Ever stare at a spa menu and wonder which facial is best for your skin? Shouldn’t that decision come from an expert, not your best guess? Enter Elena Rubin, a rising star among New York City facialists, who custom-creates treatments for your skin. “I really just have two facials—shorter and longer,” says Rubin, who looks like a young Brooke Shields meets Jessica Biel.
After working on Wall Street as a McKinsey consultant, and then at a spa with a supermodel clientele, she broke out in her own holistic direction. Her ethos shows from the start with a thorough intake form—expect to dish on your skin-care habits, diet, stress level, and hours of sleep you get. This allows Rubin to figure out what’s going on with your skin by considering all biggest culprits.
At her pretty Soho atelier, Rubin kicked off my facial with a foot massage—“a grounding step that breaks the ice,” she says. “New Yorkers are intense people. You don’t go straight for the face.” Like a handful of mind-beauty facialists in NYC, Rubin is a fan of using skin-care treatments to reduce stress. She could be the next Julia March.
Rubin’s an East-West polymath: Her skin-care treatments mix depuffing lymphatic drainage massage and acupressure with nourishing skin-care serums. And she makes use of super-active skin-refining peels, high-frequency breakout fighting wands, and skin-cooling globes. Her super-gentle extractions had me worried that she hadn’t sufficiently cleaned my pores. Turns out, she did, just with a fraction of the pore pressure I’m used to.
She also obsessively formulated her own botanical skin-care products and they get results: My skin was so dry that she recommended I use her All Purpose Eye Serum all over. I’m no longer flaking. Nor am I breaking out. My skin’s firmer, nourished, and I owe what natural radiance I’m rocking this winter to her. —Melisse Gelula