salon logo opinions

Deanna's picture

I posted a little while ago about my salon logo. I finally decided on a logo and had it refined.
However, a friend mentioned a few things about the logo that were 'off' that I hadn't even noticed.
My area is undergoing a revitalization of midcentury modern buildings. The area is starting to have a downtown lofty feeling.
The salon is modern..clean lines. Fairly simple. No fluff. I wanted it to appear unisex..not girly or flowery like some salons. I have a full clientelle- not looking for clients but I plan on hiring two stylists and hoped the salon would appeal to variety of people.
This is getting wordy. I don't want a "bunch of blue haired shampoo set" people working there..
photos of the salon if you're interested -

The logo-

The logo is on a black background ***only because I have dark windows and they kept giving me black lettering**** My sign guy said he could extract the logo from the black background since it really isn't part of the logo. The windows aren't black anyway, just dark.

She suggested stacking the words..since there is no heirarchy- ? I want people to know the name of the salon but I also want them to be driving by and go "oh a salon".
I wish I would have had her do the logo but she's so busy..

I used an online company for the logo. It was a horrible experience - not sure I can mention the name here but it wasn't ebay. Local companies were out of my price range..maybe because it's Scottsdale. And by that I mean over 1500.00. NOT that they aren't worth it and good for them because they are obviously getting it. I just couldn't swing that.

So- having said all that- you won't hurt my feelings if you tear it apart...much. :)

aluminum's picture

"I used an online company for the logo. It was a horrible experience - not sure I can mention the name here but it wasn’t ebay."


"And by that I mean over 1500.00. NOT that they aren’t worth it and good for them because they are obviously getting it. I just couldn’t swing that."

How much is the signage + business cards + ads + brochures going to cost you? Often, the actual cost of designing the logo is the lesser cost.

The logo is OK, I guess. Two letters smashed together in a not entirely bad way. The type underneath doesn't seem terribly 'salonesque' though and appears to be more of a random typeface just slapped on there. The type, itself is also very small in proportion to the mark, so you might want to rethink the scale there for use in print.

Dan Weaver's picture

The look is too sterile you might as well be a doctors office. It isn't about sexy, hair and nails are about being sexy. Add an Illustrative element or two, how about some hair and nails! Make it more fun and less corporate. You are retail not corporate.

Miss Tiffany's picture

Going to the salon isn't always about hooker nails. ;^P

If the downtown area is reviving and feels mid-century modern it would be wrong to do something too playful or over the top.

Dan Weaver's picture

I don't agree Tiff you are dealing with drive by signage you need to be over the top.

Deanna's picture

Dan- I didn't want something over the top in a "hair" way. I've seen logos with a swish of hair or a hand holding a rose and it looks cheap and girly. NOT that I'm not a girl but it's not me and it's not the salon. Did you have a chance to see the pictures? You don't have to log in to see them.

I wanted hip, edgy, modern...not like a girly frilly salon. Does that make sense? Some salons just use a name like Verve, Rolfs...
I think part of it could be the name it's not a real edgy name but I like the downtown aspect and it IS in downtown Scottsdale.

Deanna's picture

Also- for my (personal) clientelle, I don't rely on any advertising. I'm as busy as I ever want to be. I'll be renting stylist stations out and usually people who rent don't have to advertise their services they're pretty full or rely on word of mouth....BUT I want clients to be able to find us. Most established salons book by appt..not by walk ins. And I want it to look cool. *laugh* That sounded juvenile. Does all that make sense?

Da Kine's picture

I like it! It will be irresistable to yuppies, assuming there are any in Scottsdale.

Deanna's picture

Da Kine- thanks.Yeah many yuppies.

Dan..see? I like sterile. I like the word "minimalist" better. I don't know what that says about me but at least it comes across in the logo.
I appreciate your comments though..thanks for taking the time to look and comment.

It was logoloft.
There I said it, it's out!
that was a little therapeutic.
Their customer service was great...they probably get a lot of practice.

