All about the founder and her latest venture- a new Toronto salon called Baz and Banks, which she opened alongside Co-Owner Desiree Catana.
Meet Toronto’s newest haircare hotspot – Baz and Banks. This is the latest venture from Brittney Banks, of Hair By Banks, and stylist Desiree Catana, who recently opened the brand’s location in Liberty Village after a successful soft launch this past summer.
Baz and Banks will expand Brittney’s established footprint in the haircare industry and, today, she is sitting down to chat with HOLR about her latest journey, brand launches, and what’s next for the brand.
Tell us about your salon Baz and Banks and your journey to opening up your second location in Liberty Village with stylist Desiree Catana.
Baz and Banks was opened on the back of huge success from my first hair salon, hair by banks & co. I was fortunate enough to have some of the best stylists in the country working at that salon, and Desiree was such a standout person. She was talented, extremely hard-working, and understood the business and what it takes to make a salon thrive. I got to know her as an employee and as a person. I always knew she had big things going for her in the salon industry. So what better way to open a new salon than in partnership with a top-tier stylist and one of my now closest friends.
How have recent life events inspired you both to explore your passion?
Covid was tough. It is hard to sit and watch your business stay shuttered, with your employees out of work. However, instead of being back-to-back all day long servicing our clients, the Covid downtime gave us more time to think. Des was thinking through the next stages of her career and I was thinking about my next step as a salon owner. We spent a lot of time discussing our plans and aspirations. We decided to open a salon in Liberty Village, an awesome neighbourhood with a population base that appreciates our vibe.
This is Desiree’s first salon. Opening your first salon is a huge step. Opening your first salon in the midst of a pandemic is incredible – I will always admire and be inspired by Des for taking that courageous leap with me.
You have a super impressive portfolio! Can you give us some details about what it’s like to train under celebrity stylists Tracey Cunningham and Chris Appleton?
You can never have too much education. The trick is to choose what type of education will help you grow best. Tracy Cunningham and Chris Appleton are two of the best in the world. They know their craft extremely well, but more than that, they are both so humble. Learning from them was another reminder of how important it is to be good at what you do and keep your humility.
You also have your own lineup of hair extensions- can you talk to us about how you came to develop this collection?
We do, and it is called “extensions by banks”. During my Covid downtime, I also wanted to bring a new product to the market. I have been doing extensions my whole career with a third-party product and was constantly searching for something better for my clients. So I spent several months testing new products from new sources until I landed on the one that is the best I have ever encountered. There will be much more to come here so please stay tuned.
What’s next for Baz and Banks?
We want to keep growing our presence. We are blown away by the support we have received from our new amazing stylists and their clients. First and foremost our priority is to continue to build the strength of our baz and banks family, both with our stylists and our clients. Secondly, we are noticing that the pool of stylists in the industry is shrinking as there is a lack of solid educational support for upcoming stylists, so one of our goals is to develop platforms to incubate and support new and upcoming stylists. Thirdly, we need to keep ourselves educated. Styles and trends change and if you don’t keep up, you go stale. We want to stay current and show our clients the best and the newest looks at all times. We are looking forward to being a staple in the Liberty Village community for many years.
Published by HOLR Magazine.