Commitment to the Community
As a young girl, needing assistance from the community was a very real part of Heather Cohen’s childhood. Many times, her family had to rely on community programs and the generosity of neighbors to make ends meet. “I remember going with my mother to our church to pick up meals and clothing. That experience stuck with me, and not because I felt ashamed or embarrassed. It was just the opposite, in fact! Everyone who helped us was so supportive and kind, it instilled in me a sense of community and inspired me in my commitment to give back.”
Heather owns b.LUXE Hair and Makeup Studio, a brand new, 4000 sq ft beauty salon housed in the historic Medway Mills Complex. With soaring ceilings, natural light-filled rooms and the areas most current and exciting salon services, b.LUXE is one of Metrowest’s most impressive beauty destinations.
But just last year, all plans for the new studio were put on hold. Heather explains. “When we first shut-down, my initial mindset was to scrap the build-out and hunker down in our existing space. It was a tough time for all of us in the beauty industry. But, later, when we returned to work, there was a very different landscape waiting for us. My staff had to split shifts and reduce hours to accommodate the new safety guidelines. I knew right away they needed a bigger salon to work at full capacity and our clients needed a safe space to relax and enjoy their services.”
A new plan began to unfold for the studio when Heather realized that the timing of the pandemic actually enabled her to build a socially distanced salon from the ground up.
“I had to pivot away from our original design and rethink every inch of space.”
And pivot she did! b.LUXE Hair and Makeup now has 16 socially-distanced styling stations, 3 treatment rooms, multiple processing areas and a private service space for high-risk clients. They’ve also added a skincare department, organic tanning services and some of the most relaxing spa services around! Just this past week, it was announced that b.LUXE Hair & Makeup Studio is one of 20 finalists in the Salon Todays national "2021 SALONS OF THE YEAR" Competition.
From concept to completion, the continuous thread that runs through this expansion is Heather’s commitment to community.A few of Heather’s community contributions include free fundraising events for local organizations where the b.LUXE artists host beauty nights with 100% of ticket sales donated to the organization. These events have hosted 50 guests and raised thousands of dollars. Heather and her team also donate time to the Franklin Food Pantry, regularly volunteering at their food drives and back-to-school backpack programs.Guests from The Franklin Senior center visit b.LUXE for free hair styling and grooming as well as the residents from The Medway House, who receive complimentary services whenever needed.
Every year, the b.LUXE team travels to Mexico to bring beauty supplies and cutting edge education to the Martello Institute of Beauty, Cancun. With each trip, Heather donates two full beauty scholarships to students, until last year, when the pandemic sidelined their travels, she donated three. b.LUXE is also proud to work with The Hummingbird Foundation, Medway Parks and Rec, The Gilded Project and many other local groups and organizations. Heather’s philosophy is simple, “We all have it within ourselves to help others and improve our community. So, do your best...and then do a little better.”