Time may be short before Doug Stevens' next client, but he can always find a moment to talk shop. "I love helping people," he declares. "Helping people look better, feel better. That's the most satisfying thing." Doug has been a nationally certified massage therapist and aesthetician for 15 years, specializing in a process he devised to reduce the appearance of cellulite while relaxing the whole body. The technique combines an endovibratory device oscillating at 35 times per second with ultrasonic heat and his signature bodywork methods. "After the cellulite treatment, the skin is firmer, the appearance smoother," he explains. "People generally really like it, so they'll rebook."
Before receiving certification in Las Vegas in 1997, Doug was in the construction business as a general contractor. But it wasn't giving him what he wanted. "I was looking for a profession that was less stressful, where I could help people. I wanted to be more hands on. And my friends always came to me for massages, so I decided to go into that." Over time, he's added other treatments designed to improve the mood while boosting beauty, such as a photon antiwrinkle light therapy.
Doug describes his studio as very relaxing, with low light and smooth music. Though the ambiance has an undeniable pulse-slowing effect, it's the treatments' results that he credits for his return business. "Some of my clients have been coming every week for six years," he says. "Only the wealthy can usually afford treatments like these. That's not the case here. I want people to focus on how good they're going to feel."
Whenever her kids' bangs began to fall into their eyes, Paula Thurman couldn't help but feel a twinge of anxiety. She knew a trip to the hairdresser was in store, which meant an hour of squirming, whining, and complaining about itchy bits of fallen hair. But it was on one such trip that inspiration struck. As Paula told reporters from the Kansas City Business Journal, “as soon as I walked [into the salon], a fire went off in me, and I knew it. I saw it and thought, ‘I can do this.’” Although she had no experience running a salon or business, Paula had plenty experience keeping kids happy. She decided to combine that with keen motherly intuition and lessons learned from a few business classes to design a special salon for energetic youngsters—Shear Madness Haircuts for Kids was born.
Today, Shear Madness Haircuts for Kids has sprouted locations across Kansas, Missouri, and into New Mexico. Amid the salons' mad splashes of color, cheerful stylists snip up new styles and arrange locks into playful pigtails and beehives that are perfectly sized to hide uneaten vegetables. While they work, their young clients sit in chairs shaped like race cars, watching movies or playing video games. As kids are getting cuts, moms can shop for a toy, bow, or bottle of root-beer-scented shampoo for their wee ones in the onsite boutique.
North Star Body Bar’s aesthetically driven specialists embellish epidermal expanses with a menu of services that darken, smooth, and soothe skin. During slimming body wraps, an aesthetician performs dry-brush exfoliation with a cheerful sea anemone, before swaddling physiques in algae, seaweed, mud, or clay to firm the skin and oust toxins. Endermologie treatments rely on rollers and suction devices to undo dimples throughout the body, and red-light therapy improves skin tone and eases aches. Beach House Tanning, North Star's body-bronzing area, houses a variety of tanning beds that help bodies produce more vitamin D. Tanners eschewing UV rays can yield their pelts to a sunless spray tan that imbues skin in golden hues without needing a chest bump from King Midas.
Whether through UV beds or paraben-free tanning solutions, Soleil Tanning and Skin Care helps clients reach and maintain beach-worthy skin year-round. Customers can choose from an arsenal of premium- and velocity-level tanning beds, each tucked away in private rooms and designed to effortlessly bronze skin without the nuisance of sunbathing or sleeping next to an open oven. Meanwhile, Mystic spray tan booths airbrush pale complexions with a paraben-free and customized tanning spray. After their session, clients can amble into a private spa room for a Brazilian wax or lash tint, or head to the lobby to pick up a variety of products, such as Sanitas anti-aging skincare serums or a bottle of Twilight Teeth—a tooth-whitening gel that brightens smiles during the UV-tanning process.
At the three locations of Sun Care Spray Tan & Skin Care Salon, customers use sunless spray booths, light therapy, and tanning beds to help get toned and bronzed. Beds of varying strengths and Mystic Tan booths allow customers to add color to their skin without napping on freshly painted benches in the park, and beds filled with pink-glowing bulbs help to tone skin. The salon's red-light therapy aims to painlessly promote circulation, fortify cellular walls in order to increase firmness, and banish eczema, stretch marks, and acne, while the hydration steam pod helps cleanse the skin and promote moisture retention.
The Funtastic Jumps crew brings smiles to adults and children alike with rentals of towering inflatable castles, bouncy water slides, and carnivals filled with dunk tanks and interactive games. After the team sets up the gear, kids can frolic amid colorful, themed bounce houses, or zap each other with laser-tag markers. A portable family movie night setup brings enormous screens and high-tech projectors to events, letting groups watch films or make detailed shadow puppets under the stars or at any venue. Funtastic Jumps' extensive arsenal of concessions also equips block parties or birthdays with the likes of cotton-candy machines and other vital party needs, such as chairs, tarps, and tables.