five years

Wow. It’s amazing to think of how much we’ve grown and changed over the last 5 years. Garnish was my first baby way back before I ever had children. If you’ve been following the salon for a while, you probably already know its history. How I felt called to open a studio space focused on transformations, with an emphasis on extensions. How we built Garnish from the ground up based on a mindset of serving our guests and making sure you felt AMAZING when you walked out the door. How the studio has evolved and expanded beyond my initial imaginings.

Back at the beginning we were a full-service salon creating beautiful transformations of all kinds. But I’ve always been that crazy salon owner who’s absolutely obsessed with hair extensions. As my own books began to transition to exclusively extensions, I realized my dream had shifted. I wanted my entire space to be about this thing I am so passionate about. I knew I wanted my salon to specialize in the niche of high end hair extensions. It’s been a huge transition full of challenges and opportunities, but I am so proud of how Garnish has grown and evolved to be where it is today.

We’ve spent countless hours as a studio and individual artists training and perfecting our craft. The studio has a weekly academy training, business training every other month, and everyone regularly attends continuing education. Through my own training with Natural Beaded Rows, I’ve become one of only 4 platform artists with their brand, along with being one of their only national trainers.

Hair Extensions

Moving into next year, Garnish will become the East Coast hub for NBR training—stay tuned for more details on this coming soon!

Because of our commitment to our specialty, we have been able to be a part of so many transformations, touching the lives of so many different women. Being able to transform lives, bring women confidence, and help them fall in love with themselves again is truly the reason why we do what we do. We are blessed to have YOU be a part of our journey over the last five years and we look forward to continuing to serve you through the art of hair extensions for many more years to come.

Recently, our Lead Stylist, Niko, and I sat down to create a video sharing some information on the changes and growth of Garnish. We would love for you to check it out, hear all about the current happenings of our studio, and what’s to come moving forward. And once again, THANK YOU for being a part of the Garnish family.

Candice Motley


The Garnish Experience

In just a couple of months we will celebrate our five year anniversary. A lot has changed since the inception of Garnish Hair Studio. We grew as a salon, transitioned into our niche of hair extension transformations, and continue to evolve as the triangle’s premiere extension studio. There is one aspect of our business, however, that has never shifted—what we call The Garnish Experience.

If you’ve been into the studio, you already know what we’re talking about. That signature scent when you walk in the door, being greeted by our receptionist, and offered a beverage of your choice. The personalized care and dedication to details that each of our stylists offers when you sit in their chair. If you have not yet had the opportunity to experience this for yourself, we wanted to take a moment and give you some insight into what we believe sets us apart in terms of our experience. Beyond just the ambiance of Garnish—the plants everywhere, the clean, natural décor—there are three major aspects of the experience at Garnish that we believe make us different than your average salon.

The Team

Each one of our team members—stylists, assistants, and our receptionist—were chosen because they bring good vibes, positive energy, a commitment to excellence, and a passion for hair extensions to the studio. We LOVE to have fun; we are constantly dancing, laughing, and having a good time. It’s our belief that when you love what you do, and have fun at work, the work you do is elevated to a different level.

Our team is also all about supporting one another. We help each other out, we view each guest as a guest of Garnish, and every single stylist will be a part of your service, even if it’s just by offering a smile as you walk by. Because we share this unique mindset of treating each guest as a studio guest, we can also offer more flexibility in terms of scheduling. We welcome you to sit in any of our chairs, every stylist is willing and able to help out if you need a quick fix, and you never have to feel bad about seeing a different stylist in our space.

The Depth of Our Process

We recognize that if you’re new to the world of extensions, the Garnish Process might seem a bit extreme. Beginning with our application, continuing with our consultation, the paperwork we utilize to ensure everyone is on the same page—it could seem like a lot just for “some hair extensions.” The reality is that high quality hair extensions are an investment, and require both attention to detail and expertise from your stylist to ensure an incredible experience for you, our guests. We have spent years crafting our process to ensure the smoothest experience within our studio.