Lex Kominek's picture

I think the mark works with the look the inside of the salon has - clean and simple. The typeface underneath looks dated though, and I don't like the letterspacing on the second line.

I would go with a typeface like Ray Larabie's Neuropol, which would match the mark a little closer, and give the whole logo a newer feel.

- Lex

timd's picture

There is a compressed feel to the top half of the s which is not reflected in the bottom half which has a smooth curve, this continues in the shape of the d between 9 and 12 o'clock, if that was cleaned up, I think the bottom left of the s could follow the curve of the d up a touch and maybe use the semi-circular terminal created where the d is covered by the s. Stacking and enlarging the copy would make sense and a better composition, definitely lose the tracking on hair & nails though.

aluminum's picture

also, one other thought...if this is a salon, would it not make more sense to say 'salon' rather than 'hair and nails'. 'hair and nails' sounds kind of strip-mally.

Deanna's picture

aluminum...I wanted "salon" but the Azstate board of cosmetology and city decide whether names are too similar. They suggested "hair cottage". ??!!
Yeah, that's what ~I~ said.
Tim- I see exactly what you're talking about. I felt like the S was shortchanged and a friend pointed out that the white part was fatter than the skinny black part. technical terms right. Thanks for bearing with me. I obviously don't have an eye for design but can see that something is "off".
By tracking, do you mean ...a letter then a space..then a letter. Sorry I have NO idea what I'm really talking about...trying though!

Lex- because it's window signage, I was concerned about the thickness and visibility of the letters. I think that's why I accepted what I have. Do you think that the font you recommended is visible enough for window signage? It looks futuristic to me. Light years ahead of what is on the logo now but too techno?

Here's the big question. I've approved the final logo so- should I pay the charge - I think it's 75.00 to have them change it? Should I cut and paste what you all have said and send it to them? They'll know for sure it wasn't my idea..but it doesn't matter.
Can I fix it myself at kinkos? They have adobe..

Thanks for all the input. I really appreciate it.

Deanna's picture

Half of my last comment isn't showing up but when I click to edit it, the rest of the comment is there.


nevermind my broken post..not the questions about the logo.
It's late.

Arlo Vance's picture

The suggestions for the changes on the typography and overall design of the logo are well-placed. After viewing the images of the salon, I thought of a few other things that might be helpful in branding the entire salon rather than just the logo.

1. Elements of the logo should be distributed through the interior space to create a more memorable experience. I understand your desire for minimalism, and in this case, some tasteful interior elements would not detract from, but augment that ideal.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about how to capitalize on the brand you have started to establish.

If you have access to editing software or know another designer that has access to the comments on this forum, it might be a good idea to contact them once you have received final files from "the-online-company-who-cannot-be-named-but-has" for any additional work. Good luck.

timd's picture

You have defined tracking accurately enough, kerning is interletter spacing and tracking is spacing out (or in) a whole word or line. I imagine as a stylist you have an eye for composition and to some extent you can trust in other circumstances.
You could do some of the changes if you are confident with Illustrator but I would recommend approaching someone who works with it frequently (perhaps a client would exchange a style?).
Hair cottage:)

poms's picture

Hair cottage:)
Haarhütte :)

thought-well's picture

go here for more info:

Deanna's picture

Arlo- I would love to hear your ideas. I haven't thought much about how to incorporate the logo into the salon because I've just started wrapping up the whole process. It's difficult for me to pull it all together because it's been so fragmented for such a long time. The remodel, branding..etc.

timd- I've copied the comments on this page and I'm going to take them to the printer. I don't have any of the programs needed to make the changes and wouldn't know what to do with them if I did. The printer has a graphic artist so I'll hit them up for the changes. I'll be using them to print my cards and brochures so hopefully their fee won't be astronomical.
I have the the logo in all the formats required for any changes..eps tiff ai jpeg it shouldn't be a problem.

I appreciate the feedback. I'll post the revised logo when it's all finished.
Thanks again everyone.

