Forget man caves. At Lady Lair by AVM in Dyker Heights it’s all about the “she-cave.”
According to founder and Dyker Heights native Alfonsina Vendra Messina, the southern Brooklyn salon’s goal is not only to offer luxury service at a reasonable price but also to serve as a sanctuary for women who want to feel at home while getting the royal treatment.
“We’re more than just a salon,” lauds Messina. “We’re really designed to be a ‘she-cave’ where women can gather – of course, men can too – but we’re really focused on bringing women together in a social setting.”
That setting, she explained, is also made to mirror a high-end home.
“Our hair bar is an actual bar,” Messina said, “so our clients can sit and have some drinks and sweets while they’re getting a blow-out.”
And its nail nook, as Messina called it, is lined with leather wing-back chairs, similar to those you’d see in a living or dining room, as opposed to your average bulky pedicure station.
“It’s designed with actual furniture,” she said, adding that the salon’s design only adds to its monthly events. “We hold monthly events where women can get together – last month we had a psychic come and read all these women’s cards, and at the same time they were able to get their hair blown out and their nails done.”
Later this month, Messina said, is a makeup event during which clients can come in and learn how to apply makeup better from a top stylist. Next month, Lady Lair will play host to a client-run thrift shop. “We’re going to turn the salon into a thrift store where our clients can come sell their products, and others can come purchase them – sort of like a New Year, clean-out-your-closet type thing,” she said.
“We’re very much focused on the clients’ experience, not only on their beauty needs,” Messina explained.
Though, beauty does remain a top priority at Lady Lair – as does women’s health.
“All of our products are healthy,” Messina said, boasting that Lady Lair’s nail polishes (even its gel polishes) are all “five-free,” meaning that they are made without five of the harshest chemicals found in typical polishes – such as formaldehyde. “We also sell skin-care, makeup and hair-care products, all of which are plant-based and chemical-free. We also offer ammonia-free dye for your hair.”
To boot, Messina said, everything used at Lady Lair is salon-brand.
To make things even sweeter, Lady Lair-ers can purchase an unlimited membership to the salon which, for a set price per month, gets clients access to unlimited services with a member discount as well as free tickets to the “she-cave’s” monthly events. Messina also is happy to host parties and events.
Perks aside, the salon’s extensive service menu is not to be forgotten.
“We do very unique things here at Lady Lair,” Messina said, adding that Lady Lair’s pedicure menu (which boasts everything from milk and honey to 24k gold lux pedis) is perhaps the most enthralling. “Also, our tubs don’t have jets in them, so there’s no risk for any bacteria being pushed back.”
In addition, Lady Lair has a strict no-acrylic policy, meaning no fumes.
“It’s really just a place for women to gather and inspire each other,” said Messina, making note also of the salon’s walls which are lined with motivational quotes. “It’s your own special vanity table.”
Even more special to its staff, Messina said, is Lady Lair’s location.
“I could’ve opened this anywhere in Brooklyn but I chose to open it here in Dyker Heights because I feel like we deserve something like this,” said the local resident who, prior to opening Lady Lair, spent 30 years in the fashion industry. “The neighborhood is changing, and there’s not a lot of salons that offer what we offer on this side of Brooklyn. I wanted to add value to the community and bring something new that didn’t exist before.”
The salon first opened in September, according to Messina, but celebrated its official grand opening in November. Since then, the owner said, business has boomed.
“It’s been great,” Messina said. “We’re definitely seeing our business growing, and we’re definitely moving in the right direction.”
For more information on Lady Lair, including a full list of services and prices, visit www.ladylairbyavm.com.
Lady Lair is located at 7824 13th Avenue.