During more than a quarter century at the helm of LookAfter Hair Company, Peter Hall has seen the styling industry gradually split in two directions—toward the high-end salon and toward the in-and-out fast cut place. With LookAfter, Peter decided to close that gap. There, guests can get premium salon services on a walk-in basis and haircuts from stylists who will gladly slow down for careful consultations instead of racing through trims with stopwatches in their hands. The name LookAfter is meant to reflect this blend and to demonstrate his vision for a place where the staff stands ready to serve all clients, whether they need keratin treatments, eyebrow waxes, or beard trims. This approach has helped LookAfter grow to more than 40 locations across St. Louis, Kansas City, and central Illinois, and the idea has also led to ongoing community outreach. Stylists have helped raise money for disaster relief, support breast-cancer awareness, and generate funds for veterans’ programs by carrying haircare products from American Warrior.
When the new owners of Shear Style Salon took over in early 2012, they transformed the hair and nail salon into a full-service beauty emporium. Though sleek styling services and mani-pedis continue to anchor the menu, the spa’s team of aestheticians now tends to skin across the body with luxurious facials and scrubs.
A Redken Premier school, The Salon Professional Academy staffs an elite team of certified teachers, each of whom boasts more than 10 years of industry experience and a passion for education. Director of Education Chris Gould garnered 16 years of experience training with well-known brands such as Vidal Sassoon, Jacques Dessange, and Yosh Toya, before opening the academy to share her savvy with top local talent. Up-and-coming hair stylists, cosmetologists, and aestheticians meet for full-time, hands-on classes that dispense wisdom on products, body treatments, and the most effective way to relax tense mannequins. Armed with scissors, enthusiasm, and on-trend taste, advanced students head onto the floor to perform salon services on real clients under the watchful eyes of their teachers.
A good spa will transport its guests to a time and place where everyday stresses are forgotten. American Image Salon & Spa can take you to a rainforest waterfall, for example—its monsoon massage sends the gentle mist of a Vichy shower cascading onto backs and shoulders. If you'd prefer a steamier setting, opt for the hot-stone massage, during which a therapist banishes tension with kneads and strategically placed lava rocks. There are also packages that provide even longer, more luxurious escapes, such as the 6.5-hour Day of Beauty: a Clarisonic facial, massage, mani-pedi, shampoo, makeup application, and lunch.
Sometimes, however, a visit to the spa or salon is a quick reward in the middle of the day. That's why the staff here administers most of the standard treatments for the hair, nails, and body. Stylists trim new 'dos and flatten frizz with Chi Enviro smoothing formulas, or nourish the skin with specialized facials. Manicures might feature add-ons from a seaweed mask to a layer of eco-paraffin, a more environmentally friendly way to soften the hands than by wrapping them in live ferrets. Gentlemen are hardly neglected, either. Their services include haircuts as well as mustache- and beard-tinting.
Studio Valentine offers hair, nail, skin, and massage services in a charming and inviting space. Hairstylists provide deft cuts, coloring, and updos, and skincare specialists administer nourishing facials. Clients can spruce up with a makeup application or a mani-pedi, and then wind down with a deep-tissue massage to ease muscle soreness and relieve stress. The quaint, cottage-style salon is a warm retreat where all stylists, driven by fashion savvy and a desire to please, give their utmost attention to clients.
Mes Bon Amis Salon with Jen Grillo offers aesthetic treatments focused on two areas: hair and nails. Jen can apply vivid Gelish to nails during mani-pedis or flex her styling muscles with updos, textured cuts, and services for curly hair. She also animates a deep passion for color in her hair work, which she’s perfected over the course of eight years as a professional. During that time, she’s also taken classes on cutting, color techniques, and updos, sharpening her skills in the same way movie villains hone their skills through moustache-twirling classes.