SPAiry Tales

Stories about wellness, travel, and life's simple pleasures

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SPAiry Tale: Ystilo Salon - Chino Roces branch

Hola! Your SPAiry godmother Diane is back.

Thanks to my good friend Ayee, I was able to try Ystilo Salon for a long-overdue hair treatment. Although Ystilo has many branches, it was actually my first time to visit the said salon.

I was under the weather that day, but as soon as I stepped into the small salon, the staff made me feel welcome. The receptionist was able to explain the difference among the hair treatments, and suggested that I try the Aromahair treatment because my hair and scalp were dry.

Since my hair was still damp from taking a shower (I lived 5 minutes away from the salon), the attendant advised that there was no need to shampoo my hair again. She led me to my seat and showed me the vial of the Aromahair oil to be used on my scalp.

After sectioning my hair, she proceeded with applying the Aromahair oil to my scalp in sections. Upon catching a whiff of the oil (minty, lavender-ish), I immediately felt relaxed. It was during that time that I believed their claim that the oil was imported from France.

Since the Aromahair oil is only intended for the scalp, my lacklustre hair was subjected to a hot oil treatment. The head massage was next, and then a 20-minute wait to let the treatments soak.

After the treatments were rinsed off and my hair was blow-dried, it felt (and looked) like my hair was back on tiptop shape!  My hair stayed shiny and flake-free for about two weeks – not bad for PhP550 pesos. (I think my hair could have been beautiful for up to 3 weeks had I followed their advice not to wash my hair for 2 days.)

I was happy with the lively but professional staff, a bit cramped but clean salon, and the free iced tea. More importantly, I was very satisfied with the affordable Aromahair treatment. For me, it’s a little bit of heaven for the hair J

SPAiry Tale rating: Happily ever after (worth going back to!)

Filed under spairytales salon hair treatment chino roces ystilo salon aromahair hair scalp mint aroma oil France

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SPAiry Tale: Celebrity Nails Salon Home Service Spa

Hola, girl and boy friends!

Your spairygodmother is back to the real world. How about a review on Celebrity Nails to welcome you and me back? :)

It was just timely that my dear friend Jean arrived from Australia for a 3-week vacation. Yes,  three weeks is long but she was in Manila for only about 2 days and the rest will be spent in Tacloban and Boracay. I was supposed to take her and her boyfriend to Tagaytay for a dinner or lunch but it never materialized as our schedules didn’t match. (I was working and she was on full vacation mode.) But we can’t miss our best friends, do we? I had to quickly look for a good home service spa so we can just chillax and chat at her condo.

Making an appointment was a breeze. I was supposed to schedule it for 9am prior her after-lunch flight out. However, Celebrity Nails’ earliest appointment is at 11am. The phone attendant was quick to suggest though to make a late evening appointment (11pm, same day) which means a mani-pedi-spa experience 3 hours after we talk. Nice!

Fast forward to 11pm, the two lady therapists arrived at Serendra right on the dot. They were two nice girls each equipped with huge pink luggages. Jean and Peter, including me, were amazed. The Joy & Bennet quickly set up our home spa and I honestly thought it was sweet and cute. Too bad I did not have any decent camera handy so I had to rely on my phone :$

Here’s how the home spa looked like (this photo borrowed from

Jean and I had our own individual nook complete with a collapsible chair, banig mat, wooden foot tub, water heater, choice of moisturizers and foot scrubs, choice of nail polish in different colors and brands.

I selected HotNails from their menufor both of us which includes a Manicure and a Spa Pedicure.

They started by heating water in their portable heater for my foot bath, soaked my feet in it, and proceeded by doing my fingernails.

The manicure followed the usual steps of trimming, filing, and buffing. They then applied a gel moisturizer on the nails, a clear base coat, then polish. I was opting a nude-ish color on my nails but the closest color they have is the one below:

Essie on my nails:

For the feet, they did some exfoliation using a foot file and salt scrub on the lower legs. The scrub was a bit rough since it was made of salt but it was tolerable.

