For Salon Blanc co-owner Alan Vuong, hair is more than something to tuck behind an ear or sweep over a shoulder—it's an artistic medium that inspires creativity and pride. The salon's website even asserts that "hair is an expression of the moment we live in." Nothing could hold truer for Vuong and his team, who are continually educating themselves on the latest cutting and coloring techniques and products. They displayed these to full effect when they journeyed to California for the 2011 International Salon and Spa Expo—one of the largest professional beauty events on the West Coast—a trip chronicled on Living Local.
Vuong's trendsetting artistic vision earned him the title of Honolulu magazine's Editors' Pick for Best Hairstylist in 2009, and according to that publication, "he even has clients flying in from Japan and Guam to get the Vuong vibe." He and his crew rely on the Kérastase and Shu Uemura lines for haircare, and also offer services such as bridal packages, makeup, and waxing.
It should come as no surprise that Vuong is as concerned with the salon aesthetic as he is with his clients' satisfaction. His blank-canvas hair philosophy is much like the look of the Ala Moana Beach–facing salon itself; in fact, he compared the space to an artist's studio in a feature in American Salon magazine. The minimalist, white-on-white interior is accentuated by black leather chairs and feathery chandeliers that are lighter and more elegant than a performance of Swan Lake on the international space station.
For Naturally Hands and Spa, beauty doesn’t mean sacrificing the health and appearance of natural features. That’s why the spa invented its own antibacterial eyelash-extension system and performs antibacterial, organic Calgel manicures, earning a Best of Beauty award from Allure magazine. The soak-off Calgel system doesn’t interfere with nail-bed metabolism, so it can actually help strengthen nails while adding a splash of color to high-fives and pledges of allegiance. Calgel's ability to bond on natural nails without using harsh chemicals or primers has helped popularize the service in Europe, and Naturally Hands and Spa is an authorized importer of the products.
Gentle music breezes past the salmon walls at Sophisticated Facial & Nail Spa, where black, leather massage chairs rest on natural-wood floors. Nail technicians with a keen eye for artistry paint fingernails with such specialty designs as zebra print, flowers, butterflies, and near-perfect replicas of toenails. Dermalogica products nourish visages during a half-dozen different 90-minute facials, which range from an oil-and-acne treatment that uses high-frequency currents to kill bacteria to an anti-aging facial powered by hydroxyl-acid exfoliation. Private treatment rooms also host waxing procedures that leave skin smooth and hairless for longer than razors, tweezers, or stern lectures do.
The staff at Q Laser Center leads clients on a laser-driven journey toward smoother, less visibly vascular, or tattoo-free skin. The Center prides itself on using safe, FDA-approved, and effective laser treatments, carried out in a clean and comfortable environment, free of stressors such as onrushing asteroids. In addition to laser treatments, the Center's team also helps to rejuvenate the skin with chemical peels, cosmetic injections, and other aesthetic services.
Situated inside the Outrigger Luana Waikiki Hotel, the sleek contemporary interior of Ville De Coco envelops visitors in a tranquil environment while staff members administer customized pampering services. You can get a traditional Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage in a private room, or climb into a pillow-lined pedicure chair to soak your feet in warm tubs filled with aromatic salts.
Leina Keomalu can rehab mugs with an exfoliating facial, or draw on her lash certification to outfit eyelids an array of Kona lash services to fit customer's needs. Clients can also solicit the spa?s waxing services to nix unwanted hair from eyebrows, upper lips, or cherished pet rocks.