Rosemary Mac Cabe

Hemlines, heels and haute couture – your daily dose

The final nail in the coffin

This morning, buoyed by last night’s talk on Magazines are Dead: Long Live the Internet (starring Michael O’Doherty of VIP Publishing) at the Science Gallery, I went to get a manicure. Those two things are not necessarily related but, as …

Wed, Feb 24, 2010, 12:19

   

This morning, buoyed by last night’s talk on Magazines are Dead: Long Live the Internet (starring Michael O’Doherty of VIP Publishing) at the Science Gallery, I went to get a manicure. Those two things are not necessarily related but, as I’m going to do a post later on, detailing where I think magazines are going, given the internet can disseminate information, especially pertaining to fashion shows, about two months earlier than the best glossy, I figured I’d add in a little link.

I’ve recently moved to Stoneybatter and, in the interests of research, I decided to try out one of my local haunts, Top to Toe. I’ve always quite fancied the idea of having a local nail bar (because I’m shallow, yes, I know) – my sister lives in Brooklyn and there are any number of nail salons just one or two blocks from her, all offering the quickest manicures known to man, one of which does a five-dollar manicure. Just $5 for a file and polish. It’s an amazing thing.

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Image via Top to Toe

Top to Toe doesn’t do a $5 manicure, but it does do a €15 shape and paint, which ain’t too shabby (and, as my Mother would point out, is less than the price of two packets of cigarettes!). Today, I went for the paraffin manicure – a long and somewhat laborious treatment which involves a file and polish, yes, but also incorporates a cuticle tidy, a hand scrub, and the most moisturising thing known to man: hands are covered in hot wax (which is way less painful than you might imagine), shoved in plastic bags and then into these amazing handwarmer things which I was really tempted to nick,  if I thought they’d fit in my handbag.

The salon itself could be flashier. There could be more fluffy towels, and everything could be a little cleaner – but there’s something I quite like about the rough ‘n’ ready nature of it. Quite aside from the treatment itself (which was lovely; I felt very relaxed and glamorous, emerging onto the grey and rainy Dublin streets), the staff had a really nice rapport which is, I think, something you don’t see all that often any more. One of the girls went out to get coffees for everyone (including me, should I have desired one); she returned, promptly dropped her coffee, cleaned it up, and went out for another. Another girl asked for a day off – there was plenty of friendly chatter, and no rebuking of any sort, which I always loathe. It should go on behind closed doors or, better yet, it shouldn’t go on at all. Friendly and constructive criticism always wins out.

Would I recommend it? For sure. I paid €35 for my hour-long treatment, my nails look great (I went for a kind of minky beige, not unlike the new Chanel shade the kids in the know are all raving about and I have no hope of obtaining), and my hands are softer than they’ve been in months, due in no small part to the weather, and the unpacking of legions of boxes in the big move.

They do all sorts of treatments, and I’m sure I’ll be back pretty soon for a facial, to buy some Dermalogica goodies, or for the terrifying but much-loved-of-the-Irish spray tan. Tel: 01-8388537 to book an appointment. Top to Toe is open Tuesday-to Thursday from 10am to 8am, Friday from 10am to 6pm and Saturday from 10am to 5pm.

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