Luxe Aveda Concept Salon evokes a sense of contemporary glamour by offering luxurious services amid its lofty ceiling and grey and fire-engine-red walls. A hairstyling visionary, Ray Hernandez presides over a team of hair-transforming artisans who administer cuts, color services, and specialized treatments. These stylists are so passionate about their craft that they educate clients about haircare, recommending Aveda products to maintain their new looks.
Aveda produces a full line of natural beauty products carried at nearly 7,000 salons and spas. Popular items such as Shampure shampoo and witch hazel hair spray deliver on Aveda's commitment to well-rounded earthly beauty with eco-friendly packaging that cradles ingredients derived from the world's finest and least selfish plants.
Though high-tech hair removal relies on relatively new technologies, owner Nedra Lockhart has been zapping follicles for more than 40 years—she began in 1970, working at the side of her mother, for whom the clinic is named. Though electrolysis is still on the menu, the entire staff boasts national board certification in laser hair removal through The Society for Clinical and Medical Hair Removal, Inc. This range of treatment options is essential, as specialists must select the right tool for the job: though considered less painful, lasers target melanin and may not be ideal for those with lighter-colored strands, who may be better served by electrolysis or Photoshop. Besides permanent hair removal, the clinic is home to Scandinavian skincare services by stateside transplant Catharina and mani-pedis by aesthetician Lisa Schuenemann.
A shared passion often brings talented people together. That's certainly the case at Planet Sol Salon, where each staffer brings her own background and artistic eye to the salon chair. Alexa Cline, for example, trained with Redken educators to gain expertise in haircuts and color treatments. Melissa Guerra specializes in chemical texturizing, and Natasha Gutierrez—who has interned with an American Board Certified Haircolorist—uses highlights to give hair the perfect amount of dimension. Not limiting themselves to just hair, the team members also administer aesthetic services such as chocolate foot masks and shellac mani-pedis.
The stylists are educators themselves, too. They know that a new look is ultimately pointless if it can't be regularly recreated at home, especially if clients find themselves stuck in a temporal loop. To that end, they recommend manageable styles and explain the step-by-step process for their creation.
Randy and Yvette Maldonado, the owners of Fajita Junction, know the difference that high-quality ingredients make to any recipe. “Our meat is Angus beef that is fresh and never frozen, using the inside skirt of the meat with choice or better cuts,” Randy told the Corpus Christi Caller-Times. “The meat is well trimmed so it has little fat before we put it on our mesquite grill.”
Angus beef fajitas are just one of the spot's popular, made-from-scratch dishes. The chefs also make fresh tortillas for tacos filled with chicken, sausage, or mollejas, as well as rice with Mexican spices and a chicken-stock base instead of the traditional tomato. The ambiance of Fajita Junction is a draw, too: high ceilings, wood floors, and flat-screen televisions entrance eyeballs with images of sports games and football players enacting soap operas on the sidelines.
Vera Auvil's passion in life has always been cultivating knick-knacks and odds-and-ends—her "sweet nothings," as her husband used to say—so when the opportunity to purchase her own store came her way, she knew she wanted to fill its shelves and aisles with her favorite little things: clothes, jewelry, home décor, and makeup. She christened the shop Auvil's Sweet Nothings and set to work cultivating local artisans and national vendors who proffer goods such as De Novo, Waterford crystal, and Yellow Box Shoes. The skilled staffers at her vendor-based store can even help clients brighten smiles with Beaming White teeth-whitening services, make-over mugs with Jane Iredale cosmetics, and learn to cheat during shopping-cart races.
Under the watchful eye of licensed professionals, the students at Aveda Institute Corpus Christi simultaneously hone skills and pamper patrons. An aesthetician- or stylist-in-training performs each service as an expert instructor guides them through the process, tending to coifs, façades, hands, and feet with nourishing, aromatic products in order to get high marks on emery-board-shaped report cards. The institute not only focuses on bettering its students, but also on bettering the environment by providing a wind turbine and a fleet of direct-current exercise machines to generate the salon's power.