Hairstylists Tiffany Bryant, Lisa Woodley and Chanta Barrett put the finishing touches on their models’ makeup and hair behind a big curtain last Saturday night right before their models took the stage. Soon thereafter, the youthful participants strutted down the aisles and onto the runway at the second annual Hair Fashion Show.
The event, which was held at 2154 Bridge St. in Frankford, featured three local salons that hoped to demonstrate their professional work and creativity.
Lisa Woodley, a third-generation hairstylist and owner of North Philadelphia’s LSW Hair Designs, enjoyed participating in this year’s show. Woodley expected the event to have a positive impact on business.
“It’s a great opportunity for the community to come out and see a salon showcase their work,” Woodley said. “This will help us get more clients.”
Margaret Wright sat in the crowd and cheered on the poised young models. She attended the show to encourage the local businesses involved.
“I wanted to support the stylists and the local shops. Tiffany [Bryant] is my stylist sometimes,” Wright said. “They’re just young people doing their thing.”
Bryant, the owner of The Sanctuary Salon in Olney, created the fashion show last year in hopes to get local Christian salons to exhibit their crafts.
The event had a spiritual undertone as it also featured a young woman singing gospel music and a Christian-themed pantomime act before the show. Bryant wanted the event to embody the atmosphere of her salon.
“As far as my salon, I wanted to bring something different. Not just a hair salon but [also] a sanctuary, a haven,” Bryant explained. “A place where you can come and get a total package from the inside-out.”
Chanta Barrett, whose LACAA’s Beauty Studio in the Northwest participated in the show, agreed with Bryant about the importance of wholesome hair salons.
“If it’s a salon where people feel comfortable and they can come in, relax and not have to worry about inappropriate conversation, it can be a positive environment,” Barrett said.
All of the women and men at the show explained how important hair salons are to the African-American community. They not only provide a place to transform your hair, but also a venue for conversation and friendship.
“Salons and barbershops are meeting houses for the African-American people,” the Rev. James Walls, who attended the show, said. “They come. They share situations, problems and not only get their hair done, but meet friends they have there.”?Sometimes though, it’s just about the hair.
“If a black woman’s hair is done, she’s good,” said Bryant. “She feels like a woman.”
For Wright, it was a night about celebrating the local stylists: “They make us look beautiful.”