Spa Sundara's licensed aestheticians and massage therapists beautify clients with 90-minute wraps performed amid flickering candles, golden-hued walls, and draped fabric. Sessions commence with a 15-minute stint in a warm, infrared sauna to start the detoxifying process, relax tight muscles, and loosen socks sealed-on with wax. Practitioners then apply a sloughing scrub made from highly caffeinated Balinese coffee to smooth uneven skin texture, refine contours, and infuse the body with antioxidants. An aromatic coffee mask teamed up with a warm blanket wrap follows to evict impurities from cramped pore apartments. Spa Sundara's staff recommends clients receive one body wrap a week for six weeks to obtain maximum detoxification and the energy of a child playing in a pool of Mountain Dew.
Andres Tobar performed his first haircut at the age of 13. The Los Angeles native spent long summer days and weekends at the salon where his mother, Dulmary Sabater, worked. After training at the Vidal Sassoon Academy in Santa Monica, he earned a specialty in color, displayed his dos in shows around the world, became a Platform Artist at the Los Angeles International ICE Show, and sculpted the hair of supermodel Niki Taylor. At L.A. Gallery Hair & Make-Up Studio, Andres joins a team of Los Angeles–trained stylists and makeup artists. To ensure each client has access to the latest fashions and beauty techniques, the styling pros update their know-how from sources such as Bumble and bumble University, Vidal Sassoon Academy, L’Oréal Professionnel, and Motives Cosmetics. The stylists even help to push the industry forward by producing their own photo shoots, fashion shows, and training courses. Amid a rotating display of art crafted by local artisans, clients surrender their hair and faces to stylists. Beautifiers update hues with ombre color shading and INOA ammonia-free color or leave dos with a striking new look after a custom cut. The resident makeup artist, Claudia Tobar, also puts her practiced hands to work, helping clients to highlight their natural beauty until they're as tempting as Cleopatra driving an ice-cream truck.
Two hair designers and a skin care specialist staff Stasia's Organic Element Salon, and they apply their trades with organic products. For makeup they use products from Youngevity makeup. For hair, they might use Onest? or Mastey and John Masters hair care products. Like many other salons, the interior is full of soothing soft purples and softly lit private treatment rooms, and the staff tries to be equally gentle on skin and scalp by eschewing harsh chemicals found in nonorganic products. The salon's owner, Stacy, has personal experience battling eczema and found that organic salon products helped clear up her skin. So, today she has a deep personal investment in the products she uses for haircuts, keratin treatments, and color applications.
Before opening Salon Jack, owner and head stylist Chad Malm spent most of his professional life working with a diverse clientele and had his work featured in fashion publications such as Allure and Harper’s Bazaar. He also traveled extensively as an educator for Bumble and bumble, learning the latest styling trends along the way. Now that he’s settled down, Chad continues to bring the same level of commitment and energy to his work with all kinds of customers and insists that his stylists do, too. As he says on his website, the salon hires stylists "who are inspired by what they do and are on fire for it." All stylists have undergone extensive training in the latest hair trends and are well versed in professional products such as Wella hair color and GKHair keratin hair-smoothing treatments.
Hair color can have give extraordinary dimension to an otherwise plain haircut, whether it be through a bold all-over change or a few strategically placed highlights. The stylists at U.b.U Color Salon have mastered this process using high-end products such as Redken and Nioxin. Clients may also request a specialty keratin straightening treatment or nix unwanted hair during a private waxing session.
If the cozy-feeling animal-print blankets, lamps, and artwork inside Salon Belladonna and Spa are any indicator of how the staff operates, clients can expect to be treated like family. Each one studies their client's face shape, skin tone, and fingerprints before starting in on any custom haircut or highlights application. Professional products from Wella, Big Sexy Hair, and Redken also give new styles an edge. But private treatment rooms are really the salon's sanctuary, where clients relax during custom facials that help improve the condition of acne and other skin issues.