but nothing too ornate or sleek spa-ish…The emphasis is on the inner experience and not the surroundings.

Relief, Real Relief
Instead Susan offers relief, in more ways than one, to New Yorkers like myself. Ones who have no life – which means no time to indulge themselves with facials, or any spa-like treatment. But the relief is more than a great facial. She shares her understanding of holistic healing with the healing of her hands. And wow! What hands she has – her hands feel like silk.

FYI
Unlike Susan, a woman of few words, I could go on and on about that afternoon. But just let me say this…I’m not the only one raving about her. From J Lo to Al Pacino, she has dealt with all the stars, models, etc, etc. And of course, she never mentioned that. I found that out myself. She’s just as interested in giving you the facial of your life than anybody else.

As expected, Susan’s products are as pure as her mission to heal clients. I use them all, every day and I see and feel the difference. Here’s just a sampling of what she offers.

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Algae Deep Cleanse – Net Wt 2 oz.
Open the lid and breathe in. Hmmm. You can small the lavender, eucalyptus and peppermint oils which leave your skin feeling smooth and soft. Just apply a small amount onto your wet face, work into a lather using your fingertips and then rinse thoroughly with cool water. You’ll notice how smooth your makeup goes on after using this.

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Power C- Net Wt 2 oz.
Susan recommended this one for me. Especially after she noticed my pores could not handle the heavy weight moisturizers I’ve been slathering on! This is light with special ingredients like sage, watercress and lemon bioflavoids to condition, purify and energize your skin. I love it. I use it after the gym, on the morning, before I put makeup on, whenever. It’s so light it never clogs your pores and I already see how fresh my skin looks after it.

Toning Formula -Net Wt 1 fl oz.
Tighten up those pores with this unique formula of essential oils of thyme, peppermint, rosemary and lavender. Just use it on the T-zone to help eliminate blackheads. Then spray your face with Seawater and follow with moisturizer.

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Seawater
Since I suffered from rosacea years ago, this spray is prefect for me. Helping the reduction of broken capillaries, it also hydrates your skin and helps preserve your skin. It’s like a splash of well, seawater – so refreshing. Use it at least twice a day after you apply appropriate essential oils.

Marine Lotion -Net Wt 8 fl oz.
You can this on your face and body. It tingles!! I use it after the shower – love the smell of the algae, cypress, and juniper oils. It’s even great for preventing stretch marks! Plus, you can add it to facial masks or under your moisturizer for an extra boost. Go for it!

Sea clay mask – Net Wt 1 fl oz.
I use this at least 1-2 times a week to tighten my pores and remove impurities. Mix it with Seawater and leave on your skin for 10-15 minutes. If your skin is extra dry like mine, mix it with Marine Lotion for drier skin types and extra mineralization. Just make sure to rinse thoroughly with warm water and follow with prescribed essential oil and seawater.

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Effervescent Bath Balls
You gotta try these! They’re in a basket on the counter when you walk in. They come in seven divine scents: lavender, jasmine, mint eucalyptus, grapefruit, rose, cinnamon orange, and cranberry jasmine clove. I love the lavender ones and the natural minerals and exfoliants, sodium bicarbonate relaxes your muscles and the citric acid exfoliates dead skin. Fizzy bath balls…what a cool idea!

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Sunscreen SPF 30 – Net 2 oz.
It’s summer, cover up! Try this for protection. Susan’s new SPF concoction – anti-oxidants, Japanese green tea, aloe vera gel, jojoba and orange oil allow this super light sunscreen to provide moisture as well as sun protection. Blocks sun rays not pores! SPF 30 can be used over a moisturizer as well as alone. Try it over your moisturizer in the morning – you can still burn on the way to the subway!

Product Packages Want to win the battle of the bulge? Try Susan’s Cellulite Trilogy. First, bathe in the Algae Fine Powder and Toning Bath to properly cleanse, detoxify and tone the skin. After the bath, use the Marine Lotion astringent to keep you skin taut and hydrated throughout the day. The Algae Fine Powder is an all-natural bath powder that contains a blend of algaes including Laminaria Digitata to reduce water retention and minimize cellulite appearance. The Toning Bath uses essential oils to increase blood circulation and energize the body. Perfect for anyone who is losing weight or wishes to maintain their well-toned body. Marine Lotion combines pure algae oil, herbal extracts and essential oils to treat dry skin and cellulite. It will leave your skin silky smooth and pleasantly toned. It will help prevent stretch marks during pregnancy and weight change.

Finally, you meet a lot of people when you interview them for a beauty site like this. But probably one of the most rewarding things is not just meeting them and learning more about their products, but getting a sense of warmth, kindness and genuine interest in you as a person rather than an interviewer. I felt that the second I met Susan.

Maybe that’s why I left her spa with an inner glow as well as the one on my face.

When moments like that happen, I realize what real beauty is all about.

Check out the Susan Ciminelli Spa…you’ll come out a new person!

Where? When? How?
Susan Ciminelli Spa
Bergdorf Goodman
754 Fifth Avenue (between 57th & 58th Streets)
9th Floor
Tel: 212.872.2650
Toll-Free: 888.3DAYSPA (888.332.9772)

Hours:
Monday – Friday 9am-8pm
Saturday 9am-7pm
Sunday 12pm-6pm

Susan Ciminelli is also available for private appointments in California.

Please call: 888.3DAYSPA to book an appointment.

P.S. Take a look at her site, www.susanciminelli.com. There’s even a place where you can ask her any question. She answers them herself, that’s how dedicated she is!

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Originally published June 2004
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