The staff of Joel Richard Salon from left to right: Back: Connie Malagrino, Alyssa Coward, Donna Kirkpatrick, Kelly Tomarchio, Sandra Gervasio. Seated: Jodi Keegan, Joel Guidotti, Meghan F. Zajac. Not pictured: Dino DiMattia, Abbey Eastmead Ciocain. (Photo by Rachel Wintermute.)

Once you walk into the Joel Richard Salon, owner Jodi Keegan makes it her mission that you leave relaxed and fully satisfied.

“My clients don’t leave unless they’re happy and love their hair,” Keegan said.

Keegan, along with her team of educated stylists, keeps customer satisfaction the top priority of the family-oriented and more than 50 year-old business.

Customers can expect friendly greetings when they walk through the second-story door of the salon, located at the Shoppes at Pennington. Stylists work to build relationships with their clients by asking about work life, family life and most importantly, their at-home hair habits. The stylists at Joel Richard Salon won’t send anyone home with a new style that’s too difficult to maintain.

That’s what makes the customers feel so comfortable.

“I want them to feel relaxed and welcome,” Keegan said. “Not intimidated.”

Don’t let the salon’s relaxed atmosphere fool you. These stylists can handle the toughest orders.

The salon offers hair services for men, women and children of all ages. It also provides facial waxing services from $10–$13.

The stylists periodically attend advanced cutting and coloring classes hosted by companies like Goldwell, Redken and Vidal Sassoon, and each stylist has his or her specialities.

“I like to specialize in long hair,” Keegan said. “Curly long hair.”

With eight stylists on staff, the salon covers all hair-related bases.

Services offered include hair coloring, styling, cutting, highlights, lowlights, permanents, straightening and a new smoothing Keratin Complex Therapy.

No matter what a client wants, Keegan wants to make sure that he or she leaves feeling “happy, like a new person.”

For Keegan, customer satisfaction is no new trade. She has owned the salon for about 10 years, but she has worked in it for about 30 years under her father, Joel Guidotti, the original owner of Joel Richard Salon.

Guidotti is now retired from ownership, but he hasn’t said goodbye yet. He is still active in the salon as a manager and operations supervisor.

“I actually grew up in the salon,” said Keegan, who listed father Guidotti as a big influence on her passion for styling.

The Shoppes at Pennington is the salon’s fifth location in its more than 50 business years. It will be celebrating its four year anniversary at this location on September 1.

Though almost every previous location has been stationed in Lawrenceville, Keegan said that the salon has a loyal customer base from all over the Mercer County area.

However, she said the second-story location is less than ideal for new walk-in customers.

“The hard part is that the clients don’t know we’re here,” Keegan said.

With just a directory listing and street sign next to Barone’s Tuscany Grill, the salon is not very visible, despite the shopping center’s location on Rt. 31 North.

The staff remains optimistic about the new location of the salon. The space is bigger than it has been in the past, and the view from the second floor windows pleasantly overlooks trees instead of a parking lot. Keegan said that even the customers prefer the scenic view.

The walk-in appointments that the salon does welcome helps to expand the family that Joel Richard Salon has created. With stylists that have worked at the salon for decades, the salon feels just like a family.

“A lot of the employees are connected with each other,” Keegan said. “We all help each other.”

Seasoned employees, loyal customers and a friendly atmosphere are the true keys to the salon’s success.

Keegan plans to keep the salon at this Pennington location for years to come.

You can find the Joel Richard Salon at 21 Rt. 31 North, Suite 7B at the Shoppes at Pennington. The salon is open Tuesday–Thursday 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Wednesday–Friday 9:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.–4 p.m. and Sunday 1–4 p.m. For more information or details on back-to-school specials, call (609) 730-1211.