By Patricia R. Zablah
After parting ways with my stylist of two years, I was left brokenhearted. And although I was playing really hard to hide it, my hair totally gave me away: I had never had such horrifically neglected roots. Thankfully, Lifebooker.com graced my inbox with a promotion for Fox & Jane, a new salon I figured I’d check out – what did I have to lose? That site should have been called Lifesaver.com, because that’s what this new salon turned out to be.
I arrived on 154 Orchard Street and was charmed simply by the sight of the place. In a neighborhood where most other barbershops have an industrial, almost masculine feel to them, Fox & Jane is a breath of fresh air.
Located above David Owen’s Vintage Clothing, the upbeat energy inside matches the décor, with bright oranges and greens adorning the homey three-chair salon. The driving force behind Fox & Jane is Lorean Cairns, 28, who teamed up with Billy Canu to open the place in July 2011. She then brought on two of her previous coworkers from Birds and Fellas, another East Village salon, Jennifer Luna, 27, and Jamielynn De Leon, 26, to complete the team.
What’s most refreshing is the staff’s tailored-to-you approach to styling. Lorean’s specialty is color; “ombré, beachy bohemian hair” specifically. Jennifer’s specialty is curly hair and Jamielynn’s is cutting. In my case, Jennifer colored my curly hair beautifully and decided that since I wanted to grow out my pixie, we should wait to cut it. I thought, “A stylist that can actually control her scissor-cutting in front of a willing customer is sure to earn my trust!” And when Lorean exclaimed, “You don’t have to come see me every five weeks! Sometimes you’re not ready!” I was officially over my breakup with my last stylist.
In the same “we’re-not-pushy-we’re-taking-care-of-you vibe,” Fox & Jane offers complimentary men’s cleanups (neck trims and side burns) as well as complimentary bang trims for girls. The price range is moderate, with a Keratin treatment coming in at $233.00 and a cut at $64.00. Fox & Jane’s services on the book are hair only: keratin straightening and smoothing, cut and color, deep conditioning and men’s grooming. But this “female barber shop,” as Lorean likes to think of it, is more than just hair.
Their specialty is pre-party “blowout parties,” which is priced per the size of the group, (a group of five is usually $225), and includes blow outs for all involved and a couple of bottles of champagne – perfect for bachelorette parties or any night when you and your girls want to get dolled up before going out. Couple’s cuts is another fun, discounted way to get yourself and your partner looking foxy. Fox & Jane tries to accommodate walk-ins whenever they can, but at the rate they’re going, you’re better of calling ahead or booking online 24/7.
Fox & Jane offers complimentary beer, wine, champagne, water, Arnold Palmer, coffee and its own special cocktail, The Fox & Jane. If you’re lucky, you’ll come in on a day when they’re sharing a cool neighborhood find. For me, it was macaroons from Bisous Ciao. “It’s the neighborhood, the energy,” explains Lorean. “Businesses should hire us as consultants! We find out what’s going on, what people like and don’t like; we hear it first, If the restaurant, the movie is good, if we have a good experience, we tell everybody!” Not only will you leave Fox & Jane with fabulous hair, you will have fabulous city finds to boot. Still, Fox & Jane is refreshingly unassuming.
The fostering of this neighborhood feel is an organic progression for Lorean, who started her career at Rita Hazan, the upscale, celebrity salon. “It wasn’t me,” she says. “I think New York is tired of pretentious.”
When Lorean met her business partner Billy Canu, it was as unpretentious as a meeting can be. They met through a mutual friend. Friday, the first day she met him, she cut his hair. Saturday, they had dinner with mutual friends, and Sunday they went shopping and to brunch, where they decided to open up a salon together. “It was almost like saying I love you during sex!” she laughed. “We had to call each other a week later like, ‘Was that real? Do we still mean it?'” Lucky for us, they did. And they’re not stopping there.
They are already thinking about the next step – another location in TriBeCa. She thinks TriBeCa serves as a great platform for the same neighborhood concept where the client base will be “young professionals, who still want to have fun and have a beer after work.” As a TriBeCa resident myself, I can’t help but think, “meant to be!”