Kimberly Powell, owner of the spacious 9,000-square-foot Woodhouse Day Spa, thinks she knows a couple of girls who can help fix those pesky wintertime skin concerns. Their names are Wonder Woman and Miss America, and they aren’t actually people at all. They are the endearing names for Woodhouse Day Spa’s two HydraFacial machines, aka the “Ferrari of facials.” Woodhouse is one of the few spas in the Southeast to carry these mag- 148 CSD nificent machines. It is the spa’s most popular service and the perfect treatment for repairing sun damage and preparing skin for the dehydrating winter months.

As men and women living in South Carolina know all too well, the heat can be your best friend or your worst enemy. We revel in our sunny Southern lifestyle, but often we bake in the sun too long, party too hard and forget to drink plenty of water. By the time fall arrives, we’re feeling relaxed, but our skin is a real mess from the abuse it’s suffered over the summer.

Woodhouse offers three HydraFacial treatments: The Express ($100/25 min.), The Pure ($185/50 min.) and the power-packed Woodhouse ($275/80 min.). The HydraFacial is a corrective yet luxurious service that hydrates, lightens and brightens. Three pumps work to create effects comparable to a mini-peel or mini-Botox. It’s an exfoliation, glycolic peel and extraction all rolled into one. In addition, antioxidant and collagen-rich serums hydrate the skin and promote elasticity. Rather than performing manual extractions, the technician uses the elaborately named “vortex- extraction nozzle,” which isn’t nearly as terrifying as it sounds. It’s actually a pleasant sensation—like small fish kisses all over your face. And the good news is that it’s gentle enough for sensitive skin. The outcome is a fresh, firm face with clear pores and a dewy appearance.


Of course, Woodhouse, being a full-service spa, has a great deal more to offer than the HydraFacial. The space encourages relaxation from the time a guest steps through the 9-foot-tall wooden doors. The interior has a coastal, beachy feel with a palette of soft blues and creamy neutrals. Dreamy seascapes decorate the walls, while driftwood centerpieces on coffee tables complement chairs and loungers.

Seaweed has long been a healing treatment for skin repair. To combat signs of aging, Woodhouse exclusively offers the VOYA organic skincare line, made from hand-harvested seaweed from Ireland. VOYA is used in the Woodhouse Signature Minkyti facial, where freshly harvested seaweed is placed on the face over a warm seaweed poultice mask. Other must-try services include the Lavender and Seaweed Pedicure, The Organic Seaweed Leaf Wrap, and the ultra-indulgent Lazy Days Renewal Ritual.

Expectant mothers will be thrilled with the Mellow Mama massage, which focuses on easing pain in the lower back muscles. The Mama Mio products and safe pre-natal techniques used in this massage help moms-to-be fight dehydration, fatigue and swollen feet.

In addition to the luxurious experience regular guests receive, the spa offers a VIP program. When they arrive for their appointment, VIP members are escorted to a private waiting area where they are presented with a monogrammed robe and complimentary champagne. (They also have the ability to make appointments by text message, a real timesaver.)

Powell and her staff spare no detail in thinking of everything guests may need. Reading glasses are placed next to the loungers, and jewelry dishes and charging outlets are in every locker. They have a lovely café menu and extensive wine/ champagne/beer selection as well. Powell says that her clients come in for many reasons—to grieve, to celebrate or just to get away. “People bring us their most intimate moments,” she says. “We want to honor their trust by offering unrivaled service.”

Powell, the vivacious Ohio native turned Charleston transplant, has big plans for her Woodhouse franchise’s future. Currently, she is the regional developer of Woodhouse Southeast (her Charleston flagship is the largest, and she plans to mentor interested future owners to develop 11 more. Come to think of it, maybe Powell herself is the true Wonder Woman within the Woodhouse walls.

Katie Kimsey is a freelance journalist and photographer based in Charleston.