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'Color Lab' Hair Salon Opening on Halsted, Only Offers Coloring Services

By Serena Dai | March 28, 2014 6:53am

BOYSTOWN — A new hair salon on Halsted Street won't cut, primp or braid your hair — but it will work with you to transform its color in the fastest, healthiest way possible.

Color Lab, 3310 N. Halsted St., will open Wednesday, specializing in hair coloring, said owner Christian Smoker, who co-owns it with Minibar's Stu Zirin.

Smoker, who's been a colorist for 13 years, said focusing on coloring allows the salon to use specialized technology that will cut down on processing time and create custom colors for customers.

"That's our one passion, our one focus," he said. "We can offer it at a better price for really good quality color."

It's a trend across the salon industry to open specialized shops, he said, pointing to salons that offer just eyelash extensions or just blowouts. Many salons will have separate people working on cutting and coloring.

"Most people don’t really have a brain that’s wired for both cutting and coloring," Smoker said. "That’s why there’s a compartmentalization in the salon."

In addition to coloring services, Color Lab will offer customized formulas so that women will be able to use their products at home, combining salon products with home convenience, he said.

Though many Halsted Street businesses focus on the gay male customer, Smoker predicted that most of his clients will be women.

"Why would a woman go anywhere else than Boystown to get her hair done?" he said with a laugh. "The gay boys are the ones that know what's going on."