Hairstylist, entrepreneur and educator, Natasha Sunshine Antonioni established Byu-Ti Salon (pronounced beauty) as a place for clients to receive healthy hair treatments as well as a great haircut. At her go-to location in Santa Monica, California, she offers the exclusive Byu-ti Blenders system, six treatments that can be added to any conditioner to enhance the properties and healing of the hair Pureology. In addition to leading her team and working on clients, Natasha serves as an educator for line of hair products. She grew up in Louisiana and worked in New York before moving to the Los Angeles area. With bi-coastal experience, she has also appeared on television (most recently the Rachael Ray Show) giving tips on styling and color. www.byu-ti.com Tell us a bit about your background. How did you know that hair was your calling? My incredible Aunt Liz had a hair salon called Looks in the French Quarter of New Orleans. All I can remember as a small girl was that I wanted to be like her when I grew up. What stood out was watching her at work because people came in one way and left like they were floating on a cloud. I was about four years old at the time so I’m sure I didn’t recognize how good their hair looked. I just remember people being happy when they were leaving and I knew from that early age that I wanted to affect people that way. You specialize in healthy hair treatments. How does this differ from regular treatments? We have created a way to custom-formulate treatments for each guest’s specific needs with our Byu-ti Blenders. There are six blenders (Shine, Smoother, Thickener, Protein Re-builder, Overprocessed and Oily). The blenders are made from micro organic botanicals. They are not oils, but botanical extracts. We begin by choosing a Pureology Masque as our base and then boost in up to two Byu-ti Blenders to make the formulation unique to the guests’ needs. It is applied section by section to the hair and then the client is placed under our Micromist Steamer, a Japanese steamer that makes the mixture nano sized so it can penetrate all the layers of the hair. We say it’s like injecting the hair with vitamins and nutrients. True hair health from the inside out. The service also comes with a blowdry. Who is good candidate for your treatments? When we created them we had the client with problematic hair in mind but over time, as these clients got healthy hair from the service, we noticed that they continued to come back consistently – almost like you would for a facial. So, they can be used to treat a problem and they can also be used to maintain the health of your hair. Lastly, they can be used as a replacement for a haircut when you are growing your hair. Instead of coming in every six weeks for your cut, you can reserve a cut and treatment every other six weeks to keep the hair healthy, beautiful and free from split ends. What about Organic Highlights, we noticed this on your menu, what is its point of difference? Organic highlights are a great service for the gal that doesn’t want high-maintenence color. It’s a quick service and usually consists of 16-20 foils, which keeps the cost down as well. Think of a seven year old at the beach for a summer…she’ll have soft, natural looking highlights that will blend as they grow out keeping it looking terrific even during the winter. You never see a seven year old and say – she needs a touch-up, right? Same idea, beautiful, natural looking color. What is the best way to keep hair looking healthy, shiny and beautiful? Our treatments are a great place to start if your hair needs a kick start to health. The follow up is to use great products at home. We are a dedicated Pureology salon. We adore all of their shampoo, conditioners and masques. The ideal scenario is to wash less (every other day or even every third day) to maintain hair’s natural oils. Condition with every wash and use a once or twice a week masque to give your hair an extra dose of nutrients. What new hair technologies are on the horizon that really excite you? Hair color is going through lots of new transitions these days. It’s covering grey with gentler ingredients and even using oil-based formulas to keep hair shiny and well hydrated while processing. The good news that as technology improves, it improves in every area so products will continue to get better and better.