Beneath damask-patterned walls and soft curtains, red poufs give guests a cushy surface on which to try on the shoes they’ve plucked from the swank store’s glossy, white shelves. In addition to housing a wide selection of shoes, which ranges from heel-free flats to pumps designed to lend wearers a competitive edge in slam-dunk contests, staffers fill the often-rotating inventory with trendy accoutrements such as jewels, cheetah prints, and handbags accented with grommets and charms. They also sling unique pieces of jewelry, including demure pearl earrings and spiked bracelets.
They host a ladies' night every month, inviting clients to peruse new styles while sampling crudités and other treats.
Under the guidance of master barber Paul Johnson, the staff at Hair Fetish Barber Shop and Salon makes over men and women with sleek new hairstyles. Men can watch sports on high-definitions TVs while getting a quick cut and shave, and women can unwind with colors, cuts, and styles in a separate salon area. The shop’s barbers and stylists trim hair in a spacious facility with tile flooring and a wraparound mirror obscuring red walls and facial blemishes.
While working at other peoples' salons, Shelly Spann yearned for something of her own. "I wanted to get my name out there," she says. One day, while watching reality TV, Shelly was struck by an idea. All of the shows were "centered around women and hanging out together, so I thought, 'Oh my God, how awesome would it be if we did that?'" Shelly masterminded a business that beautifies brows on location at get-togethers as partygoers sip champagne and wine. "It takes a little bit of the edge off of waxing," she says with a laugh.
Now Shelly divides her hours between mobile services and time at her full-body-waxing headquarters. She uses Nufree Nudesse, a sugar-free wax alternative that removes hair with less pain, irritation, and grumbling from cranky candles. Clients can also request numbing creams to keep procedures even less uncomfortable.
Waxing and brow sculpting aren’t Shelly’s only specialties, though. The fully licensed aesthetician also beautifies her clients’ complexions with a selection of exfoliating and hydrating facials. Her treatments range from mini and teen versions of her signature facial to custom European facials that take their cues from individual skin types.
Children's toys, brightly colored mirrors, and coloring easels delight little ones at Salon 36 Kids, and patient stylists pamper them with kid-centric beauty services. During a first haircut, stylists carefully snip baby and toddler hair, saving a lock for the parents and also providing them with a photo and keepsake certificate afterward. Along with kid cuts, Salon 36's team is well versed in highlighting teens' manes, flatiron straightening, trimming parents’ locks, and dolling up digits with mani-pedis for all ages, which also are featured in the salon's birthday-party packages.
In addition to services tailored to kids, the staff also uses high-quality, kid-friendly beauty products. Fairy Tales products keep bugs at bay with a lice-repellent formulation. The salon also stocks their shelves with eye-catching hair accessories, from barrettes to headbands, as well as specialty toys, including floating bath toys and picture puzzles of Einstein's first mohawk.
"At the age of 16, my chemistry teacher inspired my love of chemistry by teaching me how to make beauty products," say Cindy Tawiah, eponymous founder of Diva by Cindy. Cindy has garnered praise from a variety of outlets, including Tyra Banks's fashion and beauty website, for her line of natural, alcohol-free hair products. Her products have also received praise and awards from typeF and Shecky's for detangling hair in a swift and stylish manner. Cindy's staff employs her signature line of healthful shampoos, conditioners, and 'do balms during a variety of hair services. As 'dos get done, other team members work to treat the whole body, from the aestheticians who smooth and renew skin with waxes and facials to massage therapists who knead away stresses or recalibrate energy levels with reflexology and reiki techniques.
At Neha Threading Salon & Spa, Neha Gupta, a threading specialist and licensed cosmetologist who's worked in India and the United States for 18 years, leads a team of experienced aestheticians, technicians, and stylists. She invites customers to unwind and relax with a wide range of beautifying and soothing spa and salon services. Threading and waxing remove unwanted hair, sculpting brows along the way. Custom facial treatments cleanse pores and exfoliate complexions, rejuvenating them for another day in public or one final staring contest with the mirror. Full-body massages use modalities such as deep tissue or hot stones to alleviate aches or pains, whereas hair and nail services tend to heads, fingers, and toes.