The best massages in Melbourne
We all need a little TLC every now and then. Leave your worries at the door and check yourself into the city's best massage parlours
The best spas and bath houses
No time for a holiday? Take yourself on a mini-getaway at Melbourne's best spas and bath houses
We tried six alternative health and wellbeing treatments
The Time Out team gets some TLC with these left-field restorative treatments
The best health food stores in Melbourne
Eat healthy and feel better with these top stores around Melbourne
Beauty in Melbourne
The Nail Art Shakedown
From likenesses of your favourite pet to burgers you've loved, you can get nearly anything painted on your digits these days. Nail art became popular in the ’80s and ’90s, but it was also super tacky (hello, claw hands). Luckily, things have progressed since then, and Melbourne has embraced the nail art revival, hard. But does one nail art salon hold the upper hand? For more pampering and primping, visit our guides to Melbourne's best massages and waxing salons.
The best cosmetic clinics in Melbourne
If there's one thing that anti-wrinkle injections, laser treatments, tattoo removal and chemical peels have in common, it's that you wouldn't want to put your faith in the wrong hands. We've searched the city to bring you the most reputable and bang-for-buck cosmetics clinics in Melbourne – now all you have to do is make an appointment. For more pampering ideas, try these top massage parlours and spas and bath houses.
The best waxing salons in Melbourne
Waxing is a delicate operation – you're dealing with sensitive areas and hot products, not to mention the fact that you don't want to be pencilling in your brows forever after because some overzealous beauty therapist went wax-happy on your face. It goes without saying that a good waxing establishment needs to be hygienic – that's a given, but diplomacy and skill are also essential. If you're in the need of some post-wax relaxation, you may want to visit one of our favourite bath houses and spas. Or maybe you just need a quiet beverage, in which case check out our guide to Melbourne's best bars.
Where to get pierced in Melbourne
Thinking of adding to your collection of stylish piercings? Finally ready to brave your first? Melbourne is full of body mod salons, but these are our favourites. If you love rocking a unique style, then check out our fave alternative fashion shops.
Wellbeing in Melbourne
Where to try hot yoga in Melbourne
What is it? Yoga, practiced in a room heated to 37-40°C. Usually it will be Bikram Yoga – that 90-minute, unvarying set of 26 postures – but there are studios popping up where you can also sweat through a little Hatha and Iyengar. You'll need to drink two litres of water before class and it will all end up on your towel. Bring a spare for showering, or rent one along with a mat, and wear as little clothing as possible. It sounds awful, why should I do it?Hot thighs! Better discipline! All of your skin sloughed off in a tidal wave of sweat! Some yogis claim Bikram doesn't have enough inversions and that the hot room makes you push dangerously beyond your natural flexibility. But the whole idea of yoga – any kind – is to have your own journey, and to work sympathetically with your body's abilities. So tell them to suck it. We like it hot because warmer muscles really are bendier muscles (so you can get your rear closer to your face), and because the sweat session leaves you as smooth and soft as a mango pancake. Also because we'd rate this on par with bear wrestling in terms of exercise extremity, yet we always feel some inner-peace despite the outer turmoil.
