In this month of hearts and flowers, we pay tribute to partnership — in this case to business partnerships. Whether sisters, friends, lovers, or spouses, salon partners must rely on and trust each other as they pursue their dreams. Judging by the enthusiasm of the salon owners we spoke to, partnership has more than its share of payoffs.

Who: Ami McLure and Traci Dungan

Where: Pro Piles Nail Gallery (Cape Coral, Fla.)

Relationship: sisters.

How it started: Ami got her license first and decided with the help of her sister, who’s good with the hooks, she would open a salon. Eventually Traci got her license to handle the overflow and now both are full-time techs.

Who does what: Both are booked solid 45 hours per week. The upside according, to Traci. “Not being alone through the ups and downs.”

The downside according to Ami: “We never get away from the business. When we go home we talk on the phone for hours since we’re too busy to talk at work.”

Kris Monaco and Kim Monaco-Crevar

Kris Monaco and Kim Monaco-Crevar

Who: Kris Monaco and Kim Monaco-Crevar

Where: Club Monaco, North- field Center, Ohio

Relationship: sisters

How it started: Kris, a nail tech, opened the salon three years ago. Kim worked full-time elsewhere and began by handling just the payroll. Gradually she left her job and joined on at the salon full-time.

Who does what: Kris handles customers, employees, and training and Kim handles the business side.

The upside according to Kim: “Having someone to lean on and discuss problems with. I stay out of her way and she stays out of mine.’”

The downside according to Kris: “We might fight, but two min­utes later we’re fine. We’ll always be sisters.”

Who: Linda Champion and Peter Ventrone.

Where: Golden Shears Hair, Nails &More (Runnemede, N.J.) Relationship: live-ins (10 years)

How it started: Even though they had been a couple for four years, Linda worked a 1/2-mile from Peter’s salon, which didn’t offer nail services. When her salon moved, she began working with Peter two days a week to test the waters. The test was a success.

Who does what: Peter is semi-retired, but still does the books, paperwork, and some of the hiring. Linda does the rest.

The upside according to Linda: “Just being in Peter’s company. When he’s not here, it’s boring. When he is here, the place comes alive.”

The downside according to Peter: “It’s tough to take our vacations at the same time, though if we do go away together we cannot call in for two weeks.”

Greg and Rose Tosti

Greg and Rose Tosti

Who: Greg and Rose Tosti

Where: Nail Depot (six locations), based in Deerfield Beach, Fla.

Relationship: married (10 years)

How it starred: His family owned a chain of beauty schools and she came on board as an instructor. Ten years ago, they opened their first salon.

Who does what: Both handle the day-to-day management. Generally, Rose supervises the managers and Greg handles the employees.

The upside recording to Rose: “This can be a really thought business, but at least you know you can trust the person you’re working with.”

The downside according to Greg? “It’s difficult to live and work together. Luckily we have multiple locations so we can split up sometimes.”

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