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Another Nail Bar For Guildford

Published on: 1 Oct, 2013
Updated on: 17 Oct, 2013
The new Venus nail bar at 84 North Street

The new Venus nail bar at 84 North Street

By Maria Rayner

With on line directory Yell.com listing 20 nail bars in Guildford town centre, is there room for another one? Jenny Dungvy at Venus, the new nail, beauty and well-being salon on North Street, thinks so.

The shop, opposite TGIFridays, opened a few weeks ago and has attracted a flurry of early customers wanting their nails pampered once the children were back at school.

“Many of our customers come to Guildford for work, they may also live here, but they have more time to fit in a manicure during the day,” said Jenny, who manages the salon.

I leave feeling like a film star

Customer quote: “I leave feeling like a film star.”

Customer, Lorraine Hazelby, who works at haart[sic] residential lettings, said: “I’ve popped in on my lunch break with a broken thumb nail. Jenny’s used gel which will last for two to three weeks. The price is very reasonable and I leave feeling like a film star.”

Having worked in London, but trained in Epsom, the manager prefers Surrey and chose to open the salon in Guildford because it is a big town and attracts people from the wider area. She currently employs three manicurists, but hopes to expand.

With a basic manicure priced at £13 the salon is a mid-range alternative to the cheaper “Vietnamese” nail bars, the high end Nails Inc, sited in House of Fraser, or traditional beauty salons.

Nail bars are a type of shop that withstood, even flourished, in the recent economic downturn, proving Leonard Lauder’s theory of the “lipstick effect”. Rather than splashing out on a new coat or handbag, women will buy a lipstick, or in the 21st century, a set of nails.

Salons have also been the focus for allegations of human trafficking, with recent press reports citing London and Portsmouth as areas where this is prevalent.

Concerns about the chemicals used to make acrylic and gel nail extensions prompted the Health and Safety Executive’s 2008 report. There are two types of acrylic nail: methyl methacrylate (MMA) and ethyl methacrylate (EMA). Both produce a strong odour but MMA vapours can cause serious respiratory problems amongst other serious skin reactions and is much cheaper. It is used by dentists to make crowns in its safe, hardened state.

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