Arlo Vance's picture


I'd love to assist in getting this venture off the ground on the right foot. Looks like you're headed in the right direction. Good luck with the finesses on the logo. I hope it turns out how you expect.

You can email me at with more of your ideas on what you expect for the rest of the salon and its branding. We can talk more there about some of the ideas I had in mind.

hughfire's picture

As far as the overall feel - I think you are hitting it. Simple and clean on black is very upscale salon looking. As far as the naming goes Have you thought about something a little more concise. Many salons that are hip trendy have simple one word names (we have one here called hotlocks for instance) But you could go even ironic - something like flirt or stomp that has an attitude quality. I wouldn't even have all that descriptor going on everywhere. I would assume that if you are like most high end salons 75% at least of your business is word of mouth referrals. Therefore being too over the top with signage isn't going to do you good (stay away from the FAUX NAGLE CLIP ART!!!! ARGH!). Instead use the sign to set the tone of what you are trying to accomplish from a brand standpoint. Tying your salon name to a location (ie downtown) makes it difficult if you ever wantto move/expand.The mark itself is what it is - two squished letters which can work in a pinch. My thoughts with salon and beauty marks is can you see a guy named Sven wearing the logo on a crisp black t-shirt as he gives you a color rinse (think Vidal Sassoon). I actually did a brand with a similar feel for a plastic surgeon (called IMAAGE - On the typeography I would pick one word to play up more than the others. I would at least remove the SCOTTSDALE from the name. If you want to really get the hip upscale urban feel what about metro?

Deanna's picture

My licenses and advertisements (yellow page)ad are all under "downtown..." I've been in the downtown scottsdale area since 1990. I don't plan on moving anytime soon but I did consider that when I chose the name. We're on Miller Rd and I thought perhaps I would just name the salon with Miller in the name. Too specific though even if I decided to stay in the downtown area.

We were "Nails,Etc" (purchased a salon that we worked in) and kept that name forever. We did nails and some tanning but no hair. My business partner moved out of town in January and I kept the space, totally remodeled and added hair stations. I knew that hair people wouldn't want to work at a "nails,etc". Frankly, no one likes to be "etc". So I chose Scottsdale Salon - which was taken. Scottsdale Hair & Nails...and figured I would still answer the phone "scottsdale salon". It was approved by the city and state and then the State Board of Cosmetology said it was too close to Salon de Scottsdale and I needed to add something to it. I was there, doing the final paperwork so I made some quick phone calls and came up with the "downtown". My yellow page contracts were due and I had to renew my licenses with the new name so I was pretty much stuck.

It's an established salon and you're right about word of mouth..that's where most of our clients come from.
Honestly I thought that if I could get a cool enough logo, the long drawn out name wouldn't really matter. It would be just a formality...because of what we need on licenses and such.

Btw, your imaage design is very cool. Also- love the name "metro"..but like I said..

Our old name was horrible- or so I far as a coolness factor but for advertising- great. When people called information looking for a nail salon in scottsdale, ours was first to pop up. When a stylist is building a clientelle it's great for obtaining new clientelle.

I have to admit, there are times when I think "gah! I hate it all!" and think about starting over. It's just been a long road with the remodel and then getting a decent logo has been an effin' nightmare. I've approved the final logo and now I have to go back and at the very least, make the changes that were mentioned on this forum.

I had company for over a week and I was glad to live in complete denial of the whole mess...but now I have to get busy. This has been dragging on for 8 months.
I've put off hiring anyone or even placing an add to hire because I want the signage and branding done.
I wouldn't want to work in a salon that was half done so I don't expect anyone else would want to either.
See? Here it comes..."gah!...."

Perhaps it's more of a therapy issue than a logo issue...:)

I appreciate all the comments and feedback. Thanks so much.

adnix's picture

The windows in your picture don't look that dark. Or are there different windows not pictured?