When you leave your consultation, you will have a thorough understanding of the extensions that we offer, along with the investment required in terms of both time and finance. If you have any questions, we WELCOME you to reach back out and ask us. We want you to feel informed and educated throughout the entire process, and we have implemented the steps we take to ensure this happens. In our experience, the more you understand up front, the better you will feel about the entire experience. And our goal is for you to feel AMAZING when you receive your extensions transformation.

The Expertise

Hair extensions are having a moment, and we LOVE this because they are our passion. This also means that a lot of stylists are becoming certified in various methods of extensions. This is awesome for our industry, but it also means that there’s a lot of opportunity for some less than stellar experiences with hair extensions. When we chose to specialize exclusively in hair extensions, we knew that we were diving into a niche market. We welcomed this because we understand how intricate the process of hair extensions can be. Everything from the health of your natural hair, to your hair goals, to the color blend, to the blend cut has to be considered and executed perfectly for you to truly fall in love with your hair extensions.

By choosing to specialize, we have spent countless hours training on these exact things in order to provide the highest quality extensions services. Our owner, Candice Motley, has spent nearly her entire seventeen year career learning and specializing in hair extensions. This level of experience is unparalleled in our area, and she has passed her knowledge and training along to our stylists as well. Each person who works for Garnish is passionate about hair extensions, so you know that when you sit in our chairs you will be receiving a service from someone who cares about you and each step of the process to ensure you have an amazing hair extensions experience.

In the service industry, it can be challenging to find a space where every single person who works there shares the same passion for both the service offered and the quality of experience. Here at Garnish, we take extreme pride in both aspects of our business. Not only will you walk out feeling like you can take on the world with your new amazing hair, but we will have taken care of you every step of the way so that you feel great about every aspect of your hair extensions experience. If this sounds like just what you’ve been looking for, let’s get started. Fill out an application, and find out for yourself just what the Garnish Experience is all about!


You all already know that we’ve been blogging for quite some time now. Years, in fact. And if you follow us on social media, you know we are constantly striving to put out content that is informative, educational, and simultaneously entertaining. As part of our commitment to providing the best possible service to you, our guests, we are always thinking of how we can better serve you. Which brings us to the next phase of Garnish content.

Beginning later this Summer, Garnish will be launching our official YouTube channel! We will be putting together two different series, each releasing monthly.

The first will be video tutorials for various topics (such as styling, products, and more) designed just for our guests to answer your top questions and give you the content you’re looking for.

Our second series, featuring Candice and Niko, will be educational videos for fellow industry professionals, particularly focused on business savvy and mindset. Overall our channel will be about sending out information and good vibes! T

his project has been in progress for quite some time, and we can’t wait to launch it just in time for our FIVE year anniversary (stay tuned for more about that soon)!

With our goal of providing the best possible content to you, we would love to hear your feedback about tutorials you want to see, information you would find helpful, and anything else you can think of! Make sure you’re subscribed to our newsletter or following us on social so you don’t miss this super exciting launch!


We have a Research and Development team here at Garnish?

This self-appointed position is held by our finance guru, Sahar. Before she ever worked with Garnish in her financial expertise, Sahar was a client who was super passionate about her hair, hair health, and the beauty industry in general. Even though her technical capacity is finance and operations, she is our number one resource for new trends, new products, and innovations within the haircare side of the industry.

Sahar brought us Virtue hair care after testing it out on her own hair along with doing tons of research on the brand. She has tested out color brands, haircare products, and her newest project: silk pillowcases. By providing us with research and information, Sahar has helped us bring you all the best of the best to keep your hair in its highest possible condition.

We wanted to shine a spotlight on Sahar’s contribution because we appreciate her SO much and she is the perfect reminder of why we all got into the hair industry to begin with.

