On Monday, November 21st I attended the red carpet premier of the reality makeover web series, â€œIn The Chairâ€. This new docu-series highlights women who have not had the privilege of experiencing a full spa experience for a variety of reasons, ranging from negative makeover experiences in the past to heartfelt stories of personal tragedy.
Show host Stephen Marinaro (better known as TheSalonGuy) treats each womanÂ to a head-to-toe makeover at award-winning spas and salons in New York and New Jersey, showing both clients and viewers at home the caliber of quality we should all expect from our salons.
The event on Monday was packed. Both women and men came out to socialize as they enjoyed live performances, food, and support the showâ€™s launch…but I donâ€™t think many expected the impact this premier episode would have.Â When the episode aired, I was blown away by the courage of Donna, recipient of TheSalonGuyâ€™sÂ first makeover treatment and survivor of horrific domestic abuse.
Donna, a beautiful, soft-spoken woman spoke candidly about her abusive, tumultuous marriage â€“ her husband suffered from various mental illnesses and she was constantly at the mercy of his outbursts. She was denied a social life, and each visit to a salon for a haircut or treatment ignited her then-husbandâ€™s jealous rage, and the abuse would begin. The abuse and outbursts escalated, and Donna finally gathered the courage to walk away after being shot in the face â€“ the bullet was lodged in her eardrum and blew out her eye.
It was incredible to hear someone speak so openly about her past, and there seems to be no one more deserving of TheSalonGuyâ€™s royalty treatment than Donna. Â SheÂ and her daughter were taken to Vito Mazza Salon in Woodbridge, NJ (a place I have frequented myself in the past) and given a full spa experience, complete with massage and hair treatment. The audience gathered anxiously around the screens, waiting for the premier. This was the first time Donna had been pampered in far too long, and her joy –undoubtedly paired with a hint of nervousness — was impossible to ignore.
After the episode ended, the event concluded with Donna walking onstage in front of our audience to roars and applause.
Itâ€™s refreshing to find a show that focuses on inner beauty just as much as (if not more than) outward appearances. Words alone cannot do the episode of â€œIn The Chairâ€ justice.
Watch the premiere episode of the online reality show on Youtube here.