Korean-owned hair salon caters to variety of cultures

By Madina Toure

The Ggumizio Hair Club in Bayside prides itself on offering hair cuts, Japanese straightening and coloring services in an area that is increasingly populated by Koreans.

The salon, located at 210-05 Northern Blvd., offers clients designer perms, hair color, hair treatment, Japanese straightening, Brazilian keratin and hair extensions, among other services.

“A lot of Koreans used to live in Flushing but a lot of them came to Bayside and he knew that there were a lot of Koreans in Bayside,” Yuri Choi, a hair stylist at the salon, translated for co-owner Zio Kwon, 47.

The owners, couple Kwon and Joanne Jun, 42, came to the United States from Seoul, South Korea in 2001 with their now 18-year-old son and 15-year-old daughter. They lived in Flushing and now reside in Bayside.

Kwon has been working as a hairstylist since he was 21 years old and always had an interest in hair and beauty, having once taught at a hair academy in Seoul.

When the family moved to Bayside, Jun and Kwon felt it was a good location to open up a hair salon. The salon takes the name of the salon that he and his wife owned when they were still living in South Korea.

Jun said she appreciates being able to offer services to people of different backgrounds.

“In Korea, she said she practiced for 10 years and when she came here, the positive thing was being able to do different cultures, just experience doing hair for different types of cultures,” Flushing resident Janet Kim, 38, translated for Jun.

The salon has five employees. Jun and Kwon are the main stylists and the rest of the employees assist them. Services can cost anywhere from $20 to $1,200 for hair extensions.

Choi, who has been working at the salon for three years, said that people are drawn to the salon particularly because the owners offer unique hair coloring services.

“A lot of people, they come for color,” she said. “They mix the color and they make it on their own.”

Kim has been coming to the salon for the last seven years. She usually gets her hair dyed or the Japanese hair straightening.

“It’s a service that they provide,” Kim said. “They’re very knowledgeable about hair and they’ve been in the business for a long time.”

Manhattan resident Jonathan Yeo, 31, a friend of Kim’s, got a haircut at the salon, his first time there. He said that it is hard to find affordable salons that cater to Asian clients in Manhattan and that Kwon gave him the exact haircut he wanted.

“I found a photo online of what I wanted my hair to be like and I showed it to him and he pretty much replicated that,” Yeo said. “To find a salon that does Asian hair, it’s a little bit hard to find that in Manhattan for a reasonable price, and that’s why I come out here to Queens.”

Reach reporter Madina Toure by e-mail at mtoure@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4566.

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