On a Sunday in January, the Martone house was bustling with people. The handy-man uncle stopped by, assorted friends and family members wandered in and out of rooms.
Grandma, with her big blonde bouffant hair, walked the house in a black fur vest, black rhinestone pants and beige boots with kitten heels. Think Dolly Parton—all sparkles and smiles.
This is a typical Sunday at the Martone house, sisters Lexi and Bria said. And that warm, welcoming energy is the kind they plan to foster when they open their East Northport salon March 7.
Salon Martone will be the Dix Hills sisters’ first joint business venture. Lexi, known for her three-dimensional nail art and work with celebrities like Katie Homes and Jada Pinkett-Smith, will handle nails. Bria will do hair and make-up. The goal is to create a fun, trendy space. The salon design is “very modern, clean lines, black metal, snakeskin,” Lexi said.
Products at Salon Martone will be high-end. Some of Lexi’s nail supplies are imports from Japan.
“We don’t want you to be able to go into CVS and buy it,” Bria said.
The sisters’ grandmother, a hairdresser who once ran a home salon in Queens, hopes to service seniors at Salon Martone and will be in charge of bouffant and wiglet placement. Their mother, Jennifer, who Lexi joked “hands out business cards to the ants on the street,” will be working the salon’s front desk during the week. She plans to give salon clients champagne glasses filled with water, garnished with a lemon wedge, when they walk in.
“She also wants to serve vegetables, but I put a stop to that,” Lexi said. “Would you like a carrot with that blow dry?”
The sisters are certainly putting their names on this.
“We’re young, but we know what we want,” Lexi, 23, said.
And they’ve been building towards this moment for years. Bria, 19, says the salon world has always been hers. When she was a little girl, she would help out in her grandmother’s salon for $1 tips. After high school, she completed a six-month master program at Make-up Designory in Manhattan, learning special effects and movie make-up among other things.
Lexi took a different route. She attended the Fashion Institute of Technology for a few months in 2011, planning to work in fashion design. When she realized a career in fashion was not what she wanted, she started doing nails.
Lexi entered a nail competition through NAILS Magazine, where she placed second in 2015 and made connections that led her to celebrity clients and the chance to work with make-up artist Jay Manuel, former creative director of hit reality show America’s Next Top Model.
And now, Lexi and Bria are bringing all that experience back to Long Island, which is exactly where they belong.
“We weren’t ‘living away’ kind of people,” Bria said.
“Once you get [to Manhattan], it’s like, ‘no, I’m a Long Island girl,'” Lexi said.