Hair Extensions

Her passion for hair, particularly her own, has kept our team fueled to continue seeking out the industry’s latest innovations, newest techniques, and to never stop learning and growing. We love having Sahar as our Research and Development “department” and we consider ourselves lucky to have such a talented and passionate person on our team.


So you’ve heard of medication being prescribed “off-label” right?

Well, we’re about to let you in on our secret “off-label” Keratin treatment magic. If you know about Keratin treatments, you likely know that they are a Smoothing treatment that relaxes curl patterns, improves manageability of your hair, and are mostly used by women with curly, wavy, or thick hair.

All true, and it does work wonders in all of those regards. The lesser known reality of Keratin treatments is how they can affect the texture of your hair even if you don’t have curl or wave. AND how they can make your extensions blend even more beautifully.

Let’s talk a little more about Keratin treatments and what they do. Keratin is a protein that your body naturally produces and is found in your hair. Over time your body naturally loses some of its keratin leaving “gaps” in the internal structure of your hair. A keratin treatment goes in and finds those gaps and repairs them, which leads to smoother, stronger hair. Keratin treatments also speed up the drying time of your hair, and make it easier to blow dry smooth. So how does this help someone who doesn’t have curly or wavy hair?

There’s another category of hair that we’ve encountered over and over, which is fine or thin hair that “fluffs.” When your hair is prone to getting fluffy or frizzy, especially in the humidity of North Carolina, a Keratin treatment can be your hair’s best friend. When it comes to wearing hair extensions, if your hair is straight the extension hair is called “Silky Straight” and stays fairly smooth even over time.

If your hair naturally frizzes or fluffs, it can make it more challenging to keep your hair perfectly blended with your silky straight extensions. A keratin treatment is the perfect solution.

In addition to creating the most beautiful blend, keratin treatments make it so much easeir to style your hair with extensions. As you might imagine (or have experienced) once you receive extensions you have signicantly more hair than you are used to drying and styling. A keratin treatment can ease that transition by making it smoother and quicker to blowdry.

Overall, keratin treatments are an amazing solution to many different hair problems. And if you always thought keratins weren’t for you, but you relate to your hair fluffing or frizzing, talk to your stylist!

Or if you wear hair extensions and are interested in a smoother blowout, a keratin treatment might be your answer. No matter what, Spring has arrived, and the NC humidity is coming soon.

It’s officially Keratin Season!


We’ve talked before about the versatility of hair extensions when it comes to color and texture, etc. but there’s an important aspect of their versatility that we’ve never really talked about. When it comes to extensions there is often a misconception about “who” wears hair extensions and what exactly hair extensions look like. The reality is that women choose hair extensions for all kinds of reasons and just as varied as their style and cut is before hair extensions, it can be just as different with hair extensions as well.

Because we offer both traditional extensions and crown extensions (need to know more about crowns, check out this recent post) we have a lot of flexibility in terms of the solutions we can offer to meet womens’ hair needs.

Whether their hair is thin and fine, or it stopped growing, or they’re experiencing loss due to hormones or aging… we most often have a solution. This means that the women who come into our studio for hair extensions are incredibly diverse and we LOVE that. We’ve found that there are essentially no limits when it comes to age and style of extensions.

We welcome women of every age to our studio. We want each and every person to feel welcome no matter what their hair looks like, how they choose to style it, or just because there’s a preconceived notion that hair extensions are only to make your hair “long and pretty.” For us, hair extensions are an incredible solution to women’s hair problems such as thinning and loss, that provide confidence and self-love to the individual wearing them.

At Garnish, we take pride in the fact that our clientele is diverse, that everyone is welcomed at the door just the same, and that we will always do our best to ensure we can meet your needs and make your hair goals a reality.

If you want to follow along with the diversity of our clientele and their hair and see just how many beautiful women we work with, follow us on instagram and facebook. We share photos (from those guests who give us permission) of our transformations and we are proud to be able to showcase the versatility of hair extensions through our beautiful clients.

