Back in 1999, brothers David and Rick Kueber noticed a lag in business at their chain of video-rental shops during the summer months, when no one wanted to be cooped up inside watching movies. The two put their heads together and found a rather unconventional solution to their problem: tanning beds. They installed a new fleet of skin-bronzing machines and sat back as so many clients flocked to their shop that the brothers were forced to open an entire store just to cater to their clients? tanning demands. This was the birth of Sun Tan City. Today, what started as an experimental side business boasts more than 200 locations across 16 states.
The staff at each location maintains a meticulously clean space, where they show clients to UV beds dubbed fast, faster, fastest, and instant. The beds include features such as facial tanners and self-contained air conditioners. Alternatively, clients can opt for the UV-free, automated VersaSpa system, which swathes physiques in a DHA, plant-based bronzing solution. The liquid reacts naturally with skin?s amino acids, creating an even coat as radiant as the high beams on Helios?s chariot within 46 seconds.
As a nationally board-certified therapist and member of the American Medical Massage Association, C.M. Massage owner Chris MacPherson draws on a wealth of anatomical knowledge to relax his clients and bring their bodies back to states of natural well-being. Chris and his team of certified therapists?both male and female?tend to knotted muscles in private treatment rooms, properly draping bodies before administering a series of targeted therapeutic strokes. The therapists' nimble fingers apply techniques culled from modalities such as sports, relaxation, and prenatal to alleviate chronic conditions, headaches, and back and neck pain. They work seven days a week and, depending on their availability, can schedule appointments with as little as 30 minutes? notice.
Sandra Murphy, Glamour Permanent Cosmetics' owner and certified cosmetics specialist, crafts tattooed facial enhancements that mimic the look of makeup, bestowing eye and lip regions with natural-looking fullness and perpetual allure. A team of four safety-certified staffers assists Murphy, each specializing in a particular form of cosmetic enhancement such as eyelash extensions, teeth whitening, and tattoos. Murphy has honed her craft since 2006 and now instructs a 100-hour course designed to certify new permanent cosmetics artists.
Massage therapist Jodi McClain had just finished her last massage of the day when her patient, still lying prone on the table, burst into tears. She began speaking about difficult emotional issues she'd held in for years, until that massage helped set the pain free. Jodi savors seeing her clients leave happier than they were when they walked in, and uses her custom blend of Swedish, deep-tissue, and trigger-point-therapy massage to achieve this pleasant outcome?by way of ousting tension and muscular pain. She also performs myofascial-release massage and cranio-sacral therapy upon request, and can collaborate with doctors to build injury-treatment plans and incite laughter with multiple taps to the funny bone.
During massages, massage therapists may slather their client's skin in Massage FX cream?infused with aloe, arnica, and ivy extracts?to keep it moisturized and dull any site-specific pain. Though they eschew aromatherapy, they often soak a cloth in eucalyptus and peppermint oils to relieve clients' suffering from sinus pressure. They also conduct facials and specialized skinny massages to tone and tighten skin, as well as applying infrared-light therapy to detox skin and enrage cats by demonstrating the photon theory of light, as most cats still think of light as a wave. They conduct all their treatments in one room designed to evoke a garden; with flowers hung from the ceiling, a decorative fence, and soft lighting. While they often plays piano melodies, the massage therapists also lull clients toward relaxation with a bubbling water fountain and casual conversation.
In 2002, Glamazon Salon was a one-man show, with owner and color-specialist Jere styling all clients, all the time. Though today Jere?s staff has grown to include four more talented designers, nail technicians, and massage therapists, he?s kept his basic concept intact: an urban salon geared not just toward offering chic hairstyles for all, but also helping the community. Throughout haircut and color services, Jere and his crew draw from a shelf full of environmentally friendly products by brands such as Neuma, Kemon, and Pureology?all of which forgo harsh chemicals and playground name calling. Outside of the salon, the team hosts various community fundraisers in support of organizations such as the Child Abuse Council and Every Woman?s Place.