It’s been nearly 25 years since hairstylists Michelle McGough and Paula Lecher first met. The two were working under the same mentor at the same salon – that just happened to be in the same building that’s now home to Salon Allure.
While the two went on to work at different salons for several years, they reconnected in 2003, and soon after, bought the building where they first worked. Together, they opened Salon Allure, a full-service beauty salon and spa in Huntsville.
“We have both been hairstylists for several decades,” Michelle said, sharing a laugh with Paula. “We know a lot about the salon business.”
“And when you do something for more than 30 years,” Paula added, “you build a lot of relationships too.”
Paula and Michelle describe styling clients’ hair for prom, doing their hair for a wedding a few years later and then giving those same clients’ children their first haircuts.
“People come in shaking our hand, and in the end, we end up hugging. We believe in getting to know our clients and offering them the best in customer service,” said Paula. “We have so many people who come here who’ve been coming for several years.”
Aside from typical salon services, Salon Allure also includes a large boutique-style retail selection. They sell professional haircare products from the two brands they’re loyal to – Redkin and Pureology, as well as gifts.
“We love shopping ourselves, so we love going to Market and picking out items for the shop. Our customers are always busy. We thought, why not give them the chance to pick up a gift for a birthday or party while they’re here? We even wrap it for them,” said Michelle. The boutique area also includes displays from local companies and artisans.
Michelle and Paula also put a focus on training new hairstylists, bringing their story full circle. In the same way the two were mentored nearly 25 years ago, the veteran hairstylists value the chance to pay it forward.
“We love getting students to come work for us once they graduate. We get to train them and see them succeed. It’s exciting,” Paula added.
“We enjoy sharing our time and our passion with the next generation,” said Michelle. And their commitment to training, Michelle says, translates to a better experience for Salon Allure customers. “Our team of professionals is constantly challenging themselves with the latest styles, trends, treatments and services.”
Salon Allure at 821 Regal Drive Southwest in Huntsville is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.
Story and photos by Melissa Johnson Warnke