All Black Lives Matter - Raleigh Durham BLM

Garnish’s foundation, upon which everything else has been built, has always been our values. Diversity and inclusion top that list, and from day one we have strived to create a safe and comfortable space for anyone who walked in our doors.

In 2017, we wrote out these values in a statement we called, “The All Colors Campaign.” The original statement read,

“Our studio has been built on the values of diversity and inclusion, and through this campaign we hope to share the message that we welcome everyone to Garnish. No matter your race or religion, gender identity or politics, whether you were born here or immigrated to America from somewhere else in the world, we welcome the opportunity to become your salon—a place where you feel comfortable, confident, and beautiful.”

This statement is something we live out every day. It’s a part of our hiring practice, it’s a part of our team, it’s who we are. Our team has always been made up of a diverse group of humans who have come together over a love of hair and passion for changing lives. Hair is an incredibly personal thing for many women, and it’s our goal to provide a safe and comfortable space for our guests to bring us their most sensitive hair concerns.

Whether it be hair loss or thinning, having been told they couldn’t wear extensions due to their hair texture, or just not feeling at home in a salon. We know firsthand that the salon industry is not always inclusive for different hair types and textures. It’s one of the reasons why we’ve made it a point to work with ALL textures of hair extensions. We believe everyone deserves to have the hair of their dreams.

In light of recent events, we wanted to revisit our All Colors Campaign to ensure that not only do we discuss diversity, but we boldy state that Garnish believes All Black Lives more than Matter.

Our studio has always believed and practiced this, but we also believe it’s important to speak up for our values. Every voice makes a difference, and we are adding our voice to this very important message.

Here at Garnish, you are accepted. You are seen. You are worthy. And you belong. Exactly as you are, no matter what.

We welcome the opportunity to serve you🌿


Hair Extensions
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Garnish Update

We’re officially back and could not be more excited!

Not only did we survive the quarantine, we did so with our entire team intact. Over the past several weeks we have been prepping to reopen—acquiring all the new safety gear, setting up the salon to ensure proper distancing, and thinking through the entire experience to make sure it still felt like Garnish. With so much new we definitely had some first day back jitters, but we’re happy to say that the whole week has gone smoothly and the jitters have subsided.

You’ve heard us talk about the Garnish Experience before. We’re super proud of the experience we’ve cultivated inside our studio. When we first learned all the new safety protocols and everything that would need to change we were worried that the “feels” might not be the same.

Our goals are to make people look beautiful AND feel good, and if they felt weird coming into our space or awkward because of the new measures it would take away from the experience we’re always trying to deliver. After a week of being open we can safely say that while it does feel different, it doesn’t feel bad. It just feels like a safer new norm that reflects where we’re at right now.

We took a lot of precautions, but we also took a lot of time to put some things together to ensure the space still felt good. For example, it’s amazing to still be able to offer someone a coffee in the morning. Instead of it being served in a ceramic mug, it’s now in a to go cup with a lid and straw.

And while they may be limited to sipping their beverage during processing time when the stylist has stepped away (due to the mask being removed), it still allows us to offer the same feeling to our guests. The Garnish Experience is a look; it’s a mood; it’s a vibe; it’s a feeling. We made sure to do everything we could to keep all of that.

Throughout this entire process all of our guests have been super supportive so we want to send out a huge THANK YOU to everyone—for checking on us, for sticking with us, and even for showing up wearing your masks ready to embrace this new normal. We know it feels a little different, but if everyone does their part all of us small businesses will be able to stay open, and we appreciate you helping us keep everyone safe. We are so excited to open up our doors and get everyone’s rows back where they belong!

We wanted to leave you with one last thought. Our first day back kicked off the same way all of our Tuesdays do—with our gratitude session. This week we decided to focus on what feelings we want to attach ourselves to for this week.  It was our way of choosing a focus and setting our intention for our first week back serving our guests and working together. This helped us all so much throughout the week and we highly recommend the practice.

Check out the team’s chosen words below:

Mot Resilient af

Niko Smooth af

April Grateful af

Reece Prepared af

Susan Thankful af

Jenn Envision af

Amani Graceful af

Sahar Prepared af

Vanessa Essential af


Garnish Hair Extension Education

It’s behind the scenes time!

