Category Archives: personal care

Go clubbing in Harlem at the new Club by Dominik Mager

I took a break this evening from mommy duties and went clubbing in Harlem…and i liked it! Well, actually I took my scalp and massive head of grey hairs to the new Harlem hair salon called The Club by Dominik Mager located 2276 Frederick Douglass Blvd at 123rd. I was in desperate need of a single process, cut and a blow out. Mission accomplished! Zap the grey hair is gone!

Take a look at the results below! What do you think?

I was very pleased myself and it all came about quickly by going online to schedule an appointment! And my favorite part of the session! The hair wash! The seats are to die for! I took a power nap there! That’s my kind of clubbing these days!

If you’re interested in going clubbing (hee, hee) like I did this evening, check out The Club in Harlem!  

The Club by Dominik Mager
2276 Frederick Douglass Blvd

Want a Harlem t-shirt? Keep Harlem, Harlem tees now available

On this Harlem blog, I use tees to feature the subject matter, ie Harlem. Sometimes readers ask, where can I buy a unique tee with the name Harlem on it? Here’s an option. One of my favorite Harlem sites, Harlem NYC, is now offering Harlem tees to purchase. The t-shirt says “Keep Harlem, Harlem.” Pretty cool…huh? If you’re interested in purchasing this Harlem tee, go here! And to check out Harlem NYC like I do, click here.


Balanced Pilates in Harlem is open for business

Balanced Pilates, the new place in Harlem we told you about this past week, is open for business. The owner saw our blog post and reached out soon after saying “I am writing to let you know that we are now open! Our website is”

So if you’re interested in Pilates in Harlem, check out Balanced Pilates located at 305 West 123rd Street between FDB and St. Nicholas!


Harlem, wondering what are most common Health Care Reform Q and A’s? Learn more here

Harlem, the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, has been in the news for quite some time. Whatever your position is about this subject matter, learning more about it empowers us all. EmblemHealth provided an article to HarlemGal Inc that covers some of the most common questions and answers about Obamacare. Given the significance around the subject matter, this blog is sharing the article in its entirety. Hope you find it helpful -HG.

Answers to the Most Common Health Care Reform Questions

By Sana Hashmi, Director of Health Care Reform and Product Design at EmblemHealth.

Through the open enrollment period, more than 1 million New Yorker’s are expected to sign up for health insurance online through NY State of Health, part of the national health care reform law known as the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare. But what do you need to do and how do you do it?

Experts from EmblemHealth have been answering a lot of questions. To help New Yorker’s choose an insurance plan, below are some of the most common questions and the answers.

Q. What is the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare?
In 2010, President Obama signed this law to make quality, affordable health care available to more Americans and offer financial assistance to those who need it most. It also requires most Americans to have health insurance starting in 2014 or pay a penalty.

Q. What happened October 1?
NY State of Health, the state’s health insurance marketplace, opened. You can learn all about it at Anyone who enrolls in a health plan between October 1 and December 15 will be eligible for health insurance starting January 1, 2014. The deadline for enrolling on the health plan marketplace in the first enrollment period is March 31, 2014.

Q. Do I need to sign up for health insurance?
Unless you already have health insurance, the answer may be yes. The federal law says that most people in the US (legal residents and “lawfully present” immigrants) must have health insurance starting in 2014 or pay a penalty. If you don’t have health insurance right now, the law is designed to help you get an affordable plan.

Q. How can I afford health insurance?
People who qualify will be eligible for tax credits and subsidies to help lower the cost of coverage. Household income and family size are used to decide who gets help with costs and how much help they can get. You may be eligible for this help if your income is between 100% and 400% of the Federal Poverty Level. The only way to know the exact dollar amount is to apply through the marketplace.

Q. Am I eligible for subsidies or tax credits?
Many people will be. Under the new law, you may get financial assistance when you apply for a plan on NY State of Health. You may get tax credits to lower monthly payments, subsidies to lower out-of-pocket costs when you go to the doctor, Medicaid (no-cost health coverage) or Child Health Plus (a low-cost health plan for young people up to age 19).

