Salon & Spa Services in El Salvador

sento luxury salon spa, sento el salvador, el salvador salon, el salvador spaPhoto credits: Sento.Before I moved to El Salvador, I had received exactly three massages in my life and had my hair and makeup professionally done as many times, including for my own wedding. Since moving here, I have definitely taken advantage of El Salvador’s inexpensive salon and spa services with regular manicures, pedicures and massages — and even the occasional updo and professionally applied makeup.One reality of living in a developing country is that wages are low and services are cheap. Which is why it’s affordable to employ a housekeeper or say, spend four hours at the salon, which I did yesterday. Life’s tough.sento luxury salon spa, sento el salvador, el salvador salon, el salvador spaSento Relax Lounge.My favorite salon/spa is Sento. It is super-fancy and nicer than any place I’ve ever gone, in El Salvador or elsewhere. It’s also the perfect place for guests. Yesterday I enjoyed an hour in the “Relax Lounge” — which offers a sauna, steam room, jacuzzi, hot stone walk and an outdoor pool — followed by a one-hour massage and then a mani/pedi.sento luxury salon spa, sento el salvador, el salvador salon, el salvador spaNail care station at Sento.Sento is definitely more upscale than a lot of other places in El Salvador. While yesterday’s price tag of $75 (not including tips) is still a lot less than what you’d pay for equivalent servies in the U.S., it’s pricier than other local options.For example, a mani/pedi at OPI Nail Bar only costs around $16, and a one-hour massage at Vidals is about $20. That is ridiculously cheap compared to the U.S. I rarely ever get my hair cut (in fact, I’ve only gotten one hair cut here since we’ve arrived) and I never color my hair, but from what I’ve heard that’s also very affordable.Hairstyling and makeup are so inexpensive that many women get their hair and makeup done not only for special occasions like the Marine Ball or a wedding they’re in, but for weddings, generally, at which they’re a guest or for a regular night out. Some women even get their hair washed and blown out on weekday mornings before work.I have never done this. But I did get my hair and makeup done — complete with fake eyelashes — for a friend’s wedding recently. Salvadoran women set high standards for looking good!Since I moved here, I usually have my nails done, whereas when I lived in DC pedicures were a luxury saved for open-toe-shoe season and manicures for special occasions. I got two or three massages the first couple months we lived here, but once I started working and lost all that free time, I didn’t get another massage for about five months, when it suddenly occurred me that hello, massages only cost $20 — why aren’t you getting one every week or two weeks?But really, it’s tough making time for all these luxuries. The massages have a health benefit — ameliorating the huge knots I have in my shoulders and upper back from my hunched-over-a-desk lifestyle — but it’s a lot of work to make sure your nails, hair and makeup always look good. I mean, who has the time?What are your favorite salon/spa services? Are there some you can’t live without and others that are luxuries enjoyed sparingly?

Published by La Vie Overseas

I'm Natasha -- writer, runner and wife to a Foreign Service Officer with USAID. Current location: Frankfurt, Germany.

5 thoughts on “Salon & Spa Services in El Salvador

  1. This reminds me of the fantastic spa that we went to on my honeymoon in Italy! It was also pretty cheap, by european standards – $25 euro for the day I think, but then you had to add on any manicure, pedicure, massage, etc., which were expensive! It had a regular pool, jacusi, hot stone walk, cold pool, salt pool, turkish bath, salt room, saunas and other showers. In spite of all this, my favorite part may have been the complementary tea and fruit that you could drink and eat while lounging. The hot stone walk was difficult on our feet! I don’t go barefoot enough – it was painful to complete!

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    1. I’ve never done the hot stone walk. I’m kind of a wimp so I doubt I could do it. The first time I went the sauna was SO hot and steamy — like I couldn’t even breathe and could only sit in there for like 4 minutes. But this last time it was perfect.

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