Then they let me choose between lotion and oil for the foot massage. Jean and I were chatting nonstop but this was the point when I suddenly felt like dozing off. Nothing beats a good massage. :)


Lastly, they painted my toenails. I am partial to red/orange colors on my toes so I selected a salmon shade this time:

Jean had hers on red.

Jean loved the treat!

And I loved the company :)

It is good to know that there is a reliable home service spa that I can call for ‘emergency’ dates. We still felt really pampered even just at home. Plus points, we did not have to brave heavy traffic on a Friday night, take long queues at salons outside, AND… we can talk about anything and laugh loudly (like good old friends do) without having to mind other people around.

The two therapists did really well on pampering us, made us feel comfortable, and answered our numerous questions about their interesting job. I will definitely call again to make an appointment and would not hesitate to recommend this Spa to friends. Or maybe book a home SPA-rty next time? :)

Filed under Celebrity Nails Salon Spa Home service spa Spairy Tales

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Indulge your Mom in a SPAiry Tale treatment!

by SPAiry Godmother Diane

(photo credit:

Hi SPAiries!

Apologies for the hiatus, I’m actually in the middle of a major shift in my life so I have not had time to update you.

Fear not, because despite the crazy schedule, I managed to review two salons for you – even my mom did a review herself! Watch out for these fantabulous reviews this weekend…

Anyway, speaking of moms, it’s Mothers’ Day on May 13. So here’s a rundown of some pampering activities for moms:

Belo Medical Group - 15% off on IPL, Aurora Photofacial, Laser Genesis, Firm Plus, Matrix IR, Fractional Needling, plus surprise gift for mom.

Boutique Spa, Bangkal, Makati –avail any service and your mom gets a free express manicure or 15-minute back massage.

Illumina Aesthetic & Slimming Center, Subic Bay Freeport – package consisting of Liposlim + Lipotone + Tripolar Radiofrequency  for only PhP5000. Contact 09193467152 for inquiries.

Paul & Joe counter, Rustan’s Makati – free mother-daughter makeup workshop. Contact 899-9331 or email to make a reservation.

Pink Me Up Beauty Nail and Dry Bar, Shaw Blvd. – free basic manic ure on May 13. Message them on Facebook to book an appointment.

Robinsons Malls  – cooking and fitness demo, mom & child fashion show, giveaways, free photo booth.

TriNoMa – free pampering for moms, expo of eco-friendly mom & baby products, games & prizes for the family, performances by Nickelodeon characters and appearances by local celebrities.

Toccare Spa, Antel Spa Hotel – package consisting of classic massage, collagen facial, classic mani & pedi for PhP2450. Contact 403-0808 local 2050 or 555-1232.

These establishments also offer special treats for moms on their special day:  Resorts World, Uratex, Sarabia Optical, R.O.X,  Cravings, Imperial Palace, Bellevue, Peninsula Manila, Citibank, Toblerone, Sofitel, Max’s Restaurant.

I’m sure there are lots of other promos out there so make sure you give the moms in your life the royal treatment! Free gift awaits anyone who can send us a short spa/salon review :)

Filed under mothers day SPAiry Tales boutique spa belo medical group illumina aesthetic & slimming center paul & joe pink me up beauty nail and dry bar toccare spa

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"Treasures and Miracles"

Dear Princes and Princesses,

It’s been a few days since our last post. We missed you! Don’t think your fairy godmothers are on hiatus. Teeheee.. We’re brewing a lot of things exciting for you! How is that?

The past week had also witnessed a lot of life-changing events for both me and Diane. Yes, busy, but we say life is just becoming more exciting. On that note, we leave you with this wonderful line from my favorite book Aleph by Paolo Coelho:

"…sometimes you have to travel a long way to find what is near. When the rain returns to earth, it brings with it the things of the air. The magical and the extraordinary are with me and with everyone in the Universe all the time, but sometimes we forget and need to be reminded, even if we have to cross the largest continent in the world from one side to the other. We return laden with treasures that might end up getting buried again, and then we will have to set off once more in search of them. That’s what makes life interesting - believing in treasures and in miracles."


Spairygodmother Ayen

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A Spa for Ali Baba?

by Ayen

So here’s the roundup on the most expensive list we wrote about this morning. Ready?