We would love to welcome you to our studio as well! Click here to get started.


Hair Extension Investment: We’ve got all the deets!

There’s one question we get asked far more than any other questions when it comes to hair extensions. The number one thing everyone wants (and needs) to know is what exactly is the ACTUAL investment of hair extensions. We’ve found that there’s not a lot of information out there that really breaks down the cost of quality hair extensions, so we wanted to go ahead and lay it all out there for you. We never want anyone to feel like they don’t understand what’s involved or they aren’t prepared for both the time and cost commitment of hair extensions.

Before we break down the numbers, we wanted to talk a little bit about investment. Like so many things, hair extensions can range in quality in many ways. The quality of the hair itself, the quality of the method, along with the quality of the actual installment can all make a huge difference in both your experience and the cost of extensions. Here at Garnish, we have chosen to only work with the top brands within the industry of hair extensions. Each brand that we work with guarantees the premium quality of their hair and is one of a few methods we consider to be the safest, most comfortable, and most natural looking. When it comes to the installment of extensions, the experience of your stylist is extremely important. Our owner, Candice, has spent over a decade devoting countless hours and thousands of dollars into education for every method, honing her skills, and becoming truly expert level.

Each of our stylists is committed to learning and growing in the same way, both from Candice in the studio and from external classes. Continuing education is vital within the hair industry in general, but especially in the growing world of hair extensions.

In addition to the quality of extensions, an important aspect of your investment in hair extensions is the time involved. For our studio, that means beginning with an in-person consultation, the time of your extension application, along with the time for your maintenance appointments. Our consultations are typically around 45 minutes. In addition to answering some questions that help us guide the rest of your consult, this time allows you to understand the details of extensions, really figure out what’s going to be the right fit for you, and answer any questions you might have. We consider this an absolutely vital step to your extension experience.

When you come in for your extensions application, there are typically one of two things happening. Either you have a color you already love and you’re just receiving extensions, or you’re getting a color revamp prior to your extension application. The color portion takes on average 2-3 hours, but if you are receiving a corrective color it could take longer. Your initial extension application averages between 1-3 hours depending on the method, amount of hair, and the stylist applying your extensions.

To ensure a great experience with hair extensions, you absolutely must commit to properly maintaining your extensions. Most methods require maintenance at around 6-8 weeks, give or take a week depending on your hair needs and hair growth. Each maintenance appointment takes on average 1-3 hours depending on the method, amount of hair, and the stylist performing your maintenance service. During your consultation, you can get a more accurate estimate of time for your particular services.

Alright, let’s dive in to the part you’re really here for—the financial investment of hair extensions. When it comes to estimating the cost, it can be difficult to provide an accurate range due to how many factors can influence the price. The method of extensions, amount of hair, length of hair, texture of hair, and even color of the hair can alter the cost of the extensions. This is why extension stylists are so hesitant to give a quote or even ballpark prior to having an in-person consultation.

Here’s our best summary of the cost of extensions based on some general assumptions.

1. Looking to add volume, but not length, with average length of hair. For most methods that we offer, this is going to be somewhere around $1,000. It could be a little less, it could be a little more (up to around $1,500), but the $1,000 mark is pretty standard. For example, this would be one row of NBR extensions.

2. Looking to add volume, and some length. This category can range a little more and will typically fall into the $1,500-$2,500 range. Most often when looking for volume and length, even if it’s not a signficant length difference, more hair is needed. Typically, this would be two rows of NBR extensions.

3. Looking for major volume and all the length aka bombshell hair. When long, luscious hair is your goal, the cost of investment is typically going to start around $2,500 and go up from there. This would be three rows of NBR extensions.

4. When you’re looking to address thinning, hair loss, or an area of concern, typically you will be in need of a Crown Extension. The cost of a crown extension can range quite a bit based on how customized it needs to be, but the average cost is going to be somewhere between $2,000-$3,500.

