In The VIP Chair: Lavi Nails Second Salon, Jersey City

It had been almost four months since I visited Lavi Nails in Newport Mall, and here I was again wandering around the mall searching for a nail salon to fix my chipped mess in readiness for dinner with friends that I had not seen in 10 years. Let’s be honest there is nothing worse than looking like a ‘hot mess’ when you haven’t seen someone for so long, and I for one intended to put my best foot forward (pardon the pun). I found a tiny salon on the second floor, which had four pedicure massage chairs all crammed into the side. They were so close that you could literally feel the person breathing on you. It was busy and hot and I should have walked out, but as normal I was desperate and on a time crunch so had to suck it up. I could see that there were no nail technicians available to do my mani and pedi however they made one call and out of nowhere someone appeared. I was halfway through my pedicure before I realized that this was the sister salon to Lavi Nails that I had reviewed a few months earlier. My technician did my nails last time, what are the odds out of 30 technicians? She recognized me, which led to us engaging in chit-chat about life, love and children for the next hour. Despite the cramped surroundings, strong smell of lunch that someone had just heated in the microwave that was close to the chairs, and the lack of relaxation music, I was enjoying the chatter so much that I began to feel relaxed. My technician did a great job of my nails and again upsold me this time to have an extra exfoliant applied to my feet. I must say that the extra massage was very relaxing so well worth the additional $5. Overall, I was pleased with the end result, I wouldn’t return to this particular salon unless I was desperate. The staff were great but the environment was hot, cramped and lacked a vital component we expect when getting our nails done – relaxation. I did find out that the owners of the bigger and more luxurious downstairs salon had only just purchased this little one so maybe they are still in transition. I always like to give the benefit of the doubt.

Until next time,


Lavi Nails – Newport Mall, Jersey City

Ambience: hot, cramped and smelly, no background music
Cleanliness of salon: Mostly clean
Polish: Bright red with a pink tinge: ‘Fishnet Stockings’ – Essie Retails $8 (Pedi) and deep purple ‘No More Film’ (Mani) Essie Retails $8
Polish job & chip factor: Fabulous polish job, mani chipped after 3 days
Brands they stock: OPI, Essie, ISS, VIP & Q
Color range: Small color range, quality polishes
Customer engagement: Friendly, professional and engaging
Price range: Basic mani: $12 and pedi: $23. Special mani/pedi: $30, Gel mani $30 and pedi $50

Ruth Shelling

As the Publisher for, Ruth has 20-years of media, marketing, and sales experience. Currently, she writes the quirky and funny column In the VIP Chair with Ruth Shelling that is all about the crazy salon experiences she has throughout Manhattan and New Jersey.

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