Green Salon Review: Synergy Salon, New Canaan

March 7, 2009 in Fashion, Style, Sustainability by Analogue Chic

The Best Haircut of My Life!

Like many women, I was loyal to my hairstylist for several years.  Diana was quiet, which suited shy, teenage me, and always showed me how to re-create my style at home.  She took me through high school, from my first major style transformation to Senior Prom.  Then she informed me that she was moving out of state, to open an antiques store in Massachusetts.  My hair has never been the same since.

For almost 10 years, I’ve bounced between salons as I went to college and found a full-time job, but I never had the same “click” with a stylist like I had with Diana.  Eventually, out of frustration, I started doing everything myself, from trimming the ends to covering my early-onset graying (a family trait).

That is, until I left the drugstore dye on a little too long, and had a severe reaction that took almost a year to fully clear up.  Finally, I was ready to dye again when I saw an ad offering organic, herbal hair care at Synergy Salon in New Canaan.  Armed with my tax refund and hope that the Fates would send me a dream stylist, I made the call.

Owner and stylist Michele Maestri-Murphy booked my appointment, and when I told her my horror story, she suggested I come in a few days early for a strand test, to be sure the herbal dyes wouldn’t have an adverse effect.  After some navigation snafus*, I entered the soothing, adobe-colored shop in an unassuming plaza set back from East Avenue in New Canaan Center.

On this bright, late winter Saturday, Maestri-Murphy humored her young son and his musical duo with the comfy waiting area as a stage.  The small but well-designed salon featured sleek furnishings balanced with naturalistic décor and several displays of colorful jewelry and gifts.  Stylist Kim Parisi welcomed me and offered me a beverage before starting my consultation.  While I waited for the herbal color to process, Parisi and Maestri-Murphy both checked on me to make sure I wasn’t in any discomfort.

Maestri-Murphy bought out an existing salon 3 years ago and transformed it into the region’s only beauty spot offering alternatives to the usual products that can be troublesome for pregnant women or people with sensitive skin or respiratory problems.  Synergy’s goal is to educate consumers by providing healthier choices that create balance in their clients’ well-being and the natural environment.  They offer organic, ammonia-free, herbal hair color including henna hair treatments as well as specialty treatments using fresh produce and essential oils; organic nail care using nail polish that is free of formaldehyde, tuolene, and other multi-syllabic chemicals; and chemical-free threading for facial hair removal.  They also offer Reiki, foot reflexology, and seasonal specials, in addition to traditional salon services.

Three days after my strand test and consultation, with no reaction, I returned to Synergy for a cut and color.  I bonded with stylist Parisi over our love of fashion and stories of dating foreigners.  Seemingly way too young to have 22 years’ experience, Parisi is a color expert and formulated a rich brown that perfectly suits my complexion and covers all my grays.  To top it off, with no instructions from me other than the suggestion of long layers, she created the style I’ve been dreaming of for years, but never trusted a stylist to carry out.  It was evident that she really listened when I described my lifestyle and career aspirations, and created a cut that is an outer expression of who I am and where I am in life’s transitions.

I left Synergy feeling fulfilled and ecstatic about finding a healthy, holistic salon that reflects my values, and relieved to find a new stylist worthy of my loyalty.

 NOTE: Kim has since left the salon. Owner and stylist Michelle gets my enthusiastic stamp of approval as well.

Synergy Salon

53 East Avenue, New Canaan, CT


*WARNING: If you go, do NOT use Google Maps for directions.