October 18, 2010

Relax on Avenue Road at Marc Anthony Salon and Pure + Simple Spa!

Is there anything better then a day of pampering?  I can't think of anything so last Saturday I spent the day in Yorkville going from salon to spa, it's a rough life but someone has to do it!

First stop was the Mark Anthony Salon at 38 Avenue Road - it looks exactly the way I would imagine a trendy Yorkville salon should look: white and polished with glass and chic people everywhere!

I filled out a form, was offered a drink, a complimentary manicure and then it was off to meet the person who would have my life (okay fine, hair) in his hands...

The very charming Byron was my stylist - he sat me down to have a look at my hair and chat about what I was looking for and then he sent me off with Silva to get washed - and all I can say is OMG!  There has only ever been one other place where I have had such a great shampoo (a little Asian place in Markham where nobody spoke English and I finally had to stop going to because we didn't understand a single word the other one was saying and I kept ending up with weird haircuts because of it, but damn, I miss those shampoos!) Silva used the perfect amount of pressure, gave the most wonderful scalp massage and didn't get any part of my body wet that wasn't supposed to be!  It was also quite luxurious because while I was being washed, Mizuki the manicurist was doing my nails, and continued to work on them during the cut - that's what I imagine it's like to be rich, you just laze around while teams of people work on you!

So here's my issue with hairdressers, and I've had this problem constantly since moving to Toronto - you go, they ask you what you want and 75% of the time you leave with something entirely different then what you asked for.  I think the problem is they either don't listen, don't understand, can't do what you want or are drunk.  Options 1 and 2 are most likely but I won't discount option 4 in a couple of instances...  For this reason my favourite part of my cut with Byron was he really listened - I told him that I needed a cut that was low maintenance and didn't require any styling to look okay and that's exactly what I got - it's almost disappointing how well he listened because he didn't even style it fancy like they usually do at the salon, you know the style you can never replicate yourself at home?  I both hate and love that they do that!  The other great thing is that the styling product that he used was the same as the Marc Anthony products that you can buy at the drugstore, which is nice because then no one is hitting you up to buy fancy products when you are done! 

If you are shopping for a new hairdresser, I would totally recommend Byron, not only is he a good stylist, he's cute, he's straight and he flirts (not that there is anything wrong with gay hairdressers but flirting with them is like giving a blind man a subscription to Playboy - it's a nice thought but it's pointless).

Hair cuts for women start at $65 or $45 for men, colour starts at $70 and I was very interested to notice that they offer INOA for a $10 service charge.  They also offer extensions, highlights, perms, a blow dry club where you can purchase a package of blow outs for a reduced price, formal up-dos as well as bridal services.  You can get the full price list and info at www.markanthony.com  and if you're more of an uptown girl, Mark Anthony has another location at 1918 Avenue Road - 416-789-1212.

You can contact the downtown salon at 416-413-1521.

Then it was across the street to 41 Avenue Road to be pampered at Pure + Simple which is totally serene and relaxing inside and of course it smells amazing, just the way a spa should!

I was there to have the deluxe sea salt microdermabrasion.  I have never had it before but knew it was good for refining your skin, reducing the appearance of fine lines, pores, scars and pigmentation. My esthetician was Tahlia and she assured me it wouldn't hurt - which it didn't, it's an unusual sensation, a combination of light suction and a cat licking your face! Along with the micro, there is also a more traditional facial with cleansing, steaming, extractions, lotions, potions and my favourite part - facial massage!  Tahlia was great, even the extractions didn't hurt and most importantly, she did them by hand, not with something metal (which you should never let them do during a facial - fingers only)!  By the end I felt thoroughly cleansed, refreshed and relaxed.  And here's the really great part - my skin looked terrible the day I went, I was all broken out on my chin and around my mouth - by the next day I had started to clear up and within 4 days, my skin was beautifully clear.  Tahlia did warn me that I might see some flakiness right afterwards, which I did, and now that it's a week later, my skin really does look great - I will most certainly be going to have another treatment.  Some places recommend you have a series of treatments a couple of weeks apart but Tahlia recommended it be done once a month.

Once you are done your treatment, you can check out their Aladdin's cave (room) of products - Pure + Simple has their own line (made right here in Toronto) and an extensive line it is!  Every product for every skin type/issue you could think of, it probably has!  They also carry lots of other lines including: Dr. Hauschka, Jurlique, Jane Iredale Mineral MakeUp and Kiss Me.  Better yet, they will make you a sample of anything you want to take home and try!  Right now I am totally in love with the Pure + Simple Collagen + elastin Serum, it goes on silky smooth and makes my skin feel that way too!

As well as the microdermabrasion, Pure + Simple also offers facials, Intense Pulse Light Photo Facials, LED Light Treatments, LumiLift Facials, Skin Renewing Peels, Intense Pulse Light Hair Removal and waxing.

They also have 3 other locations if you aren't a downtown girl:  2375 Yonge Street - 416-481-2081; 725 King Street W - 416-366-8558 or 348 Lakeshore Rd. E, Oakville - 905-844-4900.  You can contact the 41 Avenue Road location at 416-924-6555 and if you want more info and pricing check out the website at www.pureandsimple.ca.

- Lisamarie -


  1. I LOLed at "a combination of light suction and a cat licking your face."

    Pure + Simple is my favourite spot for facials in Toronto. I have been a few times, and my favourites are the Urban Renewal Facial and Super Hydrating Facial. Like you, my skin looks pretty awesome after my appointments here.

    I've almost completely switched my skincare to the Pure + Simple line, too. I really like the P+S Skin Drink moisturizer. :)

  2. So what you are saying Arianne, is that you've know about this place all this time and you kept it to yourself?! Selfish! ;-) I'll be going back for sure!

    Best, Lisamarie

  3. In my defence, I am drafting up a post featuring products from Pure + simple. So there! :P


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