CHECK IT OUT: Kiyosa Japanese Total Beauty at Bonifacio Global City
The country's first Japanese gel nail salon is a must-try for nail art enthusiasts.
Kiyosa Japanese Total Beauty
G/F F1 Hotel, 32nd Street corner Lane Q, Bonifacio Global City
Contact: 805-8888, 0939-915-8888
Open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Monday to Saturday) and 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. (Sunday)
(SPOT.ph) For us to grasp how serious the Japanese are about nail art, we have to liken it to something we're equally meticulous about-say, Christmas. We like to get started on the holidays as early as September, setting up lit trees in our living rooms and adding "Christmas In Our Hearts" to our driving playlists. For our friends up in East Asia, it's compulsory to head to nail school before one can be a licensed "nailist" or nail artist-and it isn't unusual to run a tuition tab worth P500,000 to secure the right education.
Kiyosa’s interiors are muted and minimalist
A fresh change of pace from the usual girly nail salon
So it's no surprise that in Kiyosa, where a staff comprised of four Japanese nailists and one Japanese eye designer takes care of your nail art and eyelash extension needs, you won't find any articles common to the Pinoy neighborhood "parlor." Instead of foot stools with peeling pleather and garish bottles of merthiolate, you're welcomed by a space appointed with minimalist Asian design, and there are roomy, cream-colored lounge chairs for you to relax in; a second floor for customers coming in for an eyelash tweak; and an unlimited, complimentary coffee and Japanese tea service.
Lounge chairs invite you to get comfy
There are Filipina nailists around-they underwent training eight hours a day for three months before they were given the go-signal to touch your hands-but, at most, they can only shape your tips, cut your cuticles, and paint on an unscented base polish.
Nail art design options
Using fine brushes, a Japanese nailist takes over to design your nails based on the pattern you chose. She asks for modifications you might want to have done on the design, and adjusts it to fit your nail length (longer nails give her more area to work with). Every time she adds a design element, you'll be asked to stick your hands under a UV lamp that dries the polish. Kiyosa uses only Japanese gel polish in their nail art services, because it's the only kind that allows them to play with gradation designs and fading touches; the Swarovski crystals they use for some designs only stick on Japanese gel polish, too.
We chose the Course 90 nail art treatment
The service is finished with a five-minute massage, and you can expect your embellished tips to last you three weeks (we've had 11 chip-free days so far). A nail art session can take up to two hours and starts at P2,200, depending on the design. Kiyosa also offers 40 minute-long manicures (P700) and pedicures (P800).