5. The Salon and Spa at Saks Fifth Avenue

Ehemm.. Youth Renewal Spa Package  $400 only!

6. Ohm Spa

An ultimate day of revitalization costs $429.

7. The Spa at Trump

In the article it said, “Its gemstone massage use oils infused with diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires that would make Ali Baba proud.” Oh gees, prices are unlisted. Can I afford it?

8. Deva Spa

Stars like Katy Perry, Blake Lively, and Alicia Keys are one of its regular clients. Talk about star power! A Full Day-cation costs $770. A full day-cation lasts 7 hours for the following: Deva Signature Plus Facial, Quench Body Wrap, Bee-u-tiful Signature Massage, Tender Feet Deluxe Pedicure, Tender Hands Deluxe Manicure, one hour Makeup Lesson, and organic lunch. 

Okey, so that last one is totally expensive. Right now I would prefer taking on a short plane ride to a secluded local spa for more value. But who knows someday I can make a review on one of them, too.

Poll Question: If a spa/salon has price unlisted on its menu would you dare ask the price or walk away?

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$325-Facial, Anyone?

by Ayen

Wake up East Siders!"… Okey, I’m still on that Gossip Girl high especially that it is the only TV I can watch with my crazy schedule these days. Blair and Humphrey has become pretty interesting. Will they last? Oh, that’s why I’m hooked.

For those who don’t watch the series, here’s my treat for you. I found an article on Manhattan’s 8 Most Expensive Spas so here’s my summary. You may click the link to each spa and further see how fancy these places are. Go on, indulge, be like a Manhattan elite!

1. Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa

 An establishment that has been around for a 100 years, they have the authority to charge a fat bill. An Ultimate Arden Facial can cost $265.

2. Bliss Soho

Voted Condé Nast Traveler’s Best Urban Day Spa and included in the World’s Top 25 spas. Head-to-glow treatment costs $200.

3. Completely Bare

Their name doesn’t refer to the interiors. They actually specialize on hair removal from basic brazilian to hi-tech laser methods. But check out their eclectic treatments called Foxy Bikini and Carnivale Bikini Wax. I giggled :)

4. Susan Ciminelli

Jennifer Lopez, Kate Moss, and Miuccia Prada are only a few of her clientele. The Price? $325 for an hour of oxy-facial if performed by Susan Ciminelli herself.

Hmmm… prices are just becoming steep as we go down the list. Hold on tight! Tonight, I will reveal the remaining four spas in this elite list.


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SPAiry Tale: Nail-a-holics – Cash ‘n Carry Branch

by SPAiry Godmother Diane

Let me spill a big secret – Ayen was inspired by Gossip Girl on her last entry because here’s where we currently are: the HAMPTONS!

Ok, ok. I think I’m still experiencing the after-effects of cold medicines since I was on house arrest for two days. I actually took the photo INSIDE the Nail-a-holics Salon and Spa.

To be honest, I have always been a bit intimated with the spa’s interiors and the fact that the service rates were not posted outside. But what the hey, this chic spa was just suitable for my new camera’s first day out.

I don’t know why, but the moment I entered the spa, I immediately felt at home. Since I haven’t pampered my legs and feet for a long time, I decided to try the Gold Coast Package (mani, pedi , foot spa + mud mask) for PhP 750.

Couches were all occupied so I was led to the nook that I have been eyeing (but was too shy to ask for). Due to limited space, I did some sort of luksong-baka to avoid hitting the spa attendants and their supplies on the way to my nook. This minor hassle was forgotten as soon as I got settled on my private nook and the spa attendant adjusted the pillows on my back.

The Gold Coast spa started with a foot soak. It’s one of the few times that a spa actually got the right temperature of water for soaking.

The attendant then proceeded with foot filing. Every now and then, she sprayed cuticle remover to the ankles and between toes to make it easier to slough off the dry skin.

To finish off the filing, my feet and legs were scrubbed with Dead Sea Salt. Whoa! I was surprised that there was no sting (hapdi) even after the salt was applied to my newly smoothened soles. My legs and feet were rinsed with clean water poured from a pitcher.

