On a trip to Chicago from his native Italy, young Mario Tricoci changed his life forever. The fledgling hairdresser stopped in at a prestigious salon, where he impressed the owner with his impeccable display of skill and landed himself a job. The next six decades brought strings of industry awards and the opening of his very own salon, which soon exploded into 26 locations in four states. With his styling prowess proven both to the industry and to the clients he encountered each day, the coiffeur decided to share his gift with others. In 2004, he established Tricoci University to foster a new generation of cosmetologists and spa technicians trained to thrive in the luxury-spa industry.
Throughout the Midwest, Tricoci protégés study a rigorous curriculum in high-end salon and spa surroundings to learn how to create beautiful hairdos, choose skin-flattering cosmetics, and beautify nails and skin. A team of experienced industry professionals readies pupils for the beauty world with in-depth classes, and outside education arrives via video demonstrations and guest-artist lectures on Vidal Sassoon's Wedge-Bob Postulate. More advanced students get a preview of their career to come by beautifying real people during instructor-supervised treatments, which lend the stylist essential experience as the client enjoys a pampering session at a discounted rate.
Spherical lights hang from the salon's ceiling like glowing snow globes, casting honey light on cherry-red walls and a copper floor speckled with stars. Amid these jazzy accents, skilled stylists manipulate strands with sleek scissor cuts and bold color highlights. Guests can also request a specialty wax, ideal for removing hair from eyebrows, upper lips, and beloved bald caps.
On weekends, Salon G's team of stylists and aestheticians often arrives well before the business technically opens. That’s because they’re there to prep bridal parties for their big race down the aisle. They sculpt nails on everybody, create updo's for bridesmaids, and design the bride's complete hairstyle, including the look and placement of the veil.
It's not just brides who benefit from the stylists' expertise, however. The hair designers spend most of their time creating manageable, everyday looks for clients. To accent these designer cuts, they often add highlights or, for men, condition and trim beards. They keep some heavy-duty treatments in their arsenal as well. Depending on the desired look, they might install natural hair extensions or apply keratin treatments to eliminate frizz and unwanted comparisons to Phil Spector.
The "ZaZa" in ZaZa Salon and Day Spa is a portmanteau of its owners names: Helen Zarovsky and her son Leo Zarovsky. But the 3,500-square-foot facility is more than a fusion of the Zarovsky's 20 years of industry experience; it's an amalgam of their devotion to quality education (they employ a team of stylists and European-trained aestheticians and nail technicians). Each stylist takes their specialization to an art-form, focusing on cuts, colors, or styles. ZaZa Salon and Day Spa combines their experience with impeccable customer service. This means that each client is greeted with a complimentary drink from the espresso and juice bar, and that every service is performed in only the most sanitary environment.
Recessed lighting and golden, mod hanging lamps illuminate the dark wood salon floor, complementing the warm color scheme and orange accents throughout. It's here that stylists draw from their top-notch arsenal of Oribe, Kevin Murphy, Moroccanoil, and organic Davines products to revamp tresses, as nail techs redo digits with OPI and essie shades or apply no-chip and UV gel manicures. In private treatment rooms, aestheticians reach for vitamin-rich Dermalogica and Intaglio skincare formulas to brighten complexions, and use regular wax, blue Azulene wax, sugar wax, and threading to remove hairs from sensitive skin and fragile peaches.