7 February 2023

America’s Prime Salons: Charles David Salons & Spas

As a professional hairdresser since 1982 Buddy Dudley is now well known for his expertise in color. Dudley is the recipient of numerous awards and co-owner of Charles David opened 20 years ago this coming October.

There, Buddy and David Honeycutt opened a six chair salon with 5 employees in Norwell, Massachusetts. They stayed there for 13 years, and in that time they grew from 6 to 21 chairs. Because of the demand for more space they both decided to move not to far away. About 1.5 miles down the street to Hanover, Massachusetts. The flagship salon features a 15,000 sq.ft. salon and spa with 40 chairs and a spa with 6 treatment rooms and 90+ team members. The entire building is about 18,000 sq.ft. so it only made sense to include like-minded businesses such as a laser hair removal section, Bikram Yoga, acupuncture, and a lingerie store.

David who is the co-owner of Charles David has help to bring the hospitality industry to the beauty industry. With a background in management for 20 years and excellent management, personnel skills and costumer experience, along with Dudley’s expertise in color is a match made in heaven.  Here is our exclusive interview with Buddy. 

How is it partnering with a company like Joico?
Partnering with Beth Minardi Signature/Joico has been a great move for Charles David Salons & Spas. Not only has it provided great products to service our Guests needs but it also has given us many educational opportunities, retailing ideas and incentives.”

What makes the Joico brand so unique?
Their dedication and innovation. They have everything from fun intensive colors to uptown contemporary classic shades along with amazing design and finishing products.”

What are some Joico products you can’t live without?
Vero K-PAK Color Base Breaker and Base Breaker Cool for amazing quick, clean lift in 10-20 minutes when you are looking for that one level “bump”.  We also adore Joico’s Vero K-PAK Color Crème Lightener, and of course who could live without K-PAK RevitaLuxe?

What is some advice that you can provide to up and coming entrepreneurs in running a successful business?
Develop WITH your team the core values for your business. Expectations of conduct and professionalism and how we interact with one another, the standards of service we want to provide for our Guests and LIVE by it at ALL locations.”

How important is education nowadays for a salon team? What education sources are you and your team taking advantage of?
Education is crucial for any salon team and it is certainly the “hallmark” of Charles David Salons & Spas. It is your only way to stay ahead of “what’s next” and provide “what’s new and current” to your deserving Guests. We love the Artistic Institute in CT. and the “top shelf” educators that the Joico/Minardi brand has to offer. Each year we have our own two day in-house “Symposium” with Joico Vero K-PAK Color International Artistic Director Sue Pemberton and team, packed with all the latest cutting, coloring and fashion trends in addition to quarterly classes and outside opportunities.  We have an amazing team of Educational Directors who insure all of our team has consistent quality standards.”

How is it balancing the Charles David Salon in your Hanover location and the two locations in Plymouth?
Our Hanover location is a very large facility and very high paced and busy. One salon in Plymouth is smaller and has more of a New York feel and appearance while the other salon/spa in Plymouth is medium sized with a  more relaxed, cozy and comfortable space. We still want the service standards to be the consistently the same even though interiors and atmosphere may be different. Since Hanover is the “mother ship” and the largest, we train there by pairing individuals with Senior team members or one of our 4 Educational Directors.  For classes and education events we bring all 125+ employees together to strengthen the bond between them as well and reinforce our SOP’s.

Most up and coming stylist have role models. Who would you have considered a role model when you were up and coming?
My role model and mentor is Beth Minardi. She has formed and shaped my career and has taught me to be a conscious and informed colorist and as our company Color Director/Co-owner I now bring to my team… “elevating hair color to an art form.

How important is your team to you?
Your team is a reflection of you… choose them carefully. Our fabulous team means the world to us. They are the “backbone” of the salon from reception to check-out and everything in between. Cherish your salon team and treat them with the respect they deserve. Education is key. When you give them the tools they need to succeed, that’s when the joy of watching them “fly” rewards you, them, and your business.”

How important are the charitable organizations to Charles David Salons & Spas?
From the first year we opened we wanted to “give back” to our community and we do like no other salon. Each year we have our annual “Benefit Day” on a chosen Sunday from 9-5 and every single employee is expected to participate. Unlike so many salons that do a “cut-a-thon”, we open our doors that day for every service on our menu from coloring to relaxing to spa services and 100% of that days revenue including the profit from retail sales go to our chosen charities. Along with donations we have initiated and money raised at our events we have given over $1,000,000 to our local hospital, our cancer center, animal shelter, hospice, children’s organizations and so much more. Ask anyone in the Boston area about Charles David and even if they have never been a guest of ours they will say “I hear nice things about those people”… That’s all you really want. We have spent so little on advertising over the years and have found that our good press has been the recognition received for the good things we do.”

Do you believe it is sometimes important to disconnect? If so, what do you do?
While it is nice to vacation more than one time per year, as owners we try to get away at least 4 times per year. We love the Caribbean! Release, de-stress and renew. You must take time away to remain fresh. Let’s face it, this is a hard, fast-paced business and you must learn how to relax and enjoy life. Whatever your “release” may be… JUST DO IT!

Finish this sentence. I can’t live without my _____________.  Why?
I can’t live without my Beth Minardi Signature shades collection by Joico. It delivers perfect results every time and in every situation. Both Joico’s Vero K-PAK Color and Beth Minardi Signature permanent shades are intermixable which gives you the most expanded palette available in today’s market.


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