I don’t know remember when was the last time that I was so excited to write a salon review. Probably 2015.
Since then, Germany happened, with its many unsatisfactory salon visits and confusing services. Cologne had been hopeless. Berlin was considerably better. Now, Cologne got a second chance and it is catching up.
I have successfully found three salons for threading in Cologne, made peace with Braun Sllk-épil after a visit to Wax In The City, and learned to paint my own nails if express manicure isn’t an option.
It was purely by chance that I met Pei Hooi at a meetup for freelancers. We got talking, and she told me that she is a certified beautician and shuttles between London and Cologne. We were on the same page about lack of good salons in Cologne, and how her setup is trying to fill in the gap. More talking led to an invitation to her salon (Kireini Beauty), and the rest is history.
Located on lower level of Sezen Style at Neumarkt, Kireini is a small establishment. It is cosy and can accommodate one person at a time. It was a refreshing change in terms of setup, as most salons have adjacent pedicure stations that make me feel like a piece of luggage on a carousel. It is dimly lit, with candles and floral accents. It immediately puts you at ease – like stepping in a safe haven.
I was booked in for a pedicure and express manicure with mood nail polish.
I have tried a number of salons in Cologne and have never found their pedicures satisfactory. Pei enlightened me that the reason wasn’t entirely services but that I was looking for something else altogether. It is called medicinal pedicure and requires a separate certification. Only a handful of therapists in the city can do it. Knowing this made so much sense and a whole lot less resentment.
Anyway. Back to pedicure. I had a luxurious the luxurious Zen Spa Pedicure by Jessica. It started with a soak in hot water laced with lemongrass salt while I sipped my Twinnings tea. Then, electric cuticle removal and filing away dead skin, followed by the same but manually. Next was a scrub to exfoliate (it was a special mix with micro dermabrasion qualities, volcanic pumice and fruit acid extract. And yea, I asked Pei about 20 million questions. Very annoying).
I have troubled feet, with a stubborn callous here and bruised toe there. She applied a callous softener, then a quick massage before wrapping my feat in warm booties. They help moisture to seep in your skin and feels wonderful. Like a warm hug. I skipped on nail colour and just asked for a nail harder.
Next was the express manicure, which had me excited after for an entire week. I showed it to every person I met.
The manicure followed a standard procedure. Soak, cuticle removal, nail filing, moisturizing and nail colour application. Pei told me that she has recently brought in mood polishes, which change colour according to your body’s temperature. She is the first to introduce it in Cologne, and I was very excited to try them.
There are six colour options and I opted for Sea Expert. It goes jungle green when the body is cold and a beautiful pale lilac when warm. I saw the transformation right before my eyes, and quizzed Mister for the next four days to see if he could guess whether I was warm or cold. SO MUCH FUN!
In all of my three years in Germany, this was my first satisfactory and pleasant salon experience. I loved the individual treatment, and actually felt pampered. Pei speaks perfect English, so conversation is easy. If you are not careful, she might become your best friend by the end of the treatment. Services were good, and you can literally get anything and everything done here – from threading (yes, she can thread your eyebrows and face), waxing (head to toe), facials, manicure and pedicure, eyelash extensions, shellac and massages. For hair, all you need to do is climb a flight of stairs. One stop solution.
And did I mention perfect English? Okay, good.
On a side note, Kireini Beauty might be slightly pricey compared to other salons, but there are budget options as well and if you say the magic word ‘Cherry Cross’, you can get a whopping 20% discount. So, win win.
I am definitely going back, and think you should too. For appointments, call Pei Hooi at +49 162 8120467.