Whether you’re just starting out, planning for the future, or redecorating your space, narrowing your style focus will help you develop personal and cohesive salon decor.
If you answered mostly A’s…
Your salon decor style is MODERN.
Modern decor is often associated with minimalism and simplicity, but a lot of thought goes into creating this look. It’s all about molding a trendy yet welcoming space with clean lines, polished surfaces, functional furniture, strong geometric shapes, asymmetry, and a neutral palette with bold pops of color. This is a great look for fashion-forward salon owners with contemporary taste. Expansive interiors with large unadorned windows are ideal, but minimal embellishments can help create that illusion. Stay away from unnecessary clutter by choosing only a few statement-making decorations like a large art piece, mirror, or light fixture that exhibits angular shapes, the hallmark of this style. Many modern furniture pieces are streamlined, tend to highlight functionality, and are made from man-made and natural materials. A blend of overhead- and spot-lights is fairly common as well. A popular variation of modern decor is urban decor, which is city space turned chic. It’s characterized by exposed brick or wood walls, maybe even exposed piping, and edgy color combinations you don’t see together too often like black and beige or gray and red. Common embellishments are ceiling pendants, big mirrors, and one-of-a-kind art pieces. If you’re on a budget, blowing up and framing black-and-white photography is a nice touch.
The polish display in Hoopa in Fairway, Kan., has become a functional yet decorative piece with modernistic clean lines and bold pops of color.
Hammer & Nails Salon in Los Angeles, Calif., is a great example of an urban design concept.
If you answered mostly B’s…
Your salon decor style is VINTAGE.
Do you have a thing for old-world charm or dainty beauty? True vintage rooms tend to resemble a homey living room and are adorned with timeworn objects that exude a sense of comfort and charm. This includes garage sale or flea-market finds, repurposed furniture, and antique trimmings. The look isn’t matchy-matchy, yet the right combination of things can come together quite pleasantly. Incorporate quirky, personal items that you’ve found over time to create an artful vignette, or take on a DIY art project. Vintage decor is all in the details. One room of your salon alone could have a myriad of things to look at — odds and ends on a bookshelf or an antique jewelry collection for sale strewn about different credenzas. But to prevent a room from looking disorganized, make sure to follow a coherent color scheme. Another common form of this style is “vintage-inspired,” which consists of a look that’s too old to be considered “used,” but not as old as grandma. The difference between vintage-inspired and your grandma’s house is that modern-day vintage has a more tailored look with muted versions of colors and classic patterns. Shabby chic is similar. Whereas vintage decor showcases objects from other eras, shabby chic involves distressing objects to give an aged appearance, French linens, rococo chandeliers, and pastel colors.
The owners of Polished Lounge in San Francisco are antique collectors and incorporate their finds into the salon’s decor.
Check out the vintage-inspired furniture and prints at The Pampered Girl in San Francisco.
If you answered mostly C’s…
Your salon decor style is RUSTIC.
Rustic decor is a cozy decorating style that admires the natural world and creates a kick-off-your-boots kind of atmosphere in the salon. Inspiration is drawn from country homes, farmhouses, and the outdoors. Avoiding anything too formal, you’ll often see an electric mix of fabrics and secondhand or even homemade furniture pieces. The predominant theme is unpainted wood or oak coloring — rustic decor prizes wood in its natural state. Natural lighting is key when creating this type of look with either access to nature or lots of greenery or wildflowers scattered throughout the space. Wooden floors are a great starting point, but if this isn’t available to you, look for furniture pieces made from wood, wicker, or cork. Anything to make the space cozier will aid in achieving this look. We’ve seen salons install fireplaces inside and landscape gardens out back. Rocking chairs, shutters, and decorative jars or bottles aren’t uncommon either. Rustic decor pairs well with either bold or natural colors, and simple designs and textiles. Too much texture can be too busy.
Wooden notes, fresh fruit, and natural light create a rustic flare at Beachy Toes in Solana Beach, Calif.
The name says it all at Karma Organic in Ridgewood, N.J.
If you answered mostly D’s…
Your salon decor style is ZEN.
Maybe your style preference has East Asian influences, or maybe you like the minimalism of modern decor without the bold colors. But ultimately obvious clues that you’re into Zen decor are symmetry, clean lines, natural materials, and a total absence of clutter. Most likely you want your salon atmosphere to be a calming place for clients to relax and escape the busy world around them. A perfect way to achieve this is to have your decor reflect that philosophy. A Zen look fuses natural fiber elements — such as bamboo and wicker — with colors taken from nature to create a serene environment. The natural shades induce a sense of relaxation, and a cohesive design creates harmony between the various elements of your space from the walls to the furniture. To avoid monochromatic schemes, you can choose one dominant color with matching objects. Another way to give this style depth is to incorporate different textures through the fabrics you choose. Good decorative pieces include hand-painted items (like light fixtures and art) and greenery. But stay away from clutter by keeping decorations to a minimum. Maintain soft lighting, natural scents, and simple furniture.
Orchids, branches, textured lighting, and balanced coloring completes the look at Blossom Beauty Lounge in Redondo Beach, Calif.
Nails & Co. Spa in West Peabody, Mass. aims to offer clients services that promote inner peace, an ideology reflected in its design.