It’s not often that you find a salon that successfully pulls off a maximalist design aesthetic, but Wild Salon of Dundee, not only pulls off this aesthetic, but absolutely smashes it! In our latest Salon Design of the Month feature, Salons Direct Magazine sits down with the salon’s owner Samantha Joyce and finds out more about the origins and inspirations behind this truly unique salon design.
How did your salon begin?
Here at Wild we will soon be celebrating our third birthday. My vision for the salon evolved following my decision to leave a full time position as a stylist at a city centre salon. At the time, if I’m being completely honest, I didn’t really have a definitive plan in place, but I knew I was feeling uninspired and needed a change of direction.
Nevertheless, I’d always had ideas and aspirations about the kind of stylist I wanted to be, the types of quality products I wanted to use and my professional development going forward. I truly believed that doing my own thing was right for me. I’d always dreamed of having my own salon and a space to show off my own creative vision.
Prior to opening Wild, I spent about a year establishing myself further as a self-employed stylist, which involved developing my social media presence and renting a chair in a salon owned by a good friend (he now actually works alongside us here at Wild!).
What I remember most from those early days of being self-employed were the countless hours I put in. I worked very hard and was extremely busy with clients, which in turn kept me highly motivated. After a while I knew it was the right time to find my own space and set-up a salon of my own.
I truly believe you will never change your life until you step out of your comfort zone and go for what you believe is right for you. I was fortunate and remain grateful for the support of my clients, friends and family.
How did you decide upon the aesthetic of the salon?
I wanted to bring a new, unique, hairdressing experience to the city. The idea was to create a space that didn’t feel like your typical hair salon. Wild, I believe, is quite boutique in terms of its style, services and products.
Our main aim was to ensure the salon had a welcoming feel, somewhere clients can enjoy their surroundings, relax, or have a cocktail or two before a night out with the girls. It was important to me that the environment within the salon was one of comfort as well as style.
Careful consideration was given to the selection of our seating and backwash areas. It was important these were of high quality and comfortable for the clients and stylists alike.
Pinterest was definitely my go-to source for interior inspiration, but social media plays a significant part in our industry, so it was important for me that the salon was ‘Instagrammable’, even right down to the tea cups!
Our interior at Wild has changed and evolved over the last three years and clients are always excited to see what’s new and experience it. My favourite feature is without doubt, the pink tiled blow dry bar… you’ll find me there!
How do you stand out from your competitors?
We see Wild as a full-on experience. Clients can sit back, relax and watch a movie at our blow dry bar with a complimentary cocktail or one of our signature flavoured coffees in hand. Spoiling our clients is definitely one of the things we are well known for and I believe it sets us apart from our competitors.
All of the products we use in the salon are carefully selected and are known high-quality brands. We are always happy to spend time with our clients to advise them on what regimen to follow in order to achieve the best results for their hair.
How do you think social media has influenced our industry?
It’s a great way for us to keep in touch with clients and give them an insight into day-to-day life at the salon.
When I first started out I used Instagram to post images of my work and it’s from there that I attracted most of my clients. If you put the work in, it’s amazing how much you can use it to get yourself known and to develop and grow your business.
I hope our Instagram also provides inspiration for clients and future potential clients. They can use it for inspiration for styles, colour options and much more.
How do you keep up to date with the latest industry trends?
At Wild we are proud to be the only Redken approved salon in the local area and as such we have access to an amazing amount of support and online learning that keeps us up to date with the latest trends and new products.
I also use social media to follow some of the best artists in the industry. It really is a great tool for education and inspiration.
During lockdown I’ve accessed a variety of different online training courses. I feel the industry is forever changing and evolving and it is my responsibility to give my clients the most up-to-date trends and techniques that best suit their needs.
What do you think makes a successful salon?
I feel that the client’s experience is just as important as the finished haircut/style/colour etc.
We love getting to know our clients and pride ourselves on being personable. Salons can sometimes feel intimidating, so a pretty Instagram feed is not enough. The service and experience in the salon needs to meet our clients’ expectations.
It’s also vital that you have a good team to work alongside; people who love what they do and are passionate about their work.
What advice can you give to others wanting to open a salon?
I truly believe that stepping outside of your comfort zone and trying new things is the best way to grow. There is no easy advice; you have to be prepared to work hard and be committed.
Focus on the future and not the past. Have ambition, set yourself goals… and smash them.
What are some of your favourite products and tools to use in the salon?
You will always find these in my kit:
- Cloud 9 Touch Iron – MUST HAVE! Great for creating so many different styles.
- OLAPLEX – I won’t do a blonding service without it.
- YS Park Extra Long Pin Tail Comb – It’s THE best for foiling.
- Redken Shades EQ – The best glosses I’ve ever used.
- Wet Brush – Amazing for brushing out backcombing at the backwash.
What can we expect from you in 2021 and beyond?
This year I’d love to grow my team. I’ve also got an exciting new service for clients that I’m about to announce in the next few weeks.
I’m really looking forward to getting back into the salon after being closed for three months due to another national lockdown. It’s been a challenging year for everyone I’m sure, so I’m just grateful we’ve made it through and have so many clients eagerly waiting to catch up with us and get the glow up they deserve.
Thank you to Wild Salon for taking part in our latest Salon Design of the Month feature! You can read more Salon Design of the Month features here.
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