18|8 Fine Men’s Salons hits the heart of Downtown San Antonio, Texas

18|8 Fine Men’s Salons hits the heart of Downtown San Antonio, Texas

You have to be living under a rock to not have noticed how much Downtown San Antonio is changing. The once socially untapped area that locals used to call “dead” has, in recent years, transformed into a continually evolving realm of energy and excitement. Those who desire a “city life” existence are now flocking there to seek real estate and rentals as well as start or headquarter new businesses, both big and small. These days, it is not uncommon to see the incredibly stylish locals walking side by side with the casual tourists or to find people enjoying the Downtown city nightlife, even on the weekdays.

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With this evolution, we also see fashionable businesses popping up in Downtown San Antonio. Recently, on the way to work, we noticed we had a new neighbor, 18|8 Fine Men’s Salons. A fantastic new addition to the area, 18|8 Fine Men’s Salons is seeking to cater to the growing population of hip professionals and modern men in need of quality grooming services. We sat down with John-Michael Stern, a Texas franchisee of 18|8 Fine Men’s Salons to get the latest on his recent decision to open up in the heart of Downtown San Antonio and to clarify certain stigmas regarding men’s grooming. Here’s what he had to say.
SLTV: We see that you have multiple locations. What brought you to Downtown San Antonio?
JMS: We feel men deserve a place to relax and kick back and really be pampered in the heart of San Antonio. We are excited to be a part of the revitalization that is being seen on and around Houston Street, including the addition of the Frost Tower.
SLTV: For sure. We just can’t get enough of the Frost Building in particular. It is an exciting time to be headquartered in Downtown San Antonio. So, I’m sure you’ve noticed that a large part of our male demographic carry a certain, how shall we say this, “machismo” that might stray them from participating in the deserved experience of modern male grooming. How does your salon put our male demographic at ease?
JMS: Conventional barbershop wisdom would have it that men primarily just need a haircut and shave – all other services like waxing and manicures are for a women’s or unisex salon. Since good grooming, when done right, requires head-to-toe upkeep, this is where we come in to help move the needle on this misconception. At 18|8 Fine Men’s Salons, we are a dual salon and barbershop and have found that men appreciate having more of a one-stop grooming experience with an environment that is respectfully theirs.

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SLTV: How would you describe your clientele?
JMS: Our clientele is a vast mix including fathers and sons, CEOs and executives, students, military personnel, first responders, among others. What they all have in common is that they are discerning not only about how they look but also how they feel and carry themselves when they come in for services.
SLTV: For the man who still feels uncomfortable coming in for a manicure, what would you say to him? 
JMS: We are here just for him – there is a reason we provide such a service in our men’s semi-private environment with stations separated by dividing walls, rather than having him go to a women’s or unisex nail salon with sometimes elbow-to-elbow seating. We like to call the experience a MAN-icure.
SLTV: haha… I love that. You know, I already see men coming out of the salon looking very comfortable and satisfied. You can’t help but notice their stride. I think you give them confidence, very much in the same way that I experience a new found confidence when leaving my “women’s” salon. Everyone loves to feel “fresh” and “new”. I especially love getting my hair color changed, which is something I notice you provide for men as well. Some men say hair color looks artificial. Can you tell us some innovations in men’s hair color that might encourage curious men to give it a try?
JMS: A lot of times men’s colors are artificial looking because they tend to be red based, which adds warmth and depth to women’s hair, but men’s hair color tends to be made from a natural and neutral brown base. We are seeing an increasing popularity with men asking for gray blending and we use very neutral men’s specific formulations to help men look more pepper than salt. This is achieved by subtly blending the gray without full coverage. And since this service typically takes less than 10 minutes to process, gray blending is perfect for our downtown guests to have done during their lunch break and return to the office looking better than ever.
SLTV: Yes. Great point! A productive lunch break as opposed to a relaxing sit down lunch break is a reality us city folks can’t deny. So, if a man is in a rush, but needs a quick freshen up, what would you suggest as his “must-do” items for the man-on-the-go lifestyle?
JM: In between haircut services, we offer clean-up service options to tidy up those loose hairs that grow around the ears and neckline. This touch-up service is included in the cost of our Executive Memberships, which come with 7 Executive Haircuts, 7 Clean-Ups, and more. We also offer a la carte options for an express manicure to buff, clip, and file without all the extra bells and whistles of a traditional manicure, as well as options for a hair wash, blow dry and/or light massage, for the man on the go.

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The new 18|8 Fine Men’s Salons is located at 122 E Houston St. suite #104, San Antonio, TX 78205. They offer standard male grooming services as well as membership packages for the modern man on the go. For more information, visit their website at EighteenEight.com/sa-tx/ or call (210) 901-6188 and for more fashion news, stay tuned, right here on Style Lush TV.

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Burgundy Woods
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Burgundy Woods has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music/Music Industries from the University of the Incarnate Word and a Design & Trend Forecasting degree from The Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles. She began her career in Hollywood, California, where she worked for major record labels such as Virgin Records, Interscope Records, EMI Music and Capitol Records. Later after attaining her fashion degree, she was discovered by MySpace, Inc. and was immediately hired to be their Fashion Curator starring and producing her show THE B-SPOT Fashion & Trends on their Fashion & Shopping channel. During this time, online media was in its infancy. She and her colleagues contributed to the invention and molding of the online fashion media industry. Many of the stylized ideas and tools that were launched through these platforms are still used to this day as industry standards for online fashion media. Later, with her extensive experience in developing online fashion media, she continued the show independently and has successfully rebranded THE B-SPOT into Style Lush TV online fashion network. Now, with over eight professional years in online fashion media and trend forecasting, she continues to pioneer, maneuver and develop her industry. She is currently the Senior Digital Fashion Editor, On Camera Fashion Personality and Senior Video Producer for Style Lush TV. She is also the President of the Texas Fashion Industry Initiative. The states official non-profit for the positive growth of the Texas Fashion Industry