In Spotlyte’s series Her Regimen, influential individuals divulge their most trusted resources for every aspect of their beauty, skincare, and wellness regimens. Consider it your pre-vetted primer to all things gorgeous.
It’s not easy founding startups, raising millions of dollars’ worth of capital for them, and turning them into successful ventures (seemingly overnight!). But Alexandra Wilkis Wilson makes it look incredibly simple. The 41-year-old serial entrepreneur is responsible for some of the greatest venture success stories in the beauty and fashion industries (Gilt GroupeTM, Glamsquad®, and FitzTM were all co-founded by her, just to name a few). Now, she’s the SVP of Consumer Strategy and Innovation at Allergan and leading MoonwalkerTM, which is incubating digital consumer ventures, the first of which is SpotlyteTM.
Of course, her career makes the native New Yorker — and mother of two! — a very busy woman. And when every spare minute counts, finding reliable, trustworthy experts for her beauty, skin, and wellness routines is essential. Wilson has honed her list of go-to pros and must-visit practices, clinics, and other locales as carefully as she cultivates a new business.
As you might suspect, there is a healthy sprinkling of startups and apps (including some she’s invested in!) among her favorites. There are also plenty of standbys she loves in her Upper East Side neighborhood. From the hair stylist and colorist she’s been seeing for nearly 15 years to the trendy new workout she’s obsessed with, read on to discover them all.
Haircut: Piet Sinthuchai at Vartali. “I love the salon in general, everybody knows my name, my whole family goes there now. I don’t even really need to say anything to Piet — he just sits me in the chair and just tells me what he’s going to do while I devour my stack of beauty, fashion, and business magazines. There’s familiarity there. I’ve been going to him since 2004. Piet was actually one of the first people to know that I was first pregnant as he could tell the difference in my hair texture.”
Color: Anna Page at Vartali. ”She knows me well — I’ve also been going to her since 2004. Color is something personal; I’m not experimental. I’m naturally strawberry blonde, and I like to highlight it blonder. Both Piet and Anna are so talented and make me feel comfortable. I trust them 100 percent with my hair.”
Blowout: “Glamsquad®, of course! I have a list of preferred beauty professionals by category, but everyone at Glamsquad is really talented and I trust them with my regular blowouts.”
Makeup: “I usually do my own. I learned so many great tips and tricks from Kelli Bartlett, VP of Makeup and New Services at Glamsquad and all the fabulous makeup artists during my time there. But when I need to be camera ready, then I always book Glamsquad for makeup.”
Nails: Glamsquad. “I like getting a CND Shellac® manicure. I only first tried Shellac a few years ago when we launched the service at Glamsquad, but Shellac makes life so much easier! (Wildfire is my current color of choice). For pedicures, I’ll get Essie®. I like matching the colors of my mani/pedis. I typically like orange-reds for the summer, deep blue-reds for fall and spring and Bordeaux for the winter. And of course [Essie] Ballet Slippers is a classic when I do regular polish instead of Shellac.”
Lashes: “I’ve never done lash extensions. (What’s the saying, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it?’) I actually have super long lashes — they are just blonde. So I just need mascara, and then they pop. DiorshowTM is one of my favorites. This past weekend, I met Milk Beauty Chairman Scott Sassa and he gave me Kush [High Volume Mascara], and I’m excited to try that. I have tried eyelash tinting before, but it’s not something I do routinely.”
Spray tans: “When I get spray tans, I feel great, but I honestly forget about getting them and don’t do them often, maybe twice a year — usually during the winter before going on a sunny vacation. I do love the Soleil Tan de Chanel® Bronzing Makeup Base, and I wear that all year. I’m also trying Alleven® Color Shield, which is a spray-on tint.”
Eyebrows: “I have visited Eliza’s Eyes a few times, and I like Angela Marinescu (who is at Exhale Upper East Side, or she can go to your home). For the past couple years, I have been going pretty regularly to see Aurora at Spruce and Bond on the Upper East Side. There, I get the “Blueprint,” which is tinting and tweezing for shape — no waxing, which can pull on the skin. (No need for me to do things that could cause unnecessary wrinkles! Ha!)
Facials: “I love getting facials with Nicole Paxson and I literally can be there for over two hours. They are pricey, but so worth it. It’s also a great way for me to learn about some of the latest techniques in skincare. She is a big advocate for Biologique Recherche® products. I have tried all kinds of treatments with Nicole (the list is long), but it all depends on the time of year and how much sun exposure I have had recently (or have upcoming). Dermaplaning, LED lights, microdermabrasion, IPL, you name it. If she offers it, I want to try it! When I was a teenager, my skin was prone to breakouts, so as a young teen, I got into the habit of getting regular facials. I’ve been told I should get them monthly, but I confess I probably get them every two months.
I also love getting facials with the aestheticians at plastic surgeon Dr. Adam Kolker’s office (that’s actually where I first discovered Nicole Paxson). Nina is the aesthetician there now, and I loved the micropuncture treatment she recently did for me.
Since I started working for Allergan, I’ve started using SkinMedica® TNS Essential Serum® and HA5® Rejuvenating Hydrator. I’m also a fan of Tula® Probiotic Advanced Neck Cream — I love the texture and subtle smell. It’s good for me to have handy in my beauty cabinet a specific reminder to use product on my neck, which is an area that I sometimes neglect, but know that I shouldn’t.”
Lasers: “For laser treatments like IPL and Yag, I love seeing Denise at Dr. Gerald Imber’s office. She is experienced and her treatments deliver results! I have gotten Clear + Brilliant with Dr. Gervaise Gerstner — I've found it to be excellent for improving skin texture in the décolletage area."
