Jennifer Lydon has a passion for hairstyling that predates her 22 years of professional experience. “We have pictures of me cutting my brother’s hair in the tub,” she laughs. “I thought I was Vidal Sassoon.” Lydon’s knack for mimicking hairstyling methods built a solid foundation for the skills she later learned in school, but technique is only part of Lydon’s style. Her first employer and mentor taught her the importance of accessible, friendly salons. He eschewed bourgeois ambiance and instead built a highly educated staff of genuinely kind people. “It was just a really beautiful place to work, and that’s what I’m trying to do here,” Lydon says, referring to Q Salon & Spa.
At her salon, Lydon leads a team of stylists in cutting hair of all types and ethnicities. Stylists specialize in treatments that range from keratin smoothing treatments to styling dreads in the beautiful salon with natural light, clean white styling stations, and colorful fine art doling out pointers. When her stylists tackle a new head of hair, Lydon says they make every effort to customize their cuts and colors to individual lifestyles. “When [customers] leave here, how much time do they actually spend [on styling]? You have to start there and build a rapport and, in some levels, a friendship, because there has to be trust there.”
You're laying face down, unsure of what to expect, when you catch a scent. It’s vaguely familiar, but you can’t pinpoint it before the therapist begins massaging your back and shoulders. The lotions and oils seep into your skin and their aromas rock your mind to a sleep-like state. The therapist arranges heated stones along your spine, and, like an electric blanket in a lightning storm, your back suddenly warms, allowing your muscles to complete the transition from tense to relaxed. The next hour flies by.
The hot-stone treatment is just one of five relaxing massage treatments mastered by the licensed staff at A & J Beauty and Day Spa. Aromatic or unscented oils accompany each custom service, be it an indulgent 80-minute Swedish massage or an in-and-out 30-minute mini treatment. The team doles out just as many facials, soothing and rejuvenating both men and women with products tailored to individual needs, and annihilating signs of acne or aging with the needle-free CarboDerm therapy. Their body wraps cocoon clients in seaweed or masks that energize the lymphatic system and firm and tighten physiques, and their mani-pedis incorporate skin-softening paraffin wax and no-chip shellac polish.
Anne, the owner of Tintelations, has been in the salon industry for more than 35 years. In addition to being a talented stylist, she's also a master colorist who specializes in color correction, one-process color, and foil highlights. At Tintelations, Anne helms a small team of stylists, each with more than a decade of experience.
MiniLuxe's stable of pamperers ensures sanitary and up-to-date beautification services by receiving regular consult from podiatrists and doctors, and autoclaving their instruments to achieve 100% sterilization. The 30-minute basic manicure shapes, buffs, and colors nails more quickly than dipping digits in melted copper and letting them rust. During the 45-minute KleanSpa fig and fern pedicure, technicians massage paws with a Blue Hawaii specialty scrub and hydrating lotion inflected with the scents of fresh figs, lush ferns, and vanilla. Alternatively, feet steep in paraben-free LaLicious-brand essential oils and scrubs during a 45-minute LaLicious sugar kiss pedicure, a blend of citrus, rose, and vanilla. Friendly staffers perform each service, answering lingering questions about nail maintenance or calluses shaped like Ronald Reagan.
Romanos 1 Salon takes style cues from the elegance of Italy. Elements of Roman architecture are present in the decor, and even the haircare products are Italian—the staff has the complete Echos Line collection at their disposal. They use the brand's nourishing properties to help with haircuts, deep conditioning, and color treatments, as well as texturizing services that leave hair with straight or imbued with springy curls depending on patrons' preferences.
In addition to their hair services, the team also pampers nails with mani-pedis, flatter faces with makeup, and clear away unwanted hair with wax. Each appointment begins with a beauty consultation that nails down the client's preferred look, ensuring that they communicate closely with the stylist instead of bashfully passing notes to them over their shoulder.
Milano Salon's stylists might prefer to be called artists—they view their craft as art, and back up that claim by performing nearly every type of hair service. They color locks with a spectrum of hair hues and glosses, draw out curls with permanent wave treatments, and sculpt hair into bridal or special-occasion updos. They carve new haircuts with scissors, razors, or the sharpness of their minds—the latter involves up to 17 hours of staring. The stylists use products like Pureology, Chi, and Solano. In the spa, aestheticians improve the health and appearance of complexions with a series of facials and waxing services, while nail technicians administer manicures, pedicures, and hand and foot treatments. Patrons unsure of which service they might want can request a complimentary 15-minute consultation for any of Milano’s treatments.