Nisce Skin 'N Face Facial Salon and Derma Clinic
I went to the newly opened branch of Nisce (pronounced as Nis-sey) Skin and Face Facial Salon and Derma Clinic located at the Annex II Building, SM Fairview, and Quezon City on the morning of June 9th and the other on July 03. In this area I call it, the “Beauty Strip” because the line-up of stores is all into facial, spa, salon and beauty establishments. I chose Nisce facial center for my “me” time because its located in a mall only five minutes away from my residence and since they are new I wanted to try them out.
On both visits I went at around 11am which are considered lay-away slots, meaning those are the times where there are less number of clients. The first time I left at around 2pm and the second time at around 1pm. The reception area looks nice and clean, with a medi-spa touch of ambiance on the outside and judging from the look of the establishment, you will think that it’s expensive…until I saw their service price. Wow! Prices are very reasonable. The lowest priced facial called the Nisce Basic Facial, costs two hundred fifty pesos (approximately $5.00). Then for two hundred pesos more (approximately $4.00) you will get an eye bag and an eye wrinkle treatment on top of your basic facial. But in both instances, I chose the anti-aging facial with a deep cleaning seaweed mask then, had my massage afterwards. During my first time, I chose their Tranquility full body one hour combination of Swedish, Shiatsu and Thai massage for three hundred fifty pesos (approximately $7.00). On the second visit I experienced a thirty minute Dagdagay foot therapy for 220 pesos (approximately $4.25) in place of the massage which I shall talk about later.
The general area looks tidy. You will see two reclining chairs for the foot and hand services then four massage beds having approximately two feet-space in between each other. I think this will be an advantage for the facial therapist who can move on the left side of the client during pricking and for the clients who will not also feel cramped-up. For people who does not want another client directly beside them, this is good.
Let us start first with my facial. My therapist's name was Jenny and she used a hypoallergenic cleanser first on my face (it is privately labeled and only for in-spa use). I instantly liked the facial cleanser because it smells like flowers and quickly relaxes you. Di ba pag hindi maganda ang amoy ng first product application pa lang eh parang hindi na nakaka-relax but this one, has a nice smell. Plus, she included neck cleansing which is similar to a European facial. Then Jenny steamed my face for 10 minutes which is the part that I hate the most, because I hate to be left there alone. (Most of the time during facial steaming the staff will leave you alone with damp cotton pads on your eye.) Second, I do not like steam and heat although I am fully aware that this is needed to open my pores so I need to just ignore it. Ika nga eh, magtiis ka kung gusto mo talagang gumanda (In short, you need to ignore some parts of the session that you do not like to experience because you want to be beautiful! J). After the steaming come extractions, the most painful part. I sometimes shed some tears because of painful pricking to remove all those comedones (white heads, black heads, zits and zats) and dirt on my face. That I would not normally do myself because of the pain it causes. Anyway, I am kinda used to it na so I have to bear the short painful extraction part again. The thing that distracts me during the extraction is the sudden tapping of the comedone extractor since it is made of stainless steel and they tap it to remove the dirt that is lodged in it. I hope they can just use a tissue to wipe it off. I like the suction/ vacuum and I wish the pressure could be increased. Although others might prefer the gentler suction- I am the opposite. My favorite part is the application of the high frequency machine (commonly termed by others as LASER but in fact, this is not a LASER, a LASER is an acronym for Light Amplified Simulated Emission Radioisotope- this is a high frequency machine not a LASER mainly because it emits visible light) but in this case, no creams were applied to make it easier for the glass rod to slide through my face, I think I like this technique better than those high frequency machine that are being applied together with a gel or a cream because I get to be directly applied an hf current. Talagang naaamoy ko yung current (I can smell the current). Then came the facial masking part, their mask is contained in a very small plastic container for just one usage. For one, this is advantageous on the part of management because it prevents spoilage of products not being used but contained in large containers, it also avoids contamination and it will also deter staff to take home any products which have not been consumed by the client. Suffice to say that, I also love the smell of this facial masque. The mask was sponged off and after the masque, they get to clean again my face. Then Jenny sprayed the toner all over my face (again, I like how their toner smells, it does not smell like it has an alcohol base) What strikes me is that, after the masque where you expect that the facial treatment is over, they will again apply a cleanser and anti-allergy cream and perform a 5 minute facial, head, neck and shoulder massage. I think the logic behind this is to relax and at least minimize the pain that the client went through during the session so the client gets to remember more of how relaxing and how nice it is to have a facial rather than the painful extraction procedure. Overall, I enjoyed my Facial experience!