Then, a cool mud mask was applied to my lower leg and top of the feet. While my legs were enjoying the benefits of the mask, the attendant proceeded with the cleaning my toenails. I liked that she asked what my preferences were (nail shape, extent of cleaning, etc) instead of lording over my nails, haha.

The mask was wiped off with a warm towel, preceded by a 20-minute leg and foot massage which was not bitin and with the pressure just right. Applying nail polish came last.

I’d like to point out that I was a bit frustrated with the selection of nail polish that they had. The free ones were mostly pinks so I had no choice but to select from the branded ones (Opi, China Glaze, Revlon). There are more branded ones compared to the regular (free ones) and most of them belong to the same color palette.  

I eventually settled for a greenish-blue polish which cost me an extra PhP40 since it is branded (China Glaze). I’m happy with it as it makes my feet look younger.

Aside from the selection of polish, here are other things worth looking at by the management. First, where has the foot spa machine gone? I was expecting the old school experience: feet submerged up to ankles, bubbles, some petals or essential oils in the soak. Second, attendants may want to introduce themselves before starting the treatments. And lastly, I wish (this is for all salons/spas) that free mineral water be offered to all customers.

Please don’t get me wrong, but I immensely enjoyed the spa. April, the spa attendant, has the lightest hands in all of my salon experiences. She also answered all my queries. She said they had in-house training and I think it paid off – while I was there, all customers left smiling AND only after giving tips. The receptionist also gets a thumbs-up for offering a 20-minute foot/leg massage since I didn’t want a manicure. She wasn’t giddy but she was accommodating and knowledgeable.

I also loved the interiors; I bet Mama would have fallen asleep if she had been there with me. The temperature, the music, the uniforms, the lighting, the comfy seats and fluffy pillows make one forget that s/he is in a bustling mall. I had doubts whether the price was worth the experience; let’s just say the ambiance made up for whatever what was lacking. Great concept!

It is also interesting to note that they had a sterilizer in full view of the customers and the staff were sanitary.

My verdict?

Happily ever after (worth going back to and recommending)

I hope the management can comment on these observations, and so should you our dear SPAiries…

Filed under China Glaze Hamptons Revlon cash 'n carry dead sea salt foot soak foot spa gold coast happily ever after mall massage mud mask nail polish nail-a-holics nook opi nail lacquer salon spa spairies spairytales Nail-a-holics review

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by Ayen

Last night i spotted Gossip Girl on a late evening rerun. I didn’t know they are back from their month-long break so I indulged. As much as I can, I stay away from shows that could be very scheming  as it does affect the subconscious (at least what my business mentors would say). But, ohwell, this show is my grown-up-fairy-tale in the Upper Eastside setting sans magic spells. I love the fashion and the actors have grown on me as well.

Blake Lively (aka Serena) has been a girl crush since I saw her guest on The Late Show. The fact that she hires no stylists and follows no specific diet plans makes me say she’s a natural beauty. She always wears chic to rock-chic clothes on the famous TV series so I wonder how she would dress up for gym sessions.

A quick window shop at Net-A-Porter and a few online boutiques here and there had me imagine her  on this:


1. Adidas by Stella Mccartney. Run stretch cropped leggings. Fun runs are now a huge fad. Good thing we can always make ourselves stand out from the too generic running shorts. This pair is a bit sheer on some parts and very shapely they can give you nice bum-bums.

2. Adidas by Stella Mccartney. Racer-back printed jersey tank. A tank top that’s very Serena. Very ‘Lively’.

3. MCQ Alexander McQueen neoprene tote. A little bit of color plus that McQueen blade gives a little extra character. Forget about those humongous duffels. A bag that looks like this can be used in many different occassions.

4. Lemarè 60mm Suede Strap High Top Sneakers. I don’t know if one can really wear wedge sneakers in the treadmill but this one is really sporty hot. My lone pair of running shoes won’t mind having this for company. 

Care to share your workout/sports attires?


Spairy Godmother Ayen

Filed under spairy tales gossip girl blake lively blake lively sporty adidas stella mccartney