Category: Spa Reviews

TNCB Sneak Peek

We love our manicures around here and it doesn’t hurt when they come with a little bubbly, so we were really excited to hear about a new pop up shop called TNCB, or The Nail And Champagne Bar. It’s the first pop up in Toronto to combine both nails and champagne. Open in downtown Toronto (39 Stewart St.) from May 30 to June 5, TNCB will have everything you want in a nail bar (natural nails only), plus an actual bar for champagne! We had a quick chat with owner Eliza Sipin about what to expect.
TNCB- with boarder final logo ICON-SM4-2
How did the idea for the nail and champagne bar come about?

It was a natural progression of my background and what I’m truly passionate about. I started getting my nails done in high school and it has been in my bi-weekly routine without fail. In 2013, I created 2 colours and launched Vain Polish – a small line of nail lacquers under The Vanity Events. My strict love affair with champagne took flight 4 years ago when I visited region. With over a decade background as a Bartender, I’ve always had a deep interest in sparkling wines.

Why a pop up bar and not a traditional, stay in one spot retail location?

The Pop Up scene in Toronto is really growing and it’s such a unique and wonderful way to launch a brand and have people experience your offerings.

How has the response been?

It’s been great! People are excited, interested and curious all at the same time.

You’re only going to be open for a week, are there plans for more pop-ups in the future?

Yes, absolutely! The brand will introduce one-of-a-kind experiences with all things nails and champagne.

Do you have a favourite nail and champagne combo from the list of offerings?

I would definitely recommend the  “Manicure with Champagne” combo. It comes with a glass of Tarlant Brut Reserve, which is rich and creamy but still very light and refreshing. I would definitely add some Nina’s Paris truffles. The Marie Antoinette line has ingredients from The King’s Garden in Versailles and will be exclusive at the Pop Up!

Do you have recommendations for people who can’t decide what to get?

I recommend pre-booking a manicure to be sure you have the time you want. Once you arrive, please speak to myself for any recommendations on our champagne offerings or nail services. We also have our nail designers who are all certified nail technicians to guide you. And just in case, I’m also certified so you’re in the right hands!
For more information on services or to book an appointment, head to If you’re in Toronto or not to far away, you definitely need to check out TNCB, I know I’ll be there!

Sweetease Waxing Kits

I am the worst at keeping regular salon appointments. It doesn’t matter if it’s a hair or waxing appointment. I am always a few weeks later than I should be. I save up my Sweetease Waxing Kits in case of emergency.  Sweetease has developed these little easy to use waxing kits for your legs, face and bikini area at home.

Using a Sweetease Waxing Kit is as easy as it sounds. The first step is to warm a strip between your hands. Don’t skimp on the warming time. You want to be sure that it’s very warm so the wax sticks. I found it helpful to sit on the strips that I wasn’t using yet to start warming them up early.
Sweetease Leg Waxing Kit
Next peel apart the wax strips slowly. If they aren’t warm enough, you won’t be able to get them apart. You will smell the delicious vanilla scent when you peel them apart.

Now press on the strips in the direction of the hair growth.

Make sure that they are good and stuck!  And rip them off quickly in the opposite direction quickly, just like they do in the spa. The success of how well they work depends on how long your hair growth is, how well you stuck it down, how well you ripped it off and your own hair texture.

Overall, it did a great job at getting the hair off. My only complaint is that to do my whole leg, it took quite a long time. I kept trying to find shortcuts to make it go quicker. Like I mentioned, I tried sitting on the strips to warm them. Because my hair is thin, I was also able to use some of the strips twice on the lighter areas.

I don’t think that I would ever use the Sweetease strips for my entire leg again, but they are perfect for touch ups when need be. You can use them on date night or vacation when you don’t have time for a full shave.

Rinse Beauty Bar Review

Rinse Beauty Bar Mani Station
The Mani Station

I’m all about going for a mani-pedi so when we were offered the chance to go to Toronto’s Rinse Beauty Bar in exchange for a review, I was on it. Rinse isn’t exactly next door to my house but it’s pretty accessible and totally worth it. The first thing I noticed when I walked in was that it doesn’t smell like a typical nail place. That chemical scent that gives most of us headaches was missing. That’s because Rinse Beauty Bar tries to make everything as non-toxic as possible.

Rinse Beauty Bar Pedi Station
The Pedi Station

Owners (and sisters) June and Andrea really do their research on what non-toxic products work the best and stop using things that don’t. They’re also extremely welcoming. Everything about Rinse tries to make you as comfortable as possible and the products they use are fantastic. They use a lot of SpaRitual products and both my polish choices were Zoya, a brand that I love but never find in a nail place. The body cream that was used on me was from June and Andrea’s sister-in-law’s company Koya Natural Skincare and smelled so good, I immediately bought one.

