When it comes to nails, desperate times often call for desperate measures. It was the day before my Semi-Formal, and since studying for Finals had all but completely consumed my life, my nails were in a pitiful state of neglect. A trip to a salon downtown seemed out of the question. Nonetheless, my nails had to be attended to, which is how I found myself at the Jean Madeline Aveda Institute right on campus (3945 Chestnut Street). Jean Madeline is a beauty school, so all the manicurists are currently training to get their licenses. For this reason, no metal tools are used, so students really can’t use more than an emery board and the actual polish. The salon itself is beautiful and very spacious, but even with an appointment I found myself having to wait a while until a student was available. Though the students are very nice, their manicures left a lot to be desired. Without being able to use real tools, the manicure was one I could have done for myself, and was definitely not worth the price tag ($30 for a manicure and pedicure plus tip). Furthermore, the quality of your manicure is entirely contingent on your assigned manicurist, as they are all at different skill levels. Though my manicure was perfectly adequate, one of the friends I went with ended up taking her splotchy, messy polish job off right after she got home! Overall, I was definitely disappointed at my attempt to cut corners. If you need to get your nails done and are in a hurry, splurge, and take a cab downtown instead.
By Stephanie Ghitis