In this exclusive interview, Sarai Gillmore the owner of Salon on Sixth tells us all about her highly successful salon and how she got started in the biz…
Q. How did you get your start in the hair industry?
Sarai: I always wanted to be a hairstylist, so I enrolled into Gateway Technical College right after I graduated high school. I graduated from beauty school in 1996 and went on to achieve my manager’s license in 1998. I then became a haircutting coach thru the Aveda Network in 1999. This included advanced classes and training in haircutting, styling and coloring. It also brought me the opportunities to assist in runway shows and doing stage performances of showing different trending looks. I then became a haircutting and styling ‘Purefessional’ with Aveda in 2008. That let me share my passion with other stylists all over the country. It also really help me hone my skills and knowledge of products and techniques.
In 2012 I took over Salon on Sixth. I am very passionate about great hair and giving and experience that is above and beyond. Not only do you get a color and cut, you get the newest innovation of technology and techniques, with value added services: hot towel treatments, stress relieving treatments, skin care/make up touch ups, and hand massages, just to name a few value add on services we love to share with you. Always giving back to our guests, community, and planet is my number one commitment.
Q. What inspired you to open up your own salon?
Sarai:I wanted to create my own vibe. To be able to create a salon that is technically driven with giving back to the community and the Earth.
Q. Salon on Sixth is a Aveda salon, can you tell us a little about Aveda?
Sarai: Horst founded Aveda in 1978 one of the world’s first natural cosmetics companies. Horst shared his passion for the healing power of plants with his daughter, Nicole and long time partner Kiran, building Aveda. After Aveda’s sale to Estee Lauder, Horst, Nicole and Kiran knew they wanted to continue their family’s tradition of creating luxurious, effective and environmentally responsible beauty products. In 2008 they launched I-N, the first-ever USDA-certified organic haircare line. Skincare followed in 2010. Beauty isn’t just about looking good-it’s also about cultivating a brighter tomorrow for your body, your career and the planet. One choice at a time.
Q. Why did you choose Downtown for your salon?
Sarai: I love the view of the majestic Lake Michigan, such a great benefit we have. We raise money every year to help support the Great Lakes sustainability. The character and history of downtown is just amazing and I love to help support that.
Q. What is your role as the owner of Salon on Sixth?
Sarai: Just like everyone I have many roles or hats that we all wear. I try to be supportive and ever evolving with all the roles I take on. Being completely transparent in all intentions.
Q. How do you keep up on the latest trends in hair?
Sarai: I am always looking at Fashion Magazines, and watching Runway shows. I find inspiration from everyday things like the beauty of nature. The colors are always so inspiring to recreate on someone’s hair. Everything is customizable to compliment each individual personality.
Q. What is one hair trend you you wish never happened?
Sarai: I love and embrace all trends. The greatest thing about trends that has happened over the years is that they are all customizable to each and every person. Each guest can own their own trending look.
Q.How many stylist do you have on you team?
Sarai: Salon on Sixth has 3 stylists.
Q. What goes into putting together your team of stylists?
Sarai: Having a passion for growth, Strong technical skills, friendly, creatively-inspired and driven and always striving to help others.
Q. What is your craziest hair story?
Sarai: I have so many crazy stories, depends on what your looking for. I personally always like the stories my guests tell me. They feel comfortable enough to share with me secrets and stories that they know I won’t tell. It can be interesting when dealing with the public.
Q. What makes Salon on Sixth stand out from other salons?
Sarai: The character and comfortableness of the shop, We can literally give you a head to toe makeover, New hair, massage and new outfits!
Q. Where can we find you on your day off?
Sarai: Taking a class, teaching a class or playing with dogs.
Q. How can people book appointments?
Sarai: You can call 262-657-4878, book online thru our Facebook page, Google page or our website salononsixth.com
We decide we wanted to get to know Saria a little better so we went ahead and asked her a few rapid fire questions.
Q. Who is your favorite all-around band or musician?
Sarai: Cyndi Lauper is my favorite musician
Q. What is your favorite thing about your career?
Sarai: The ever evolving creative platform of hair.
Q. What local restaurant always gives you a great meal?
Sarai: Daily Dose, Yee’s, Soon’s, UPT, Capt. Mike’s, so many more!!
Q. Favorite hobbies?
Sarai: Painting, creating new aroma blends, playing with my dogs.
Q. Who do you look up to professionally, real person and/or fictional?
Sarai: My Educational director at Intelligent Nutrients,Marlo Boyle
Q.What is your favorite TV show?
Sarai: The Golden Girls
Q. What is your favorite movie?
Sarai: The Princess Bride
Q. Where is your favorite vacation spot?
Sarai: Anywhere I’m on Vacation is my favorite
Q. Does pineapple belong on pizza?
Sarai: If you like pineapple on pizza go for it, Wouldn’t be my first choice I’m more of a savory person.
Salon on Sixth is located at 5038 Sixth Avenue Kenosha, WI
Book your next appointment by calling 262-657-4878
or visit salononsixth.com
Follow the on Facebook & Instagram
For more w/ Sarai check out her appearance on the Ktown Connects Podcast
Apple Podcast Link or Spotify Link
Q&A and photos by Donny Stancato
Edited by Jason Hedman
Follow the Downtown Kenosha Magazine on Facebook & Instagram
For everything Kenosha see visitkenosha.com
(This article first appeared in the Winter 2022/23 Downtown Kenosha Magazine)