Jack Panico

Panico Salons and Spas

Ridgewood, Oradell and West Caldwell, New Jersey; and Miami Beach, Florida

In the years since Jack Panico has taken over the family business, he has helped it evolve from a group of five stylists to a multi-location business with 225 employees, Here’s a glimpse inside his successful salons and spas.

How did you get your start in the salon business?

My parents were salon owners, so I was brought up in the industry.

We hear Jack Senior is planning to get involved in the business again. What will his new role be?

My father lives in South Beach and decided he wanted to get back behind the chair again. He’s an International Champion who’s been training with the best in the industry, and he’s back in action.

What are the challenges of running salons in two different parts of the country?

We maintain our programs and systems as tightly as possible. Keeping in mind the needs and wants of the clientele, we sometimes have to create different programs to suit the needs of a particular area.

What niches do you target?

We target all ages and groups by making sure our technicians receive education in the latest cutting, color and spa services. People know our stylists are trained to execute the latest trends, and that they’ll receive a great hair cut and color.

How do you cater to men?

We cater to men much the same way we cater to women: with consistency, education and professionalism. We offer men’s events, in which we create a ‘Guy’s Night Out.’ We bring in widescreen TVs for special sporting events and offer mini-chair massages and hair cuts.

What’s the most memorable thing to ever happen at your salon?

A woman drove her car through the wall of our color area. We had the police and paramedics come. She had to be taken to the hospital. Fortunately, she was okay. That’s not the end of the story, though. A few hours later, she came back to get her hair done—bruises and all! I envisioned making a commercial out of it with the slogan, “Nothing keeps them from coming to Panico.” Honestly, the joke for the next several weeks was our customers asking if we offer “drive-thru color.”

Who is your industry role model?

My parents were my first significant industry role models who’ve made the greatest impact in my career. My father’s talent is unsurpassed, and my mother’s integrity has made me who I am today.


Established: Ridgewood—1973; Oradell—1976; West Caldwell—1988; South Beach—2004

Website: www.panico.com

Salon setup: Ridgewood—63 chairs, 6 treatment rooms, 4 mani and pedi stations; Oradell—42 chairs, 4 treatment rooms, 8 mani and pedi stations; West Caldwell—21 chairs, 2 treatment rooms; South Beach—8 chairs, 4 treatment rooms, 6 mani and pedi stations

Square feet: Ridgewood 7,500; Oradell 6,000; West Caldwell 3,000; South Beach 2,500

Employees: Ridgewood 82; Oradell 63; West Caldwell 48; South Beach 12

Prices: Hair cuts range from $50-$150

Salon software: Software Creations

Equipment/furnishings: Salon Interiors

Primary hair care lines: Davines, Goldwell, Paul Mitchell

Primary chemical lines: Goldwell, Paul Mitchell, Redken

Primary spa lines: Murad, Phytomer


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