Then let us go to my massage and Dagdagay experience. In my first visit, I had the Tranquility massage (a combination of Swedish, Shiatsu and Thai massage) which was rather common. Nothing fancy. The second time, it was Rose who gave me the Dagdagay session, it’s a traditional Ifugao foot massage where she used small bamboo ticks to tap your toes and the sole of your foot. I think inside this particular mall at SM, Nisce is the only one which offers Dagdagay so you one does not have to go to Ifugao or Baguio to experience a little bit about our culture. Although I must say that “medyo bitin” kasi I am in a hurry and I can only spare 30 minutes of my time. This is not my first time to experience Dagdagay, the techniques Rose used are more gentler than the one I experienced in Baguio. I do not know what type of massage oil Rose used but according to Rose its an aroma oil. Based on the price, Tranquility massage for an hour is Php350 pesos ($7.00) and Dagdagay foot therapy for 30 minutes is Php220 ($4.25) I think that this is a mineral oil. So might as well bring your own (if they allow you to use your own massage oil) or come to think of it, they should have a different price for services using aromatherapy massage oil.
The over-all area is clean and hygienic. Sounds were relaxing. The materials used including cotton balls, small containers, facial trolleys, etc. are clean, hygienic and in order. There is a common toilet with light brown tiles, dry and small but clean. Right outside this common toilet is a sink with hot and cold water. Unfortunately there is no wall-mounted mirror which I think this area lacks because clients need to see how they look after their facial session. The first time I went there, I got to use the shower and toilet for massage clients. I like that it serves dual in function because couples can use it and it is in between two massage areas. But since there is no glass in their shower area, the water drips outside the curtains and it wets including the toilet, flooding it a bit.
Let us talk about the staff: The accommodating receptionist was nice but she is not yet familiar with the therapists and what specialties they offer. I am not sure if her name was Michelle or Rhea. Some staff have dual roles like Rose or Rosa (which acts as a massage therapist and facial therapist, manicurist, pedicurist, etc.) whom I have interviewed a bit and had known that she has already more than 10 years of experience in different spas. Jenny my facial therapist who attended to me the second time, only performs facial. Staff were courteous and friendly. I inquired if they had a website and since the staff didn’t know, I had to search for it on Google. I strongly recommend that you visit it first and check out the services offered then when you schedule your visit you can ask what services are available at that branch and get the procedure you want.
Other information about them includes that it is owned and operated by ETN Beauty Concepts, Inc., they have Beauty centers located in various malls in Metro Manila with their flagship branch at SM Megamall and in Northern Luzon including La Union (their head office is in San Fernando city), Dagupan, Baguio and Pangasinan. Their website is http://www.nisceskin.com/. The head trainer and Chief Aesthetics Officer is Marie Antoinette T. Nisce, a Singapore and UK certified Aesthetician. Their dermatologists are also available for consultation and dermatological services.I have yet to experience more of what they offer because I think they have more interesting services that I have yet to experience and if you were to ask me, my overall rating for this branch is 83%. Price-wise they are a steal. I feel it is a good value just based on the price. Hopefully, they get their share of clients on this side of the “Beauty strip”.
Third time to visit Nisce for a Massage
The third time I visited this particular Nisce branch and had my Tranquility massage. Based on menu and price list, this is a combination of Swedish, Shiatsu and Thai massage. You can have two options the 30 minutes (back massage only) for 250- Pesos (approximately $5.00) and the one hour massage (whole body) for 350 Pesos ($7.00). On both occasions, I remembered that Tricia was the one who gave me the massage.
What I like about the massage:
1. Tricia placed a towel bolster under my bent legs whenever possible. It makes my feet and legs comfortable.
2. Tricia also gave me clear instructions about how to get up from my lying (supine) position and what to do after my massage (e.g. do not take a cold shower, drink cold water, etc.)
What I don’t like about the massage:
1. Tricia forgot to ask me how her pressure was so I have to tell her to exert more pressure on my shoulders, unfortunately she did not exert too much pressure at all. Feeling that she might not have the strength to do so stopped me from asking for more. We have different preferences and I prefer a medium to hard (in between the two) type of pressure.
2. As I noticed, she does not also observe correct body mechanics while performing the massage.There should be more pressure exerted on some parts than on others and she should be sensitive on the reaction or directions of the client.
3. The pace of her massage techniques were quite fast not very relaxing for a supposed to be tranquility massage.
Overall rating for this visit: Fair (78%) but still gave her a Php 100.00 ($2.00 tip).
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