Founder Todd Beckman opened the first Tan Company location, then called The St. Louis Tan Company, in 1994 with a pair of average-size sun retreats. After perfecting a superstore concept with multiple levels of tanning beds and an intrepid-reporter alter ego, Beckman's bronzing business now spans 53 locations in 8 states, including 39 locations in the St. Louis area. Todd ensures each salon keeps the same high standards that won the 2010 award for Best Tanning in St. Louis from CityVoter.
A knowledgeable staff maintains each bright, highly sanitized environment and stocks shelves with Australian Gold, Swedish Beauty, and Designer Skin tanning products. The Tan Company also fashions UV-free tans with Mystic Tan standup booths that evenly spritz bodies with a paraben-free DHA solution infused with aloe vera.
A Redken Premier school, The Salon Professional Academy staffs an elite team of certified teachers, each of whom boasts more than 10 years of industry experience and a passion for education. Director of Education Chris Gould garnered 16 years of experience training with well-known brands such as Vidal Sassoon, Jacques Dessange, and Yosh Toya, before opening the academy to share her savvy with top local talent. Up-and-coming hair stylists, cosmetologists, and aestheticians meet for full-time, hands-on classes that dispense wisdom on products, body treatments, and the most effective way to relax tense mannequins. Armed with scissors, enthusiasm, and on-trend taste, advanced students head onto the floor to perform salon services on real clients under the watchful eyes of their teachers.
Todd Beckman founded MassageLuXe with the notion that five-star service should not be limited to pricey hotels. Today, the spa's team of qualified massage therapists and aestheticians continues to realize and build upon Todd's initial aspirations. A spa day at MassageLuXe includes all the perks one might expect from a vacation resort, from facials and massages to full-body waxing and baths in warm, effervescent champagne. The company's services tend to exceed expectations in other ways, too; along with standard massages such as Swedish and deep tissue, therapists are proficient in specialty modalities such as hot stone, reflexology, and aromatherapy.
A graduate of the St. Charles School of Massage Therapy, Cheryl Billman of Body Kneads pairs a scholastic knowledge of anatomy with an empathic concern for her patrons’ health and wellness. With a variety of massage modalities on her resume—Swedish, hot-stone, reflexology, and sports massage, to name a few—the licensed therapist calls upon vast reservoirs of experience to tailor sessions to individual needs. While patrons recline on a massage table, soft music subdues stressful thoughts and aromatic whiffs of essential oils and steamy chicken soup alternate with exhalations of stress.
Owner, licensed therapist, and pain-management specialist Aliki Taylor plunders back panels for stashed-away sore spots, relieved of tension via customized kneads and pressures. Her dexterous digits are fully trained in nine massage modalites, which she stitches together to suit each client's aches. Sessions may incorporate soothing Swedish strokes to boost circulation, cranial-massage methods to relax brain waves and eyebrow joints, medicupping techniques to smooth rippling cellulite, or myofascial therapy to loosen connective tissue. Paraffin wax and aromatherapy can sweeten sessions for an additional $5 each, and Aliki uses only products that have never been tested on animals and are so friendly to the environment that they know every tree's first and last name.
During more than a quarter century at the helm of LookAfter Hair Company, Peter Hall has seen the styling industry gradually split in two directions—toward the high-end salon and toward the in-and-out fast cut place. With LookAfter, Peter decided to close that gap. There, guests can get premium salon services on a walk-in basis and haircuts from stylists who will gladly slow down for careful consultations instead of racing through trims with stopwatches in their hands. The name LookAfter is meant to reflect this blend and to demonstrate his vision for a place where the staff stands ready to serve all clients, whether they need keratin treatments, eyebrow waxes, or beard trims. This approach has helped LookAfter grow to more than 40 locations across St. Louis, Kansas City, and central Illinois, and the idea has also led to ongoing community outreach. Stylists have helped raise money for disaster relief, support breast-cancer awareness, and generate funds for veterans’ programs by carrying haircare products from American Warrior.