Q. I already have insurance but my spouse needs it. Will my salary affect her ability to receive a subsidy or a tax credit?
Yes. Eligibility for tax credits and subsidies is based on total household income.

Q. How do I sign up and what information do I need?
You can sign up for a health care plan online, in person, over the phone or by mail. You will need social security numbers for all family members you plan on enrolling, or document numbers for legal immigrants. Also, have employer information and income information at hand, and policy numbers for any health plans covering members of the household.

Q. Can I enroll my entire family?
Yes. The law requires most citizens and legal residents to have health insurance.

131021-obama-healthcare-hmed-240p.380;380;7;70;0Q. I have health insurance through my company. Will I need to sign up on NY State of Health?
If you have health insurance through your employer, you may not need to sign up. To be sure, ask your employer’s health benefits administrator (the person who assists with health benefits) or someone in the human resources department.

Q. I heard the new employer mandate was delayed. How does this affect me?
The employer mandate was delayed until January 2015. Once it takes effect, employers with 50 or more full-time workers must provide adequate, affordable health care coverage to their full-time employees or pay a penalty. (Adequate, affordable coverage means the plan covers 60% of total health care expenses and costs employees no more than 9.5% of their household income.)

If you have health insurance through your employer, you may not need to sign up. If you don’t have health insurance through your job, you can visit NY State of Health to look at your options. For more information, ask your employer’s health benefits administrator (the person who assists with health benefits) or someone in the human resources department.

Q. Can I still buy insurance directly from a health insurance company?
Yes, you can buy health insurance directly from a health insurer. But financial assistance is available only through NY State of Health.

Q. What are “metal” plans?
All health insurers participating on NY State of Health will offer four types of metal plans — Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum plans. They cover the same benefits but, between health insurers, differ in monthly costs and in the choice of doctors, hospitals and other health care providers. “Catastrophic” plans will be available for people under age 30 and others who qualify. This plan covers essential health benefits, routine preventive-care services and three annual visits to a primary care doctor at no out-of-pocket cost to you. It has similar benefits as the metal plans, but different costs.

Q. What will be covered?
All health insurance plans will be required to provide coverage for these essential benefits:
1. Routine doctor visits
2. Visits to the emergency room
3. Hospital care
4. Maternity and newborn care
5. Mental health and substance-abuse treatment
6. Prescription drugs
7. Habilitative and rehabilitative services
8. Laboratory tests
9. Preventive and wellness services and chronic-disease management
10. Pediatric services, including vision care
Certain preventive care services, like cholesterol tests, will be covered at 100% so that it’s easier to stay healthy.

Q. I don’t want health insurance. Will I be penalized?
If you don’t have health insurance in 2014, you may have to pay a penalty when you file your taxes. For 2014, the penalty is $95 per adult and $47.50 per child or 1% of taxable household income — whichever is higher. For example, if you are a single adult with $50,000 of taxable income, the penalty would be $500.

The penalty will go up each year until 2016, when it will be $695 per adult and $347.50 per child or 2.5% of taxable household income — whichever is higher. After 2016, the penalty will continue to go up with the cost of living.

It’s important to think about more than just cost when considering your options. Health insurance is essential to protecting both your physical and financial health, in case something happens.

Q. Where do we go for more information?
The NY State of Health website,, is a good place to start. Customer service information is available at 1-855-355-5777. EmblemHealth also has extensive information at

KafkaCare Medical Spa opens at 114th Street and Frederick Douglass Blvd in Harlem

Back in January 2013, HarlemGal Inc told you about a new skin care clinic coming to Harlem at 114th Street and Frederick Douglass. We now know more about this business, such as the name, whose behind it and when it opened. KafkaCare Medical Spa opened about two weeks ago at 281 West 114 Street in Harlem. KafkaCare is located right next to the new Douglas Elliman office on the corner of 114th Street and FDB. KafkaCare is offering a variety of services, such as Botox, Juvederm fillers, laser treatments, and nutrition/weight loss.

A Harlem resident opened KafkaCare. Her name is Nicole Kafka, MD. She is a board certified surgeon, with a Bachelor’s degree from Harvard and an MD from Cornell University. She completed her surgical residency at NY Hospital (now NY Presbyterian – Weill Cornell).

