Meet Miwa!

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miwa

Everyone’s had a bad manicure. Not everyone has had a great manicure. Enter: Miwa Kobayashi. Her holistic and natural approach to nail care is, to say the least, refreshing. She is meticulous. Whether you like glossy, perfectly painted claws, or if you want some hand-painted nail art, she “nails” it every time!

Miwa strays away from traditional techniques that, although are common practice, are not beneficial to nail health. For instance, instead of cutting cuticles, she uses removal gel that safely, hygienically, and naturally softens and deteriorates the skin surrounding the nail. Cutting often times removes too much or injures, leaving skin and vulnerable to germs and dangerous infections.

I have actually had the privilege of knowing Miwa for upwards of 4 years. She is a highly intelligent, ambitious, generous, and hilarious woman. I was excited when she let me bully her into doing this interview. So, I sat Miwa down to pick her brain about her techniques, history, and inspirations.

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Where in Japan are you originally from?
I’m from Niigata. It’s diagonally north of Tokyo.

How did you get started doing nails?
When I was teenager, I used to work at fashion building called “Shibuya 109″ in Tokyo. I had the opportunity to see all the amazing nail art there. That pushed me to get into doing nails.

11055615_1628077647423488_243765696_nWhat were some of the first nail art trends you noticed?
Tropical designs were very popular that time. Lots of palm trees, dolphins, hibiscus flowers, and anything island inspired.

I’ve had you do some crazy designs on my own nails! Remember the time I had you paint the mini Bud Light can, motorcycle engine, and even had you put real snake skin on them?! Thanks for putting up with me.
Are you kidding?! I love the challenge! Although, that snake skin did take some work!

IMG_2483What was your motivation for moving to Los Angeles?
When I was 19 years old, I went to beauty school in San Diego. Naturally, I fell in love with California. I always wanted to have experience of living in the foreign country, learning different cultures, and meeting people from all over the world. After school, I returned to Japan to built my career. I had my own salon and school. Then I moved back to the US as planned.

You have a long list of celebrity clientele and press tear sheets. Molly Sims gushes about you in her book The Everyday Supermodel. You’ve done Marion Cotillard’s nails for Dior, events, and other publications. However, I’m wondering, are there any specific accomplishments so far in your career that you are especially proud of?
I love being able to combine my passion for art and health into a career. That is an accomplishment in and of itself. Who doesn’t want a career that doesn’t feel like work?!
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What sets you apart from other celebrity manicurists? 
I always listen to what each client exactly wants. I use all of my knowledge to satisfy their needs. I keep up to date on the hottest trends, latest technology, and best products. I think my thirst for knowledge and growth is what sets me apart. That and my holistic outlook on nail care too.
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What or who inspires you? 
I love fashion. I’m always watching fashion shows. Usually, whatever comes to my mind when I’m locked into a creative mode. Nail art gives me an artistic outlet.
What would you say you’re most known for? 
Hmm.. I enjoy doing hand-painted nail art, but I would like to say my speciality is more treatment based. I’m very into health. My friends call me the “health nut.” Real beauty comes from inside. I studied reflexology, aroma therapy and esthetic treatment. (skin and massage) I like to customize my services for each client.
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If you could do anyone’s  nails (dead or alive) who would it be and why?
My mom. She is in Japan. We’re very close so it’s hard to be away from her for so long.
What hobbies do you love doing when you’re not at work?
Painting, of course, or playing piano!
Miwa works Tuesday through Friday 10am to 3pm. She offers regular manicures and pedicures as well as gel. Call in and book her along with your hair! Nothing better than two birds with one stone!
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Instagram: @MiwaNails

Colorist in Focus: Chris Greene

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Where are you originally from?
I am from Newfoundland, a large island that is the Eastern most province in Canada. I was born and raised there. It is known for its rugged beauty.

It’s stunning over there! How does coming from such a naturally beautiful environment, like Newfoundland, influence your work?
Newfoundland translates into my work through the organic beauty of the people who surrounded me back home. I consider myself to be a colorist with a soft, gentle touch with my color brush. I’m a big fan of enhancing what my client already has: bringing out the highlights that the sun may create or richening a color to showcase the clients skin and eyes. I tend to steer clear of drastic changes, unnatural colors and abnormal placements. There is a time and place for everything, but my heart lies in the more natural side of hair color for sure! Much like Newfoundland, I prefer natural beauty!

