Like any good teacher, style director and salon owner Shelley Hutchinson believes you are never done learning. Her 14 years as a cosmetologist have led her to oversee a staff of hairstylists, aestheticians, and massage therapists, all of whom continue to hone their skills through educational seminars. As they absorb new techniques, they graduate on a track from apprentice to senior stylist, having chosen a major in either scissor biology or beehive keeping. Shelley herself attends international trade shows to keep up with the world's aesthetic tastes, adapting her knowledge of cuts and colors to make the most of the salon's partnership with Goldwell.
Inside Shelley's beautification venue, sunlight illuminates fixtures inspired by the natural world. Potted trees, floral arrangements, and bamboo window shades complement the earth-toned walls of private spa and public styling areas. The services also draw from nature: guests can warm their feet during the Tranquil Earth pedicure featuring hot rocks, or they can nourish their features with an enzyme peel's pineapple and papaya extracts.
The European facial is touted as a treatment primed to maintain healthy visages and is customized to each guest's individual skin type. The relaxing session begins with deep pore cleansing, followed by exfoliation, extractions, and a face, neck, and shoulder massage. Guests are also treated to an application of a variety of Guinot skincare products. During the pampering, hands are swaddled in warm, hydrating mitts.
Lipstik Beauty Lounge's stylists de-poof manes with the formaldehyde- and keratin-free ThermaFuse Amino Fusion Smoothing Treatment. A practiced hairdresser first consults with guests to outline the service before slathering hair fibers with an amino-fusion product rich with biocompatible amino acids that render strands shinier than a freshly laundered bowling ball. Post-treatment locks boast greater manageability, less frizz and volume, and a shorter dry time. Because ThermaFuse requires no curing period, patrons in pursuit of a different head-hue can color their hair the same day as their smoothing, or steep their feet in vats of food coloring for at least 72 hours.
At Metamorphose Salon, a style-savvy posse of beatifying beauticians pampers visitors from finger to toe with an array of spa services. During each mani-pedi, experienced digital stylists preen patron's extremities, doting for 45 minutes on the fingers and an hour on the toes, soaking, massaging, and moisturizing away stress and dry skin. Utilizing an artistic eye, nail technicians sculpt tips to the client's specification, rounding out points, squaring edges, or crafting tiny busts of Michelangelo. After relaxing hand and foot massages, detailers paint paws with OPI lacquers bright enough to make a rainbow blush, leaving skin soft, supple, and revitalized.
Ania Hair Studio & Spa's stylists fear no wave, corkscrew, or kink that comes their way. With their certification from Ouidad, a line of curl-centric products, and their trademarked curly-hair salon techniques, the only curl they don't tackle professionally comes with a roast-beef sandwich at Arby's. Their team is comprised of stylists of every skill level, from beginner to master artist, but they all work closely with their clients to find the cut or color that suits them best. In the spa department, aestheticians pamper skin with facials and waxing services, as well as eyelash extensions and mani-pedis. Massage therapists, alternatively, soothe muscles with various bodywork modalities, reiki, and herbal steam. The studio itself features a modern, urban aesthetic, with a corrugated-metal ceiling hovering over painted exposed vents and track lighting. Yet wood accents, granite floor tiles, winsome yellow orb lighting, and a smattering of plants lend the space an eclectic, decorative vibe. You'll also discover wicker chairs padded with brown leather cushions—even individual items cull their aesthetic influences from disparate yet complementary sources, like a basketball arena outfitted with a slip 'n' slide for players to cool off after each dunk.
Katerina Mathias aims to show each client their true potential. She uses chemical peels, diamond microdermabrasion, and other skin care therapies to bring out the best in each person's skin. She also uses professional skin care products, as well as organic, custom-made masks and oils. Clients leave her spa with glowing complexion, nourished skin, and clear pores.
But what qualifies Katerina as a skincare expert? The answer is twofold, spanning both formal and personal experience. First, she earned a bachelor's degree in organic chemistry, receiving institutional confirmation of her enzymatic and molecular know-how. Next, after moving from Russia to the United States, Katerina became a mother. And although it was the textbooks that imparted stats about cells and atoms, it was her long hours as a new mom that drove home the need for quality self-care. "As a woman and a mother, I know it is not easy to break free and love yourself," she explains, "but once it happens, it starts a chain reaction that improves all aspects of life."