This month, French skin-care company Caudalie opened its first U.S. boutiques. One is on Bleecker (pictured) and a smaller boite is located on Lexington and 75th Street.
The innovators of vinotherapy (or using antioxidant-rich grape skins and seeds in beauty products) also have a spa in the Plaza Hotel and are stocked in Sephora stores. But they wanted “a place where you can soak in the products and history,” says Caudalie’s co-founder Bertrand Thomas, whose wife, Matilde, is the brand’s commander de beaute.
Caudalie’s deep roots in beauty vinoculture are proudly displayed in the boutiques, with photos of its Bordeaux flagship spa and Smith Haut Lafitte vineyard setting. Down the center is a long Barrel Bar (love the wine allusion), where product testing and sampling is encouraged.
You can create your own crushed Cabernet grapeseed scrub ($20), a signature product mixed fresh at the spa, that includes Gironde honey, brown sugar, and your choice of essential oils. And the Bleecker Street location provides what might be the most thorough complimentary mini-facial ever offered. In 10 minutes, you’ll be cleansed, toned, moisturized, and dotted with a tiny bit of bronzer (optional).
If only pours of the family’s wines were served while shopping. Although it’s probably better for your beauty budget that they’re not. —Melisse Gelula
Caudalie boutiques, 315 Bleecker Street, West Village, and 1031 Lexington Avenue, Upper East Side, us.caudalie.com