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How long have you been doing hair and how did you get started?
I have been doing hair for 14 years. I studied hair design right out of high school. I went to hair design school in Nova Scotia, then studied at Bumble & Bumble in NYC and Aveda in Minneapolis.

What really excites you about doing hair?
I love making women feel beautiful, like the best version of themselves! I love knowing that the client has been looking forward to their appointment and that they leave feeling special and beautiful. It’s also really fun getting to know my clients and hearing their stories.

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Are there any specific accomplishments so far in your career that you are especially proud of?
I’m really proud that I am from such a small town on the east coast of Canada. I made it to Nova Scotia, then Toronto, and now LA. I am living out my dream. I know now that it really is true that with hard work, you can really do whatever you set your mind to!

I’ve worked on celebrities and tv, meet really great people, and most importantly make women feel beautiful and special! That’s such a wonderful feeling! Getting to do what I love and having people love what I do. Having the ability to make someone leave my chair with a smile on their face and bounce in their step, that’s irreplaceable.

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What would you say is your “signature” or “speciality”? What do you enjoy doing most?
I would say my “look” is soft, sexy and natural. I’m all about enhancing what you already have or at least making it look like nature could have played a roll in the finished product! Blondes, brunettes and reds, I love em all! I want my clients to have flattering hair that enhances their overall look.

I do foils, balayage, a combo of both.. I always say, I would paint your hair with my toes if its going to give us the look we are both going for. It’s not so much about the technique used, as it is about the finished product. People get caught up in buzz words and trends, which is fine, but at the end of the day, the technique used has to work with your hair, lifestyle, and taste.

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If you could do anyone’s  hair (dead or alive) who would it be and why?
This is probably selfish, but I would love to get my hands in Oprah’s beautiful hair! I love lots of hair, and I love me some Oprah! hehe I’m trying to think of who else.. My mom or my best girlfriends, they all live far away, and I know how much they love getting their hair done with me, so I would say them! :)

Favorite person you follow on Instagram?
Oh gosh, I have so many! I love seeing what my fiends are doing back in Canada, I love everyone at Meche, so much talent under one roof, it’s awesome! I love Instagram in general, I don’t think I have a fav.. I follow a lot of hair people, big and famous and also in small towns, everyone is putting out such great work! Fashion stylists, makeup artists, friends, celebs.. so so many!

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What or who are your biggest influences/idols? (Doesn’t have to be hair.)
Hair wise there are a lot, I have to say, it’s amazing to be working alongside Tracey Cunningham! I’ve looked up to her work for a long time, and to now be at Meche is awesome! I’m influenced by anyone who can take their passion and make it into an amazing career!

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www.chrisgreenehair.com | Instagram: @ChrisGreeneHair

Tracey Cunningham Hair Model Call!

Well, hello ladies and gents! For this upcoming class, Tracey is looking for five hair models! We all know how hard Tracey works, so please take the time to read all of the following information before emailing us! We are psyched to hear from all of you!

Before we get into the exciting stuff, here’s some additional, but important information!

  1. You cannot have previously used henna or box color on your hair if you want to go lighter! This is important! For the sake of time, we are looking for models without box color. If you have used box color and are not going lighter, please disclose all information about what you have used on your hair in your application email!
  2. This is a non-paying modeling opportunity. You will receive the color services, a light breakfast, as well as lunch is provided the day of the class, but no additional compensation will be provided.
  3. LA area locals are preferred. Mèche is not covering travel costs.
  4. Please keep in mind, before and after pictures will be taken the day of the class. Do what you gotta do, gurl!
  5. Class takes place on Sunday, May 24, 2015. This is Memorial Day Weekend. You will need to be to the salon for 10am. Plan to be here until 5pm.

And now… without further ado… the demo categories!!

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Blonde going Emma Stone red!

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Brunette wanting Lily’s or Khloe’s ombré!
*Preferably virgin hair, but absolutely no box color or henna could have been used on your hair!

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A red that needs refreshing!
*Got some roots? Your already auburn hair looking dull? Cool. Send in your info!

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Brunette going sultry dark!
*Lowlighting and dark formulation demo. Think dimensional, deep brunettes. 

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A neutral blonde (level 7 or 8) going brighter! Think Cameron Diaz or Gwyneth Paltrow!

If you would like to be considered as a hair model, please email the following:

  1. Your name, email, phone number, and location.
  2. Which demo you would like to be considered for.
  3. Three, well-lit images with your hair down: front, back, side. NO FILTERS! DAYLIGHT-LIT PLEASE! (Don’t worry, no one except Tracey and her assistants will be seeing the photos.)

