When Michelle Parkes opened Core Salon & Spa, she didn't want just another cookie-cutter business. After spending two years as a national educator for Paul Brown Hawaii and 25 years working for other owners, she decided she wanted to do a salon her way. Her way was to surround herself with an unparalleled group of stylists, support staff, and a moat to guard against invading paparazzi. The end result was Core Salon & Spa, a beauty center manned by skilled stylists that use quality products from brands such as Yon-Ka, L'Oreal Professionnel, and Kevin Murphy.
Beach Bum Tanning's high-tech beds, sunless booths, and tailored beauty treatments regularly appear in press outlets such as Allure magazine. The salon's heated Mystic HD booths spritz bodies with vibrant pigment while warming skin to ensure optimal and even color saturation without having to bear-hug King Midas. Certified Airbrush Artists also implement customized airbrush tans over 150 ways by using a combination of fine-point-guided and wide-point-guided guns to shade and contour a custom-tinted tan to the body's curves, bends, and highway overpasses.
Salon Violett's experienced stylists bring their aesthetic expertise together to revamp outmoded 'dos with an arsenal of beautifying techniques customized to each client's unique features. During the approximately 40-minute visit, guests yield their head threads to partial highlights that add color and depth to monochromatic manes with a foiling technique. Afterward, a seasoned hairdresser blows out frazzled locks and straightens them with a flatiron, rendering hair as smooth and shiny as a diamond-encrusted bust of Barry White. While waiting for their treatments, visitors can scan their peepers over Salon Violett's sleek interior marked by polished hardwood floors, maroon walls, and leather furniture.
Signature Service: Spa, Skin Care, Body Care, Nail Care
Brands Used: Yon-ka, Peter Thomas Roth, and FarmHouse Fresh
Handicap Accessible: No
Staff Size: 1 person
Parking: Free street parking
Minimum Age Requirement: 10
Pro Tip: Facials by Francine is a very personalized, one-on-one spa. She only services one client at a time.
Do you use any products or brands you're particularly proud of? What makes them uniquely effective?
Yes, Yon-Ka Paris because the company concentrates on research and development rather than marketing. They only use high-quality herbal and plant extracts. They are paraben-free and very gentle on the skin.
What's the most common beauty mistake you see people make? What would you recommend they do instead?
Using soap on their skin and using a harsh scrub. They should consult a professional aesthetician like myself first before using any kind of skincare program.
Is there anything else you want to add that we didn't cover?
The clients will instantly feel relaxed as they enter the spa [with its] array of aromas and calming decor.
At Lilly's Nail Spa, the actual mani-pedi experience is just as important as the end product. Nail technicians lavish attention onto hands and feet, filing and buffing fingernails and toenails into perfect crescents. They also dunk feet into a bubbling whirlpool bath to soothe soften skin, and further calm overworked heels with a reflexology massage. And when they finally get to polishing nails, the technicians turn on the creativity, outfitting tips with polka dots and chevron stripes or applying extra-glamorous touches such as faux crystals or strands of celebrity DNA.
At the precocious age of 22, entrepreneur Linda Cesario started her own salon—but a fire soon destroyed it, and Cesario was forced to go to work for other salon owners. With time, Cesario gathered the courage to strike out on her own again, and she named her new salon Lighten Up as a nod to her career philosophy of always striving to lift her clients' spirits. Now at Lighten Up, Cesario is again her own boss, which means she has to email herself when she wants to play hooky and then confront herself when she does. She draws on more than 38 years of industry experience as she helms the salon’s dedicated stylists, who tame tresses with INOA hair color and products from Redken and Paul Mitchell. The salon also coddles appendages with manicures and pedicures, waxes away fuzz, and massages sore muscles.