As most ladies in the neighborhood know, Bushwick has been seriously lacking in quality beauty services. We’ve seen the yoga studios roll in by the bundle, then acupuncture, and about a year and a half ago, we were gifted Self Salon. Now, the Spa gods have answered again: Local Honey, which opened just over a month ago, is full-service salon, offering everything from your standard Mani/Pedi ($40) to special consultations for The Perfect Brow ($45) and Lash Perms ($70), and by-appointment-only services like Henna.

Owner Kate Quintard says the salon was born out of the absence of high-end services in the neighborhood. Having lived in the neighborhood for 7 years, she decided it was time to take matters into her own hands.

Kate Quintard

You might remember Local Honey’s location at the corner of Troutman and Irving previously as Maria’s Banquet Hall, famed for its quincineras and salsa lessons. But in a quick renovation, the new space bares no resemblance to the reggaeton days of its past; the salon is spacious and modern, decorated with minimalist furniture, geometric light fixtures and chevron patterned pillows. Its cool interior holds a brow chair, cozy private waxing room, nail bar, and lots of shelves for tiny crystal, cacti and assorted gifts.

I’m the kind of girl who wears a Nirvana t-shirt and hiking boots to the spa while sporting a fresh kitchen injury: a chopped in half middle finger nail. I also jump at an opportunity to try anything new, hence the eclectic choice to get my first ever brazilian wax and gel manicure at the newly opened spa. I booked my appointment online and was greeted with a mimosa and cheerful welcome to the space, which feels both homey and industrial – kinda like Bushwick. I was lead to the private wax room, where my wax expert Rayna made sure I was comfortable before talking me through the process.

I learned that Brazilian waxes are super popular in Bushwick, and (almost) Brazilians with landing strips come in second. Seems that the ladies in the neighborhood like to keep it clean and simple down there. While my experience as a wax first-timer could warrant an article all on its own (with gifs referencing The 40 Year Old Virgin), my end result was tidy, smooth, and extremely professional. My tip for other first timers (or not)? Zen out and breath. And remember: in this case at least, pain leads to pleasure.

The next part of my journey had me asking why the F I’ve never gotten a gel manicure before. While my nail stylists Sonia and Shae layed out a hundred options of gel colors and nail art, I got cozy with mimosa #2 and eventually landed on a subtle holiday mani with two holiday accent nails. To my relief, my half-nail injury wasn’t judged or doted on, just carefully covered up with a custom-cut acrylic tip so it has time to grow on its own.

After that, the process was a seamless set of steps involving many layers of paint and UV light but in the end only took about 35 minutes, including the time spent perfecting the tiny snowflakes on my ring fingers. Days later my nails are strong and in perfect shape despite bike riding, gardening, metrocard swiping…. You know. All those Bushwick girl things. I’m never looking back!

With the Holidays right around the block, it’s the perfect time to let some honey into your life. A holiday manicure or nail art is a hit at holiday parties and the salon has a full line of handmade products for everyone on your list! An awesome spa in Bushwick, it’s about time. Hallelujah!

Local Honey BK is open Tuesday-Sunday 11 am-8:30 pm.