When the Douglas J Aveda Institute opened in Knoxville in 2011, it joined a family of institutes and salons that Douglas Weaver started in the 1960s. Here, Aveda students pursue certification in cosmetology and esthiology while practicing their craft on real clients under the supervision of licensed educators. And because students perform the services, the rates are lower than at traditional salons. The Knoxville treatment menu includes hair design—cuts, color, retexturizing—as well as Aveda’s Elemental Nature facials, pedicures, and manicures.
The Institute is inside the historic S&W Grand building, a handsome art-deco landmark that, like a compassionate fairy-tale prince, is equally handsome on the inside. The spa rooms have a rustic balance of exposed brick and wood paneling, and the salon’s geometric light fixtures gleam upon checkerboard tile floors and industrial shelving lined with Aveda’s signature products.
Most of the stylists at Cutters Point East have at least a decade of experience, with several serving more than 20 years in the business. They draw on their years of knowledge to craft classic and modern hairstyles fit any age or gender. Many of the hairstylists serve double duty as aestheticians and manicurists. They wax off unwanted facial and body hair, perform cleansing facials, and coat nails in pretty colors. Manicures can finish with a coat of Shellac polish, available in 12 different colors that dry quickly and prevent chips for up to 14 days or, if fingers are cryogenically frozen, forever.
The blow-dry bar at Salon Karma wrangles thick, long, curly, and straight hair into silky-smooth finishes using nothing more than water, shampoo, a blow-dryer, and a brush. The staff also works with any hair type during cuts and coloring treatments and offers nailcare and tanning services. In addition, they take their show on the road with on-set hairstyling for films, photo shoots, and trendy magazines.
High-tech tanning equipment and an amiable and knowledgeable staff greet clients at VIP Tanning, a go-to indoor-tanning emporium in business more than 20 years. Here, customers can refill their vitamin D reserves from UV beds or standup booths, or bask in a nonstreaking, UV-free sunless tan from the Mystic Tan system.