A typical salon visit goes as follows: client checks in at a front desk with a receptionist, consults with their stylist, gets a robe from an associate, goes to a sink to get hair washed by an assistant, goes back to stylist to get hair cut or colored, has hair blow-dried by an apprentice and then heads back to the front desk to check out.
“This doesn’t work,” said Joel Warren, cofounder of Warren Tricomi and founder of new beauty venture, The Salon Project. “It hasn’t changed since the Seventies…during the Vidal Sassoon era, [when] there was a receptionist, manager, assistant and commissioned hairdressers.”
This long-standing process became the impetus for Warren’s new concept Salótto Beauty — his take on revamping the traditional salon model.
Salótto Beauty, which soft opened the month and saw an official opening this week, has one stylist tending to a client throughout their entire visit — from check-in to checking out and facilitating the sale of products, if desired. The 1,000-square-feet space has six chairs and is located in the One Hotel & Homes in South Beach, Fla. Haircuts start at $125, blowouts at $70, highlights $250 and single processes at $120.
“Your color, cut and wash is all done by one person. This is more specialized, bespoke and intimate, and also makes it a lot less chaotic and more efficient. Just as Uber has changed taxi industry, that kind of shift needs to happen in the salon business,” Warren said.
He cofounded Warren Tricomi in 1990 with Edward Tricomi and Roxana Pintilie, and as of last October, is no longer associated with the salon. Joel Warren founded company The Salon Project late last year where he doubles as its creative director, and his first concept is Salótto Beauty. The venture is self funded.
He explained how the new process works: A stylist meets the client when they arrive and brings them to a chair for a consultation, at which point they are turned around to have their hair washed in a sink right behind the chair.
“The stylist is in total control and has the power of what’s going on with the client….This eliminates the chaos that goes on in salons,” Warren said, noting that in addition to increased attention paid to clientele, seamless checkout was integral to concept. Clients check out at their seat; there is no longer a need to go back to a front desk.
Warren has plans to open 10 to 15 of these salons over the next two to three years in major cities across the U.S. and is launching a namesake product line this summer.