DuVall’s School of Cosmetology epitomizes hands-on education. Though students do spend time in the classroom, most of their training is spent in the 11,900-square-foot school’s salon and spa, where they perform a roster of services on real people under the guidance of their instructors. Cosmetology students shampoo and cut hair, add length with extensions, and add hue with highlights. Students partake of elite training from instructors versed in the Sassoon method, a system honed by Vidal Sassoon himself during his more than 50 years as a top stylist. Meanwhile, aspiring aestheticians perform facials with products crafted by Dermalogica, a skincare brand that is produced without such common skin irritants as artificial colors, fragrances, and puns. Those outside of the training program can also take advantage of the school's pedigree by basking in carefully mastered beauty services performed by students at a fraction of standard salon prices.
When hairstylist Shelton Ogle opened his first salon at 21, he quickly realized the secret to maximizing the number of gorgeous haircuts he could render: a well-trained staff. So two years later, he opened his beauty school, Ogle School of Hair, Skin & Nails. Now in its 40th year, the school leverages its accrued experience and knowledge to teach aesthetic arts ranging from skincare to hair coloring. In the school’s salons, students practice on the public, cutting hair into elegant, customized shapes, texturizing strands with relaxers and perms, and highlighting nails with manicures, rather than with rings with built-in strobe lights. A testament to Shelton’s success in building his vision, he was even able to develop a weekly show for PBS about the beauty industry.
Bella Body Oils employs a new brand of mixologists. The staff here boasts a stock of more than 2,000 fragrances, which they turn into everything from soy candles to body butters, bubble bath, and massage oil. To accompany their oil business, they have a full slate of nail treatments. The salon’s skilled technicians can free-hand designs with paint, rhinestones, or even turn emailed photos into nail art.
After nails have been trimmed, filed, and buffed, the nail technicians at Pampered Nails really get down to work. They paint nails with artistic looks that include stripes, animal prints, and swirls, and even prep nails for holidays with festive designs including black cats and mummies for Halloween.
Elixir Salon & Day Maker's stylists add texture to hair with an unconventional substance?marshmallow. Marshmallow root, that is. It's one of the many botanically based Aveda lotions, oils, and creams the salon favors. Their makeups, for example, might be made from Brazilian nut-seed pigment, cinnamon from Madagascar, or the anti-oxidants of ripe berries.
But amid the bazaar of natural products, one still finds the sleek plastic casing of modern technology. Elixir's signature HeadMapping process applies highlights systematically, while the microdermabrasion smoothes away signs of age with a crystal wand. Continuous education keeps the stylists, aestheticians, and massage therapists abreast of the latest trends and techniques in their fields without calling a psychic hotline.
At Blissful Escapes Day Spa, married couple Kendra and Scott McKellar bring out the stunning natural beauty of their clients with a long list of soothing spa treatments. A litany of massage modalities lift away stress from muscle fibers with the soft strokes of Swedish treatments, the quick tension release of a chair massage, or the warm, igneous hug of a hot-stone session. Facials and body scrubs exfoliate and nourish the skin with extractions, chemical peels, and body wraps, while waxing quickly lifts unwanted follicles from anywhere on the body.