Forget 50 Shades of Grey: Finding a decent nail salon that doesn't cost an arm and a leg is every girl's fantasy. South Pasadena Beauty Salon is a no-frills, Vietnamese-run, full-service salon that offers everything from hair care to facials. But what separates it from its peers is the fact that you can get a Gelish brand gel manicure (a procedure that uses UV or LED light to instantly dry nails and make the polish last two to three weeks) for $35, or a gel manicure plus spa pedicure for $45. Because those prices have been something of a secret, appointments during the week are a breeze. While usually you get what you pay for, at this salon, nail technicians will make sure you're happy with the result, including an offer to layer on an additional top coat to make nails last extra long. If you're not into gel, an array of O.P.I. and Essie polishes are available for regular manis and pedis, too. 1128 Mission St., Pasadena. (626) 441-0302,

—Romina Rosenow

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