To learn more about KafkaCare in Harlem, view their website at Phone is 212-688-2100.

Blink Fitness signage up in Harlem, target opening day June 2013

A friend, reader of HarlemGal Inc., and filmmaker/producer of Changing Face of Harlem, Shawn Batey, sent in a photo over the weekend of signage on the upcoming Blink Fitness, which will be located on 125th Street and Frederick Douglass Blvd. According to Blink Fitness’ website, the Equinox-owned business is aiming to open this coming June. Interested consumers can join the gym at their Harlem location for $1. For more information, go to

And a big thanks to Ms. Batey for sending in the photo! Muchas Gracias!


It’s Spa Week at Polished FingerTips in Harlem April 15-21

We just received Harlem’s Polished FingerTips electronic newsletter and noticed that Spa Week is coming up starting April 15 until April 22. Enjoy a variety of spa treatments for $50 for this one special week. To learn more about Spa Week at Polish FingerTips, go to their website or give them a shout. Contact details are listed below.

Polished FingerTips Nail Spa
2198 Frederick Douglass Blvd
New York, NY 10026
(212) 222-4466

Tribeca Pediatrics signs lease in Harlem, former 99 cent store to become children’s medical facility

The Commercial Observer reported last week that Tribeca Pediatrics is opening up a branch in Harlem. Tribeca Pediatrics signed a 10-year, 2,500-square-foot lease at 2111 Frederick Douglass Boulevard in Harlem, which most of us know as the 99 cent store.

The reason for the upscale facility coming to Harlem? According to Douglas Elliman’s retail group team Faith Hope Consolo, who represented both the landlord, Tahl-Propp Equities, and the tenant in the transaction told National Real Estate Investor that “just as Starbucks is a marker for an emerging neighborhood, a sophisticated pediatric clinic is a sign it has arrived. This now coveted corner is transitioning from a 99 cents store to a cutting-edge medical facility for children.”

To learn more about Tribeca Pediatrics, visit their website.


Made in Harlem: Uptown Soap Co. featured in February issue of Vogue

I love it when I see Harlem-based companies in the news, specifically in glamorous places, such as in lifestyle magazines. This month Uptown Soap Co. received another nod from Vogue in their beauty section called Made in NY, aka Made in Harlem! Of course, it doesn’t hurt to get notice by Oprah too, which the Harlem based company has on their milestone belt as well.

Uptown Soap Co.’s Silvia Dontcheva tells HarlemGal Inc that “they make all of their products by hand in a small brownstone on 123rd Street in Harlem. The company started 4 years ago and although it began with solely soaps, they now specialize in bubble baths, soy candles, perfumes, body scrubs and more.”

No need to go downtown for these Made in Harlem products. Dontcheva says their products can be purchased in Harlem at the wonderful Harlem Flo on Frederick Douglass Blvd and 122nd Street. Owners Stefan and Louis have reordered from Uptown Soap since they started. Very cool. I know where I’m buying me some pretty soap! See ya at Harlem Flo!

Dr. Mehmet Oz to visit Harlem Children’s Zone for ‘Brush Up Smile Zone’

According to a media advisory, the TV doctors are coming to Harlem. Actually the real ones, not the TV actors who play doctors on TV. This coming Thursday, Jan 24, Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dr. Jonathan B. Levine, who is a national oral health expert and regular contributor on “The Dr. Oz Show,” will join more than 300 kids (ages K-12) at the Harlem Children’s Zone to host a special themed event, “Brush Up Smile Zone!” The event will include a variety of fun and educational activities that spread the message about the importance of good oral health-as it relates to overall health.

jj1Oral-B is the corporate sponsor. Through a charitable partnership, Oral-B and Dr. Levine’s GLO Good Foundation are educating Americans on the importance of having good oral health. They will be visiting select areas throughout the country. The first stop is starting right here in Harlem on January 24th.

This event is happening from 4:30 to 6 pm at the Countee Cullen Community Center, PS 194, which is located at 244 West 144th Street between Frederick Douglass Blvd and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd.