A trip to the salon can be both relaxing and down right transformative – in the best way possible. No one knows this better than Magnolia Salon and Parlour owner Alicia Robertson. She has been helping give Acadiana residents a fresh, new look for years, and she recently renovated her salon to offer even more of a refreshing experience for her customers. After a fun chat with Alicia, it’s clear that she is a gem of a hair stylist with a love for her community.
What do you love about doing hair?
“I guess it runs in my blood. My grandfather was a barber, and I have family members who are hair stylists. When I started doing hair, I just fell in love with it. I was helping out friends doing hair and different things and then decided to go to cosmetology school. Through my journey with hair styling, I’ve loved meeting new people and learning new things.
I’ve also loved the way I can make people feel when I do their hair. When someone leaves the salon with a happy smile because you just made them feel like a hundred bucks, it really tugs on your heart. It’s fun to see our customers be excited about life just because you did something great to their hair.”
What led you to start Magnolia Salon and Parlour?
"I started Magnolia because I was working for a corporate printing company and got laid off when I was nine months pregnant. At the same time, the salon where I was working part-time was going up for sale. I felt that it was the perfect time to finally do exactly what I loved. I took the leap and here we are today, almost a year later, finishing up the remodel and loving every day. My husband and I have been working together when we can to finish the remodel while also raising our almost two-year-old. This is truly a labor of love for us."
What inspired you to renovate Magnolia Salon?
“This location has been a hair salon since the 1960s. The owner before me didn’t renovate at all, and I felt it was time to make some changes. I love the concept of everyone being able to see each other, and the customers being able to see outside. Before renovations, things were very sectioned off, so I knocked some of the walls down to help open the place up. It’s more clean now and you can see everything when you walk in the doors. I just wanted to open the place up and give it a fresh, new look.”
Speaking of changes, how do you see Magnolia Salon continuing to grow?
“I’d love to have a salon full of stylists who are well-equipped. Continuing education is a big thing for me. We’re actually hosting a few classes for current stylists during the month of September. I’d love to continue to have classes here for stylists to learn new things. I learn new haircuts and techniques all the time.
Also, over time I’d love to grow to have a full-service salon spa. I’d like us to do everything from facials to body waxing along with continuing our hair services. I’d love to expand into that concept.”
Have you had any special moments with clients during your time working at Magnolia Salon?
“I recently got a new client from Mississippi. She’s been living here in Acadiana for a year, and she was literally driving to Mississippi to get her hair done just because she was comfortable with her stylist there.
Not long ago, I had given a gift card and some other items to the UL Alumni Association to auction off at their annual gala, and this client won. She came into my shop with the gift certificate and was unsure whether or not she would like Magnolia Salon. However, since her first visit she has come in three different times, and now we chat on a regular basis. We’ve become good friends and now she’s a regular client. She has even spread the word about my salon to others.
In addition to special moments with clients, I love that the people I work with have become family. I’ve even become close with the families of the people I work with – their wives, partners, husbands, kids, and grandkids. We also become like family with our clients. We know what’s going on in each other’s lives and we’ll give gift cards to clients for different things like if we hear someone in their family passed away. We truly care about everyone we encounter.”
Is there anything potential customers should know about Magnolia Salon?
“A lot of people don’t realize that we do corrective color. They’ve used the box color for so many years, and then they want to go from a box black to a platinum blonde – we do that here. We also do the Brazilian blowout which a lot of people assume can only be done at a high-end salon. There’s just a ton of hair styling that we’re able to do here. We're going to start doing facials in one of our rooms.”
What do you feel is the importance of shopping local in Acadiana?
“When I worked in the corporate world in Acadiana, I served on a lot of local boards. I understand the power of buying and shopping local because I’ve seen how keeping the money here helps the community grow. It continues to keep tax dollars in the city to help build walking paths or things like the horse farm transforming into Moncus Park. Those transformations make Acadiana a place that people want to come visit or live. I hope people will remember that when it comes time to shop or use services in the area.”
Magnolia Salon & Parlour is a wonderful example of how a small, local business can strengthen a community. Not only are Alicia and her team talented stylists, but they create connections and bring people together in Acadiana. Explore Acadiana on Towny – you'll be surprised how many local spots you didn't know about! When you support local dreamers, you support the Acadiana economy + on Towny, you get rewarded for doing it! It's your FREE resource to perks, freebies, + local updates: hop on it today!