After moving to Buffalo, Nece Bellomo found herself returning to a passion she had first discovered in her homeland of Brazil: styling hair. “I just like to make people happy, to make them beautiful,” she says, recounting how she embarked on a whirlwind of education with hair mavens from Paul Mitchell and Rusk. Seven years ago, after only six years working in other people's salons, a devoted clientele motivated Nece to open her own salon and spa.
Drawing on a sleek New York aesthetic for inspiration, Nece and her daughter—a Goldwell-educated stylist and coworker—decorated the space in blacks, whites, and silvers and hung mirrors with ornate scrollwork frames to reflect back their clients' masterful coiffures. Although Nece is drawn to modern styles and keeps abreast of the latest coloring techniques and trends, she and her team focus on shearing ’dos that suit their clients’ face shapes, preferences, and inspiration from their favorite Bjork album.
In addition to pampering tresses, the salon and spa also enhances nails with chip-resistant Gelish polish, lavishes feet with scrubs and pedicures, and waxes away unwanted body fuzz.
Founded in 1974 in Memphis, Tennessee, by the eponymous Sam Ross, Fantastic Sams is a family-friendly salon geared toward quality. Today, the brand spans more than 1,200 locations, employing a legion of experienced stylists as they wage wars on bedhead and uneven bangs. Wielding shampoos and conditioners crafted with provitamins and soy proteins, the staff offers services such as haircuts, color treatments, and straightening treatments.
From head to toe, inside and out, the attentive staff at You're So Vain Salon and Spa cossets clients with therapeutic services. Stylists twist and tease locks into vibrant new styles and nail techs, meanwhile, fortify fingers and toes with gobs of mortar or long-lasting OPI color. Aestheticians give attention to epidermal layers with chemical peels and DermaSweep MD—a facial that sweeps away dead skin cells with topical solutions, vacuum pressure, and a precision brush-tip exfoliation. The spa treatments, including hot-stone massages and teeth whitening, can be combined into packages, with bubblegum-scented options for Little Girls spa parties.
• For $15, you get a haircut and blow-dry with a new talent stylist (a $30 value). • For $20, you get a haircut and blow-dry with a junior stylist (a $40 value). • For $25, you get a haircut and blow-dry with a senior stylist (a $50 value).
Experienced aesthetician Maggie Wallum aims to infuse faces with radiance in the tranquil confines of MillionHair Salon, which is bedecked with colorful abstract art and a glowing fireplace. Soothing music sets a relaxed scene in the softly lit room during facial treatments with add-ons such as collagen polypeptides with myoxy caviar or vitamin C with oxysomes, ideal for reducing the appearance of wrinkles. A firm proponent of personalized treatments, Maggie works with her clients to craft skincare regimens that combine professional treatments with continued homecare, resulting in visages as fresh and glowing as a newly minted star. She also pampers bodies with salt scrubs and wraps, and smoothens out skin with swift hair-removal services.
The Serenity Facial (a $75 value) is BeautyQuest's classic countenance service, blending together deep cleansing, exfoliation, massage, and a mask treatment, all customized to suit the specific face at hand. The included hand and arm massage feathers the edges of the pore-based pampering with the finesse of a paintbrush manned by Bob Ross. Once skin is thoroughly scrubbed and glowing, a skilled aesthetician will use radiance like a spotlight to aid in the performing of a detailed manicure with soothing essential oils and warm towels (a $15 value). During the manicure, finger-skin and nails will be buffed and shaped until they're smiling, at which point they will be treated to an additional hydrating massage and fresh coat of polish.