Unless the bulk of the traffic passing by is pedestrian, I think the logo is too difficult to read from a car, even at slow parking lot speeds. I think a normal, not extended face will be more legible in that case. If it's a clean, modern, mid-twentieth century feel you're after, how about Futura or Neutraface--though surrounding business might go the same route.

I do suggest talking to a legitimate designer. If you are upfront about budget restrictions, but also open to making an investment in your business, most independent designers should be able to work with you.

Good luck.

Deanna's picture

This is one of the first drafts. I like the font but was concerned that it wouldn't be visible from the street because it was so thin.

I love the look of neutraface - in fact I've ordered my house numbers in that same font.

adnix- The windows don't look dark from the inside but from the outside you can't even see in. Of course they aren't black but basically only white shows up well. The letters in orange will be more difficult to see...and I'm second guessing that.
Many of the surrounding business haven't gone modern just yet.
They're still finding their "tuscan" roots.
NOT that there's anything wrong with that...

I assumed the designers online were legitimate and handed over my money. I was lured by the idea of more than one designer working on the logo. I thought for sure that if 3 or 4 people were working on it, I would have something great.
Right now I'm just ready fix this one and get on with the business of being in business.
I'm not discounting the importance of good design...but it's not a logo that invokes thoughts of bloody fingers or bad hair cuts..

I was browsing the other logos today. I think I'm addicted to this place!

Deanna's picture

just for fun....some of the logos that made me want to yank my hair out.

Remember the windows are dark and I was very specific about clean modern lines. No swirls or frills

aluminum's picture

"I was lured by the idea of more than one designer working on the logo. I thought for sure that if 3 or 4 people were working on it, I would have something great."

100 designers working for peanuts will rarely equal the efforts of one designer working with a decent budget and closely with the client.

Those other logos, for the most part, are horrid...with one exception...what about the first logo and just loose the mark completely? Just stick with the type, or maybe add a very simple skyline mark above it. It would be a bit art deco-esque.

A super-quick mock-up:

Deanna's picture

aluminum..I like this one. The windows have just the type with an oversized ampersand. I felt like I needed it to be more..logo-ish. More identifiable.
...I really like this one..

Duckworth's picture

If you want to look up-market, how about a simple wordmark? It might suit better than generating a mark you're not entirely happy with. I agree with Tiffany's earlier post that you should steer clear of a playful approach.

It seems to be heading in a more upmarket direction with your latest iteration - not quite sure about the skyline, but maybe if you picked a rich, solid colour and relied on the typography alone, it would give you the upmarket feel you were looking for - certainly the logotogogo or whatever that did the first logo missed the mark.

It was really great that you posted the photos because it gives a feel of your salon and it looks contemporary and upmarket from the interior alone - i think it looks almost European somehow, it seems nice and refined. Your logo is important because it has to sync with the environment it's got to work in.

Maybe look at a sans-serif typeface that isn't so Art Deco - I'm not quite sure that the Art Deco fits with the image your salon portrays. It could be something as simple as Helvetica or DIN, or a condensed Akzidenz Grotesque. If you wanted something with more to it, slab serif such as Serifa might be a good way to go. I really think a more minimal approach would suit your salon. I wouldn't be afraid of a thin typeface - if you use it on its own as a wordmark, you could make the type larger. If you use really heavy weights of type, it could cheapen the look.


Deanna's picture

Turns out that the guy at the printing company next door is a graphic artist. Yay!
You think he would have walked by my ugly windows long ago and made a barf face or something. Which would have been so professional. :)

He's tweaking my logo for me. I'm keeping the original. I like it, it needed some fixing but I basically like the idea. I'm horrible about asking everyone's opinion and then freaking out about my choice so I'm going to make the changes that were mentioned and "stay the course" so to speak.
I'll share it with you when it's done.
Btw, I was driving down the street yesterday and noticed that one of the renderings form was Desert Schools Federal Credit Union's logo. That would have been just fabulous.Lesson Learned! Thanks everyone.

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