Please do not call the salon in regards to the class. All questions can be emailed in.
Email all the above to: tc.colorclass@gmail.com!

IG: @TraceyCunningham1 | @MecheSalonLA

See you guys there!

TCCOLORCLASS

Jesse Montana on Candy-Colored Hair

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No, the cotton candy hair fad is not over! Jesse Montana sat down with GirlsLife Magazine and dished all the secrets to obtaining and maintaining your favorite pastel shade. Jesse has been coloring his hair shades of sugary-sweet colors, so who best to go to for tips than he!

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Check out the article here!

IG: @girlslifemag | @thejessemontana

Sarah Conner & Yvonne Brown featured on Refinery29!

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We love Refinery29 and were so flattered that they wanted to include us in their summer hair color article!

Sarah Conner was featured for her baby-fine, ribbons of highlights.

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Yvonne Brown was featured for her rooty, lived-in blonde.

Check out the entire article here!
IG: @refinery29

Emma Stone for Interview Magazine

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Emma Stone is on the cover of the May 2015 issue of Interview Magazine! What’s more? Diane Keaton is the interviewer! The article is wonderful. It’s almost as though you’re eavesdropping on the two having coffee.

The images are shot by one of my personal favorites, British fashion photog Craig McDean. Harkening back to 70’s editorials, the photos are deliciously grainy with a muted palette, except, of course, for that vibrant red hair by Tracey Cunningham!

Check out some of the images:

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You can read the article in its entirety on the Interview Magazine website!

Sarah Conner and Mane Addicts

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Sarah Conner is on fire. She’s the colorist behind Kylie Jenner’s Coachella looks and Abbey Lee’s dusty pink-blonde. Her talents and eye for hair color are unprecedented.

Sarah is one of the most hands-on, hard working, progressive colorists I have ever met. Without an agent, she’s slaying the hair color world.
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Looking for some inspiration and motivation? Read her amazing interview with Mane Addicts here:

Mane Master: Sarah Conner 

IG: @oncolourground
Blog: http://sarahconnerstylist.tumblr.com

Alissa Smith is Back!

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Alissa Smith will be returning from her maternity leave on May 12th!

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She will be available Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 10am to 4pm! More days will, of course, open up going forward, but we want to make sure little Otis has his much needed time with her!

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(cut/style: Alissa Smith | color: Sarah Conner)

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(cut/style: Alissa Smith)

Welcome back Alissa!

Instagram: @alissasmithhair

Charlize Theron on the Cover of Esquire Magazine

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Charlize! One of our favorite Tracey Cunningham clients, Charlize Theron, is slaying the cover of Esquire Magazine for the May 2015 issue!

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She’s a force to be reckoned with. She’s brilliant, award-winning actress, absolutely stunning, and her activism and philanthropy work is endless. Just to give you an idea: she is a UN Messenger of Peace, runs the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project (CTAOP), 2014 Stop Rape Now campaign, worked with TOMS to provide shoes for children of third world countries, women’s rights, animal rights, same-sex marriage rights, and the list continues.

Yes, she does all of this and films movies. Talk about an inspiration! She has three movies coming out in 2015: Dark PlacesMad Max: Fury Road, and The Last Face. You can expect three more movies from Charlize in 2016!

Check out the Esquire Magazine photos, shot in downtown LA:

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We’re anxiously awaiting the release of Mad Max: Fury Road, which stars Charlize Theron, Riley Keogh, and Abbey Lee! All lovely clients of Meche! Mad Max comes out May 2015! If you’ve seen the trailer, you know it’s going to be beyond incredible. If you haven’t, here you go:

May 2015 is on newsstands now, but you can also read the article here:
Esquire Magazine: Charlize Theron

@MecheSalonLA
@TraceyCunningham1

New ‘Do For Natasha Slayton by Jesse Montana

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Jesse Montana created GRL singer Natasha Slayton’s new, shorter locks!

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Jesse Montana lobbed off four inches, giving her a sassy, mid-length chop just in time for GRL’s tour with Meghan Trainor!

We’re getting lots of requests for this length! Whether it’s to change up your über long locks or if you’re growing yours out, this length gives tons of volume, easy to manage and style, and we all know our ends could use some trimming.

You can catch G.R.L. in Australia, opening on the That Bass Tour and at the #ItGetsBetter LGBT event!

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Instagram: @GRLNatasha @TheJesseMontana

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