Few things are better than having the day of your birthday off work and indulging in a mani/pedi, which is exactly what I found myself doing at The Ten Spot last Friday. (Ah beauty blogging, what a rough life.) This Toronto-based, new-to-Vancouver beauty bar franchise specializes in manis, pedis, waxings, and facial treatments. If the 45-minute pedicure and 30-minute manicure I tried are any indication, you'll definitely want to book your next mani/pedi at The Ten Spot. Read on for all the reasons why!
1. The convenient location. The Ten Spot is minutes from the Canada Line Yaletown station and accessible from almost anywhere in the downtown area, which makes getting your beauty fix easy-peasy.
2. The friendly and capable staff. My aesthetician Alexis and I chatted as my pedi progressed through the various stages: a foot soak in a warm bath, nail buffing and shaping, cuticle trimming, buffing away of callouses and dead skin, a scrub, massage, lotion, polish application. Each step was performed with the utmost attention to detail and my comfort. Same with my manicure.
The results were perfect: clean edges, flawless cuticle lines, good level and gloss on the nail polish. It's been a week now and my manicure is just beginning to chip while my pedicure remains immaculate.
3. The attention to hygiene. At The Ten Spot, everything they use in a mani/pedi is either sanitized and prepared especially for your treatment or disposable. Alexis assembled separate stainless steel trays of tools, cotton, and little jars of product for each treatment. The lotion and scrub weren't from some dubious communal jar; they were pre-dispensed and ready in the sort of stainless steel cups restaurants use to bring you a side of ketchup. The nail file—a short, almond-shaped emery board that sticks to the end of a stainless steel utensil—was peeled off and tossed after use. Alexis wove fresh pieces of rolled-up paper towel between my toes instead of using toe spreaders. Even the towels lining the surfaces during my mani were paper and disposable.
This is probably what I appreciated most about The Ten Spot. There were no worries about the cleanliness of the tools and whether they'd been used on other clients, no concerns about picking up fungal infections or goodness knows what from unsanitary practices. I had complete peace of mind as I enjoyed my pampering.
4. The bright white, airy, no-nonsense space. As owner Patricia Senft and The Ten Spot employees explained proudly, everything is clean and out in the open and they have nothing to hide. The sanitizing and tray station is in plain view so you can see exactly what's being prepped for your treatment.
5. The entertainment. I'm not really a magazine gal during manis and pedis, but I did enjoy the fun tunes (Lana Del Rey) and close-captioned movies (The Hunger Games) playing during my treatment.
6. Owner Patricia Senft's passion for what she does. Patricia instinctively understands the importance of beauty rituals to a woman's sense of well-being, partly because of her Brazilian upbringing and partly because she was once a devoted client of The Ten Spot herself while living in Toronto. When she and her husband relocated to Vancouver for his new job, Patricia quit her 9-to-5 corporate gig in the process and considered the next step in her career. "I wish I had a job as fun as going to The Ten Spot," she said wistfully to her husband one day. Fast forward a year and her dream has come true—literally!
I had a chance to speak with Patricia at length during The Ten Spot's media preview and we've exchanged a couple emails since; her enthusiasm is inspiring and contagious, for her staff and The Ten Spot clients alike.
7. Quickie treatments if you're in a rush. The Quickie Manicure ($22) and Quickie Pedicure ($38) include all the steps of the full mani/pedi treatment except for the scrub and massage.
8. The Ten Spot's house brand. If you fell in love with the 5-free Get Nailed lacquer or yummy-scented body scrub and lotion used during your treatment, you can purchase your very own to take home with you.
9. I learned a new mani lifehack from Alexis. After my nails had just set, Alexis painted a thin layer of cuticle oil on top. The oil acts like a cushion so that accidental bumps and nicks glance off the top instead of creating dents and smudges. Bonus: This trick works with any sort of oil (even olive oil!).
10. They'll take great care of you, even when you're on your way. You can hang out as long as you like while your nails dry, but with my energy fading due to hunger and an oncoming cold, I was ready to go shortly after my treatment ended. Kristin, the guest coordinator, helped me put on my coat and pull the hems of my leggings from my knees back down to my ankles. They even offered to wrap my toes if I wanted to wear my ankle boots out the door lest I smush my fresh pedi. With such exceptional service and attention to hygiene, I'm sure I'll be back at The Ten Spot soon.
Ready to #getnailed? Visit The Ten Spot's website for more info on treatments or to book an appointment online. Special thanks to The Ten Spot Yaletown and Erin of Sparkle Media for allowing me to try the treatments for review consideration.