I had a mani and pedi but they also offer waxing and hair services. If you want gel polish, they use Bio Seaweed Gel but don’t expect to find anything acrylic here because it doesn’t exist. Which I appreciate. I usually leave nail places with a headache from the smell and this was the first time I haven’t. The manicure was great but the pedicure was really the best part. They don’t use those blades on your feet, but something that looks like a grater and you barely feel that works so much better.

Rinse Beauty Bar Mani
The mani

It might not be the closest beauty bar for me to get to but the experience alone is worth a repeat trip. You can find more information on Rinse Beauty Bar on their website.

Fuzz Wax Bar Launches The Vajacial


Things are about to get very personal because I’m about to tell you about Fuzz Wax Bar’s new service, the Vajacial.

The Vajacial is exactly what it sounds like: a facial for your vagina. It’s for women who suffer from ingrown hairs and acne in an area that can sometimes be a little uncomfortable to talk about. There aren’t really any products to help you pamper that area. If you are a waxing regular than you know that sometimes that is the one area that needs pampering the most. You don’t want to be too embarrassed to spend the night with your loved one ever.

The Fuzz Wax Bar Vajacial is there to stop all embarrassment. You get a facial, manicure, massage and pedicure, so why not pamper your vagina a little as well.
You should schedule your vajacial about 10 days after your shaving or waxing. You want the hair to have started to grow back in when you visit. This way your technician can see what is going on down there.

The name is funny and the idea of a facial for your vagina might be weird, but the process itself isn’t either of those things. If you’ve ever had a waxing, you’ll be totally comfortable, and maybe even a little relaxed. You will have to strip down, but they cover your eyes to help you relax while they exfoliate your sensitive area. They only work on the outside area, so you aren’t getting overly personal with your vajacial technician.

The extractions can be a little painful, but no more than the wax you got 10 days earlier. This is how they get your ingrown hairs out safely, so you don’t end up with scars or infections.

Next they use a special oxygen jet to help moisturize your skin. It’s totally painless and is definitely the time when you can close your eyes and relax.

Then that is! It’s over. From start to finish, the entire process only takes about 20 to 25 minutes. You will leave feeling fresh and soft. Some people might notice some redness or irritation a few days later, but it should be minimal.

With so many wax bars popping up, I wouldn’t be surprised if everyone starts offering vajacials soon. The process is so simple and easy. Everyone who is a waxing regular should get one at least once to get the invaluable advice on how they can keep their skin looking great.

KS Beauty Lounge

We love finding new spas, salons and nail places but KS Beauty Lounge is something we haven’t tried before. They specialize in eyebrows, eyelashes and makeup. We had the option of choosing what we wanted to try from their services list. Stephanie chose eyebrows (and ended up adding on makeup) and Alyssa chose eyelashes.

I got my brows done first. I am quite proud and happy of my natural brows, so they only usually need minor maintenance to keep them looking clean. Maryam from KS Beauty Lounge totally understood and made me feel comfortable that she wouldn’t go in heavy handed. I lay down and let her do her work. This was probably one of the most gentle brow jobs that I have ever had done. She did a little waxing and tweezing to clean up my eye brows. It barely hurt at all. She told me I could say “ow” but compared to other waxings this was nothing.

After, she sent me off to Joey to get my makeup done. You need to understand that a week before this appointment, I was hit in the face by a baseball at my baseball game. So I was suffering from a serious black eye. The swelling was down and it didn’t hurt, it was just embarrassing. I asked him to work his magic! Joey explained to me while doing up my face with a light airbrush foundation, that KS Beauty Lounge developed all of their own makeup. It’s used by pros in the business, but anyone can go in and get their makeup done for an event. Unlike most other professional makeup, nothing felt heavy or thick. My skin felt like I could breathe. He was great at asking me what I wanted and was comfortable with wearing. He wanted to know what I usually wore and what trends I was into, so he could give me a look that I loved. When he was finished I was shocked and amazed. He had almost completely covered up and hidden my black eye. He turned the shades of purple on my eyelid into the base for a light purple smoky eye. And that pink lip was fab! But it was nothing compared to what Alyssa was getting done in the other room.

I love all things eyelashes so I went in for ‘something eyelashes.’ Maryam decided to give me the Truly Natural Lash Extension set. My own lashes are pretty long so I’d never really thought about extensions before but they’re almost completely white and I didn’t realize that extensions alone could make them darker. Maryam had me lie on the table after I took all my makeup off and told me it would take about an hour. She placed hydrating eye pads on my eyes to protect my lower lashes but also to keep my eyes closed.

KS Beauty Lounge eyelashes done
No mascara!

