Management Practices

It Takes Two: Medusa Salon, NY

Lisa Doyle | July 10, 2011 | 1:34 PM

In their small town, Medusa Salon's owners have made their business a big success.

It Takes Two: Medusa Salon, NY

Shannan Klahn and Christy Bottoms

Medusa Salon, Springville, New York


On historic Main Street in Springville, New York, sisters-in-law Christy Bottoms and Shannan Klahn run a salon with a bright future. Between their commitment to education, specialty treatments, kid-friendly services and tasty treats, they've created a salon that offers something for everyone. Bottoms shares the little extras that have kept their business going strong.

Q. How did you get your start in the salon industry?

A. We both started out in different fields. I got my degree in business marketing, but had always wanted to do hair and finally took the opportunity in my twenties. We decided we wanted to open a salon in our small town that had a more sophisticated feel, like the upscale salons we had worked in outside of Springville. It has been a great career move and has brought a lot of wonderful people into our lives.

Q. How do you cater to niche clients?

A. Men receive a relaxing scalp massage with every cut, and are out the door in less than 30 minutes. We have also just taken on the new Utubia children's line, a fabulous collection of mix-n-match tearless conditioning shampoos that children can create for themselves at a mixing station. Clients love it!

Q. What services make your salon stand out?

A. Our Chocolate Conditioning Experience! It starts with a deep conditioning treatment using Thermafuse Intense Repair-which has a great chocolate mint scent-under the dryer. Meanwhile, we treat clients to coffee or hot chocolate, a box of chocolates and a retail-size bottle of Thermafuse Eight Elixir. Living in ski country, this treatment is very popular in the winter months when hair can be very dry and the temperatures are freezing. We also offer Virtual Style, which involves uploading a client's photo and allowing her to virtually "try on" a wide variety of colors, lengths and styles. This is very popular for those wishing to take their long hair short-most donate to Locks of Love.

Q. What has been the greatest challenge in your business?

A. The greatest challenge has been balancing every aspect of the business between just the two of us. Not only do we run the business aspect and do all our own marketing, we answer the phones, schedule appointments, check clients out and work behind the chair.  It can get very hectic, but our clients appreciate the personalized attention.

It Takes Two: Medusa Salon, NY

Medusa Salon reception area.

It Takes Two: Medusa Salon, NY

Medusa Salon

  • Established: January 2006
  • Spa setup: 3 chairs, manicure station, Utubia shampoo mixing station
  • Square feet: 600
  • Employees: 2
  • Prices: women's hair cut $24; men's hair cut $15; highlights $65+; single process color $58+; brow/lip wax $12
  • Salon software: Carteblanche
  • Equipment/furnishings: All oak work handcrafted by Klahn Builders
  • Primary hair care lines: Thermafuse, Utubia
  • Primary chemical line: Wella


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