This time we’re taking you with us through the experience of our Team Photoshoot day. Once a year we make a point to take a day, come together as a team, and take some dope photos for our website.

We update our headshots, take team photos, and gather content to be used for our website and social media. This has become a tradition inside of Garnish and we have the best time every time we get together. It’s silly, it’s genuine, it’s organic, and we’re just really excited that this is something that we get to do as part of our job inside of the beauty industry.

Something we’re super proud of at Garnish is the culture we have created. We put a lot of thought and energy into how we want the vibe of the studio to feel. It’s part of why we share so much on social media.

We feel like people should see the real us. What we do, how we do it, why we do it and the type of dynamic that they’re going to be walking into as a guest. Our photoshoot captures the essence of Garnish and we hope you can feel the good energy every time you see one of our photos.

Check out our behind the scenes video to experience the fun!

Photographer: Kassy Snyder
Videographer: Tony Veritas



Garnish Hair Extension Education

If you know anything about Garnish, you probably know that education is one of the most important facets of our salon. We pour a huge amount of time and energy into all kinds of different trainings and education, and we thought we’d take a moment to share with you all the amount of effort and work it takes to be a stylist inside of Garnish.

Garnish Hair Extension Education

First, we want to brag on two very special stylists—Reece and Amani.

Garnish Hair Extension Education

Reece has just hit his two and a half year mark, and Amani is at one year and some change. Over this time, they have both been put to the test and stretched, and have learned so much in the process. We have truly been blown away by the amount of dedication that these two have had to learning their craft on a deeper level and becoming Garnish stylists. (In case you missed the announcement, Reece was recently promoted to Level One Stylist and Amani was recently promoted to New Talent Stylist!)

Which brings us to our two new hires, Vanessa and April. To work inside Garnish, the standard is very high. Each person who joins our team has to be equally committed to delving deep into their education. The expectation is set for them to focus on not just what they’re learning technically, but also to be able to create the type of experience for our guests that Garnish has become known for.

Garnish Hair Extension Education

Apart from the day to day training inside the space, there are two main types of education at Garnish. There’s “behind the chair” training, which is learning a skillset, practicing technically advanced skills and other aspects related to the actual craft. Then there’s “in front of the chair” training, which is focused on business skills like verbiage, role playing, content creation, etc.

Garnish Hair Extension Education Garnish Hair Extension Education

We have a scheduled monthly education which alternates between these two types. If you work at Garnish, you’re required to attend this monthly training and take your education seriously. In addition to this once a month training, we also have one educational studio trip each year. We’ve been to Canada, NYC, New Orleans, and this year we’re hoping to go to California!

Finally, there’s also smaller, but no less important, aspects to our training regimen. One of these is our “weekly recap form.” This form goes over the biggest aha moments from the previous week.

Reece and Amani have been filling these out from their very first week at Garnish, which means now they have a whole assortment of aha moments and things they have learned hands on that they can look back on. Not just to remember what happened, but to read their notes and know why they chose that as their takeaway.

Everything inside of Garnish is set up to encourage growth and to encourage our stylists to continue to level up. We want them to feel amazing inside of the service that they’re delivering, but also within creating that signature Garnish Experience for each of our guests.



You may or may not know that in addition to being obsessed with transforming womens’ lives through the art of hair extensions, the Garnish team is also pretty obsessed with growth and goal setting.

It’s one of Candice’s passions and she’s cultivated an environment focused around growth. For the last three years Candice has chosen a word of the year to focus her next year around. At the end of each year as she reflects on the year to come, there’s always something that shows up. Once it appears, she recognizes that that’s where she should be focusing her energy.

Candice has found that if she puts all of her energy into making sure that every step that she takes is focused around this particular word for the year, that at the end of the year it really does show up that her life wrapped around it. Because this practice has been so significant for her individually, this year she decided to introduce the concept to the Garnish team. She asked the entire staff to dedicate the next year to a particular word.

Here’s what they each chose:

Candice – Manifest.

Niko – Fearless.

Amank – Disciplined.