From our studio, every extension quote includes the actual extension hair, application of your extensions, custom color of the extensions, the blending cut, style, and 2 week follow up appointment. Any color to your natural hair is not included in your extensions quote.

The cost of maintenance varies based on the method of extensions, amount of hair, and the stylist’s level. Most methods start around $100. NBR extensions begin at $150 and go up from there based on the number of rows and stylist’s certification level. The quote you receive during your consultation will also include the cost of maintenance for your particular hair extensions.

One last thing to note when it comes to the cost of hair extensions. Each of our stylists brings a different level of experience, expertise, and style to their extension services. We have a level system that differentiates these aspects, which also means each of our stylists has slightly different pricing. As the owner and extension expert, Candice’s pricing is going to be the most investment. We know that everyone has a different beauty budget and we want them to feel confident in choosing one of our other stylists for their transformation. Our Creative Director, Niko, brings incredible artistry and attention to detail to her extension transformations. Our New Talent Stylist, Reece, does amazing extension maintenance services, and is currently completing his full transformation training. No matter whose chair you sit in, the Garnish Experience remains the same—our commitment to the highest quality of service and artistry is a studio standard.

If you have ANY questions about hair extensions, the investments required, or our process, please give us a call at (919)793-4008 or shoot us an email at


There’s a trend that’s happening slowly but surely, and it’s one that we are totally here for. And while trends often come and go, this one we believe is here to stay. In light of a certain holiday today we wanted to talk to you a little bit about the most important relationship in your life: YOU.

When you really take a moment to reflect, you realize how impactful taking care of yourself can be. So much of what we do in life—how we interact with others, how we care for others, how we take care of ourselves in terms of what we eat and activity levels… it all comes back to how we feel about ourselves. And I mean, how we really, truly feel deep down.

At our core, we instinctively want to love and care for ourselves. The reasons why we find it so difficult are based on years of societal standards, social conditioning, and negative self-talk, which is often learned at a very young age. It takes time and effort to undo those standards, but ultimately, it IS possible to fall in love with yourself and begin the process of not just taking care of yourself, but really investing in yourself as a person.

There are many aspects to self-investment and they can look vastly different based on you as a person, your individual needs, and what makes YOU feel good. There’s internal self-investment such as taking a class to learn a new skill, reading a book, meditating, listening to music that makes you feel good, and many more things. And then there’s external self-investment such as getting a massage or facial, buying new clothes, working out, or getting your hair or nails done. There’s value in both aspects of self-investment, and it’s incredibly personal what works best for you.

On a daily basis we meet women who have struggled deeply with a physical aspect of themselves. Whether they’ve lived their whole life with thin or fine hair, or they’ve experienced thinning and loss due to a medical illness, or their postpartum hair loss really hits them hard, their hair is something that keeps them from feeling self-confident. Our passion for hair extensions is rooted in the ability to help transform that aspect for women and help them feel amazing when they look in a mirror. Internal self-investment and external self-investment are intricately linked together in that often it takes both to truly achieve self-love.

One of the most difficult aspects of walking down the path towards self-care is that we sometimes experience a level of guilt for focusing on ourselves instead of our children, partner, or really anyone else. The reality is that if we invest in ourselves and care for ourselves, we are better able to show up for the people in our lives that matter most. Don’t you want your son and daughter to know that they are perfect exactly as they are and they are loved unconditionally?

Being a living example by loving yourself unconditionally will leave a far more lasting impact than if you constantly put yourself last because you feel like you “should.”

As our Valentine’s Day gift to you, we are giving you permission (in the hopes that you will give YOURSELF permission) to take some time for self-care. Whether that’s taking a long hot bath, or just going for a walk outside, whether it’s signing up for that class you’ve been dying to take, or if it’s finally achieving the hair of your dreams… you deserve to feel AMAZING about yourself.

