LONDON — Is a healthy gut the new status symbol?
The wellness industry is racing ahead, capturing the hearts, minds — and stomachs — of consumers who once looked to creams, color cosmetics and the odd facial to feel better about themselves.
Today, men and women alike are taking a holistic approach, looking to beautify on the inside as well as outside with therapies aimed at calming and balancing the body and the mind. They’re also researching medicinal products — and therapists — to help them with their individual needs.
Tapping, Qi Gong, sound baths and energy healing have become popular among fashion designers in particular, while at retail, the lines between beauty, alternative therapies and ancient treatments are blurring.
Net-a-porter has added a wellness subcategory to its beauty pages, offering products such as hair vitamins costing 70 pounds a pack, water bottles with amethyst crystals to emit calming and creative energy, and a drinkable vegan radiance powder to help the skin glow.
Likewise, Cult Beauty has introduced a well-being category that sells libido and energy boost pills, acupressure pillows, quartz eye masks, CBD oral spray and expensive dietary supplements.
Face Gym, which offers high-energy facials involving hand massages and technology to tone muscles, has been expanding in the U.K. and North America, where it has opened mini concept stores in the Upper East Side and TriBeCa.
Earlier this year, it branched into skin care with the release of a new range of heat and motion-activated, skin-care sticks meant to be used during gym or outdoor workouts to draw out toxins.
At the Indie Beauty Expo in London in October, vitamins and women’s menstrual wellness products jostled for attention alongside traditional beauty and makeup.
The New York-based Pratima, which is based around Ayurveda, is set to re-brand and relaunch early this year. What won’t change is the approach of the founder, Dr. Pratima Raichur, whose aim is to tackle the root, internal cause of skin problems before applying any product on the face or body.
That holistic approach to beauty and wellness is only gaining steam.
Reset, a luxury platform that uses AI technology to offer a range of personalized, mindfulness services that address stress management, will hold a pilot event in London later this month, with the app set to go into beta testing soon.
Founded by Joy Yaffe, who built fashion brands and worked in the health sector for over a decade, the site connects users directly with gurus online, via the app, and offline through Reset events, pop-ups and experiences.
The experts address a range of issues, offering solutions to video addiction and cancer counseling, teaching pain management techniques, and creating pre- and post-natal practices.
“It all comes down to the fact that you are what you think, and you are what you eat,” said Yaffe. “Seventy-five percent of people are stressed on the job. Millennials are living their lives in a pressure cooker, and the majority of people lack coping mechanisms, connectivity and community.”
She said the aim of Reset is to address stress by providing solutions that are “life-enhancing, and enable self-optimization.”
Other new businesses, such as the Khera-Griggs Cleanse Clinic, are focused more on the day-to-day needs and workings of the physical body.
Founded by the longtime public relations executive Meena Khera and the naturopathic nutritionist Amanda Griggs, Khera-Griggs has opened at the new Urban Retreat day spa in Knightsbridge, offering cleanse programs, infrared saunas and holistic treatments.
The clinic’s offer includes sensory therapy with chakra oils; bioresonance testing; cupping and yoga with Sadie Frost’s masters, Hortense Suleyman and Maya Fiennes.
The clinic also has a soundproof fitness studio meant for yoga, Pilates and meditation and offers services such as Deepak Chopra’s Inner Space Immersive Meditation Experience.
Separately, Urban Retreat has a roster of doctors, therapists and specialists who plan to host residencies and practice there.
It’s truly a sign of the times, that men and women alike can walk through the doors of Urban Retreat and get anything from a haircut and blow dry to a tattoo to a bespoke colonic treatment. Rounding out its approach to wellness, Urban Retreat even has a restaurant that serves healthy food — and organic wines.