Sorbet: The Family Run South African Salon in North London

Written by: Sophie Taylor

Does this look like a face that belongs in the beauty industry?

One fine day in Johannesburg circa 2004 ish, Ian Fuhr was enjoying his usual massage. Amongst whale song and body oil his therapist started a fateful conversation, convincing him that what South Africa really needed was a beauty salon chain.

He turned over and frowned, confused.

“Does this look like a face that belongs in the beauty industry?” he scoffed, most self deprecatingly. “No” she said, somewhat cruelly, “but it looks like a face that could change it.”

With an admiration for entrepreneur Steve Jobs and a morbid fear of waxing, Ian set to work on his first salon. His niece Debra was soon on board, helping to open two salons in Bedfordview and Norwood in Johannesburg in 2005.

The name they plumped for was Sorbet, knowing that lemony fresh palette cleanser brings to mind thoughts of newness and, in my case, what’s yet to come for the next course.

Hungry for more, Ian  and Debra expanded the brand, opening more salons and always sticking to their original ethos: to put people first.

“You go into business to serve people, service first, reward second.” Their people- focused family business thrives on community, sustainability and authenticity. There are now 170 Sorbet stores open across South Africa.

“We decided to use a Wealth Creation financial model that includes staff as true assets to the business – and allowing us to share Sorbet’s wealth.”

More recently Sorbet has taken on the role of pioneering community upliftment initiatives through education, which is a salon-first in South Africa.

They were also the first to launch their loyalty programme in 2006, Sorbet Society, seeing over 300,000 members enjoying rewards and benefits from their regular salon visits.

In 2015, Sorbet opened its doors to the first Sorbet Salon in Muswell Hill. To date there are currently 4 stores in London including Sorbet Crouch End, Sorbet East Finchley and Sorbet Mill Hill. Because they know that North London is where it’s at

North Four, North London magazine, sorbet salons, beauty treatments, facials, massage, nails, waxing

As one ecstatic client beamed on Instagram, “Clarissa at @sorbetsalonsuk has the precision of a bomb disposal expert and the patience of a saint.” Her nails do look good enough to eat, mind. Pink and gold anybody? Yes kween.

Dermalogica, Environ, OPI & Morgan Taylor are the flagship products used and sold in Sorbet salons with a “get in, glow out” menu of manicures, pedicures, nail extensions, body waxes, massages and facials. But the most appealing product for me is the South African favourite: the Sorbet Skincare Collection itself. “Whether it’s optimum hydration, specialist care or anti-aging solutions you require, the Sorbet Skincare Collection delivers scientifically proven results to suit the unique demands of your skin, and your lifestyle.” Get me some of that good stuff, stat!

If you join the Sorbet Society Loyalty Programme you can start to enjoy the many rewards and discounts available. PLUS Muswell Hill Mums and Crouch End Mums now get 10% off any treatment. All you have to do is present your card and say HEY BABES IT’S ME WHAT’S FOR DESSERT?* Plus plus plus, when it’s your hotdiggedydog birthday, you can stop weeping into your birthday cake and get 50% off any treatment.

Have a peruse of all their very reasonably priced treatments and read up on Sorbet’s story with their handy timeline on the right while you’re waiting for your nails to dry / wax to heat up. 

Photos via Sorbet Salons Insta.

*you can just present your card

Brave Sir Robin Opening 14th December 2017
Eat & Drink

Local Thinking, Craft Beer Drinking: Brave Sir Robin Launches in Crouch Hill

Carouse founders Chris, Theo and Ben – the charming folk behind Kentish Town’s Rose and Crown – have a new venture afoot and we couldn’t be more bloody excited to see it. We’ve been creeping in their windows, peering through the paint and sneaking glimpses at builders’ bums for a few months now (okay, maybe not the last one), watching these guys transform this cosy corner of Crouch Hill into a rather cool little boozer. Now they’re opening and everyone is invited. Come one, come all, and try all 20 of their beers on tap with us.

Back of persons head with cigarette tucked over ear

Body Hammer: Clubbing, but not how you know it

Last month I decided to try clubbing again. I don’t quite know what came over me, but I actually (brace yourselves) enjoyed it. I went to Body Hammer’s monthly party in Manor House and I’m here to tell you to go too, whether you love clubbing, hate clubbing, or really couldn’t care either way. #notspon

Close up of person shoving a stuffed potato skin into her mount at Skins in The Magic Roundabout for North Four Magazine
Eat & Drink Events

Go Your Own Way at Skins' Fleetwood Mac & Cheese Night

Rich, fried, buttery, potato-y vessels loaded with flavor combinations that go down rather well with craft beer, late nights and good times. Ha, who am I kidding, EVERYTHING goes down well with beer. You heard that right buddy, loaded potato skins are back with a bang (and a generous portion of bacon) and are currently being served at Old Street's The Magic Roundabout by street food pop-up Skins and we could not be any happier. Well, unless they were to stuff it with, say, Mac and Cheese or risotto. Oh, that's exactly what they do? Well paint me green and call me a cucumber.

