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  • Traci Macfarlane

Beautiful nails are always in season!



Ahh February, with its mitten and boot-wearing temperatures…ugh. It’s only February and I already long to wear sandals again! If you’re one of the lucky few who have booked a beachy vacation to a warmer climate or if you’re just wanting to pamper yourself, you may be thinking about treating your hands and feet to some TLC at Thair with a mani/pedi and maybe a treatment or two.When I think about painted nails, I imagine the striking “victory red” manicured hands of famous Hollywood stars like Elizabeth Taylor and Lucille Ball. Manicured hands were considered a necessary fashion accessory! Even before the post-war era of glamour, the practice of manicures and pedicures dates back centuries to the Ming Dynasty and ancient Egypt. A beauty historian even wrote a book about its history!Mani/pedis continue to be a popular beauty ritual with nail salon businesses seeming to pop up on almost every corner…FYI, Toronto has over 1100 nail service places! The problem with the influx of these businesses is the toxicity of the products being used in most of them and the unhealthy working conditions of many estheticians, in addition to the lack of safety and sanitation measures taken to ensure the tools aren’t contaminated.Toxicity of polish and remover: Conventional nail polish contains many harmful toxins, including what is known in the industry as “the big 3”:

DIABUTYL PHTHALATE, a solvent that is believed to be toxic to reproduction, and is associated with liver and kidney damage when exposed in larg quantities;

FORMALDEHYDE, a known human carcinogen is found in concentrations of up to five percent in nail polish and can trigger asthma and skin rashes; and

TOLUENE, a developmental toxicity hazard that can affect the central nervous system.

*See David Suzuki’s article for more info.As part of Thair’s commitment to maintaining a clean non-toxic environment for their customers and staff, product lines such as Butter London are used for mani/pedis. These polishes are formulated without diabutyl phthalate, formaldehyde, and toluene, as well as being free of other toxins like formaldehyde resin, camphor, ethyl tosylamide, and xylene. There are several colours to choose from and if you’re worried that the polish’s lack of toxic chemicals will mean it won’t be durable enough, Thair also offers an eco gel (by Butter) add-on for $10 that extends the longevity of your mani-pedi another 4-7 days. The polish remover used is also natural and acetone free so that neither the client nor esthetician is breathing in harmful fumes.Sanitation of tools: Thair is also dedicated to ensuring the tools used for mani/pedis are properly sanitized in extreme heat and sealed in individual bags. When tools aren’t cleaned properly, they can cause fungal infections and irritations. At Thair, each client is invited to open a bag with tools, so they can feel reassured that they are fresh!Add-on treatments: The popularity of the mani/pedi isn’t just about showcasing a cute colour, but also about maintaining the health of hands and feet. Thair offers a few luxurious treatments that go beyond a basic nail service. One of those treatments is a 15-minute foot and leg massage for $20 that will stimulate circulation and make your feet feel amazing. There is also a clay-based detox foot mask for $10 that will help draw out impurities in the feet. Finally, another add-on is an organic paraffin hand and foot treatment for $20 that softens dry cracked skin and calluses. Instead of being petroleum-based, its formula is derived from beeswax, which is more natural and healing. This treatment sounds especially sumptuous…after your hands and/or feet are dipped in the wax, they are wrapped in plastic and placed in mitts or boots with a hot stone placed inside to keep the wax warm. Then, after the duration of the treatment, the wax is massaged into the skin. So cozy and soothing!Needless to say, the nail services offered at Thair are a special treat! You don’t need to have Kelly Osbourne’s million dollar diamond manicure (yes, really…) to feel like a million bucks! I think you’ll find the prices are extremely reasonable, especially considering how much healthier, safer, and more indulging the treatments are.If you have any questions, feel free to inquire with the ladies next time you’re in.

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Thair - 2020