My New Favorite Eco-Conscious Salon...that I'll Actually Go Back To


Photo Credit: ION Studio

I’ve had my share of eco hair and body treatments, sampled a range of natural cosmetics and experimented endlessly with products that claim to do everything from save an acre of rainforest to brighten my skin (I’m pretty sure we know which one is more important, but also often sure that neither happens). In short, a lot of us know that the greenest products, spas or salons aren’t always the chicest or most effective. Which is why my new favorite beauty destination is NYC’s ION Studio. For why, follow the jump.Founded by a trio of very lovely Italians, ION (41 Wooster Street in Soho, NYC, 212 343 9060) is an ode to the mindful lifestyles Leonardo Manetti, Marco Santini and Pasquale Ferrante lead in their native country, where they essentially grew up together. Mid-blowout, Leonardo told me about how as a kid, he learned about recycling and eco-consciousness more as a part of life then as a trend. These three are not just green enthusiasts –they are talented stylists with big clout in the fashion landscape.

Sweeping, minimalist and airy, ION features pieces made entirely of furniture from the space’s previous owner – in fact, 85 % of the salon was created this way. The best part? Super cool hair-washing chairs, that you have to literally rock back on for a shampoo (not as scary as it sounds, although I did rock forward once when I got a little too conversational. Advice – keep your butt back).

ION’s also wind-powered, and uses socially-responsible hair care line Davines. Also important to me – this place feels chic. There’s no Yanni playing, local artists are featured on the walls and the stylists feel current. Katy Perry’s a client. So were a few fashion week shows including Coventry. Green feels like a passion, not just a marketing trend.

At my visit last week, colorist Lena Ott gave me a gorgeous, shiny brown that brightened up my entire face and was exactly what I wanted – a rarity, at any salon.

ION is aware that there is always room to improve, and the owners are looking into ways to get leaner and greener. They know that not every single service is perfect, but make tradeoffs carefully. Leonardo dried my hair with a traditional tool – not a more energy efficient one –because he just doesn’t think anything else does the job right. But he explained to me how this wasn’t a decision made lightly, and the wind power that propels the dryer felt like a step in the right direction. People need to like the way we look, we discussed, to keep coming back anywhere – green or not. Which I would (and will) to ION.

NEXT WEEK - I check out Phyto Universe spa.

For more on green beauty:
The World's Top 5 Greenest Spa Escapes
Throw an Easy Eco-Spa Party
Save Water, Energy, and Money with DIY Dry Shampoo
It's Time To Wean Yourself Off of Foundation
Beauty Lab: Organic Wear Eye Shadow from Physicians Formula

Tags: Cosmetics

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