SpaRitual Announces 2016 Slow Beauty® Awards

By Shel Pink

I’m excited to announce SpaRitual’s first annual Slow Beauty awards to recognize thought-leaders and influencers that fueled the movement in 2016. It’s our intention to honor the influencers, thought-leaders and brands reflecting the principles of the Slow Beauty philosophy: self-care, natural beauty, positive body image and overall wellness.

Each award recipient has been selected because they embody the Slow Beauty philosophy through one of the following ways: business practices, product ingredient choices, give-back initiatives, journalistic excellence and influential commitment to promoting natural, empowering beauty and wellness standards.


 Al Barillas, Alternative Beauty Services, Portfolio Manager

Al Barillas is an influential leader with over 20 years of experience and dedication in the health and beauty industry. His work with Alternative Beauty Services has helped advance the industry and support the education of beauty professionals internationally. His work promotes quality beauty resources across the globe, ultimately providing individuals access to the services they need for their own personal Slow Beauty practice. 

Alo Yoga

Alo Yoga has helped bring the mindful movement to the forefront, a core principle of Slow Beauty. With a goal to “spread good,” in 2016 its first flagship store launched with a café and space for rooftop yoga.

Amanda Chantal Bacon, Moon Juice Founder

Amanda is a pioneer in wellness and has helped introduce new natural solutions and superfoods to incorporate into a healthier and more beautiful life. In 2016, Moon Juice launched individual-sized versions of their iconic Dusts, in addition to The Moon Juice Cookbook: Cook .Cosmically for Body, Beauty, and Consciousness. Amanda offers many great tips and wellness products for anyone looking to create a Slow Beauty practice.

Ampersand, Consignment Store in Los Angeles

A Slow Beauty approach to fashion can include a preference for vintage clothing over the seasonal churn of trends. Ampersand offers a selection of women’s consignment clothes and accessories. In 2016 Variety Magazine featured Ampersand as one of the top high-end resale shops in L.A., stating that wearing used clothing and accessories is now a valued proposition.

Ashlee Piper, The Little Foxes blog

Through The Little Foxes blog, Ashlee promotes an ethical vegan, cruelty-free and eco-friendly lifestyle. Her animal-loving approach to life and beauty aligns with Slow Beauty, shining through from the inside out.

Call Your Girlfriend

The Call Your Girlfriend podcasts serves as a way for women to learn about and connect with other women – a core principle of Slow Beauty. In the mix of male-dominated podcast space, the show has become a go-to for women.

Carolyn Rafaelian, ALEX AND ANI founder

Completing her first full year as the most financially successful woman in the jewelry industry, she remains committed to creating meaningful, eco-conscious jewelry and accessories to positively empower and connect humanity. With self-expression and human connectivity as key principles of Slow Beauty, Carolyn is a great example of Slow Beauty in action.

Casey Evans, Hiatus Spa, Partner

With a core focus on self-care, powered by pure products and a high-touch philosophy, Hiatus is changing the spa industry. Spa is a key component of Slow Beauty, and Hiatus takes it to the next level by providing a sensory journey and customized aromatherapy with every service.

Cleo Wade, Poet

With the 2016 resurgence of poetry, Cleo Wade has helped bring it into the modern Western world. By sharing her uplifting works on Instagram, she’s able to reach a wide group of readers of all ages who can benefit from reading and getting inspired to write their own poetry. Writing and reading poetry is part of the self-expression facet of developing a personal Slow Beauty practice.

Eric Stephenson, imassage, Inc. Co-Founder, International Spa Association (ISPA) Board of Directors

As co-founder of imassage and a leader in the spa industry, Eric has set a standard of excellence and empowers and inspires many spa professionals. His techniques and education have helped massage therapists provide quality services while maintaining their own physical wellness. Eric’s mission and service philosophy is mission aligned with the philosophy of Slow Beauty.

Essence Gant, BuzzFeed Beauty Editor

Essence’s stories featured on BuzzFeed showcase her passion for empowering women and girls of all ages to embrace their individuality and be authentic, which is important in establishing positive beauty habits from an early age, which is aligned with the Slow Beauty philosophy of defining you own personal standards of beauty.


Headspace has pushed meditation into the mainstream with a simple app to provide guidance and a meditation program from beginners to experts. In 2016, they launched Headspace for Kids, which features engaging activities that teach them the basics of mindfulness. Meditation is a great inclusion in a Slow Beauty practice, and this app is an easy way to put it into practice.

