Salons-cum-saloons are elegant affairs that send many a freshly coiffed, overly imbibed client swaying down Madison Avenue in broad daylight — it’s an enviable way to spend an afternoon, to be sure. And bully for those other broads who get preened in their barista’d salons that are stocked with patisseries and Paris Vogues.
Yet what of the more humble salon that serves water and green tea and only stocks the latest Chopsticks NY magazine? It’s easy to cast a glower after all those previous pamperings — until, that is, it’s time for some fine Asian ass-play.
That brings us to Salon Vijin, one flight down the art deco staircase under the Today show. Vijin is a nondescript Japanese salon that offers more than a reasonably priced cut and color; you can also get your frontside and backside bidet’d beyond your wildest dreams.
I’d been seeing my stylist, Kaz, for years when I finally discovered the pleasures of Japanese commode-ery, and after twenty minutes of trying out all the features, I could practically hear the clarion call of angels and see rainbows glowing from my underpants.
It starts as you open the powder room door: the lid slowly lifts like the curtain rising at the Metropolitan Opera House and it’s nearly as thrilling. On the right arm of the toilet is a panel featuring a daunting selection of choices. You may first want to select your seat temperature, relax and study the menu while you do your so-called business. There are buttons for sprays for both your front and back nether regions, allowing you to choose not only the water temperature but the pressure as well. And just when you thought it was over, there’s the showstopper — the eleven o’clock number — the finale to beat all finales: a pulsating option that will leave you breathless. Then with just the tap of another button: mini-blow-dryers pop from under the rim and dry you off. And once the fat lady has sung, as it were, no need to turn around: the seat will lower itself as you exit.
Forget your stylist/barmaid and your colorist/coffee boy; just shove a fistful of macarons and mini-bottles in your handbag, snag a foreign rag, and slip into the restroom at Salon Vijin for a couple of hours. Your hair will still be a might mussed, but with privates that pristine, who cares?