Raising the Bar

Veronica Brashear and her staff never settle for anything less than excellence at VBar Dry Bar Salon & Skin Lounge, which offers guests an escape like no other.

By: Stephanie Kusy
Photos by: Paul Marshall

The doors open at VBar Dry Bar Salon & Skin Lounge, and immediate solace is found from trying to escape the South Texas heat. Tunes from Lana Del Rey and other runway tracks play softly, creating a relaxing atmosphere in a chic space. When it comes to salons, Corpus Christi has never seen this concept before. A dry bar salon and skin lounge like no other, VBar offers a transformative escape to every guest.

Veronica Brashear opened the modern salon just over two years ago because she wanted to deliver high-end services at an affordable price. Back then, the dry bar concept did not exist in town. Traveling to New York City inspired her to bring inventive haircuts from the fashion world back home.

“The dry bar concept is all over New York City, Houston, Dallas and every big city, but at the time when we were coming up, there wasn’t anybody marketing for that here,” she says. “Starting out was really scary because I’m not a big risk taker. I like things planned out. I’m just not a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants person. I didn’t know if we would be well received or not. But once we did it, business has been great.”

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A blow dry bar accommodates anyone from the working mom to the businesswoman on the go, to the Friday night gals. VBar stylists wash and style your lovely locks so you do not have to. For $35, guests can choose from a variety of looks they desire to achieve, whether it is The Anna – sleek and smooth hair with high shine – or the Elyse – lots of loose curls with a natural finish.

The best part: Each blow out comes with instructions on how to recreate the look and extend the life of the “do” throughout the week. “What’s the point of putting an amazing color on someone’s hair, style or cut, if they go home and don’t even know what to do with it?” Brashear states emphatically.

These top-of-the-line stylists use top-of-the-line products. VBar exclusively carries Bumble and Bumble, a complete hair care line with a full range of shampoos, conditioners and styling and treatment products.

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The most popular services include haircuts and color. Currently, many clients request color using a freehand technique known as “bayalage,” a French word meaning, “to sweep,” or “to paint.” It creates sun-kissed, natural-looking hair color with softer, less noticeable regrowth lines.

This one-stop-shop also offers a skin lounge where guests can take advantage of services such as waxing, facials and skin peels.

While Brashear’s business has taken off, styling hair was not her first career choice. She initially wanted to become a paramedic, but dropped out of college for two years to take care of her grandfather while he battled cancer. After his passing, she enrolled in a community college and tried registering for classes on the last day of registration. Only cosmetology courses were available.

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Now a cosmetologist for 15 years, she cannot imagine doing anything else. This first-time entrepreneur places emphasis on training top-notch stylists by inspiring them through her knowledge and craft of the industry. She enjoys working behind the scenes and strives to create a family-like work environment.

“It’s what keeps me going in the morning, knowing that people look up to me and what I’m doing,” Brashear says. “The decisions I’m making affect the lives of others. I have the ability to change that for them.”

While she is changing lives of up-and-coming stylists, she still finds it difficult to completely put the scissors down. “I do get behind the chair,” she says. “I don’t think I’ll ever leave because that’s what keeps my pulse going: actually having my hands in someone’s hair.”

Having her hands in someone’s hair is how she plans to leave a legacy for her two daughters, Elyse Mia, 16, and Zoey Paige, 2. She hopes they will follow in her footsteps and one day take over the family business, which is growing. Brashear says she is looking to open a second salon in her hometown of San Antonio.

The VBar staff endlessly strives to offer each and every guest a space of relaxation and renewal. One thing is for sure: They will never settle for anything less than excellence.

VBar Dry Bar Salon & Skin Lounge is located at 7426 S. Staples, Ste. 104, in the Encantada Village. You may call 361-960-0545 to make an appointment. And for a price list and other information, visit www.vbarsalon.com.

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