A visit to the hairdresser is a great deal more psychological than one might expect: one’s identity and self-perception is communicated to a stranger, who must then attempt to translate their client’s aesthetic ego. In many senses it’s a matter of passing over control, a vulnerable transaction that requires an environment that is sensitive to these fears yet functional. As much as the experience can be one of pampering and self-indulgence, this state of mind must be facilitated by a salon’s interior. Here, we look at five examples of spatial design guiding the engagement and relaxation of a hairdresser’s clientele.
Grande Class in Nagoya, Japan, is a men’s salon that focuses on creating individual spaces for its clients. Large, solid aluminum plates hang between the styling chairs, providing each client with a private space. Designed by Hiroyuki Miyake, the predominantly concrete interior is sparingly lit – creating a pared-down environment that is empathically masculine.
In contrast, Texhair in Belluno, Italy, epitomizes an atmosphere of femininity. Raspberry velvet-tufted stools and fuchsia wallpaper are positioned against a matte bubblegum-pink floor and neon backlit wall panels. Architect Luca De Bona uses multi-era references to create a spatial collage designed to sit in the liminal space between then, now and when. Gold becomes the bridging material of the space, appearing in fixtures, mirror frames, product display units, and the moveable column-shaped stations.