Both clients and guests are protected from air-bourne particles with the Freestylist with Vented Platform, as shown here at Salon Audace and Blow Dry Bar.
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Both clients and guests are protected from air-bourne particles with the Freestylist with Vented Platform, as shown here at Salon Audace and Blow Dry Bar.

In June, our 2021 SALONS OF THE YEAR will debut, so our minds are turning to salon design. This year, we're inviting some of the industry's top designers and furniture and equiptment manufacturers to take on our reader's top-of-mind questions. In the first installment of this series, Blair Hopper, founder of Freestye Systems addresses the question:

What furniture/design choices should I consider for the health and comfort of my team members? T

Hopper: This past year has really changed the way salons operate their business.  They now have to offer healthier options for both their staff and guests to stay competitive and safe during the pandemic as well as afterwards.  

The Freestylist with Vented Platform is our contribution to both pandemic and post-pandemic air quality improvement and ergonomics.  For a salon that’s 20’ W X 50’ L with 10’ H ceilings, it would take a 1,000 CFM (cubic feet per minute) exhaust fan about 10 minutes to replace all the air in the salon.  A more reasonable approach is to purify the air above each station with a quiet 250 CFM exhaust fan to expel chemicals, steam and other allergens immediately.  COVID-19 particles float in the air, so it’s easier to suck them out.

The 6’ distance rule was established because heavier particles fall to the ground quickly, within 6’.  Lighter particles can stay air-borne for several minutes, that’s why the exhaust fan directly above each station works so well.  With about 250 CF of air around a station (5’X5’X10’H), a 250 CFM exhaust fan can remove that air in one minute.  When you think of air contamination, particles floating at or above 4’ are the problem because they’re more likely to be breathed in.  The added bonus is that this type of fan also helps eliminate odor from services such as color, perms and keratin treatments.

The weight of blowdryers can cause repetitive stress injuries for service providers. The Freestylist with Vented Platform, as shown here at Capozzi & Co. Salon, suspends the dryer so it is weightless. (This photo was taken before the pandemic.)
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The weight of blowdryers can cause repetitive stress injuries for service providers. The Freestylist with Vented Platform, as shown here at Capozzi & Co. Salon, suspends the dryer so it is weightless. (This photo was taken before the pandemic.)

The Freestylist is the ergonomic mechanism designed to support a hair dryer’s weight while in use, rendering it weightless.  It was invented to help stylists avoid and alleviate repetitive stress injuries in necks, shoulders, backs, arms and wrists associated with holding the weight of a dryer.  It enables hairdressers to work more comfortably and can substantially prolong their careers.  It can now be ordered with a vented platform featuring an exhaust fan.  These technologically advanced health-conscious systems will become staples in the industry because they make people feel comfortable enough to spend more time in the salon.  Learn more on https://freestylesystems.com/product/lp04-round-vented-light-platform/.

Note: Typically, salon owners and stylists look for lightweight dryers to seek relief from the stress and strain of blow drying, but lighter dryers are made with DC motors.  Dryers with AC motors last many times longer but are heavier.  So, the advantage of The Freestylist is, a blow dryer can be chosen based on the heat, power, noise level, ergonomics, motor and reliability, rather than on weight.

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