REVIEW    |    MAP      |    HOME


by Carrie Hampton

The dark and lovely Caroline has much more strength in her hands than her petite size indicates, and I wished I had booked a massage as well as a Repêchage Express Lift Hydra Dew facial.


My last facial at a different salon felt like a skin polish that didn't penetrate, with no explanation of what was being skated across my face and why. Caroline on the other hand, explained the what and why of each step. She didn't treat me like just another face either, but tailored each concoction to suit my skin, which was showing signs of age and pigmentation. Thus she used a clarifying mask to exfoliate my skin and cleanse deep down into the pores, instead of the honey and almond scrub which is for more sensitive and dry skin types. The clarifying mask I was told also helps to lighten and brightens the skin, and it's true, my other half told me later that I looked years younger.


The hour that this facial took, seemed much shorter and aroused a hunger in me that I attribute to the delicate scent of English cucumber sandwiches that arose from my skin while under the clarifying mask and hydra refine toner. I also thought the hot compress smelled like oatmeal, but Caroline said I was imagining that one.


Caroline has been working at Pure Health & Beauty since it opened in 2006 and you wouldn't know that she didn't own it herself, such is her professionalism and natural confidence. While preparing my face for the Repêchage Hydra Dew facial, she identified sun spots on my neck and gave me the pep talk I needed about using more sun screen. She also gave me a couple of sample face creams to take away and try before I buy.


Pure Health & Beauty is not in a busy shopping area like many urban salons, it is in a purpose-built extension to a residential house in Kenilworth, Cape Town. Owner Antoinette de Nobrega found the need to expand her nail boutique into a fully blown salon after requests from her clients who wanted a one-stop beauty shop. It has been a great success and there are now three therapists in this salon offering Environ and Repêchage treatments, all aspects of nail care and the usual waxing etc. 


Apart from being stylishly minimalist with warm honey-coloured travertine tiles and soft caramel walls, it is spotlessly clean with spacious treatment rooms and neatly stored equipment. This kind of precision come across in the Pure Health & Beauty newsletters too, which are concise (without the usual boring stuff) and outline enticing specials, which include really good value offers on featured treatments. I have even bought my man a facial, which Antoinette tells me is quite common amongst her clients. treatments, all aspects of nail care and the usual waxing etc.


In short, this suburban day spa is now my preferred drop in and go, or lie about and be pampered one-stop beauty shop in the southern suburbs of Cape Town. Pure Health & Beauty are open after office hours to accommodate the working professional and didn't blink at my late notice change of plan.