“Nail-ing it” - The Rise of the Mani & Pedi

With the exciting introduction of OPI nail varnishes to Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club treatment menu, we take a look back at the history of the manicure and pedicure and how it became such a popular treatment choice.

The terms “manicure” and “pedicure” come from Latin origin, ‘Manus’ meaning hand, ‘Pedis’ meaning foot and ‘cura’ meaning care, this has now become common terminology used for the cosmetic beauty treatments we know today. 

Manicures and pedicures date back to 1781 BC where Babylonian men used Kohl to colour in their nails to signify class status. The upper class would wear black, while the lower classes painted their nails green. 

This process evolved and during Egyptian times Cleopatra and Queen Nefertiti painted their nails with Henna, whilst red became the popular colour of the time. It is interesting to note that during the early rise of the manicure both men and women would paint their nails. Egyptian Pharos would be given a manicure during the mummification period. This would serve as a strong symbol of their status as they entered into the afterlife. 

Popular culture in the 20th Century saw the shift of manicures and pedicures from signs of wealth or status to a general social activity, enjoyed by the masses. The first U.S nail salon opened in 1878 and in 1920 the first nail liquor was born.  Growing ever more popular, nail varnish sales surpassed the sales of lipstick for the first time in 2013 and today the popular market boasts a variety of different colours, stencils, tools and styles. 

There are huge health benefits associated with regular manicures and pedicures such as improved health of nails, stress reduction and improved blood circulation (when massage accompanies the nail care.)  Both treatments are popular choices at our Spa and Health Clubs with the therapists ranking them within the Top 5 treatments that are requested on a daily basis.

OPI is already in use at the spa in Luton Hoo, whereas The Grand Hotel uses Mavala products and Tylney Hall uses Jessica Nails or GELeration for manicures and pedicures. 

Why not try out a nail treatment for yourself and see what all the fuss is about. To book a treatment please contact our hotel spa directly.