For years Raya Taver Spa has been the destination for dermis-obsessed dames on a budget. The 29-year-old European spa boasts of its “recession-proof prices,” and it's true. For $67 — a price that hasn't changed in five years — you get multiple topical applications and masks tailored to your skin type, a steam treatment, a facial massage and the benefits of a weird but effective electric wand thingamajiggy that tightens pores on contact. Sometimes, of course, beauty is pain. The centerpiece of any good facial is the extraction process: the part where they pop your zits, blackheads and whiteheads. Raya Taver aestheticians aren't always gentle, but they get the job done right. You might leave Raya with a red face, but rest assured that when you wake up the next morning, your mug will not only gleam, it will feel as soft and fresh as spring wildflowers. Waxing and spa services are available, too. 533 N. La Cienega Blvd., W. Hlywd.; (310) 652-2250,

—Lina Lecaro

LA Weekly