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Essensuals London brings British beauty to 11th and Union — Plus: Kismet opens on Broadway, Bang celebrates 2 years

IMG_3864Paris and London at 11th and Union? Newly opened boutique salon Essensuals London is bringing the freshest cut, coloring and styling techniques from Toni&Guy UK to Capitol Hill. After nearly a year of commuting back and forth between Los Angeles, hair whisperers (and twin brothers) Jason and Robert Townsend have opened up shop in the new retail space located next to French pastry shop Ines Patisserie at 11th and Union in the Viva building.

The brothers left Beverly Hills in search for a new home to offer their UK-inspired styling services and quickly set their sights on Capitol Hill. “We had been coming to Seattle quite a bit and fell in love with it,” Jason Townsend tells CHS. “It seemed like to us, at least, Seattle is what other major cities wish they were,” he said.

“We started looking around, we saw the style here, the cool people here, we just wanted to be part of it,” he said.

The trend-focused Capitol Hill salon, now open for business, opted for communal-style seating instead of more traditional stations. The salon boasts 16 chairs and will cater to both men looking for proper barbering and women searching for a straight off the runway look all served up with a cup of French press coffee.

“You’re never going to see the same stylist in the same spot. Our life is about change, our hair is changing, our style is changing,” said Townsend.

They plan to keep it simple in the product department, pulling together the best of the best of select shampoos, sprays, and styling products from Label M, the only product used backstage at London Fashion Week, plus some color products from Redken 5th Avenue, and Pureology.

And while the technique hails from mother England, don’t get caught up in the name, Townsend assures that it’s all locals snipping hair here. And they’re hiring.

Education focused, Townsend said he is taking on budding hairstylists and more experienced stylists in the Seattle area interested in the Toni&Guy UK technique. “Education is close to our heart,” said Townsend.

Customers can expect haircuts starting at $55.

Men’s fashion and shoe retailer Trumpet is also slated to open in the new building.

Essensuals London is located at 1156 11th Ave and is open Tuesday through Friday 10 AM to 8 PM and Saturday and Sunday from 10 AM to 7 PM. Closed Mondays. You can learn more at

Madrona-transplant Kismet opens on Broadway
Kismet Salon also celebrated its grand opening and is ready to serve you on Broadway after a move from the Madrona neighborhood.

Heather Caldwell celebrated the ten-year anniversary of Kismet with the move to the former video store space on north Broadway. She’ll soon have a new neighbor in paired bar and restaurant project Bitter and Herb under construction next door.

Kismet’s move allows the salon to offer more services and more of its Aveda-focused products. You’ll find it at 512 Broadway E. You can learn more at

BANG celebrates two years on Capitol Hill
Bang Hair Salon has grown to two locations and more than 20 employees. On Thursday, December 11th, they’re ready to celebrate.

The salon will host its second anniversary party and an art show at 5p.m. on December 11, 2014. The art show will feature permanent installations at Bang Pike by local mural and tattoo artist Kyler Martz.

“We have an artist crush on him and are honored to have his original images permanently painted on the walls at Pike,” BANG owner Casey Nickole tells CHS. The collection is a nod to salon and barber culture in Martz’s style of bold lines and remarkable details. “It’s part of the Blitz Art Walk and we encourage our friends and clients to come help us celebrate two years!” Nickole writes.”

The salon offers haircuts, coloring and nail art services. You can also get even more trendy and dye your armpit hair:

You can find Bang’s salons at 1207 E Pine and 723 E Pike. You can learn more at


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8 thoughts on “Essensuals London brings British beauty to 11th and Union — Plus: Kismet opens on Broadway, Bang celebrates 2 years

  1. $55 starting price for a mens haircut. Good grief I am cheap.

    Nice to see small business owners being able to set up shop in these new retail spaces. I wish them the best!

      • No, you’re not cheap and, no, that’s not outrageously expensive either.
        You typically get what you pay for.
        Enjoy your savings with a clipper cut at Supercuts, Great Clips, or a local barber chain, or enjoy a full-service, personalized session with a stylist who has years of experience, is engaged in ongoing education, and whose skills are up to date.