In 1999, SALON TODAY was invited to toast the honorees at a champagne reception held at the very first The Salon Association’s Symposium held in Scottsdale, Arizona, and many of the honorees attended the event. The SALON TODAY staff brought 300 copies of the issue to the reception and were amazed when they disappeared in minutes.
Fun fact: In 1999, 90 percent of the salons were automated (that’s 100 percent today), but only 45 percent of those owners had e-mail.
A sign of the times, 2000 marked the first year SALON TODAY asked salons to include their website address. That year, 77 of the 200, had websites—Today, it’s incredibly rare to find a salon in the list that doesn’t have one.
That June, SALON TODAY partnered with Cosmetologists Chicago for ThinkFast, the first live salon business event that focused on the SALON TODAY 200. More than 150 people attended the twoday event.
The cover of this funky model on the bright orange background was shot in Los Angeles by photographer Bill Knapp on September 10, 2001. Then Editor in Chief Stacey Soble was on location for the shoot and stayed on for a spa conference, which started the next day, 9/11. “There were hundreds of spa owners at the event and we were stranded for almost a week at the Disneyland Resort. It was surreal, since Disneyland was supposed to be the happiest place on earth. No one really wanted to discuss spa business, but none of us could get home,” Soble remembers. “Every time I see this cover, I think of that experience and of the events of 9/11.”
During a depressing time in our nation’s history, this issue attempted to brighten the perspective by focusing on salon owner’s bright business ideas and handing out SALON TODAY 200 sunglasses at Symposium with the issues.
In March of 2006, the newly appointed editor of SALON TODAY, Laurel Smoke (now Nelson), once again created a live event based on the SALON TODAY 200. Bill Rancic, the first winner of The Apprentice was the keynote speaker for the first SALON TODAY 360°: From the Page to the Stage, held at the Intercontinental Hotel in Chicago. SALON TODAY 360 had a successful threeyear run until a troubled economy made salon owners hesitant to travel for business events.
For the first time, SALON TODAY let the readers pick the cover. “Online contests were growing in popularity and I though inviting readers to pick the cover of the SALON TODAY 200 would create some excitement for our new website,” says Nelson. She directed the photographer to shoot three different cover options with the same model in different looks. Readers voted on salontoday.com, and this was the winning cover.