Jill Willard, Author, Intuitive and Meditation Expert

In 2016, intuitive Jill Willard launched her own business IM Community, helping people everywhere live with presence. She also released her first book: Intuitive Being. Her book explains how to harness your own intuition, which is important for establishing a Slow Beauty practice.

Kassia Meador, (Kassia + Surf) Creator

Kassia founded Kassia + Surf to create environmentally conscious surf essentials for women, such as wetsuits and swim suits. She also embodies an alternative beauty standard aligned with the Slow Beauty philosophy and incorporates yoga and meditation into her surfing lifestyle. In December of 2016, Kassia launched up-cycled yoga mats.

Kimberly Snyder, Certified Nutritionist

As a nutritionist for the mind, body and soul, a yogini and author, Kimberley shares her wellness philosophy and advice through her books, including her most recent book Radical Beauty (2016), which teaches wellness principles to “transform yourself from the inside out,” these principles are also in-line with the Slow Beauty philosophy.

Koya Webb, Yogi, Get Loved Up Founder

On a mission to spread love and teach self-love practices that are in-line with Slow Beauty yogi Koya Webb has recently graced the covers of Oxygen and LA Yoga Magazines, showcasing her strong, yet feminine physique.

Leslie Johnson, The Spa at La Costa, Spa Director

As Spa Director, Leslie innovates with new offerings based on industry trends and guest needs, including a new services menu utilizing innovative techniques, organic ingredients, sustainable products and Slow Beauty treatments.

Patrick Huey, Corporate Director, Red Lane® Spa, Fitness and Tennis (Sandals Resorts International)

Due to his outstanding performance in his 20 years in the spa industry, Patrick Huey was elected to serve on the board of the International SPA Association (ISPA) in 2016. Under Patrick’s vision and leadership, the Red Lane Spas have become an award-winning wellness brand for Sandals Resorts International. Patrick embraces the Slow Beauty philosophy and incorporates its practices both professionally and personally.

Sakara Life Founders Whitney Tingle & Danielle DuBoise

Organic meal delivery service Sakara Life announced a nationwide expansion in 2016, meaning more people will have access to Whitney and Danielle’s healthy foods for busy lives. Slowing down and eating for wellness are core principles of Slow Beauty, and Whitney and Danielle believe food fuels all aspects of life: relationships, career, happiness and our ability to create. They also continue to be at the forefront of the brand and challenge traditional viewpoints toward diet and body image.

Shailene Woodley

Shailene Woodley has been an inspiration for natural beauty and healthy living for young women. In 2016, she leveraged her stardom to become a key source to drive publicity for the protests at Standing Rock, which resulted in a halt the Dakota Access Pipeline. Her efforts align with the Slow Beauty component of grounding in nature and connecting and uplifting your community.

Suze Yalof Schwartz, Unplug Meditation founder

Suze Yalof Schwartz founded Unplug Meditation, the world's first drop-in, secular meditation studio. Due to her ability to make over the meditation approach, in 2016, studios inspired by this method continue to pop up around the country. Meditation is a proven panacea for many ailments we face in the modern world, and can be used as a Slow Beauty ritual as a way to slow the aging process. 

The Now

The massage boutique creates a luxury service in an accessible and affordable manner in an inspiring environment. In 2016, they opened their third location – in Santa Monica. Spa visits promote self-care and are valuable to a Slow Beauty practice.

Thoughtfully Magazine

2016 marked the second year of publication for this inspirational thoughtful media publication. In line with Slow Beauty, it follows the mantra that what we put in our bodies is just as important as what we put on our bodies.

Ulla Johnson, Fashion Designer

As a leader in the Slow Fashion movement, Ulla designs and creates quality women’s clothing made for longevity. The philosophy connects to the Slow Beauty movement, as she bases each of her collections on a foundation of natural fibers, beautiful finishing and ease of fit and form.

Valerie Grandury, Odacité Skincare Founder

As the founder of Odacité Skincare, Valerie Grandury embodies Slow Beauty through her choice to only include organic ingredients in Odacité’s products. Her empowering story as a breast cancer survivor who removed toxins from her life as part of her healing, is a guideline for others facing the same challenges.