As owner of Ruby Blu Salon, Michael Barone brings 13 years of experience to its styling operations, overseeing staff members who sculpt tresses amid exposed ceilings, track lighting, and portraits of models with stylish 'dos. The son of a professional hairstylist, Michael followed in his father's footsteps—a difficult task, as they were filled in with hair clippings. In addition to traditional haircut and color services, his team smooths frizzy tendrils with keratin smoothing treatments and nourishes coiffures with products by Moroccanoil and Kemon Nayo Organic Color.
The human body is capable of healing itself. Health practitioners at Bowenwork Energetics use natural treatments to enhance the healing process. Bowenwork, a little-known holistic therapy that uses small, gentle rolling movements in precise locations on muscles, tendons, and nerves, sends messages to the automatic nervous system to prompt automatic brain commands to each area stimulated, causing the affected area to ‘reset’ itself to its default state. Bowenwork is believed to be able to improve circulation, rebalance the body, and relieve acute pain. Treating everything from migraines and carpal tunnel syndrome to sciatica, digestive problems, and back pain, practitioner and Reiki master Surrinder Arora studies the detailed medical history of each of her clients before healing the body with Bowenwork treatments.
Certified massage therapist Crystal Jennings helms Mellow Moods Therapeutic Massage, thoroughly yet tenderly traipsing her trained hands over musculature suffering from chronic pains and severe aches. During the one-hour fusion massage, Jennings pays special attention to the neck and shoulders, blending Swedish and deep-tissue modalities with passive stretching techniques to temper muscular tension, treat adhesive tissues, and diffuse active trigger-point pain and microscopic thermal detonators. As a heated massage table and warm-towel treatment mollify soul sacks, a calming soundscape aims to uproot anxiety from the mind—the one stressed-addled place Jennings isn't able to massage due to the skull's thickness and a lack of neurological training.
The stylists at R Place Salon skillfully trim tresses and artfully highlight locks to capture the sun-streaked look of summer or the moonlit look of a long Alaskan winter. Keratin treatments tame frizzy, unmanageable hair, while perms add bounce and body to straight strands. Massage therapists on staff knead tension out of muscles as nail techs primp and polish nails with mani-pedis.
A lively energy fills The Stage Salon, where master stylists and barbers tend to all hair types but excel at working with African American tresses. Women can stop in for quick haircuts fortified by Redken and Clairol products, or unwind in the styling chair as stylist Ebony straightens curls with relaxers and Brazilian blowouts or creates length and volume with professional extensions. Gairyd and Silky Sam, the salon’s resident barbers, clip and trim men’s hair, topping them off with salon-quality gel or pomade. Beyond haircare, The Stage’s staff also outfits nails with eye-catching colors in OPI mani-pedis, waxes unwanted fuzz from entire bodies, and ornaments ears with piercings or gold staples.
Esther McCormick is a licensed acupuncturist, but she also displays a broader familiarity with Traditional Chinese Medicine—and its mutually supportive interactions with Western medicine—at her clinic, Core Health Clinic. McCormick and her team don’t restrict their work to treating clients, however; they also emphasize preventative treatments clients can perform on themselves. Beauty classes teach students to interpret the ingredients of their skincare products or to craft toxin-free products of their own, ranging from body butter to deodorant. An ear acupressure course, meanwhile, teaches participants to relieve their own stresses without rolling down a gravel road to approximate hot-stone massage. Even the clinic’s private acupressure treatments split time between the therapeutic massage and instruction on self-healing techniques that clients can use at home.
At International Therapeutic Massage, the staff values well-being above all else. They dedicate the full appointment to the massage, refusing to subtract any time for changing, a consultation, or a quick game of patty-cake to warm up the therapist’s hands. Once a client stretches out in one of 10 treatment rooms, the therapist goes to work using various techniques—deep-tissue, prenatal, or Swedish, for example. These techniques are designed not just to alleviate pain and discomfort, but also to improve mental well-being, promote self-healing, and enhance the immune system.