Must-try treatment: Spa Pedicure ($40)
only thing we love more than the girly environs of this Bucktown nail
spot (owner Larisa Stanojevic studied at the Harrington College of
Design) is its killer spa pedicure. While it’s fairly bare-bones, there’s a
consistency among the workers so you don’t have to worry about getting
the “bad tech.” It’s also as clean as a whistle and BYOB. What more
could a girl ask for?
ZaZaZoo, 1842 North Damen Avenue, (at Churchill Street); 773-687-9717.
Must-try treatment: Hot Mama ($60)
We can't get enough of this Chicago original — including all of its homemade retail products, such as the Midas Touch hand balm and Get Up and Glow body-cleansing scrub. Our pedi pick is the Hot Mama, a stimulating treatment utilizing Mojo's warming Shanti Spice scrub and Shanti Spice body lotion (both available for purchase). Made with an almost-good-enough-to-eat blend of apple puree, clove, cinnamon, and ginger to help increase circulation, it's perfect for this time of year. You'll also get a mineral-rich foot soak and leg massage before your nails are filed, trimmed, and painted to perfection.
Mojo Spa, 1468 North Milwaukee Avenue (between Evergreen Avenue and Honore Street); 773-235-6656.
Must-try treatment: Callus Therapy Pedicure ($50)
Truth: We'd want to hang here even if we weren't getting an amazing pedicure. But, since duty calls, this foot fixer focuses on getting rid of even the toughest calluses (the safe way), thanks to a little good, old-fashioned elbow grease. Chill with a glass of vino or a libation from the martini bar (a Twisted Ginger, perhaps?) while your feet are transformed back to a softer state.
Polish and Pour, 1244 North Wells Street (at Goethe); 312-274-9935.
Must-try treatment: Rose Pedicure ($65)
Everything is coming up roses at the Spa at theWit — but not for long. From now until the end of February, you can indulge in this Cleopatra-style pedi, complete with a rose petal-infused foot soak and sugar scrub to pamper your feet, as well as your senses.
Spa at theWit, 201 North State Street (at Lake); 312-239-9402.
Must-try treatment: ESPA Holistic Feet ($100)
Along with bells and whistles like a skin-smoothing exfoliation and hydrating paraffin dip, this luxe treatment also includes a relaxing-yet-therapeutic acupressure-point massage that is guaranteed to have you walking out the door with a spring in your step.
The Peninsula Spa Chicago, 108 East Superior Street (at North Michigan Avenue); 312-573-6860.
Must-try treatment: Signature Pedicure ($45)
Ever since Soho House opened its doors in the Fulton Market District, we’ve been big — make that HUGE — fans of its pedi. Instead of scary scrapers and aggressive files that have you squirming in your chair, the tech will use an ergonomically correct, high-tech electric file to exfoliate even the toughest of calluses without pain or discomfort. The only downfall to the long-lasting results? You won't have a reason to make a return visit as soon you'd like.
Cowshed Spa at Soho House Chicago, 113-125 North Green Street (at Randolph); 312-521-8000.
Fuga Centro Salon & Spa
Must-try treatment: Decadent Pedicure ($50)
full-service salon and spa touts itself as an "Italian escape," right
down to the espresso bar. And, just like a vacation on the Amalfi Coast,
this pedi pampers to the utmost degree. Sip your cappuccino while a
skilled tech exfoliates your feet with a luscious scrub and uses an enzyme
treatment to safely remove calluses in a matter of minutes.
Fuga Salon & Spa, 8 South Michigan Avenue, Suite 200 (between Madison and Monroe streets); 312-332-3842.
Must-try treatment: Ultimate Hydrating Pedicure ($83)
you don't feel like venturing out into the winter cold, Nail Taxi will
travel to your home, hotel, or even your office — talk about the
ultimate lunch break! Our pedi pick from this ridiculously convenient
biz is one that offers a serious moisture infusion. Along with a
thorough exfoliation and massage of the lower legs and feet, you’ll also
receive a deeply hydrating paraffin-wax treatment before your nails are
cleaned, shaped, and polished to perfection.
Nail Taxi, 888-242-9799.
Chuan Spa at the Langham Chicago
Must-try treatment: Kerstin Florian of the Orient Caviar and Pearl Pedicure ($135)
This service is more like a facial for your feet than a pedicure, and we’re totally okay with that. Before you even get into the nitty-gritty elements of the treatment, your feet will be wrapped with warm towels infused with a Chuan spa signature essential oil. Next, it’s time for a thorough exfoliation with an oil-and-herb rich scrub, followed by a relaxing and hydrating foot massage. The icing on the cake? The application of a Caviar Age-Defense serum, to firm and smooth the skin on your feet and legs like a boss.
Chuan Spa at the Langham Chicago, 330 North Wabash Avenue (at the Chicago River); 312-923-7650.
Must-try treatment: Signature Pedicure ($45)
Priced at under $50 and with the inclusion of a glass of bubbly, this might just be one of the best professional bargain pedicures in the Gold Coast. But, that’s not the real reason Gloss makes our list. It’s all about nail tech Zena Shlosberg. The industry veteran has painted the toes of Oprah Winfrey, as well as other socialites and celebrities in Chicago and overseas, who all love her thorough European technique. Added bonus: If you’re among the time-starved (who isn’t?), Shlosberg can administer your pedicure while you get other services, such as cut and color.
Gloss Salon, 875 North Rush Street (at Delaware Place); 847-721-7991.