Think dim lighting, premium scotch, black leather chairs, and flat-screen TVs. Now throw in relaxing mani-pedis, and you’ve just pictured the ultimate man cave of a salon, Hammer & Nails. This L.A.-based shop just opened its doors for business last month and is described by its owner Michael Elliot as “the place where the guy who never goes to a salon would go.” While women are most certainly welcome, Hammer & Nails was designed with men in mind.
“Whenever I’d walk into a salon, I felt judged, like I wasn’t supposed to be there,” said Elliot, a man who frequented nail salons mostly at the request of girlfriends past but eventually came to appreciate the service. To oblige the growing market of men like himself, Elliot adorned his salon with overtly masculine details like distressed auto parts, hammers framed in shadow boxes like art, and a punching bag. Each chair is accompanied by personal over-ear headphones, a flat-screen TV, and books. “There’s nothing feminine about the brand, you feel me? It’s as manly as Gillette.”
The menu is basic but gets the job done. Customers can choose between maintenance or reparative MANicures and pedicures, and nails are left bare unless a matte or shiny finish is requested. The only colors you’ll find there are black, blue, and gray shades from Morgan Taylor’s collection. Buff shines, callus removals, paraffin treatments, and massages are also offered.
What’s interesting about Elliot is that most of his accomplishments are outside the nail industry, having written a handful of screenplays for movies you probably know including “Like Mike,” Just Wright,” and “Brown Sugar.” But he’s passionate about nails (and a salon fanatic!) and has a super strong team of techs on his side.
If you’re looking for relaxation and a clean look over statement-making nail art, pay Hammer & Nails a visit. And send your boyfriends, brothers, husbands, and fathers there, too!
Hammer & Nails | 8257 Melrose Ave. | Los Angeles, CA 90046