Acote Salon: Blow Out on Newbury

Shop Talk by Kitty Kaufman

I've said it before. This is everything I know about hair: it's too long or too short, it's too curly or too straight. It's too dark or too light, it's sticking up or it's flat. It's time for a cut, the highlights are low, and why do we never quite manage to look like the picture in the magazine.

So stylists like bartenders maybe, wear armor and tiptoe through therapy 101 to get through the day. Doesn't your stylist tell you too that no matter whose hair they're doing, we all want the opposite?

Alexander Safar, manager of Salon Acote (ah-ko-tay) has the right take on the business of hair: "I do anything to make people happy; this is my passion." It's no surprise he brings feeling to the work; he grew up in the business. He and his father, Gaston Safar, stand side by side coaxing miracles in adjoining chairs.

"This is not just another hair salon on Newbury Street," he said. He's got loads of natural light, a roof deck, wine and cappuccino to go along with savvy cuts and color. His clients are tended by stylists who stay on top with hair shows and continuing education. They also do in-house training with an eye to what's next. "I come in at 6:45 am and don't leave until we're done," he said. "Working with clients is so rewarding. We really have fun here." One sunny afternoon I watched as several heads of hair were patiently blown out. The results were magnificent.

© May 25, 2005 for the City Shopper
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