Christmas Gift Guide by Pretty Shiny Shop in Stroud Green North London
Lifestyle List

A Very Pretty Shiny Christmas Gift Guide

Magical gifts, wonderful gifts, marvellous gifts, beautiful gifts, gifts, glorious gifts glo-ri-ous giiiiiifts. Please Sir, I want some more. It’s that time of year again and whether you love it or loathe it gifts will be purchased and presented into expectant hands. Stroud Green's very own Pretty Shiny Shop have compiled a gift guide to help ease the shopping shock. Imagine only having to trot to your local gift shop and tick off your entire shopping list in one fell swoop. Done, finito, terminado! To make it that little sweeter, it's also all very affordable... so you won't even have to pick a pocket or two.

Three people clinking plastic glasses in the air in a tent with people in the background at Thor's Tipi Bar in Regent's Place
Eat & Drink Events

Drink, Feast, Conquer, Repeat. Thor's Tipi Bar Has Arrived.

Alright guys, it’s happening. The frosty charm of December is, once again, being beaten to a pulp by the capitalists’ wet dream: Christmas. The hideous twinkling of artificial outdoor lighting is starting to appear, with tourists flocking from far and wide to watch D-list celebrities press a button. Invitations to Christmas parties flood in from your multiple part-time jobs, ensuring you make bad decisions bi-weekly til next year. Supermarkets are selling 12-day advent calendars containing confetti, cookie cutters and candles for a flawless £50. And oh, how the mulled wine flows.

Girl peeking through gold and pink balloons at Top Balloon in Shop Stroud Green for North Four Magazine
Eat & Drink Events

Shop Stroud Green Christmas Trail 2017

Who doesn’t love a cheeky statistic, correctly sourced? You know we do. Well, did you know that for every £1 spent with a small business, 63p is re-spent in the local area, as opposed to a measly 40p in every £1 re-spent locally with larger businesses? An absolute travesty, am I right? That 23p has to mean something, right, guys?! Guys? Guys, where are you going? Wait, there’s freebies involved too!

Eat & Drink Events Lifestyle List

Top 4 'Christmas is just a bad excuse for a' Winter Markets

By gum there are a lot of winter markets this year. Fueled by sickly sweet mulled wine and overpriced pulled pork sliders, we’ve managed to wade our way through the murky waters of winter markets and find some decent looking ones round this here part of town. Don’t let our Grinch-esq vibes put you off (I’m more of a Pancake Day person myself) because, if you’re into markets, you’ll probably like these. Read on, if you’re merrier than us.

The Vinteriors team and Mary le Comte at Moseyhome in Finsbury Park, North London for 'Style My Shop'.

Style My Shop: Vinterior x Moseyhome

Take a short walk along Finsbury Park’s own sunset strip and you’ll find MoseyHome, an interiors retailer and styling consultancy who have invited us to collaborate with them on an exciting new series titled 'Style My Shop', in which they invite some of London's most talented interiors experts to quite literally style their shop. Interiors porn at it's finest.

Eat & Drink Events List

Top Five "It's That Time Of Year Again" Things To Do This Winter

Why was the snowman sad? Because he had a meltdown. Much like us, every year, when winter comes. It’s cold, it’s dark, and we know Christmas is on its way. But hey, it’s not all bad – the events round this time of year can be pretty swell. So don your scarf-shawl-blanket and get your frolic on, it’s time for fairy lights, scarfing mulled wine and stuffing your face!

Hand feeling colourful splashes of artwork at Smith and Sinclair Flavour Gallery
Culture Eat & Drink Events

Suck it at The Flavour Gallery

Touch, taste, smell, hear and create art. Smith & Sinclair, purveyors of the Edible Cocktail, presents The Flavour Gallery: a multi-sensory adventure that’ll seduce your senses and tickle your taste buds beyond all imagination. Ooh matron!

Hodgepodge on Crouch Hill, North London. New restaurant opening November 2017
Eat & Drink

New Opening: Hodgepodge Crouch Hill

Offering modern British cuisine with a smokey twist, Crouch Hill's newest contender to its foodie scene, Hodge Podge, is all minimal styling and hearty yet inventive dishes.

Cartoon of vampires standing in tunnel for London Horror Festival
Events List

Top 4 ‘Eat, drink and be scary’ All Hallows haunts

Brush the cobwebs off your sexy banana costume; it’s that time of year to make a tit of yourself in fancy dress again. We’ve rounded up the most spine-chilling Halloween happenings in North London and, trust us, they sound horrendous. Be afraid, be very afraid.

Eat & Drink Events

The Moroccan Medina at The Queen of Hoxton Rooftop

God bless the Queen... of Hoxton. Or, more specifically, their rooftop - which happens to be one of our favourites in this here city of London. These guys are well known for creating beautiful, seasonal pop-ups which have included the Nordic Viking themed 'Skye Halla' and the Neverland inspired 'Bangarang'. This winter make way for 'The Moroccan Medina', a sky high hideaway inspired by the romanticism of the beguiling ancient city of Marrakesh.

Mento, floristry cafe in finsbury park, North London
Eat & Drink

Mento: Flowers and Coffee

Next time you need a caffeine hit why not take it from a cup brewed from Jamaican beans grown under a canopy of rainforest-preserving trees, whilst eating a home made vegan banana bread as you sit among an array of sweetly scented blooms. Welcome to Mento, Finsbury Park.

Eat & Drink

Pilgrim: A Unique Spanish Pop-up Dining Experience

Pilgrim, the newest kid to Hackney's pop-up scene, is a unique dining experience inspired by the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage. This six course tasting menu includes regional dishes with a contemporary twist not yet seen before in London.