The first thing you notice outside the entrance to the Aura Salon on upper King Street is the beautiful flowers in the artfully arranged window boxes.
Once you step inside on the lower floor you’ll be welcomed by four vanities bathed in natural sunlight where make-up artists use the latest Aveda products to enhance your natural beauty. In the mood for beachy waves or a blowout? Check, the stylists can do that too using the high-end Dyson Supersonic blow dryers which have a built-in sensor to protect your luscious locks from any heat damage.
If you need a fabulous cut or color or mani/pedi without all those harsh chemicals, simply walk upstairs and let the magic begin at the salon.
The salon and beauty bar is owned by Leticia Villagran and Chappaqua mom Jenn Filardi. Jenn was actually a client of Leticia’s for many years when Aura Salon focused on hair and nails. Realizing that there was an unmet need for expertly applied make-up and blowouts that won’t break the bank, Leticia teamed up with Jenn to open the Style Bar in February on the first floor of the salon. Having worked in the city at fashion shows and with celebrity stylists, Jenn brings a wealth of knowledge about the latest beauty trends and loves creating updos, braids and signature blowouts, all at an affordable price point.
Both Leticia and Jenn have relatives in the beauty business. Originally from Guatemala, Leticia’s father and grandfather cut hair. She went to cosmetology school there where students learn everything from facials to applying highlights.
Once she came to the U.S., she obtained her license and still takes classes to stay abreast of the latest beauty treatments and trends. She has more than 20 years of experience in the beauty business. Jenn’s grandfather was a barber and says working at the Style Bar is “in her genes. It’s so much fun. It doesn’t feel like work.” She also enjoys educating her clients about the best products to maintain the health of their hair.
With the upcoming prom and wedding season, the salon is ready to pamper clients for special occasions. “We do communions and wedding parties from the bride to the youngest flower girls,” said Villagran. Parties of four or more get a 10% discount and if the client requests it, they can provide at-home services. But Filardi is quick to point out that Aura is also a great destination if you need express services like speedy make-up applications for a night out or a quick blowout on a more regular basis.Villagran and Filardi and their staff have trained with leading beauty experts at Bumble and Bumble, Vidal Sassoon Academy, Wella, the Aveda Institute and Organic Salon Systems. They are passionate about having staff take industry workshops and continuing education so that clients have access to the latest products and styles.
A member of the Chappaqua-Millwood Chamber of Commerce, the salon’s stylists have volunteered at several events at local schools including a new moms event at World Cup Nursery school and creating a Nordic braid bar at Seven Bridges International Day. They also are proud to have a Greeley senior Clara Perlmutter help them with social media through a LIFE School internship program. Many of the local businesses have helped them get off the ground by promoting their services. “The whole community has been very encouraging and helpful–a real communal effort! “ added Filardi.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF WILLIAM LULOW