Choose Between Two Options
- $62 for a haircut, deep-conditioning treatment, and blowout ($125 value)
- $25 for a men’s haircut and scalp massage ($50 value)
Salon Shears: Design on the Edge
A stylist’s best friend is a collection of specialized shears. Continue reading to learn how these razor-sharp tools help create flattering new looks.
Training and education are invaluable for stylists, but the right tools are also essential. Professional-grade salon shears are sharpened to sever hair precisely and almost effortlessly. The material of the shears matters, too: blades are typically stainless-steel blended with additional alloys and elements to optimize function and minimize wear. For example, carbon hardens the steel, chromium protects against corrosion, and molybdenum protects against dulling. High-end salon shears can even include cobalt or titanium in the blades, adding durability with little extra weight.
Even if it’s made from the finest alloys, one pair of scissors is rarely enough for any hairstylist or person who makes a lot of paper snowflakes. Amber Rosema—a freelance beauty designer with Amber Rose Styles in Chicago—has four pairs of salon shears at her styling station at virtually all times. “I’ll usually change shears about twice in a general cut,” she says. This allows her to thin or texturize tresses by switching to one of her two pairs of specialized shears. Her other two pairs of trimming shears each sport convex blades—thin, razor-like edges that cleanly slice through strands—as opposed to beveled blades, which grip the strands before cutting them. Beveled shears are generally recommended for beginners, but the stylist’s level of comfort matters more than any other factor—Rosema says she, for one, prefers convex shears because she originally trained with that style.
Alloy composition and blade orientation are important, but Rosema says that when picking out new shears, “the first thing I notice is how they feel and how they fit in my hand.” Different grips can ease the strain on the stylist’s busy fingers. Finger inserts give a snug fit and increased control to the stylist’s hands, and designs with offset handles, swivels, or bent thumbholes don’t require the wrist to move so much, reducing the chance of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
Burnt District Salon & Spa
Eyelash Extension Adhesive: Super Strong, Super Subtle
Technicians use a special adhesive for individual eyelash extensions that’s available only to trained experts. Read on to see what makes it so special.
Natural-looking yet genetics-defying eyelashes: that's the goal of eyelash-extension salons. Each tiny extension is attached to an existing lash with a special kind of medical-grade glue that disappears into the lashes so clients can forget they weren’t born looking that way. It’s a delicate process performed by highly trained technicians, but it wouldn’t have been invented if not for a common household item: Super Glue.
In 1942, Dr. Harry Coover invented Super Glue by mistake. While trying to formulate a clear plastic to be used for gun sights at Eastman-Kodak during World War II, he and his team found that one substance was so sticky that it was almost impossible to work with—it would bind to just about anything, with no need for heat, pressure, or pleading. The company eventually put it on the market in 1958. Chemically known as a cyanoacrylate, the adhesive eventually found experimental use in the Vietnam War as a way to quickly close wounds and stop excessive bleeding, giving wounded soldiers more time to seek medical help in the field. Eventually the FDA approved forms of it for use in medicine.
Today, different cyanoacrylate formulations are used in dental surgery, to rejoin veins, and in the eyelash salon. Despite its ancestor’s application of bonding skin, eyelash-extension glue is meant to touch the lash only. To avoid contact with the lid, the glue is applied to the extension rather than the natural lash. Then it’s held against the lash with tiny tweezers for the 30–40 seconds it takes for the chemical bond to form—and repeated dozens of times until the lids are as lushly curtained as the client likes.