The intimate interior of this homey space, complete with colorfully stocked shelves, wall paintings, and cozy furniture, evokes a living room vibe. Upon entering, however, one will be pleasantly surprised to discover that Smith & Brit is a beauty boutique and spa whose owners, Claire Beevers and Kristyn Smith, aim to provide high-quality makeup and skincare in a space that feels relaxed, welcoming, and personal.

The catchy name, “Smith & Brit”, is a play on Kristyn’s last name and the fact that Claire and Ali are both British (they are both from the same “tiny, tiny” English town, but strangely enough, they met for the first time in New York). The trio met while working in an apothecary in SoHo and were drawn together by a “shared love and passion for beauty.” Between the three of them, they cover a range of specializations: Claire is an accomplished aesthetician in the UK best known for her makeup in the US; Krystin is an aesthetician and makeup artist specializing in medical facial treatments for healthy skin; and Ali is an experienced reflexologist and holistic therapist. Interestingly, the three are separated by age gaps of exactly a decade – Claire is ten years older than Kristyn and twenty years older than Ali – and their combined experience allows Smith & Brit to cater to a variety of age groups, styles, and skin types.

When the three ladies decided to open Smith & Brit in 2015 and foray into the competitive New York beauty industry, their goal was twofold: to provide innovative and effective products that are “natural as well as scientific” and to make beauty feel personalized and non-intimidating. While the former is evident from the hard-to-find, all-natural brands (like Haeckels, Margaret Dabbs and Cloud 9) that line their shelves, the latter is really what makes Smith & Brit distinctive. Instead of the sterile, shiny counter-tops and rows of chairs and mirrors that one usually finds in beauty salons, Claire, Ali, and Kristyn have opted for a small, comfortable and well-designed space with just one station, which ensures that each client gets the full attention he or she deserves. Their treatments are bespoke – tailored carefully for the needs of each client – and they use their exuberant passion and vast knowledge to help their customers “enjoy the entire process, from selection to application.”

First published on Manhattan Sideways (