A burgundy door beneath an awning of a similar wine hue provides entry to It’s All About Me Salon & Day Spa, where waiting clients take deep, relaxed breaths amid thriving plants in the reception area. Hair stylists guide tresses into face-flattering formations in front of a wall of mirrors, which prevent town pranksters from sneaking up behind clients to tickle their ribs. As stalks of live bamboo and flowering orchids oversee manicure and pedicure stations, wall sconces and candles glow dimly in the private rooms where massages slake stress and facials drive away dead skin and wrinkles.
The swirling barber's pole out front beckons young men and old, wise Feenys into Cory Mathew's Salon for a haircut and shave. But the services don't stop there. The staff also can color your hair, wax your unwanted strands, and manicure your fingernails.
Sofia Perez has always had a passion for hairstyling and beauty treatments. Her mentor, accomplished hairstylist Gilbert Febles, taught her how to both design hair and push herself beyond perceived limits. After years of experience in running a high-volume beauty salon, Perez created the first Sofi's Color Lounge in Cranford in 1997. Here, she gathered together a team of former coworkers and skilled professionals, and the venture was successful enough to spin off a second location in Summit in 2008.
Today, Perez's adept staff perform their signature color treatments and diverse hair services using hand-picked, innovative products from makers like Goldwell, KMS California, and GK Hair. Both locations have a sleek, modern feel: the Summit site has metallic blue and silver walls, and the Cranford salon also welcomes guests with a metallic color scheme.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Parking: Metered street parking
Most popular service: Indoor and custom UV-free spray tanning
Brands Used: Norvell, Australian Gold, Designer Skin, and Dr. Muller
When and how did you first develop a passion for your work?
I developed a passion for tanning in 2001. I finally had the desire and the means to jump into the industry by opening a salon in 2008.
The interior of a business can affect how its customers feel. What kind of decor do you use to help make your clients feel pampered and at ease?
Stylish and modern. Eclectic crown molding, chairs, and decorative modeling throughout the salon give clients a warm, homey feeling from the second they walk in.
The team at Bella Organici LLC takes organic culture seriously. That's why every one of their products is 100% organic, no small feat at a tanning salon. In fact, none of their products have even been animal tested, either. Their work helps clients circumvent the inconvenience of tanning beds and outdoor sunbathing to achieve a nice bronze. The salon's tanning sprays react with the skin’s chemistry to create natural-looking color that lasts for up to two weeks. To boot, their at-home tanning events transform solitary beauty work into a party, prepping a group of friends for a day at the beach and helping the homeowner become invisible in front of their bronze walls. Bella Organici's other services also work to beautify skin, with facials, exfoliating scrubs, and waxing.
The stylists at Cranford Hair Company rarely come across a curl they can’t straighten or a strand they can’t lengthen. Though their skills are potentially intimidating—the staff includes a Redken-certified colorist and specialists in keratin straightening treatments—they go out of their way to make clients feel at ease. This combination of upscale styling and a relaxed atmosphere has won the salon many fans, as has a service menu that caters to both genders with precision haircuts, multidimensional coloring, and 100% human-hair extensions. The staff balances these scalp-oriented services with beauty treatments that focus on the rest of the body. Waxes remove hair entirely, and precise applications of airbrush makeup help skin glow brighter than a light bulb filled with plutonium.