Unlike some other beauty salon openings stemming from their owners’ strong background in the industry, Pastille owners Erene and Abra not only have a totally different background from beauty but also a totally different background from each other. One a law grad and the other a psychotherapist and qualified counsellor, despite their contrasting careers, they've joined together to create a must-visit destination in the heart of the City and an extremely successful one at that. So much so, that in the mere two years of being opened, they've already managed to bag impressive awards including “Best New Business” in 2014 along with their recent success at the North East and Yorkshire heat of the Women in Business awards, where they secured “Young Entrepreneurs of the Year”. It's safe to say, they've had an eventful couple of years.
Conveniently positioned in the cool up-and-coming waterside location of Granary Wharf, it's no surprise that the beauty bar attracts a shed-load of working professionals with the vast number of offices taking residence nearby, not forgetting the base of loyal regulars increasing throughout the years. Just a five minute walk from the City Centre though, not only is Granary Wharf home to Pastille, it also hosts an array of the City's most delicious eateries, well worth checking out after a spot of self-indulgence at the salon. Situated next to the popular meat-lovers haven Fazenda, Pastille adds a touch of beauty to the area.
Eagerly walking through their glass entrance with my nails in desperate need of a serious transformation, I couldn't help but notice that their bright and attractively-decorated interior would be enough to lift your mood even on the dullest of days. With empty pastel coloured frames adorning the walls and a large white one taking centre stage, framing Pastille's signature turquoise 'P', along with glass jars filled with pastel shades adding a pop of colour to the white walls, the salon's interior is both playful and completely unique. Their signature P also adds a personal touch to the reception desk, standing out against the crisp whiteness of the paint. Two big grey armchairs with white and turquoise cushions sit at the far end adding a relaxing and homely vibe to the room, whilst the treatment tables and chairs are white with wooden table tops and wooden chairs along with silver table legs add a contrasting modern touch. The white walls and ceiling with spot lighting inject brightness into the room, helping to create that fresh and luxurious feel. Although only a small room, the decorations and light colour scheme manage to make the room feel so much more spacious than it is whilst also retaining that cosy vibe. Pleasing to the eye, this certainly is.
Welcomed by friendly faces and shown to a seat, I was presented with an infinite number of alluring nail colours and impressive nail art designs and with 170 different gel colours, 55 various types of glitter along with studs and pearls to choose from, the choice was pretty hard to say the least. As someone who has or should I say has never experienced the delights of a gel manicure with nail art, I couldn't wait to treat my nails to Pastille's speciality. After a whole load of oohing and aahing over the various shades and patterns with their beautiful Cath Kidston and ombre style designs memorably catching my eye/still in my mind, I finally settled for a contrasting nude and coral coloured mani embroidered with rose gold glitter.
When designing Pastille, Erene and Abra used inspiration from American salons, creating a place where people wouldn't just come for fabulous treatments but also to relax and to hang out, placing emphasis on Pastille being a neighbourhood beauty bar. As I sat having my nails done within close proximity to another client, listening to the chatty voices of the team and the quiet music in the background filling any comfortable moments of silence, this is clearly something they've managed to accomplish. The atmosphere is chilled, sociable and relaxing and before you know it, you'll be happily chatting away to a fellow client.
Watching Olivia, one of the four highly skilled and passionate staff Pastille have hired, all suited and booted in casual attire to match the room, I noticed my nails were painted with great care and the staff looked like they were thoroughly enjoying what they were doing. Although for the first three months, Pastille classed itself as a nail boutique, it quickly transformed itself into a beauty bar, catering to the needs of the girls of the City. So, with each member of staff specialising in a specific treatment, don't be fooled to think that it's just your nails that can receive the luxury treatment, as Pastille also offer eyebrow and eyelash treatments, being the only salon in Leeds to provide the lusted-after Russian Volume Lashes treatment, and they've also recently started doing hair and makeup too, meaning more of your beauty needs are now under one roof.
With appointments booking up three weeks in advance and Christmas already looking chock-a-block, this is one of Leeds' most popular beauty spots. With my perfectly shaped glitter embellished nails currently tapping away on the keyboard as I type, still without a chip in sight, I think it's easy to see why.
Be sure to look out for their pop up beauty bars throughout the City.