A judgment-free zone, a place where everyone feels welcomed — that's the goal for salon owner Chelsea Joffray, owner of The Hideout Salon and Lounge in the heart of East Nashville, Tennessee.
Joffray prides herself on creating a safe environment for the LGBTQ+ community.
"I think that should be the default with most spaces. You know, most spaces should just be inclusive," Joffray said.
At her salon, hair has no gender.
"For most of my career, I've had genderless pricing. So rather than, like, men's haircuts, women's haircuts, it's always been short cuts gone by length. And I didn't really see that a lot here in Nashville when I moved here," Joffray said.
Wanting to make a difference, she opened her own salon in 2018. Since then, the salon has held multiple community events like art shows and pop-up markets.
In the salon’s first ever Pride pop-up market in celebration of Pride Month, Tristain Heitzke, a client at the salon, said having a safe place to go to where they can be themselves makes all the difference.
"So definitely knowing that there’s a place that I can come to from my house, door to door, where I know that I’m not going to be accosted in some way is very heartwarming. And having a community is so important," Heitzke said.
Stylist Miranda Rockow said she’s grateful to be part of a place that is so inclusive.
"It doesn't always feel safe for LGBT community members, and having a place you know you can come where your pronouns are going to be respected, where, you know, you're not going to have people looking at you like, 'Oh my gosh, who the heck is that?' like, it just feels good," Rockow said.
"We just really want to be clear, like you are welcome, and there's no doubt about it," Joffray said.
Being involved in the community is important to Joffray. The salon features artwork from local artists at the salon and works with non-profits throughout the year. It also promotes small businesses.
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