Reece – Prepared.

Susan – Centered.

Sahar – Balanced.

Stephanie – Limitless.

Jennifer – Aligned.

If you’re noticing a couple of new names on the list, allow us to introduce you to our two newest team members. Stephanie is our lovely new part-time guest service team member who takes care of the front desk all day on Saturdays. Jennifer is our amazing helping hand. She manages our inventory, puts hair away, and pretty much just makes sure everything is flowing smoothly.

For everyone reading this, we encourage you to pick a word to represent your 2020.

Don’t put too much pressure on it or stress yourself out about it. Just choose a word that means something to you that you want to focus on this year. Manifestation doesn’t work under pressure, so you don’t want it to feel forceful. It’s just a simple reminder as you’re walking through your life that you should be focused on “X” because that’s what you want the outcome of the next year to be. If you want to talk more about your word (or ours!) we would love to chat during your next visit.

We love sharing about our goal setting practices and spreading our manifestation vibes!


Niko's Garnish Love Story - Hair Extensions

Each one of our team members means the world to us. Our team is the core of everything Garnish and we are so blessed to have such amazing people that make up our crew. We wanted to take the month of December to introduce you to each one of our team members in a new light—their Love Story with Garnish. Each story of how our team came together is a little different so we’ll be sharing both their perspective and Candice’s on how they came to be a Garnish stylist. This week’s feature is our OG, Niko.

Niko’s love story starts with a keratin treatment class several years ago. Niko was 19, a fresh new stylist, and she told us, “Candice walks in looking fly as hell. I told her she was so bad, then felt so stupid afterwards for telling her that.” Niko spent the whole class asking all the questions, wanting to assist whenever needed, and just trying to get to know Candice as much as she could. After the class they became Facebook friends.

Niko would occasionally see Candice around town and “get all weird because it’s Candice Motley!” and THEN she saw on Facebook that Candice had opened Garnish. While that was cool, Niko just knew she would never work outside of the downtown area. But she was also working in a space that wasn’t inspiring, and she knew her time there was coming to an end. The exact same week she got into a heated discussion with her boss, Candice reached out to her on Facebook and said she had one space left in her salon and thought Niko would be a really good fit. Candice invited Niko to lunch and if you know Niko, she is always down for a meal. She thought Candice was super cool, but even before they met up she had already decided that she wouldn’t work at Garnish.

When they sat down, Candice asked Niko about what she was currently struggling with within the industry. After Niko shared, Candice told her she thought she could help with those struggles and invited her to come look at the space. Still not sold, Niko stopped by the salon… and the rest is history. She smelled the smells and saw the things and felt the space and knew this was where she was supposed to be. A week later she brought all of her clients over to Garnish.

Niko shared that when she first got to Garnish she was the baby of the salon, but so fired up for her new salon home. She poured her heart and soul into Garnish, and she found that by doing so it pushed out all the negative people in her life as she filled herself up with all the positivity. At the beginning, she didn’t know if she would make it at Garnish because it was just so much more than she was used to, but with Candice’s encouragement and support she made it through. Every year since has brought something new. Her first year she built up a solid clientele, her second year she started learning extensions, and her third year Garnish transitioned to be extension exclusive.

In Niko’s own words, “Being with Garnish (if Garnish was my man) has forced me to elevate. It has brought me so many amazing people—everyone I’ve worked with I’ve loved. It’s brought out the best in me, has forced me to rise to the occasion, and I feel like I’ve grown up in the past 4 years. Everything that has been promised has come true for me. I’m so thankful to be in this space and to really have said yes from the beginning. It has molded me into the person I am today and I love the person that I am today.”

When we asked for Candice’s side of the love story, she immediately said, “I knew that Niko was coming as soon as I invited her in to see the space.” Her love story with Niko through Garnish has become a really incredible friendship, and truly someone that Candice just fell in love with. Niko’s work ethic and how she was able to rise to any occasion made her such a pivotal part of Garnish. Even four years later, they communicate so well, and make a really great leadership team for the salon. Niko brings something so magical to the space.

