DTLA Pioneer Neihulé Salon Opens A Second Outpost in the Fashion District

The space is a beauty school, too.

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When Neihulé Salon opened its first location kitty-corner to Pershing Square over a decade ago, "friends and clients spanning from West Hollywood to Pasadena simply thought we were crazy to put a high-end salon in the heart of Downtown L.A.," Yvonne Neihulé tells us. She and Atouzo Neihulé, her husband and business partner, "tried explaining to them that DTLA was on the verge of a renaissance — but like everything in life, it's harder to convince people when you at the forefront of a movement."

At that time, the couple's chop shop was the first high-end, full-service hair studio to open in DTLA in 60 years; it was followed by the opening of their tanning space and a nail salon (which has since been sold) around the corner near Bottega Louie a few years later. As beauty industry veterans (Yvonne's a Redken color specialist who trained at Vidal Sassoon; Atouzo trained at the renowned Warren Tricomi salon and holds a degree in fashion photography), they're now ready to pass their knowledge onto the next class of pro hairstylists at their second outpost, Neihulé Academy of Beauty, in the Fashion District.

Open as of last November at Santee and 8th Streets, the salon and academy offers a complete curriculum for becoming a licensed cosmetologist, esthetician, or nail artist; other expert-led beauty classes include microblading and makeup artistry. There's also an externship option for students who've racked up 1,000 hours of experience, allowing them to assist pro stylists and potentially fast-track their career.

As far as services, the salon offers women's and men's cuts ($85 to $145 and up and $55 to $75 and up), hair color and treatments ($150 and up for full color, highlights starting at $85, and full balayage for $195 and up), blowouts ($55 and up), and extensions. Also on the menu are nail services (manicures starting at $21 and pedicures for $30 and up), brow shaping ($40 and up), microblading and microfeathering ($600 to $1,000), facials ($100 to $140), waxing ($30 to $65 and up), and spray tanning ($65 and up); plus makeup tutorials and bridal beauty.

Prospective students should know they're in good hands: The cosmetology program will be led by Yvonne, while microblading specialist Angelina Mancinas will teach esthetics and manicurist Elena Hernandez will teach her craft. (All are licensed cosmetologists, of course.) And the Neihulés themselves have been entrusted by stars like Isla Fisher, Kate Walsh, Janice Dickinson, Lauren Conrad, and Kim Kardashian, among many other clients.

One school is in session, the space will offer beauty services by students, including haircuts and color, manicures and pedicures, facials, waxing, microblading, spray tanning, and eyelash extensions. On the shelves are haircare from Kerastase, Bumble & Bumble, and Kevin Murphy; cosmetics from Becca and NCLA; and skincare from Sonage and Osmosis.

As far as the interiors, the Neihulés decked out Scandinavian modern-inspired space with rattan light pendants, birchwood fixtures, sleek marble, and plenty of greenery.

Here, Yvonne shares more about what inspired her and Atouzo to open their beauty school in Fashion District, how they've seen DTLA transform, and more — read on below, and see more photos inside the stylish beauty haven in the gallery above.

What are your and Atouzo's specialties?

Atouzo's are women's haircuts and men's grooming, and [mine is] hair color, babylights, balayage, and women's and men's cuts.

What inspired you to open the second salon, especially in that particular location?

We were inspired to open a cosmetology academy and salon in one location. I have personally trained many stylists over the years and found that many licensed stylist had gaps in their education. Our academy will allow students to be salon ready when they graduate so they can get a job right away out of beauty school.

This hybrid salon and academy is the first of its kind. Most beauty schools do not encompass a high-end salon aesthetic. This hybrid academy also gives students a better learning experience. 

What do you love about Downtown, and how have you seen it change over the past decade?

Gosh, I love Downtown L.A. We opened our first location before it was "cool" to open a business in [here]. You had to have a vision and passion for DTLA back then! Around our location on 6th and Olive Streets, all the retail spaces were vacant. Now 6th Street is bustling. Olive as well was quite desolate — now it is home to The Nomad hotel, Whole Foods, and high-end apartments like Atelier. Also, parking has tripled!

Neihulé Salon and Academy, 305 East 8th St., LA, 90014; open Tuesday from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Wednesday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., closed Sunday and Monday; (213) 395-0947

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