Seriously, the whole process was a lot easier than I ever expected, while she was attaching the extensions to my own eyelashes I almost fell asleep and to be honest if I hadn’t heard Stephanie talking and taking pictures of what was happening to me I could’ve slept through the whole thing. The end result was amazing. My eyelashes were longer than I can even accomplish with false lashes and were so dark it looked like I was wearing mascara. And that was the natural set. I was given a clean mascara wand and told to comb my lashes every morning because they can tangle and they really do but combing them out fixed everything.

Most lash extensions last about a month before they need a refill and in the first week it was a great experience. I woke up every morning looking like I was wearing mascara and found I needed a lot less makeup to look ‘done’ but then I ran into the snag. I have crazy allergies in the summer and with the humidity it gets worse. Just past the first week with the extensions my eyes went crazy with my allergies and while I was sleeping my eyes were so itchy I basically rubbed my eyes to the point where most of my extensions, and some of my own lashes, came off completely. But while I didn’t have the greatest overall experience with my extensions I would definitely try them again in the winter when allergies don’t take over my life and I can keep them on longer. I would even go to the next step and get the Luxurious Lashes or Lash To The Max set.

Maryam and Joey worked their magic on both of us and everyone there was completely welcoming. We had a great experience and can’t wait to get back to KS Beauty Lounge to try something else.

You can find more information on KS Beauty Lounges, their services and locations here.

Blo Dry Bar & Beautiful Blowouts


Like me, there a good chance that you have seen blow dry bars popping up in your town and thought why? I didn’t know why I would need a place to go just for a blow dry that wasn’t my hair dresser. To solve this mystery, I got in touch with the leaders of this hair trend, Blo Dry Bar.

Blo was the first blow dry bar in North America and the leaders with over 40 locations in North America and Asia. Sharmina Rajabali a Franchise Partner with Blo says that “We have become experts at session styling because that’s all we do! Blo is the perfect place to go in between trips to the hairdresser to maintain salon-quality locks. It is a quick, affordable and convenient luxury. After all, perfect hair equals perfect confidence.”


So I booked my appointment and headed to the Blo Dry Bar at Bayview Village in Toronto. It was early and I had a barbecue later that afternoon, so I was excited to see what they could do for my uncontrolled waves. When I went in, I was rushed into a seat quickly and asked what I wanted. I was nervous and I felt a little uncomfortable. I just said straight please, because I wasn’t sure how this worked. I was secretly envying the loose waves and braid from one of the girls working, but I didn’t know if I could ask for that.

I had my hair washed and then when I went back to the chair, I picked up the menu of Blo’s styling options. Blo doesn’t just offer regular blow outs, but an option of styles from classic to waves to straight and even braids, ponytails and buns. I asked if I could change my mind and pick loose waves for something fun.


Cristina went to work. I have had many stylists blow dry my hair over the years, but none were as fast as the crew at Blo. It wasn’t just Cristina, but everyone there was a pro at blow drying. Even though they were all focused and working fast, it didn’t feel rushed or formal. Everyone working was having a good time laughing and singing along to the radio. While at times, I felt a little but left out of the joke. Overall it made me feel more relaxed that I could sit and enjoy their company.

All the while, my hair was turning from crazy to gorgeous. My waves were looking beautiful. As each wave dropped, the smile on my face got wider and wider. When it was all done, xxx stepped back to admire her work and ask me what I thought. I was thrilled! But then she asked me how I felt about her adding a braid to my hair to keep my bangs out of my face, exactly like the girl’s hair that I admired on the way in.


When it was done, it was perfect. I walked out of Blo Dry Bar feeling amazing. I honestly don’t know if my hair has ever looked better.

I can definitely see how this could be addicting. They say there are some clients who come in every other day to keep their blow out looking amazing. I don’t know if I am that addicted yet, but maybe one day.

Going Au Natural With Elixir Organic Spa


With all of the chemicals I put on my face every day through product testing, I figured it was high time to strip down and clean up my act. Elixir Organic Spa is Toronto first 100% synthetic-free spa. After speaking with owner Lynn Shulman via email, I was excited to have my first all-natural facial.

Elixir Spa just moved into their new bigger location on King St. West, when I went inside the busy bustle of rush hour traffic was silenced. I was met with light smells that I couldn’t quite put my finger on and a quiet calm atmosphere. The front part of Elixir Spa is a store selling all natural, organic beauty products and while there isn’t a lot of product, I was drawn to it and wanted to pick up the beautiful bottles and smell their aromas.


I was met by owner Lynn, who then introduced me to my facialist. I was surprised to learn that Lynn doesn’t have a beauty background, but marketing. She started the spa after she had a bad experience with chemical filled beauty products. She has since worked with estheticians to perfect the spa’s treatments, while working to market and collaborate with other natural brands.