Glycolic Peels: “Hands down, the best glycolic peels I have ever had (and I have tried a few) are at the Upper East Side offices of my dermatologist, Dr. Neal Schultz. I get them regularly, and they truly brighten my skin and improve my skin texture within five minutes (and with zero pain!).
Fat Freezing Treatments: “I first tried CoolSculpting® when it first came out and found it to be uncomfortable (bordering on quite painful). Not anymore. I just tried it again, and it’s so much more comfortable now. I can’t help but multi-task, it’s in my DNA. I recently went to CoolSculpting’s Pleasanton office and was so impressed by the technology. I only just tried it again, so I’m looking forward to the results in a few months.”
Cosmetic Injectables: “I’ve tried wrinkle reducers and I am interested in learning about other treatments, which is why I am so excited about Spotlyte!”
[Editor’s note: Injectable wrinkle reducers are temporary medical treatments that help smooth the appearance of moderate to severe lines in certain areas of the face. Like any treatment, there are possible risks and side effects, so talk to a doctor to see if this is right for you. Want to chat about wrinkle reducers? Our trained aesthetic specialists are here to help!]
Teeth: “Dr. Frank Andolino is my orthodontist, and he is awesome. I did Invisalign® with him several years ago. He told me it would take eleven months, but since I only wore it at night — instead of the recommended 22 hours a day like Dr. Andolino told me I should— it took double the time. But I absolutely love the results! I smile a lot, so I need to feel good about my teeth.”
Nutritionist: “I love Dr. Jairo Rodriguez! I saw results after following low calorie diet, protein shakes, delicious cereals and vitamin regimen.”
Personal trainer: “For at-home training, I use TroupefitTM for pilates, general training, or yoga.”
Favorite boutique fitness classes: “I am obsessed with Shock Therapy®, which is a new boutique fitness studio that uses Electric Muscle Stimulation (EMS)-based classes. It’s a popular technique in Europe, but it’s only just coming to the United States. Every class only has six people in it.
I also love AKT®, and I have been doing barre classes at Physique 57® and Exhale® for years. And I have a Peloton® at home, but I admit that sometimes, I use it more as a place to hang my clothes when I am getting ready to pack for a trip (shame on me!). This week, though, I tuned into Cody Rigsby’s class.”
Vitamin B12 shots: “Since childhood, I’ve been prone to fainting. Last summer, I fainted and felt very “low energy” afterwards, so my GP, Dr. Symra Cohn, recommended a B12 shot. Within a few hours of trying the shot, I felt great — energized and stronger. It’s something I would love to do regularly but I just don’t have the time. I should go back.”
[Editor’s Note: Vitamin B12 shots are medical treatments, so be sure to consult your doctor.]
Personal shopper/stylist: “I have worked with Beckie + Martina for years. They’re excellent at coordinating outfits for moments that matter to me, whether it’s social events like a gala, or professional events, like giving speeches, attending conferences, or media opportunities.
I’m really passionate about this category. In 2016, I actually founded a closet-organizing and personal styling startup called Fitz which was sold to Tradesy® in 2018. I still use them — I live in New York and my closets are not as big as I wish they were. I like things to be organized. One thing I learned through Fitz is how important it is to see everything in your closet — if you don’t see it, you forget to wear it — so I started taking shoes out of their boxes, bags out of dust bags. It’s been very helpful.”
Personal chef: “I was so sad when the startup KitchenSurfing closed down. I used to use it all the time! I am open to any good suggestions.”
Infrared sauna: “Before my 40th birthday, I got a five-class package at DTX. I did conference calls during that, too! I love beauty treatments where I can multi-task and no one will get mad at me and tell me I need to relax during the session.”
Professional organizer: “Tidy TovaTM is the best! She just revamped my kitchen and helped me purge. Everything is clean, everything has its place. We got rid of so many things — old vases, dried-out art supplies. She’s amazing — life changing! It’s therapeutic, actually. She kind of Marie Kondo’d the whole apartment. I’ve used her many times — she can really just help tidy anything that needs organizing. I like things to be tidy, but sometimes, I don’t know the best way to do it. I highly recommend her.”
For more beauty tips, follow Alexandra Wilkis Wilson on Instagram: @awilkiswilson.
CoolSculpting® Treatment Important Information
The CoolSculpting procedure is FDA-cleared for the treatment of visible fat bulges in the submental area, thigh, abdomen and flank, along with bra fat, back fat, underneath the buttocks (also known as banana roll), and upper arm. It is also FDA-cleared to affect the appearance of lax tissue with submental area treatments.
During the procedure you may experience sensations of pulling, tugging, mild pinching, intense cold, tingling, stinging, aching, and cramping at the treatment site. These sensations subside as the area becomes numb. Following the procedure, typical side effects include temporary redness, swelling, blanching, bruising, firmness, tingling, stinging, tenderness, cramping, aching, itching, or skin sensitivity, and sensation of fullness in the back of the throat after a submental area treatment. Rare side effects may also occur. The CoolSculpting procedure is not for everyone. You should not have the CoolSculpting procedure if you suffer from cryoglobulinemia, cold agglutinin disease, or paroxysmal cold hemoglobinuria. The CoolSculpting procedure is not a treatment for obesity. Ask your doctor if CoolSculpting is right for you. To learn more about what to expect, visit the CoolSculpting website.
Dr. Gervaise Gerstner is a paid Allergan consultant.
CoolSculpting® is an Allergan-owned non-invasive, fat reduction treatment.
SkinMedica® is an Allergan-owned skin care product line.
Alexandra W. Wilson is a shareholder in Glamsquad®, Shock Therapy®, Tula®, TroupefitTM and Tradesy® (the entity that purchased FitzTM).