Amara Wellness Centre
Dr Zara Celik is passionate about holistic health and wellness, and believes that beauty is reflection of our inner wellbeing and health. She believes in organic, natural, non-invasive treatments that aims to improve wellbeing and health of individuals and makes them beautiful as a result. The rear of her Amara Wellness Centre in Brunswick is a hammam, providing a nurturing steam, massage and bathing ritual to Melbourne’s tired and weary, in time-honoured Turkish tradition. The front section is all about skin renewal and tightening, courtesy of the LPG Endermotherapie and Endermolift treatments. The hammam After a day of first-world problems I’m feeling pretty drained and not in any mood to be taking my clothes off. Thank god I’m here to do a job, because after three hours in this Sydney Road hammam, experiencing an authentic and wellness Turkish and Moroccan bathing ritual is now top of my advise-everyone-to-do list. Zara Celik, a chiropractic doctor, came to Australia from Turkey when she was 15 years old, and found she missed the ancient bathing rituals of her country. Determined to introduce the experience to a wider Australian audience, she toiled away on creating this beautiful hammam, decorated from top to bottom with intricate mosaic tiling (Zara looks a bit pale when we speculate on how long that must have taken). Each steam room has domed ceilings and heated marble slabs on which to lie. Customers strip down to a bikini – or shorts – and are joined in the ro
Have you ever felt truly, and absolutely, weightless? When staying afloat takes no effort at all, to the point that you begin to lose any sense of your own body? If you’ve visited the Dead Sea, then these feelings might be familiar. But add total darkness, silence and stillness into the equation and things start to get a little more… interesting. I find Beyond Rest in an alleyway just off Chapel Street, where I’m greeted by owners Nick and Ben Dunin. The space – clean, curved lines, low lighting and scented candles – imbues a sense of calm that the brothers have taken care to create using principles of 'sacred geometry' (patterns found in nature that make up all living things). I’m led through this temple of relaxation until I reach my private room, which is dominated by a huge, white tank, filled with 1000l of purified water and 500kg of Epsom salt and magnesium sulphate. The door locks behind me. I take a deep breath. Floatation tanks haven’t always enjoyed the best (or most accurate) reputation. The concept was developed in 1954 by American neurophysicist Dr John C Lilly, who was interested in the meditative effects of sensory deprivation achieved by floating in ‘isolation tanks’ (and, to be fair, by taking LSD). Dolphins were also involved; I’ll let you Google that one yourself. Floatation theory became popular in the ’70s, but took a downturn in the ’80s during the AIDS crisis, when public health fears caused public pools, spas and tanks to shut down. In the mainstrea
Natural beauty tips from Richie Angelo
A hardcore beauty regime feels like an efficient way to keep your skin in good nick, but when you can find some of the same ingredients in manufacturing processes – it can’t be good, right? Richie Angelo, an experienced beauty therapist and natural skincare expert, says no. Richie’s passion for natural and organic skin care coincided with her first pregnancy. First, she became more interested in what she was ingesting and later curious about what she was absorbing through her skin. Her journey led her to become an advocate for natural skin care – skin care made from naturally occurring ingredients as opposed to compounds made in a lab. Richie primarily uses Sodashi and MV Organic products, both of which are high performance Aussie brands that use only plant-derived ingredients and no synthetic chemicals – no parabens, petrochemicals, preservatives or fragrances. Richie shares some of her skin care wisdom with us. Tip #1: Your nan was right You’ve gotta be regular. “You need to poo daily,” Richie says. “A lot of skin issues, especially acne, happen because your body is not eliminating as it should. If you’re not having a daily poo, toxins get reabsorbed and expelled through the skin.” Tip #2: Don’t strip your skin It’s oddly satisfying to wash your face until it squeaks, but don’t do it. “If you use skin care that over-strips your skin you remove the natural oils that your skin is supposed to have and it creates a pretty chaotic chain reaction,” Richie explains. “A clean
Beauty and grooming for men
The best barber shops in Melbourne
Finding the right barber can be a lifelong search. Thankfully, there are experts in this area who excel in getting the discerning man’s ‘do’ just right
The best male grooming services in Melbourne
For men who take pride in their appearance and well being, regular facials and massages do wonders for the body and mind
Melbourne’s best tattoo parlours
Find the artist who suits your needs and taste with our guide to Melbourne's best places to get your first (or 50th!) tattoo
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Where to spend the Melbourne Cup Carnival
The Melbourne Cup Carnival kicks off this spring, culminating with the Melbourne Cup Day on Tuesday November 1. Whether you're going to the races or having a flutter at your local pub, some of Melbourne's best pubs are getting in the spirit with pre and post-race events, Happy Hour deals, and guaranteed good times.
