The Ritualist: Our Favorite New Beauty App

Cleopatra, a modern mother of her time (and our dream interview), is famous for her beauty routine. But what often gets glossed over is the fact that she was also running a kingdom, fighting wars, learning seven languages, and raising four children. She needed some downtime! Anyone who argues otherwise can see themselves to the nearest palace exit. Cleopatra’s schedule sounds not too unlike our own today, what with balancing careers, motherhood, marriage and more, taking care of ourselves is key to keeping that balance. And while we’re not quite ready for a bath in crushed pearls and donkey milk, we are always on the lookout for easy ways to keep ourselves feeling our best.

Enter The Ritualist, a recently launched app that lets you book a bespoke facial, massage, manicure or pedicure and enjoy it from the convenience of your own home or hotel room. Started by Keltse Bilbao and Marta Cros, two friends who were, as Keltse explains, “frustrated with the hassle of booking appointments a week in advance and navigating the city to get some pampering” and so decided to bring the pampering home to them. Appointments can be made with just a few swipes on The Ritualist iOS app or by email and a licensed esthetician will arrive at your home or hotel with everything needed to perform the service.

We tried The Ritualist’s facial services with esthetician Camille and loved having a mini-getaway for a couple of hours. Our intern Kate tried the rehydration treatment, and Julia tried the go-glow treatment– both felt relaxed and recharged after Camille worked her magic. The Ritualist also offers specialized massage treatments for expectant or new mothers, which target certain areas of pain or fluid buildup–because if new motherhood isn’t the perfect reason for an in-home spa treatment then what is.

 So even though we’re busy running our own empires, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t make time to take care of ourselves–an at-home spa treatment is an easy way to keep that ever elusive work/life balance. And while The Ritualist is only serving New York City for now, we can think of a few moms in other cities (Ancient Egyptian Pharoah included) who would happily sign up for a bespoke facial in the comfort of their own home.

Written by Sara Dimmitt
Photo by Bruce Weber for W Magazine, 1997



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