Candice told us she is so proud of Niko for going through everything she’s been through and changing so much in her personal life to show up differently in her professional life (because the two things are married together!) We’ve been so excited for new role as she has stepped into management this past year. Candice said she can’t wait to keep seeing her grow, and keep seeing her say yes. Through all the change, Niko has stayed open, humble, grounded, and on top of everything and there’s nothing that is thrown at her that she throws away. Candice said, “I’m excited to see her career blossom. I don’t know where Garnish would be if it wasn’t for Niko. This is a scenario where both sides win, both people win, both spaces are better with that person than without. All the effort she puts in, she gets back from Garnish. Pretty much, we’re in love.”


Garnish Hair Extensions Stylist

Each one of our team members means the world to us. Our team is the core of everything Garnish and we are so blessed to have such amazing people that make up our crew. We wanted to take the month of December to introduce you to each one of our team members in a new light—their Love Story with Garnish. Each story of how our team came together is a little different so we’ll be sharing both their perspective and Candice’s on how they came to be a Garnish stylist. This week’s feature is New Talent Stylist, Reece. 

Reece’s love story begins a little bit before Candice went to his school, Paul Mitchell, to give a presentation on hair extensions. While at Paul Mitchell, there was another student who wore hair extensions the entire time. One day she needed someone to put her extensions in and allowed Reece to apply them. He told us, “in that moment I thought it was so crazy what extensions could do and I knew I wanted to pursue them.” Reece also knew that cosmetology school was just the basics and he didn’t want to just graduate and go out on the floor. He wanted to go somewhere super strong in education. He had been talking to all his schoolmates, and his sister who was also in school with him, and really just putting that energy out into the universe.

He said, “One day at school there was this beautiful lady carrying so much shit and so much hair into the school and I was just wondering what was happening.” Candice was at Paul Mitchell to do a presentation on hair extensions and she had brought pretty much the entire essence of Garnish in addition to all the hair. Succulents, garnish décor, and several types of hair extensions.

Reece said that everyone was dressed so nice aand so polished and were so professional in how they were speaking that he immediately began to fall in love. At the time, Candice was wearing removable halo extensions, and she took them out in front of everyone. This moment of realness was one of the biggest sellers for Reece.

At the end of the presentation, Candice asked for a model. Reece told us he, “shot up faster than lights could turn on,” even knocking people over. Despite the fact that all she put in his hair was five fusion bonds, he thought it was so cool and those five little extensions made him feel “brand new.”

It was very little hair in terms of extensions, but it gave him “mad confidence” and really illustrated to him the impact extensions can have on how you feel. Volunteering to model was also Reece’s way of getting his foot in the door as he realized he would have to actually go to Garnish to get the hair extensions removed.

When he walked into Garnish he thought it was so beautiful and such good energy. The whole vibe was so nice and so clean. He told us he wanted to work at Garnish so bad that even just sitting in Candice’s chair to get his extensions removed that he was so nervous. He made sure to deliver his application in person because he wanted to stand out… little did he know that he already had!

Candice told us that as soon as she met Reece, as soon as he offered to help her carry in all the things for her presentation, she just knew that that was it and he was one of Garnish’s people. He had such good energy, was so positive, and had so much tenacity for learning his craft.

Throughout the entire application process he did everything so professionally, and it was easy to tell how badly he wanted it. He didn’t care that the program could be two years long, he didn’t care what the pay rate was, what long hours he might have to work, etc. There was nothing Candice could have done to deter Reece from wanting to work at Garnish. As soon as he was hired he brought so much energy into the studio. And now, a month from testing out to be on the floor as a stylist, he still breathes so much life into the salon. Reece will be our first to graduate through the Garnish Academy, and our love story with him just keeps on growing. Stay tuned for Niko’s Love Story coming up next week!


Garnish Stylist - Amani's Love Story

Each one of our team members means the world to us. Our team is the core of everything Garnish and we are so blessed to have such amazing people that make up our crew. We wanted to take the month of December to introduce you to each one of our team members in a new light—their Love Story with Garnish. Each story of how our team came together is a little different so we’ll be sharing both their perspective and Candice’s on how they came to be a Garnish stylist. First up is our sweet Studio Apprentice, Amani.

