Guys, good news: You don’t need to feel left out anymore when the wife or significant lady friend does a spa day out with her girls. Now you can treat yourself to your own spa day out at Gentlemen’s Tonic, a premier men’s grooming destination and barbershop from Mayfair.
The Publika outlet is the first Gentlemen’s Tonic to arrive in Malaysia. It exudes an aura of modern elegance with handsome black timber shelving, comfortable leather couches and charming British-themed bric-a-brac. After enjoying a complimentary drink and filling out a form – Gentlemen’s Tonic prides itself on using chemical-free products, although some might contain nut traces – it’s time for the pampering to begin.
First up is the Haircut & Finish, where a groomer sits me in one of the unique barber chairs and asks me some questions about my preferences, then suggests some hairstyles to try. After I settle on one, he starts deftly snipping away and shaving my sideburns with a switchblade razor. An innovative rotating washbasin also means that I don’t have to walk around between cuts and washes, which is a first for me.
Next comes another classic: the Traditional Wet Shave. I luxuriate in the soothing warmth of a hot towel on my face before getting pre-shave oil patted on the softened skin around my cheeks and jaw. Soon after, soft badger hair bristles brush shaving foam on, and a razor rasps over my skin as it pares away my five o’ clock shadow. Taking my worry about my sensitive skin into account, the groomer used a lighter razor and the procedure didn’t sting at all.
It’s out of the chair and onto a massage table in the therapy room next for a 30-minute Indian head massage. This is by far my favourite experience as the masseuse expertly kneads and massages the crown and back of my head, causing all my stress to melt away.
The 40-minute Hydration Facial sees me getting whiteheads painfully squeezed out of my nose (ladies, I don’t know how you do it) and more creams, serums and lotions than I’ve ever seen in my life applied to my face. The rest of the time is a blur of hot towels, steaming equipment and “this serum is for your eyebags, sir”.
Shortly after the facial begins, another therapist starts work on the Bespoke Hand Treatment, which involves thoroughly exfoliating and moisturising my arms, a relaxing hand massage and – another first for me – a manicure! She carefully cuts, files and buffs my nails, leaving them so shiny I can almost see my reflection in them.
When I finally emerge after the three-hour experience, I feel very refreshed and relaxed. My face feels brand new and cleaner than it’s ever been before – if a bit sensitive from all the work done to it, but nothing too bad – and the difference in the mirror is noticeable. My skin practically glows! A session at Gentlemen’s Tonic is definitely a treat for any guy that wants to be pampered in a truly manly fashion.