Starring by Ted Gibson
Los Angeles, California
Owners: Ted Gibson and Jason Backe
Established: April 10, 2019
Description of Style: Modern, sleek, architectural, forward-thinking design and function from guest experience to retail
Square Footage: 1100
Number of Styling Stations: “We call them clouds, and there are five of them; each one is 13-feet high by 9-feet long and 8-and-half-feet wide.”
Salon/Spa Equipment Lines Used: Minerva
Furniture Lines Used: Minerva
Retail Lines Carried: STARRING By Ted Gibson
Color Lines Used: Goldwell
Design Firm: FGP Ateiler
Architect: Francisco Gonzalez-Pulido
Photographer: Brad Mitchell Cohen
The future of beauty is calling, and celebrity stylist Ted Gibson and celebrity colorist Jason Backe recently answered—with the April 2019 launch of STARRING by Ted Gibson in Los Angeles, what they describe as the first smart hair salon. The concept merges cutting-edge smart home technology with the duo’s 30+ years of styling and color expertise and the vision of architect Francisco Gonzalez Pulido FGP Atelier in Chicago.
“STARRING is the culmination of our creative vision to provide consumers with a forward-thinking, multi-dimensional smart salon concept, premium product line and unprecedented luxury experience all in one,” Gibson says.
Adds Backe, “We’re excited to finally reinvent the hair salon and put forth a new, disruptive way of thinking.”
Poised to reimagine all aspects of the salon experience from manufacturer to client, the salon features five individual, semi-private pods, called clouds, in lieu of traditional stations and chairs. Architecturally inspired by hair blowing in the wind, each cloud is outfitted with an Amazon Fire HD 10 tablet, Amazon Prime Video and smart home speakers for a personalized client experience. Additionally, each cloud offers various ambient lighting options, such as “everyday sunshine, “moonlight” and “indoors,” so clients can view hair color and styles in different light and tonal settings.
The salon is voice activated through Alexa, too, and an entertainment lounge greets guests instead of a traditional waiting area.
Along with the technological advances during services, guests can also peruse shoppable window displays full of products hand-selected by Gibson and Backe. While the salon is entirely cashless, customers can scan SmileCodes using the Amazon app on their mobile devices, and every item they purchase will be delivered to their doorstep with the optIon of auto-renewal subscriptions. Passersby on La Brea Avenue can even shop the window displays using their phones.
“Gibson and Backe wanted to create a state-of-the-art salon that merged cutting-edge technology with an unrivaled client experience,” says Pulido, who designed the space. “The idea was to reinvent and spearhead the salon of the future before the industry even caught on that it was behind—that type of forward-thinking is exactly how I approach design.”