Yes, men are notoriously difficult to buy for. And yes, we are fickle beasts. But in lieu of clothes, or experiences, or tickets to see something we may quickly change our mind on, two things are certain of success: things that’ll make us look better, and things that’ll make us feel better. Like massages. And grooming treatments. And, really, the sort of nice things we wouldn’t buy ourselves.
Here are the best treatments that he would welcome for any special (or not so special) occasion:
Thai massage at Akasha Spa & Fitness
Based in the tranquil sanctum of Cafe Royale, the Akasha Spa is a world away from the Ninth Circle of Hell above on Piccadilly Circus. And, while the expert team offers much in the way of relaxation (hot stone massage, aromatherapy, et al) it’s the 90-minute Thai massage that really gets things going, recalibrating joints, stimulation circulation and providing the kind of feel-good firmness we so often crave after the gym.
The ultimate, Tom-Ford approved shave
Tom Ford’s aesthetic – big money Manhattanite excess – is easy to wear. But it’s a signature well translated to the art of grooming, with a Tom Ford store in Covent Garden offering the same level of luxury in a wet-shave session, complete with a hot-towel massage and a rotation of hi-spec products that made the US designer a household name. It may not quite hit the level of a velvet dinner jacket, but it does come close.
The Margaret Dabbs foot treatment
We don’t give our feet the due care and attention they need. And, with pedicures still stamped as firmly ‘for women only’ (and incorrectly stamped, may we add), it’ll take a bona fide expert to convince men otherwise.
Enter Margaret Dabbs. The anointed queen of feet has set-up shop in Harrods’ Wellness Clinic, ensuring a top notch treatment that includes an exfoliation foot bath and oxygen therapy, all in the confines of one of the world’s most famous shopping locations. Expect an imminent pedicure conversion.
From £130, harrods.com/thewellnessclinic
The customised facial
Men’s skincare is big business. The next level, however, can only be breached by a certified practitioner that can unlock what real, tailor-made grooming can look like. At Urban Retreat, a therapist can conduct a consultation, and then compose the right facial for him that packs all the added bonuses his bathroom cabinet just can’t hit.
The old-school barbershop experience
When the Soho House group announced they’d be rejuvenating an old bank in the city, nobody expected the throwback to be on such a grand scale. Crowned The Ned, the vast member’s clubhouse has extended the old school luxury to its spa, too, and Ned’s Barbershop is the type of old-school haunt we imagine our great grandfathers going to. He can sit back, crack open a beer, and dream of his return with a brand new war hero haircut.
Though beards are now permanently pinned to the grooming board, hair removal is still considered a must elsewhere (and believe it or not, can be a source of real anxiety for many men). But if your encouragement is not enough alone, the good folk at the Ministry of Waxing will provide some gentle coaxing – and a raft of treatments that’ll tidy things up a bit less painfully. But yes. We will still complain as if you’ve never experienced a wax before.
From £19, ministryofwaxing.co.uk
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