Earlier last year Amani was working at a full-service salon watching her fellow stylists taking all services, double and triple booking, and just in full-on rush mode all the time. She has always liked to take her time with her guests, truly connecting, and couldn’t see herself rushing people in and out and double booking. She knew when it came to hair she wanted to do something deeper and more rewarding. Enter Niko.

Amani told us that it all began when she started following Niko on Instagram and watching her live videos. Inpsired by Niko she started following Garnish. It didn’t take long for her to realize that THIS was what she wanted to do—work with women who had fine hair, thinning hair, and experiencing hair loss. She wanted to do extensions, but was comfortable in her current space and scared of what leaving would look like. Enter Candice.

When Amani saw the video of Candice talking about transitioning Garnish into an extension-exclusive salon she knew that this was where she was supposed to be. She thought it was such a brave and risk-taking decision to make that it inspired her to take the risk and reach out to Niko about Garnish. She sent in her video, filled out the infamous 10 page application, and the rest is history.

In her own words, Amani says, “These are my people. I love them. They touch all of my heart strings and help me be a better person.”

Recently, after having returned from the Thanksgiving break, Amani had a realization that she feels perfectly reflects her love affair with Garnish. She says, “I love off time, I love vacation, I love traveling, and Garnish is one of the only places where I really have to work hard. I am pushed to the limit every day here. You would think it would be hard to come back but it felt so good to come back. Who is happy to go back to work after a 5 day break?? It says a lot about where I work and the people I work with.”

When we talked to Candice about her experience with Amani joining the team, she shared how she knew from the moment she first saw Amani’s application video that she was meant to be a part of our team. No matter how her shadowing went or what skills she had, Candice could tell immediately what kind of person she is. In the past year, we’ve watched Amani change and grow and now her confidence is through the roof and we see such a different person every day. Garnish is all about hiring for who you are on the inside, and with Amani it was clear from the very beginning that she would become a part of our team.

We are so blessed to have Amani’s positive energy, incredible work ethic, humor, and fun as a part of our team. We can’t wait to see how her talent continues to blossom as she transitions from apprentice to stylist in the next year.


The Garnish Hair Academy

Welcome to The Garnish Hair Academy

You all already know our Studio Apprentice, Reece, but we thought you might be interested in what exactly our Apprentice Program is, why Candice decided to create it, and how it positively impacts the Garnish Experience.

The Garnish Hair Academy

Throughout the Salon industry it’s fairly common practice for newly licensed cosmetologists to complete an apprenticeship program of some kind. These programs often range in content and duration, and as you can imagine, how much the new stylist learns has a lot to do with the stylist training them.

Having been in the industry for almost 15 years, Candice has worked with a lot of different stylists, and particularly throughout the three years at Garnish has really fallen in love with building up and growing the stylists in her team. This passion led her to decide it was time to create an apprenticeship program within Garnish.

The Garnish Hair Academy

The program consists of a series of classes taught by Candice and our Senior Director, Christine, covering everything from different color techniques, various extension methods, and even how to take beautiful photos of hair (for the social media age in which we live.) You could think of an apprenticeship program like “grad school” for stylists. It allows them to really specialize their skills and learn under the guidance of a seasoned and successful stylist.

The program begins with shadowing, transitions into weekly classes, and concludes with a hands-on portion in which the apprentice(s) begins taking clients of their own. This creates a unique environment in the salon that makes a part of every day about education and growth.

The Garnish Hair Academy

As a studio who already focuses on education and growth, having an apprentice in the studio fits into our culture perfectly. It will also allow us to offer a “New Talent” level stylist, providing more flexibility and options for clients scheduling their visits with us.

When you come into the studio, you may see our apprentices shadowing your stylist, assisting with shampoos, treatments, and blow outs, and helping out with styling and “after” photo taking. By allowing the apprentices to be an integral part of your services, it provides the best possible hands-on education to foster their growth and skills.

The Garnish Hair Academy

We love being a part of growing a new generation of stylists, and hope that you enjoy your salon visits as we integrate the apprentices into the Garnish Experience.


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monthly hair affirmation

repeat after me: I safe and well!