These 3 Salons are Strengthening Community Ties – Here’s How
From cocktail bars to yoga classes, salons are fast becoming local hotspots, we talked to three salons on how they became pillars of their communities.
Earlier this year, hairdresser Tim Scott-Wright of The Hair Surgery in Stourbridge turned heads with his story of The Friday Ladies, a group of women who have visited his salon every week for the past 30 years, bonding over shared life experiences including cancer and bereavement. When lockdown hit, Tim was determined to provide that same level of support, arranging phone calls every Friday in which the group could chat, socialise and even grill Tim for hair advice! The story was then featured in Marie Claire’s and the British Beauty Council’s Bring Back Beauty campaign, a short film series highlighting the impact of the pandemic on hair and beauty businesses and the effect on their clients.
Salons have long been at the heart of the community and post-Covid, more businesses are adapting their spaces to their clients’ changing needs. From work-friendly zones to cocktail areas, salon owners are looking at ways of increasing their services to become community hubs “We need to find a place to belong and the salon is one of those places,” says Tim Scott-Wright.
The one-stop eco shop
Trailblazing eco-salon Anne Veck in Oxford is the only salon currently certified as carbon neutral (an accolade held for the last three years). Clients are invited to reduce their plastic consumption by using the Davines refill station to replace their products, without extra packaging. The salon is also signed up to the Refill initiative, which provides free drinking water to the public to reduce single-use plastic bottles. Searchable on the Refill app, Refill gives locals (clients or not) a reason to call into the salon, whether as a one-off visit or a regular drop in. ‘The Refill initiative is a straightforward and effective way of reducing plastic consumption and creating a more close-knit community’ says Anne.
The all-day hangout
Opening this month, November Collective is a state-of-the-art hair and beauty destination in buzzy Livingston, near Edinburgh. Founders Christopher Laird and Emma-Louise Cantwell, designed the space from scratch, which spans an impressive 150 square metres over two floors. Luxurious materials –oak floor, taupe leather chairs and green velvet beauty stools – create a feeling of calm and are accented with lush botanicals and cleverly created ‘zones’, each with their own scent. The salon boasts a lounge area, bar and glass-fronted beauty mezzanine – while mood-enhancing light settings add to the versatility of the space. “We wanted to create a space that allows the customer to take their time – they can come in and use this area to take calls, have a cocktail and send emails,” says co-founder Christopher.
The wellness hub
Mewies & Co in Leicestershire opened in August 2019; with founders Dan and Jemma Mewies creating a salon that reflected their mindful approach to hairdressing and has strong links with the local community. ‘We have a yoga studio which holds daily classes’ says Dan. ‘We also have another room which we rent to local businesses with similar values to us – it currently hosts acupuncture, meditation and reiki. All of our refreshments are sourced from local businesses, including vegan snacks and drinks.’ Providing multiple wellness services under one roof means that the salon has a steady stream of locals passing through, helping build the community links that are so important to the business