What Is Balayage?
Camille Albane franchises specialize in today’s hottest color treatment
Balayage, which is arguably one of the most-requested color services in the world, is a longtime Camille Albane specialty. This French technique of hand-painting highlights onto the hair creates such a beautiful and natural effect that it has become the hottest trend.
Dessange Paris created Balayage in France in the early 1970s, so we are well versed in this “trend of the moment.” Balayage is practiced in many salons, but it was pioneered and perfected in ours.
Color services are an important driving force behind the growth in the $75 billion hair salon industry, responsible for as much as an 8% sales increase annually. Color — whether subtle highlights like those provided by Balayage, something funky like neon streaks or a full-coverage effect to mask gray — has become more important as Baby Boomers and Gen X’ers spend more and more in the pursuit of a youthful look.
“I had been trained in Balayage, but I never truly understood everything about the technique until I came to Camille Albane,” says Drew Irmen, Salon Manager at our flagship store in Boston.
“We’re not just a brand, we’re a brand that creates our own techniques — techniques you’ve never seen before and that you may not be able to find anywhere else,” says Maria Cavard, General Manager of Camille Albane in North America. “For instance, we invented the Balayage technique — painting of the hair without foil. No one does it better than us, and everyone who comes in and has it done never wants to go back to highlights with foil.”
Celebrities gravitate toward Balayage because it provides a more natural-looking, more subtle alternative to the ombre effect that’s been popular in recent years. Balayage leaves hair looking like someone’s been living a life of leisure, playing in the sun.
“Camille Albane offers the French touch to the American female, which is unique because it focuses on creating a special look just for her rather than following the trends in Hollywood,” says Drew. “It’s about developing a special look for themselves and bringing what’s exciting about them to the forefront.”
Who are my customers?
Camille Albane salon franchises cater to a very specific customer. The client we have in mind is modern and sophisticated. They live in or near a large urban area. They are typically between the ages of 25 and 45 and are following a successful career path. The Camille Albane client has enough discretionary income to treat herself to an upscale salon visit every six weeks. Her image is important to her.
The Camille Albane customer — mostly female, although fashion-forward men frequent our salons as well — wants to find the best way to express her style and individuality. She is not looking to copy someone else’s signature look; she is seeking a signature look of her own, and she wants a stylist sophisticated enough to help her create a look that can evolve and grow with her.
That’s what we provide at Camille Albane salons. And we provide it in such a way that our customers know they’re the most important person in the world to us during each and every visit. They’re paying a price for an upscale salon, but the services we provide are a notch above. It’s true we’re in the salon business, but really, we’re in the experience business.
“These days, customer service varies from place to place,” says Maria. “It used to be the customer was always right, and we definitely still have that philosophy here. We’re bringing it back to America, that customer service that Americans crave. Even if you’re not paying the highest price here, you’re still getting the highest-price service.”
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