Monday, March 16, 2009

The cost of beauty in Switzerland...

Perhaps I am just nuts, but who spends 180 CHF to get a full set of nails? I mean, perhaps I am just the clumsiest girl in the world (Jace, no anonymous comments here, please...) but I would chip these babies up during the first dishwashing and the curses that would ensure would be heard in Basel, especially if I had just paid the equivalent of a week's worth of groceries for those babies... moreover, who pays CHF 220 when these are not on sale!!!?!

I remember, back in the day when I lived in a place where the prices were more to my cheap charlie liking (and please, I know that everything is relative and that wages here are better and so is the quality of life, but there is such a thing as sticker shock in every country). I remember when I used to get a manicure for $12 including tip and a bikini wax for $40. These days, you pay CHF 40 for a manicure and a small fortune to have someone delve into your nether region in Switzerland, and let me just say, they don't do it like the Helga's in Boston.

Speaking of the cost of beauty, I spent some time the other day in the Globus cosmetic section and the place was completely empty... as in, I could hear a make-up brush drop from the ground floor empty, and I couldn't help but think that the meticulously well groomed Swiss just might be saving some dough at the moment, using drug store cosmetics and DIY hair dye kits... then again, have you seen the selection at the grocery store? Pitiful. And don't get me started about drug store beauty product prices in Switzerland...

One thing they do get right here is the hair salon. Michelle from The Adventures of Swiss Family Willis got it right when she wrote about how there is a hair salon on every corner in Switzerland (true!) and that while you pay a premium (like everything else) for a wash and a cut, you do get excellent service (true, true!). My girl in Urdorf is fantastic, not at all what I expected from a small local salon. Just as Michelle explained, they take your coat, offer you a diet coke, and spend the time to give you a consultation and discuss the 'procedure' all before taking you to the sinks. And for all that excellent service, I do not mind paying around CHF 60 - 80 for a haircut, treatment and head massage... I should probably pay more considering the going rate for a set of nails!

What is your biggest beauty splurge in Switzerland? Got any deals to share?

4 comments:

Anneliese Mostert said...

Hi! I'm enjoying your blog! We moved to Switzerland 2 weeks ago so still very new at everything and learning everyday but loving it. The beauty thing had me worried long before we came though! I parted with my full head of highlights before we left, back to a more natural colour to save money and also worrying that a new hairdresser might not do the same job I'm used to.. Have also been wondering about the bikini wax... mmm... where to go for that or should I try do it myself... Any tips?

Jessica said...

Thanks for the comment! I checked out your blog, too, and I will be back!

Hairdressers are so expensive, but there are some good ones. Join the Yahoo Expats in Zurich group for some good recommendations. As for waxing - I had a HORRIBLE experience here, so I now use the epilator for everything and love it. Feel free to email me for more specifics. ;)

Stephersplatz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Haven House said...

Nice beautiful place for visit...Switzerland....

 

Contact me. | Advertise on Swisstory