Editors Blog: A Lesson on Mixology and Haircare Bars

One of my favorite things about being an editor for American Salon is having direct access to what’s new, and even better, getting to experience it. I recently had the chance to try out the new ShuBar, a personalized hair service by a Shu Uemura “mixologist,” at Yves Durif Salon (which is “nestled” within The Carlyle Hotel, a historic, stately building near Central Park). When I arrived at the salon on the third floor, the front desk attendant led me to the Salon Privé, separated from the rest of the salon with a metal mesh curtain. The walls are decorated with photography from Yves’ personal collection—images Marilyn Monroe planting a kiss on Frank Sinatra’s cheek, Yves doing hair on the Brooklyn Bridge.

Before beginning the treatment, my ShuBar specialist Jazmine asked a series of questions about my beauty habits, general lifestyle and any problems I experience with my hair—it’s color-treated, and I’m more of a wash-and-go girl who occasionally indulges in a more meticulous routine. She then cocktailed the perfect combination of products and prescribed Sweet Remedy, which uses golden root extract and ceramide 4000 (a super-high concentration of reparative aids). She mixed in some Quick Fix, which has magnolia for shine and strength. After she measured each product into a shot glass (a nice touch), she massaged the mixture onto my scalp and rinsed. It was quick, pleasant and effective.

I think the biggest point of difference with a bar service is the time element, and a small dose of smoke and mirrors. It’s an easy upsell, add-on or a way to give your client some extra pampering. Cocktailing a collection of products after carefully, but quickly, “sizing up” the client, and then applying it with a luxurious, relaxing scalp massage can be accomplished in 15 minutes, making it possible to tag it on to a blowout, color treatment, cut—you name it. Really, the whole thing was simple, but genius: Through delivery and presentation, it became a sophisticated star-treatment.


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You can follow the salon on Instagram at @YvesDurif @ShuArtOfHair.

About: Kristen Heinzinger is the Managing Editor of American Salon, where she gets to report on the latest products, trends and industry hotshots. She holds a B.S. in journalism from Boston University, and has previously worked as an editor for beauty, art and finance publications. She currently lives in New York City, in an apartment where a multiplying collection of dry shampoos, conditioners, eye creams and nail polishes are earning her lots of potential for an episode of "Hoarders."