Secret Service: Five in-store beauty services you didn’t know about

The first time I stumbled on a “secret” service offered by a beauty brand, I was at a popular department store browsing through the drugstore makeup on sale. The sales assistant was probably eager for me to finally make a purchase, so she offered to give me a free makeup session whenever I needed one - with zero prompting from me. She told me that a lot of clients usually request that, and that she and the other SAs willingly oblige if it’s not a busy day.

As I made a mental note to go back there instead of splurging at a parlor for my next event, I realized that money (or at least meeting the minimum purchase requirement) truly does open doors! Since then, I’ve learned to never hesitate to ask if beauty brands offer additional services aside from selling beauty items. That’s how I discovered that there was so much more than just free makeovers! From bacne (back acne) extractions to professional makeup workshops, here are three establishments that offer secret beauty services that you may not have been aware of!


We all know about the legendary brow waxing service at their Brow Bar - we even featured their commitment to charity a while back through this service. But did you know that they offer brow tints, lip and chin waxing, and lash extensions, too? Select branches even offer body waxing for the underarm, bikini, arm, and leg areas. You can enjoy these treatments in the privacy of their Pretty Rooms (which totally live up to they name, btw!) located at the Alabang Town Center, SM Megamall, and Trinoma branches. Prices range from P700 to P1,400 and are available strictly by appointment only. Bonus: they’ll be offering a new brow service come May!

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VMV Hypoallergenics

I’ll be completely honest: I really like VMV skin care products for how they are formulated and labelled. The price point might be a bit high but appreciate how knowledgeable and straightforward their marketing generally is. My fondness for the brand intensified after trying out their Skin-a-Jiffy Facial, a 30-minute facial treatment that includes a gentle massage, steaming, and a custom-mixed mask treatment made on the spot but I didn’t even know that their SM Megamall branch had a spa room!

They also offer Superskin Facials (1-hour facial similar to what I tried, plus light extraction), and more intense treatments like targeted Cosmeceutical Booster Facials and Skintensive Care treatments. These treatments address aging, stress, blemishes and even back acne using VMV products! I think the pricing is fairly competitive, considering that you get to use products from the respected brand, and even receive discounts after specific purchase requirements.

What really blew my mind was when I heard about their Skin Research Centre + Clinics in Makati. You can consult with their in-house dermatologists, get help for customizing your skincare routine, and possibly even participate in their skin research trials. Appointments can be booked online.

Make Up For Ever

MUFE recently launched their Make Up Service Menu that includes different makeovers and lessons. These can be booked for free, after meeting specific minimum purchase requirements. If you’ve ever purchased a beauty product that you weren’t sure how to use, the video tutorials in the app make it super easy and convenient to access. lf I had to buy skincare or makeup from a high-end brand, I’d definitely go for MUFE! The videos are useful and give added value to their actual products. As a brand that even professional makeup artists trust, I have been eyeing the Ultra HD Makeup Lesson so I can do my own makeup for special occasions — it’s pro-level makeup so it deserves pro-level tutorials!

Estée Lauder

Speaking of looking picture-perfect for events, Estée Lauder has just launched their Glam It Up makeup services at all their counters! As the brand founder liked to say, “The most beautiful face in the world? It’s yours,” and this new offering makes it so much easier to do just that. You can choose from their Face Defining service (3-5 minutes) if you want something quick but high-impact, or go for one of five Full Look options (40 minutes to an hour) which include Bare Faced Beauty, It’s A Date, Beauty At Work, Late Night Party, and Modern Classic. 

If you're looking to up your skin care game though, you should definitely take them up on their complimentary skincare consultation! A Beauty Adviser will personalize a regimen best suited for your needs, and even do a mini facial so you can try the products and see how they work with your skin.

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Bobbi Brown

It's not enough to just own the products, you need to know how to use them properly to maximize their potential. With a brand focus on natural beauty, Bobbi Brown keeps things real with its How To makeup lessons. The approach is practical with modules like How To Look Less Tired, How To Make My Skin Look Better, and How To Get Ready In Five Minutes. Best of all, the makeup artist will give you a personalized Face Chart and How To Tip Card at the end of your lesson so you have references when you recreate the look on your own! You can find the full list of available lessons here

These are just a few of the beauty secret services available in the metro, and I’m eager to find out if there are others being offered! Do you know of any other beauty secret services in Manila? Which ones are your faves, and do you have more tips to share? Comment below!