I was hurried to the back to prepare for my basic organic facial. The treatment room wasn’t quite finished yet when I visited the spa and Lynn made that very clear to me. There was just a curtain blocking my facial room from the rest of the store. This meant when people came in to shop or the phone rang, I could hear them. I felt a bit exposed having to strip down with so little protection between me and the world. Lynn told me that within the next few days they would have walls up to create two treatment rooms. The room itself was tiny, i was surprised that I could fit in there with a bed and someone to do my treatment. I felt bad for the facialist who had to maneuver around me.

I know they will work the kinks out soon though because even though it was a bit awkward my facial was softer and gentler than ever. I don’t have sensitive skin, so I’m not necessarily the key target audience for Elixir Spa. They cater to people with sensitive skin, pregnant women, people with specific ailments such as cancer survivors who need to avoid chemicals or anyone looking to go chemical free. This facial really was so gentle on my skin. All of the products smelled amazing with fresh scents of relaxing lavender and refreshing lemon. I found out later that all of the products are food grade, meaning they are safe enough to eat.

Unlike other facials there wasn’t that tingling sensitive to the harsh extractions that can sometimes hurt. Everything felt gentle. Even my arm and neck massage was light and gentle.

When I left Elixir Organic Spa, my face wasn’t red and puffy like it was after some other facials. My skin felt nice, but it didn’t feel like a deep clean. People with sensitive skin who tend to avoid harsh facials would love this soft feeling.


I also had a chance to peruse the products for sale in the store and now have a laundry list of products that I can’t wait to try. I might give them a few weeks to get everything finished, but then I will be shopping.

Pure + Simple Spa Review


There are very few things on this earth more relaxing than a great facial. You can imagine my excitement as I headed to the Pure + Simple Spa in Toronto Yorkville neighbourhood for their signature Pure + Simple Facial after a particularly stressful week.

The location is nice, but lacking in a lot of personality, since I know that Pure + Simple is all about their natural products, I expected in interior of the store to say something about that. They did have tons of products though and really friendly staff willing to help me with anything I could possibly want.

I had other plans though and headed in for my facial. I was in for a treat. I don’t have sensitive skin, and I was glad when my face got pampered, but not babied. I really felt like every step of my facial was deep cleaning my skin.

The massage portion of the facial is always the best, but Pure + Simple has the best of the best. I didn’t want the neck and scalp massage to end!

When I left my skin felt so moisturized and dewy. Anyone who has dry skin should pop into Pure + Simple because my skin has never felt so moisturized in my entire life. I was a bit red and splotchy, but that is to be expected when you have had a deep cleaning. More than clean, I felt refreshed.

This is one spa ritual you need to try for yourself.

Coming Soon: Spa Week

Spa Week by WaySpa 6
If you love spa treatments but find them a little expensive, don’t worry, spa week is coming! If you’re in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton or Ottawa you might want to book off some time April 21-27. Spas in each city will be offering treatments for $50 each (and some of these are originally $300)!

To see what’s offered near you and to book appointments go to You should probably do it soon because at this price space will probably run out. I wonder how many treatments you’d be able to fit in a week?

Sugar Moon Salon: The Pain & Glory Of My First Sugaring


I had heard about Sugar Moon Salon and sugaring for a long time, but never taken the plunge. The whole idea of waxing was scary, but sugaring was supposed to be easier. The name sounds nicer at least.

Sugaring is when a trained technician uses a warm ball of sugary paste to remove your hair anywhere you want on your body. Sugar Moon Salon is the place to go in Toronto for sugaring. These ladies are supposed to be the best at getting the smoothest skin. So I made my appointment.

Walking in to Sugar Moon, I have to admit that I was nervous. I hate getting waxed more than the average woman, but not enough to stop doing it. I don’t know why I insist on putting myself through this pain. When I opened the door, I was met by the nicest spa receptionist that I have ever met. She made me feel instantly relaxed as I took of my shoes and waited surrounded by candy coloured walls.

My Sugarist, Cricel, greeted me with a smile and led me downstairs to the room of doom. I was nervous and my stomach in knots while I waited. Cricel was the best though! She explained the whole process to me and how sugaring works, the pain I could expect and the aftercare needed. She didn’t start until she was sure that I was ready.

I have to admit, if people tell you sugaring doesn’t hurt as bad as waxing, they are lying. Sugaring hurts! Badly! But Cricel made it all better. She was my lifesaver. She cracked jokes with me. She distracted me with jokes and stories and we talked about my dinner plans. She made this horribly painful experience actually enjoyable. Once we were done, and I was upstairs waiting to pay, she even gave me a Sugar Moon dark chocolate bar to make it all better.

My skin was a little sore for the rest of day, like she told me to expect, but I made another follow up appointment for a month later. I never do that. I always wait to make my appointment and then “forget”.

Despite all of the pain, Sugar Moon is my new go to spa and I actually can’t wait for my next appointment.