At Salon Laura Michaels, which earned a Best Boston Hair Salon award in 2005, stylists apply high-end products from brands such as Goldwell and Moroccanoil during haircuts, highlights, and conditioning services. Strands soak up a hydrating elixir during deep-conditioning treatments, which help prevent hair from breaking or becoming an actual bird’s nest. Stylists wash, cut, and style coiffures into face-flattering designs, adding partial or full highlights to attract attention more tastefully than a tub of popcorn chatting on a cell phone. During the one–two hours of pampering, visitors can take in Laura Michaels’ modern décor, which encompasses droplights, sleek wooden floors, and an end-table with quirky cut-outs.
Crush Salon and Spa's diverse services run the gamut from beauty to relaxation, including hot-stone massages, keratin straightening treatments, and a full-fledged spray-tan business. The staff cuts hair for women, men, and children, applies professional makeup, and rejuvenates complexions with deep-cleansing facials. In addition to these conventional salon services, Spray U Tan—located inside Crush—focuses exclusively on airbrush tanning, bronzing clients' bodies from head to toe, conjuring golden skin tones the way alchemists conjure excuses for why they seem to never actually turn anything into gold.
Most artists use a brush and paint. Michelle Como uses foils, shampoo, and dye. Sure, she's technically a stylist, but she treats each service as an artform. Michelle owns Pure Color Bar Salon, where she spends her days sculpting and coloring hair. In addition to color treatments and highlights, she specializes in keratin smoothing treatments to get rid of curls, frizz, and misplaced crazy straws. Her coworkers produce stunningly complex nail art, with stripes and swirls peppered with little gems fastened in place with adhesive.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Staff Size: 2–10 people
Parking: Parking lot
Most popular service: hair color
Brands Used: wella, keratin complex
A cozy salon in the heart of Madison, Norma’s Hair Styling caters to all things beauty related with space for haircuts, mani-pedis, and waxing. Men, women, and children can settle into one of the salon’s six styling chairs for a chic haircut, deep-conditioning treatment, or foil highlights sponsored by John Amico Italian hair color. Overgrown cuticles and hangnails meet their demise in the mani-pedi corner, where skilled technicians buff and shape nails as meticulously as a ship captain buffs his glass eye every night. A layer of colorful OPI polish or chip-resistant gel—the latter of which lasts for up to two weeks without chipping—leaves nails glimmering and clients feeling confident enough to high-five themselves in public.
Clients walking into La Bella Delle Rose Salon might sense a warm, personal aesthetic shaping the styling studio, even if they don't know that the dark-wood reception desk was hand-built by the owner's father. Sherbet-colored walls backdrop ice-cream-themed decorations, a popcorn machine commingles with the coffeemaker in the waiting area, and a manicure station recalls a fortune-teller's table with its scarlet damask draping. While basking in Pureology hair treatments or being prepped for weddings and other landmark occasions, guests sit beneath studio lighting, which helps them tell stylists apart from IRS agents.