If you’ve ever wondered why you haven’t seen any celebrities sitting next to you in a fluffy white robe in the high-end New York City spa you frequent, it’s because they’re not there. So, where do these VIP spa-goers actually go? The answer: Aida Bicaj. Tucked inconspicuously away on the ground floor of a Park Avenue apartment building on Manhattan’s Upper East Side is Aida’s private spa. It’s also the reason those celebrities age so gracefully (if at all).
Aida doesn’t give ‘facials’, at least not the generic facials you’re used to getting at the spa. Aida gives ‘treatments’. And while I was certainly able to relax and enjoy the hour and a half experience, in retrospect, this story is probably more suited for the skincare section. Then again, Aida does give one heck of a head and neck massage, so I think it’s ok to continue the story.
Aida Bicaj administering her signature treatment
A firm believer in the French approach to skincare, Aida is all about nourishing the skin with active and live ingredients that help the skin balance so it reaches the PH value as close as possible to the PH value we have when we are born. She highly recommends the products by Biologique Recherche – in particular, the balancing Lotion P-50 – and she uses these products at her spa.
If it were up to Aida, oil-free products would be removed from the shelves and…(warning: avert your eyes if you’re not good with surprises)…she only recommends sunscreen when you’re at the beach or deliberately sunbathing to get tan. Otherwise, stick with a rich moisturizer without SPF. Now, my first reaction to such dermatological blasphemy was to run. But it’s hard to do that when a woman with such radiant skin herself (who’s not exactly 22 years old) is telling you to do this. You simply become a believer.
Whether Aida treats you or a member of her team does, you will receive a complete skin diagnostic followed by a recommended skin regimen to follow at home and with regular visits to the spa. Aida’s treatment is centered around the use of specific machines utilizing micro-current to infuse essential serums deep into the epidermis.
In addition to providing nourishing hydration, this method virtually lifts the facial muscles and smoothes the topical layer of the epidermis. No surgery, just regular facial “work outs” to get your skin healthy, radiant and lifted. Aida actually worked for a prominent NYC plastic surgeon but started her own business when so many of the doctor’s clients opted for the non-surgical route to aging gracefully.
Now, I’ll be honest. The machine didn’t cause me pain, but I didn’t find the experience to be totally relaxing. It left my face feeling like it had, in fact, spent 2 hours at the gym with a personal trainer yelling at me. It also literally left a bad taste in my mouth. I tasted metal. But I am a drama queen with a low threshold for any discomfort, so I truly believe Aida when she says that most of her clients actually look forward to that portion of the treatment, often managing to take a much-needed catnap during it.
The micro-current machine definitely produces tangible results and I can understand why people schedule their appointments with Aida the night before important events. My skin was glowing and super soft, and the more obvious your signs of aging are, the more obvious the difference in your appearance will be.
Aida’s mantra is to “be the best you can be at any age” and her passion for helping you get there is genuine. It won’t happen overnight, but according to Aida, with commitment, patience and persistence, your skin, no matter when you start, can change to become healthy, glowing and radiant.
Institute de beaute
61 East 75th Street, Suite 1F
New York City 11028