Salon Alexander owner Ashley Stone might look familiar. That's because she—or, rather, her alter ego, Blondie—was the runner-up in the Oxygen network's second season of Hair Battle Spectacular, in which hairstylists competed to create the best larger-than-life fantasy hairdos. Stone has shared her hair beauty tips on Elle Girl's website and appeared on the Hot 93.7 radio show to discuss her interest in modern art, which is the driving force behind her avant-garde style.
Together with her team, Stone combines her extensive experience and passion for art and fashion to transform her clients with a variety of services, including specialty coloring, makeup, and eyelash extensions. The stylists at her sister company, Beauty Entourage, travel to the churches, homes, or low-hovering spaceships of brides-to-be to beautify them for their big day. The mobile crew has earned one of The Knot's Best Makeup Artists & Hair awards.
Committed to developing beauty beyond the surface level, Stone participates in charity events. You also might have caught her WTNH 8 interview promoting a charity event that benefited Wigs for Kids, which provides specialized wigs for children who have lost their hair because of medical conditions.
Amid the chaos of life, the therapists at Natural Balance Therapeutic Massage step into a bubble of calm at work. Their clients go there to find peace as well, and they gently glide their hands over their dermal canvases during Swedish, deep-tissue, and sports massages. The therapists also help to alleviate pain in the body by concentrating on the feet during reflexology treatments and “This Little Piggy” sessions. Reiki sessions also prove useful in tempering aches and stress by releasing energy blockages.
GBS Brows has carved out a niche for its four locations by offering beautification treatments not often found at other salons. While they certainly present standard fare such as facials, massages, and waxing, what sets them apart are their two other treatments; threading and henna tattoos. Threading, an alternative to traditional waxing, uses intertwined pieces of thread to remove and shape facial hair with increased precision. Their India-trained henna tattoo artists can create beautiful, often floral-inspired designs that typically last about two to four weeks, like most grade school plays. Each location's décor showcases its own type of elegance, but they all feature bright colors and pleasant flourishes such as plants and paintings.
Unlike the playground game it takes its name from, Rock Paper Scissors Hair Salon has nothing to do with competition. Instead, the staff members—who have more than 35 years of combined experience—emphasize cooperation as they work closely with their clients to craft personalized looks with their extensive assortment of hair services. Inside the modern and sleek salon, in which red fixtures dangle like stalactites, the stylists work their magic with high-end products from Goldwell, L'Oréal, Simply Smooth, and Moroccanoil. The team also encourages clients to enjoy complimentary coffee, tea, wine, or their choice of a high-five or bear hug—but customers must supply the bear.
Binda Neupane, GBS Browz's founder, hails from Nepal by way of South Carolina. In her homeland, she was inspired to learn the art of threading for hair removal after being exposed to the tradition in a hair salon. In Nepal, the tradition gets passed down directly from generation to generation, like the American tradition of not really knowing whether Alexander Hamilton was a president. Binda took up the trade with enthusiasm, and after learning it from masters and practicing it herself for many years, she opened up GBS Browz. Though the salon's name hints at its brow-shaping specialty, Binda can also render henna body art and improve complexions during facials. For the latter, she might incorporate fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy products, or herbs.
At Envy Hair Salon, services come without attitude as stylists work with clients to find a flattering style. Owner Nichole Vega creates a laidback environment, replete with neutral walls and wood-framed mirrors that reflect expert cuts and color treatments. Also included in their list of services are airbrush tanning and massage therapy.