Nichola Sanders searches out the most tantalising talons
Time Out Bahrain staff
Bahrain has some of the best nail bars in the region and, as any die-hard nail fan will know, there is a whole lot more to manicures than meets the eye. We caught up with Samah Mohammed, manager of Head to Toe beauty salon, who explained why there was no such thing as a simple manicure.
‘Manicures are an essential part of any women’s beauty routine for two reasons,’ explains Samah. ‘Alongside immaculate nails, they also value the down time sat in the manicurist’s chair. It is one of the few opportunities for working women and busy mums to completely switch off and be pampered.’
OK, so which treatments are most popular at this time of year? ‘The French Manicure because the colour is neutral and won’t clash with their varying outfits, and our new Minx nail technique which has taken the celebrity world by storm. A coloured film is applied to nails using heat and pressure so they can last up to two weeks without chipping or smudging. We are the only salon here in Bahrain qualified to apply them which is keeping us very busy!’
How we can keep our nails in good condition away from the salon? ‘Take vitamins every day, eat lots of garlic and lemon juice really helps to keep the nail root strong. Also always apply moisturising cream to your hands and nails after washing them to prevent cuticles from drying.’
So what is the worst part of her job? ‘There isn’t one – honestly. When we are really busy it can be difficult when a client asks for extra treatments that she hasn’t booked that day. We have to try and juggle our therapists to accommodate them but it’s not always possible. We have a policy that nobody is kept waiting for more than two or three minutes after their appointment time and I think our clients really appreciate that.’
And finally, the best part? ‘Meeting so many new people and seeing them leave happy and relaxed!’
Top five nail bars
Beauty & Nail Salon Experts in the application of renowned Creative gel and acrylic nail products. Manicures and pedicures (express or luxury) with decorative nail art a favourite for the party season. Adliya, next to Seashell Hotel (17 717 323). Open daily 10.30am- 8pm. Manicure fromBD5.
Head to Toe Beauty Salon The only salon in Bahrain to offer a new and alternative to nail varnish -Minx nails. A current celeb must-have, this ‘nail film’ claims to neither chip nor smudge and lasts up to two weeks. New Zing, Avenue 60 (17 252 505). Open Sat-Weds 9am- 8pm, Thurs 9am- 9pm and Fri 10am- 8pm. Minx Nails BD10.
Lovely Lolita Offers luxury manicures and pedicures using Jessica products from the US. Nail art, nail extensions and paraffin hand treatments available. Hoora, Golden Sands Building 1 (17 540 101). Open Sat-Thurs 9am-9pm. Manicure from BD3.5.
N Spa Offers fast nail glamour for women on the go. Newly opened in Seef Mall, this funky nail bar offers expert manicures and pedicures with over 300 nail colours to choose from. Seef Mall (17 580 011). Open 10am 9pm daily. Manicure from BD5.
Nstyle Nail Lounge The ultimate in nail lavishness set in a trendy and sophisticated environment. Specialists in acrylic nails and paraffin hand therapy. Al A’ali Shopping Mall (17 581 974). Open daily 10am-10pm. Paraffin treatment BD11.
The most popular nail treatments
French Manicure The classic of all manicures whatever your age or lifestyle. Popular during the party season because it is neutral and won’t clash with any of your party frocks!
Cranberry Sensation Manicure A soothing soak is followed by an intensive exfoliating cranberry and pomegranate scrub that sloughs away dead skin and softens it to perfection.
Minx Nails A new alternative to nail varnish that doesn’t chip or smudge and is taking the celeb world by storm. Quickly applied by heat and pressure and lasts two weeks.
Paraffin Treatment An indulgent aromatherapy treatment. Hands and feet are dipped in warm paraffin wax and sealed in heated mix and emerge soft, supple and restored.
Acrylic & Gel Nails If your own nails are simply beyond repair (stop biting them!) then false nails are a great temporary solution. Acrylic is recommended for a quick fix and gel if you want longer lasting talons.