The party vibes are already strong on an average weekend in Fitzroy, and Fitzroy Social is adding to that with its sprawling, high-ceilinged bar space. Open seven days a week, Fitzroy Social really takes off on Bloody Mary Sundays, when Bloody Marys fly off the bar counter for $12 all day, from 11am to closing time. Choose from four varieties, including the Classic Bloody Mary, the Bloody Maria with Olmeca Altos tequila, the Spicy Sailor with house made spiced rum and a cinnamon sugar waffle, and Bloody Hell with bacon-infused vodka. Lock in Happy Hour in your calendar every day from 5-7pm and 8-10pm, and make Fitzroy Social your local summer bar, they'll be pouring frozen Margaritas and Frosés for $10 a pop to quench your thirst. The bar food menu caters for whatever mood you're in. Get in on the brunch burger and Bloody Mary deal all day on Sundays, and top it up with pizzas and chicken wings to share. Set menus are available for those special weekend dinners, and check out the vegan and gluten-free menus for those with dietary requirements. Brought to you by the team behind Asian Beer Café, Father's Office, The Shaw Davey Slum and The Bank on Collins, Fitzroy Social takes up the space left behind by the Little Creatures Dining Hall. The colourful space is adorned with artwork by renowned local artist David Bromley, whose work grace the venue's custom upholstery, wallpaper, and the statement mural running the length of the dining room. The icing on the cake is Bromley
Every trip to Melbourne Zoo is different. Despite being Australia’s oldest zoo, this vibrant animal world is constantly evolving with new exhibits, events, and of course, creatures great and small. A trip to Melbourne Zoo done right takes a day. The largest exhibit is the majestic Wild Sea, where penguins and seals bask on land before slipping into clear waters and showcasing their elegant aquatic skills. Another highlight is the sprawling Orang-utan Sanctuary, where a family of beautiful, intelligent orang-utans swing from tree to tree, play with each other and feed high off the ground. Then there’s the Trail of the Elephants; an immersive Asian village and garden where five Asian elephants thrive. We could go on and on about the lions, lemurs, meerkats, butterflies and native animals that you’ll encounter, but we’ll let you discover it all for yourself. Throughout your Melbourne Zoo experience, you’ll learn about all the conservation work that happens behind the scenes; saving wildlife, conserving habitats and raising awareness of initiatives like Palm Oil labelling. For children and adults alike, a trip to Melbourne Zoo is a way to reconnect with our animal friends and gain a closer understanding of the delicate ecosystems of the world. If it’s been a while between visits, then there’s a world of adventure waiting for you. Children aged 0-15 get in for free on weekends and public holidays (Mon-Fri $16.30) and adult prices range from $24.90 (concession) to $32.50.
The Grand Tour: Cities Shaped by Art
Learn the essentials of art history with ACCA's chosen team of experts with a refreshing complimentary cocktail in hand. Just as Melbourne's arts culture has shaped the city, the same goes for many of the world's biggest metropolitan cities. ACCA has picked out a group of 'tour guides' for the Grand Tour lecture series to take you through the world's best galleries, arts events, and architecture, as well as visit the writers, thinkers, and artists that have shaped each city. For the final tour of 2016 on Monday October 24, ACCA invites you to the thriving Los Angeles, California. Your guide for the evening will be Annika Kristensen, curator at ACCA. She will take you deep into the history and culture of the city – once described by Jack Kerouac, and later, Guns N' Roses, as a 'jungle' – from Gehry to the Getty and beyond. Kristensen is known for her work at ACCA, but also as the former exhibition and project coordinator for the 19th Biennale of Sydney (2014). As always, guests will be treated to a complimentary themed cocktail to ease you through your travels. This time, the Melbourne Gin Company will be pouring piña coladas worthy of LA summer days. The bar is open from 5pm, and the talk will run from 6-7pm. Tickets include a free cocktail inspired by each of the cities and created by The Melbourne Gin Company. Visit the ACCA website for full details.