Former Paterson SA hairdressers Gemma Hill (27) from Gorebridge and Elaine Murdoch from Newtongrange are behind Luvely, in conjunction with their former employers, with the focus on appealing to a younger market when it opens on April 26, at the former Michelle Mowatt Hairdressers on Dalkeith High Street.
Gemma revealed the new salon’s partnership with Green Salon Collective.
She said: “It will be a cool place to get your hair done and we are very keen to look after the environment.
"We pay Green Salon Collective to give us three bins, one for hair, one for materials and one for chemicals – any excess colouring for example.
"They are trying to stop all these things going into landfill and clogging everything up. They take the hair away and make what they call a hair boom. In which the hair gets stuffed into a pair of tights and used to soak up oil from our local waterways. It’s amazing.
"We never knew anything like this could be done.
"And, a lot of what we use in the salon has environmental friendly ingredients.
"Not a lot of salons do these things, but we want to.
"I think young people will be keen to get involved. It will help them feel better about the planet as well as themselves when they come to see us. We are also involved in a scheme with Wella through their ‘WeDo’ product range which means for every product sold Wella will pay to have eight plastic bottles removed from the ocean.”
Gemma will be joined at Luvely by two other hairdressers, three trainees and two receptionists, with a room above the salon used by contractors to do nails and eye lashes.
She added: "We are not just another salon, we are trying to do something different and engage with our clients to get involved in what we do.
"We will also be doing events throughout the year. With a DJ playing on Saturday afternoons. It’s a sense of trying to bring something different to the table. Make it more like a day out than just a hair cut. And after Covid, people are desperate for that.
"There is no specific age range, but we do have a younger clientele in mind.”
While starting up her first salon of her own, Gemma is glad she is still tied to Paterson SA, who she has worked with since she was 14.
She added: “I would never want to leave Paterson SA, they are like a family to me. So that’s why we are doing this together.
“Paterson SA are a salon group who appeal to all ages and I wanted to take all I’ve learned from them but put my own funky spin on things
"On our graffiti wall we have a big portrait of George Paterson, the owner who passed away 17 years ago. And the name Luvely is taken from a club night he had in Edinburgh.
"So it’s quite nice to have this tie between the two and in tribute to him. I never knew George but I know so much about him.”
As for preparing for the opening later this month, Gemma added: ”I have came in and ripped it back to the brick and started again.
"It has been four months of hard work but it’s been fun also. And it’s been nice to see it progressing.
"It’s my little baby. We just have a few small touches to finish it off.”