Two more finalists for Salon of the Year

Michelle Cockburn tends to the hair of stylist Kelly Goulding. Picture: Scott Louden
Michelle Cockburn tends to the hair of stylist Kelly Goulding. Picture: Scott Louden
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Small salons are showing that they’re more than capable of making the cut in the finals for the Salon of the Year 2014.

It was a double celebration for staff at Ark, in Bonnyrigg, as they heard the news they were in the final ten on the same day they were celebrating the salon’s seventh birthday.

Owner, Michelle Cockburn, 38, said she could have been “knocked down with a feather” when she heard the business had secured a place in the top 40 so being a finalist had left her “gobsmacked”.

She added: “Bonnyrigg has ten salons so I thought it was unlikely but we were celebrating our seventh birthday on August 1 when I heard and I just did not know what to say. I was just so pleased. I’m just so gobsmacked and so proud. When you’ve worked hard to get where you are, to know that your customers appreciate you is really great.”

Mrs Cockburn, who has been in the trade for 23 years, said:“I will be encouraging all our customers to vote for us again – I have already been texting them!

“For us it would be nice for a local wee salon rather than a big one in Edinburgh to win.”

The mother-of-two said opening the salon had ­always been a dream of hers and that great service was what made the salon stand out from the crowd.

“We are a small, friendly salon and we treat all our customers like a member of the family,” she added.

“The best thing I can do in my job is make somebody’s day – there’s nothing better than putting a smile on someone’s face when they have had the worst day.”

The salon, which has six staff including four stylists, caters for all age groups from newborns to OAPs with their oldest client due to turn 100 soon.

And it seems there could be double celebrations if they are crowned the winner.

“Because it happened at the same time we kind of forgot about the birthday,” Mrs Cockburn said.

“But if we win I’m going to invite all the customers to the salon to ­celebrate.”

Mooutique style goes down a storm

ANOTHER small salon which has proven it’s in the creme of the crop from thousands of entrants is Milk Hairdressing.

The boutique salon in Mid Calder lives up to its name with its model cow outside and has already become popular in the community despite only opening two years ago.

Salon owner Roy Rogers, 43, said starting the business had been an ambition of his after spending years training other hairdressers in a big company and making the top ten was a great compliment.

He added: “It’s great because it’s our customers that have nominated us. At first we did not know about it and we didn’t know anything until we found out we were in the top 40.

“We did not think we would get in with all the salons in Edinburgh so when we saw it we were over the moon and it’s a great compliment that our clients took the time to do it.”

“We have been asking them through our Facebook page and people have been coming in and asking about it.”

The salon has just three staff but Mr Rogers said this was part of the reason why it appeals to so many people as they have clients coming from both Edinburgh and Glasgow for one of their haircuts.

“I think the size of the salon is what makes it a success because the clients feel really comfortable and we have even watched friendships blossom because it’s so small that everyone gets involved in the conversations,” he said.

The salon has won several awards since it opened and is now hoping clients can help it reach the top spot.

“It would be lovely to win,” Mr Rogers added.

“We would definitely celebrate and even get the cow involved too!”