Vincent Wright snipped his first bang in his uncle’s barbershop in 1963, and that bit of creativity went on to became his lifelong passion. He later went on to study at the Vidal Sassoon Academy in London, perfecting his styling techniques so much that he was invited to join the faculty. Eventually, he returned to Maryland, where he opened Ascension Salon and Spa in 1988.
And his shears haven’t slowed down since. He and his team of stylists trim, style, and color hair, while their aesthetician allies cleanse skin with facials or paint nails in lacquer, Shellac, or tiny oil portraits of Renaissance beauties. On the spa side, massages knead away tension in 30- to 90-minute sessions.
Merle Norman & Day Spa is an offshoot of Merle Norman Cosmetics, a brand that's been in business since 1931. Inside, aestheticians combine time-tested makeups and powders with a menu of spa treatments to help clients look and feel their best. The team performs skin-revivifying services such as customized facials, microdermabrasion treatments, body wraps, and polishes. But they don't stop at the skin; massage therapists perform long, soothing sessions in order to evaporate tension and promote overall wellness.
What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
I offer facials and advanced exfoliating for the face and body. I also offer body wraps and eyelash and eyebrow services. With over 8 years of dermatology experience I am big on educating all clients about their skin.
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
My inspiration for starting Calming Beauty Spa was to be able to provide custom treatments for every skin type and educate women and men on the proper way to take care of their skin.
What do you love most about your job?
The two things I love most about my job are giving my clients new knowledge and seeing their expressions after their treatment.
What is the best reaction you've ever gotten from a customer?
One of my clients is a burn victim and she was not happy with how her skin looked and wanted to be able to even out her skin tone and texture. After just one treatment of advanced exfoliation she saw a huge difference and started to cry tears of joy. That makes everything I do worth it!
At Gossip Salon & Day Spa, you'll get more than a haircut, a makeup application, or a massage—you'll get an atmosphere of friendly ease. The staff adopts the original meaning of the word gossip—folks as far back as 1014 used the word to mean a close friend. It was only later that it took on a more pernicious denotation, though it always kept the connotation of comfortable chatter. At the salon, stylists mainly stick to gossiping about new tools, techniques, and products that'll help clients look runway-ready.
Inside the welcoming confines, the stylists, aestheticians, manicurists and massage therapists chat amiably with clients, consulting them on their desired look and lifestyle before trimming their hair into classic and on-trend cuts or shaping their brows into their favorite parallelogram. Gossip Salon & Day Spa offers a full menu of nail services, from spa mani-pedis to gel and pink-and-white sets to French polish. They also practice their approach outside their salon, participating regularly in community outreach and charitable events.
Led by senior stylist and owner Liz Sarvinas, the expert team at Hair by Ell gives hair a fresh start with Paul Mitchell, It's a 10, and Joico products during haircuts and deep conditionings. After a stylist seats a client before his or her own personal, triangular haircutting station, the two work together to pick a fitting style, working through options such as ombre coloring, asymmetrical bangs, or a perfect cowlick. Once hair is shed of split ends and extra weight, clients can choose to add body with extensions or depth with highlights or a perm.
Balancing beauty, wellness, and the wonders of medicine, A Better You, LLC helps its clients stay healthy and achieve their aesthetic goals all at once. Using paraben-free Guinot skincare products and other advanced skincare solutions, the staff helps release skin's inner glow with a full menu of facials. The staff also rids bodies of unwanted hair with waxing treatments, and offers sunless tanning and massages. But it isn't all about pampering—the staff builds personalized physician-supervised weight-loss programs that might include appetite suppressants and B12 injections. Integrative health services like acupuncture and reiki energy healing help restore internal balance. And A Better You also provides routine primary health-care services that keep bodies running like well-oiled and extremely comfortable machines.