It may not come natural to you, but we promise, you will never regret making an investment in YOU. You are so worthy of feeling loved, and the best place to start is by loving yourself.

Happy Valentine’s Day from the Garnish Team <3


If you’ve been following the blog for the past week, you saw that our Salon Manager, Kassy, has recently transitioned out of that role and into a new one.

If that left you wondering who would be taking on that role, well, we didn’t want to leave you hanging for long. Without further ado, we wanted to take a moment to introduce you to the TWO incredible individuals who will be sharing the Guest Service space and taking care of all the guest service related things within the studio.

Both of our two new team members have extensive experience working with guests, managing, and creating an organized, efficient space. They are both detail-oriented, caring, easy to talk to, and both LOVE hair. All of this means that when you call or come into the studio you will be in GREAT hands for all of your appointment scheduling, rescheduling, having questions answered and more.

Introducing… Lauren Hall & Susan Wright!

Garnish Extension Studio

A little bit about Lauren

Lauren was first introduced to Garnish as a guest of Niko’s, which means she truly understands the guest perspective. She previously spent a decade in the corporate world as an IT project manager for a large clinical research company. After falling out of love with her career and eventually choosing to leave it behind in pursuit of a lifestyle fueled by her passions, she answered our call for a new Studio Manager and here she is!

She loves using the skills from her old life as a project manager in a brand new way while being surrounded by so much beautiful hair and all the best haircare products. (Lauren is definitely a product junkie and would love to talk to you about haircare products!) Engaging with clients is at the top of her priority list, as well as utilizing her acute knack for details, and juggling all the schedules.

Garnish Extension Studio

A little bit about Susan

Susan first fell in love with the world of hair extensions when she came into the studio to make her own mermaid hair dreams a reality in Candice’s chair. From that moment she was hooked, and she loves being a part of the hair transformations for each of our guests. She brings previous salon coordination experience to the role along with high end retail service through her time working for Lilly Pullitzer.

Her passion for organization and attention to detail means you will be in excellent hands for scheduling your services, coordinating details, and if you ever need guest services assistance. Susan is one of the sweetest people you will ever meet, and you will love the chance to talk to her when you come into the studio.

Garnish Extension Studio

We are so thrilled to have Lauren and Susan as a part of the Garnish Team and know that you will love working with both of them whenever you come into the studio!


Introducing Quirks Creative

If you’ve been into the studio you probably know our Studio Manager, Kassy. What you may not know is that she has been growing her side hustle into a business for the last two years all while managing the salon full-time. Beginning in the new year Kassy’s role at Garnish will be shifting as her business becomes her full-time career. I wanted to take a moment to share a little bit about her journey with us here at Garnish before introducing her new role.

Quirks Creative

You all know I’m a vision person. I am all about a Vision Statement. And I truly believe Kassy was brought to Garnish through my vision statement for my studio manager. She embodies everything I was looking for in a manager—and then some.

In addition to all of the guest service and management qualities I was seeking, I knew I wanted this person to bring an artistic and creative vibe to the role. Hence why I consider her heaven sent via my vision.

Kassy’s business had just recently launched prior to her joining the team, but it was through the yearly Garnish Vision and Goals exercise that each of my team members completes, that her business found direction.

Quirks Creative

Just about a year and a half ago we sat down to discuss her goals and what it would look like for her to exclusively focus on the aspects of her job that she’s most passionate about—the ones that aligned with her business.

We’ve been steadily moving towards that goal and I am thrilled to be able to stand behind one of our creatives as she takes this next step in her career.

Quirks Creative

I am proud to introduce our new freelance partner, Quirks Creative, who will be continuing to grace our chalkboards with art, managing our social media, updating website content, and contributing to the Garnish blog. Click here to visit her website, or follow along with her social media (Instagram/Facebook).


Hang Out with Us on Instagram

Hang Out with Us on Instagram


monthly hair affirmation

repeat after me: I love myself as I am.