Mario Tricoci earned a name in the beauty business not only for being a hairstyling legend, but also for his line of luxury products and his multiple Chicago-area salons. Forty years since it all began, he is ready to look to the future with a rebrand and new salon. Tricoci Collection—which drops "Mario" for a heritage brand effect, like luxury fashion houses such as Prada or Armani—includes 13 clean products created by stylists.
Mario weighs in on the big changes and what's next for him and his brand.
What inspired the decision to rebrand?
It has been Mario Tricoci for 40 years – and what we realized in the last few years is that the name belongs to the entire team. We met with large consulting firms who told us our name was recognizable in the Chicagoland area just like Coke and Nike, and we earned the reputation of being able to stand alone for us to be one word: Tricoci. We are a collection of artists and experts in the field and the name belongs to all the people that have been with us since the beginning and those with us now. We are all Tricoci, and what’s most important is that the name is reflective of that.
What is the foundation of the rebrand, and the new haircare collection?
Three years in the making and 50 years of passion. Over the years, we used [products] because of popularity, but they didn’t take care of the guests’ hair. The Tricoci signature line is strictly for the guest ... to have salon-level care in their homes. The products were developed by stylists, so they can maintain it and care for it as their stylist behind the chair would.
After a 20-year hiatus, what was this salon opening process like for you?
We have the education, the talent, the product knowledge and great experts already in place. We have the finest haircolorists in the country, as well as Creative Director John Gialluisi, who is always on top of what is new and fashionable. At this point, it’s like riding a bike—under the circumstances it’s a bit more challenging, but we are so well prepared to provide impeccable services, it’s easy for the guest to embrace.
How are your salons navigating COVID-19?
It’s very challenging times, but we’re happy our local government is supportive. We really believe we have in place the safest organized methods to be able to service our guests still at 100 percent. We have been working to increase our already high safety standards, and implementing additional safety protocols and cleansing equipment to ensure everyone is safe and comfortable.
From your experience in the business, what advice can you share with young hairstylists?
At the risk of sounding repetitive...Don’t be afraid to take a chance, and if you don’t take a chance from time to time you don’t know what is at the other side. Everyone needs to ... go outside the box, take a risk and always be learning.
What is the biggest difference in the professional beauty industry today compared with when you started?
So much is different today. Every one of our guests is truly an individual and we are more mindful of the needs of our professional team and the guests—to pay attention to what people need, and to listen and hear the voice of the client and what the younger guest is telling us.