Vintage decoration fills Tried and True Salon, from an old Toshiba television set to multiple VHS movies like “Die Hard” and “Home Alone.”Allison Oliver, owner and master hairstylist of Tried and True Salon, decided she wanted to decorate her salon the same as her home and wanted it to have a comfortable feeling when anyone walks in the door.
After opening its new location in Denton Town Square in November, Tried and True Salon specializes in balayage and vivid hair color. The salon initially started in a suite in Rayzor Ranch, then moved to the back of the Bearded Lady Barbershop. Then, a storefront became available next door to the Bearded Lady Barbershop, so Oliver took the opportunity for growth.
“We’ve been open for about four years, but at the time it was just me and I was just working constantly,” Oliver said. “I just didn’t have enough room for anybody else and I felt bad turning people away, so I figured, ‘Why not open a space and hire people I know I can trust?’”
Oliver, who is originally from Lewisville, moved to Denton six years ago and has since loved the support she has received from the community, especially since moving into her new space.
“I was talking to one of the owners and I was like, ‘Man, if I don’t do this then anyone could move in right here,’” Oliver said. “We share bathrooms, we share a patio and we share the doorway. The only thing that is separating our shops is a wall, so I was like, ‘Why not let me go over there and expand?’”
Oliver knew she wanted her salon to be gender-neutral and a space that is comfortable for anyone. Known for her vivid colored styles, Oliver’s goal is to be able to do anything for her clients, whether they have a short fade or decide to dye it bright colors, they would feel comfortable enough to enter her salon.
Caitlin Donahue, Tried and True Salon hairstylist and Denton resident, has been working at the new location since it opened in November. Donahue and Oliver met on Tumblr almost six years ago, and she said she knew the moment Oliver was opening a store she just had to be there.
“Anyone and everyone are welcomed and accepted there,” Donahue said. “The vibe is that of somewhere fun and enjoyable. You can truly come to Tried and True and just relax.”
Oliver describes her experience working at other salons as being too pretentious for her. She wanted Tried and True Salon to be somewhere where any man or woman would feel right at home.
Mackenzie Iffland, Tried and True Salon client and Dallas resident, decided it was time to finally take a chance and dye her hair multiple colors. Having mutual friends with Oliver, she was shown her work online and knew she had to take a look at the new salon.
“The process was pretty long, about five hours, but it was so worth it,” Iffland said. “Allison is the nicest hairdresser I have ever met and her salon makes you feel like you’re at home. She talks you through every step so you feel like you are a part of the process and at ease.”
Going forward, Oliver said she hopes to continue to make her clients feel welcome in a judgement-free zone. As her business continues to grow, her motto and name of Tried and True Salon is something she holds dear to her heart.
“Tried and True essentially means that if you have something and you’ve tried it, you know it works and no matter how many times you do it or use it, it’s going to work,” Oliver said. “And I figured that was a really good name for a salon because a lot of people have trouble picking where they’re going to get their hair done. and I wanted that Tried and True name to be a representation of the quality of work that we do.”
Featured Image: Owner Allison Oliver cuts a customers’ hair in the Tried and True Salon on Jan. 29, 2021. Image by Gurleen Kaur