Industry Insiders: Rogerio Cavalcante, Hair Therapist

Hairstylists often do double time as therapists. Some stylists and their clients even become BFFs. Think Jessica Simpson and Ken Paves. Or my stylist, the in-the-know, talented Rogerio Cavalcante of Maria Bonita Salon & Spa in SoHo, who’s revealed some of his fascinating life story to me when I can stop yapping about my own latest drama.

Point of Origin I am from Sao Paulo, Brazil. I have a large family, and 12 of my relatives are hairstylists. My first job was in my uncle’s salon when I was 13. I swept the floor and washed hair. And by the way, he did not pay me well (laughs). My career began when I was 22 and I started working at my cousin’s salon with some of the best stylists in Sao Paulo. I was so eager to learn that I gave up part of my commission to be taught by the top stylist, Marcelo. He taught me to mix colors and highlight techniques. I continued working, and took classes with Vidal Sassoon, Toni & Guy, Nick Arrojo, L’Oreal, Redken, and Wella.

Why do you enjoy doing hair? I just love it—it is the best job in the world! I look forward to seeing the excitement on my client’s face when I finish their hair.

What are your favorite things to do as a stylist? I love cutting and coloring hair, but please don’t tell anyone that I have the most fun when I am cutting. And of course, like all stylists on the planet, I love big changes.

What are you known for as a stylist? I am a “precisionist.” I like to do precise and sharp hair cuts. My haircuts can take up to two hours because I want to make sure that the style works well with the client’s features and it is exactly what they want.

The ambiance in Maria Bonita is really fun and relaxed—why do you think that is? First of all, the clients make the salon very special. We love to see our clients from everywhere in the world. They come in and we help them relax while we make them beautiful with our exclusive Brazilian treatments. Also, the staff at Maria Bonita is always in a good mood— and we have fun making people look their best!

What is Maria Bonita known for? What is requested most often? Maria Bonita is known for being the only full-service Brazilian salon to offer hair, nail, and waxing services, as well as facials and massages. People request Brazilian blow-outs (straightening) and color treatments most often.

What’s the difference between how South Americans approach hairstyle and care vs. Americans? Volume! My beginning here in New York wasn’t easy. In Brazil, girls want pin-straight hair. I was used to taking the volume out of their hair. Here, I have to add it—a lot of it!

What are some hair trends you really hate? That’s hard. I think it’s better to keep my mouth shut here: No Habla Ingles!

What are some Spring hair trends you are loving? Definitely middle-length hair. I like the modern choppy bob, with the ends lighted by a technique we call ombré.

Name 5 beauty and hair products that no girl should be without. 1. Envix 20 in 1 hair mask 2. Pomade/wax for the spring/summer messy look 3. Bianco breeze dry shampoo 4. Redken shiny gloss 5. Moroccanoil light oil treatment

What are your favorite places to eat and drink in the city? The places I like for food are Cachacaria Boteco (they have feijoada and caipirinhas), Café Habana and Bread.

The places I like for fun are Goldbar, SubMercer and Bourgeois Pig.

Brazilian Freebies from Maria Bonita Salon and Spa

I cannot say enough about Maria Bonita Salon and Spa. The boutique atmosphere is friendly and bustling, with women and men fluttering about, offering up compliments while attending to their business. It’s a “regular” kind of place, meaning loyal customers keep coming back—with good reason. The beauty destination employs a close-knit group of talents (for highlights, ask for Rogerio Cavalcante), and they believe in bringing your “sexy” out by offering nutritious services that repair and care for hair as part of a balanced regiment. Case in point: they’ve developed Bio Supplements, a product formulated with a cocktail of essential vitamins and natural ingredients to nourish hair that they designed after they noticed all of their fellow Brazilians were having too much fun in the sun, and wrecking their luscious locks. This Thursday they’ll be throwing a launch event (because Brazilians are no stranger to a good party) and will be giving away their entire line.

Date:Thursday, February 3, 2011 Time: 5pm to 7:30pm Address: Avignone Pharmacy, 281 Avenue of Americas (@ Bleecker street). RSVP:

Though you wont leave empty-handed, your RSVP to enters you into a raffle to win the entire line of Bio Supplements, including all of their systems specially formulated for different hair types.


1). Volume Control System The Volume Control System combines essential oils that hydrate and tame each hair strand. The Shea Butter protects against dehydration and the Avocado Oil delivers the necessary emollients to control hair volume.

2). Ultra Straight System The Ultra Straight System has a Protein Mix of Silk and Rice that adheres to the surface of your hair to align each strand and bring your hair under control. The Essential Vitamins will leave your hair soft, silky and manageable.

3). High Gloss System The High Gloss System is a special formula of Keratin, Pearl Proteins and Essential Vitamins that reinvigorates the hair cuticle, leaving hair shiny and healthy.

4). Mocha Cappuccino System The Mocha Cappuccino System rehabilitates dry, damaged and chemically treated hair with Cocoa extracts for intense moisture and Coffee extracts for ultra-violet and anti-fade protection.

5). Citrus Shine System The Citrus Shine Shampoo is a specially formulated combination of Citrus Fruits with the Amazon Andiroba seed that balances the hair’s natural oils. The Golden Pearls and Essential Vitamins hydrate, soften and enhance hair shine.

Maria Bonita Salon: Some Brazilians Do Care About Being On Time

I have enough Brazilian girlfriends to know that moving in a timely manner is not their priority. Arriving to dinner dates on time is an uncommon miracle, and getting ready with them to go out at night is just as lax. It’s all part of their charm, their devil-may-care attitude about time, which I love, until I’m the devil caring. Which is why it’s more than noteworthy that my favorite Brazilian salon happens to be a stickler about time-saving techniques. The Maria Bonita Salon, located at 12 Prince Street, has just created a time saving “Good to Go” package that has everything you need to get ready for a night out in 45 minutes flat.

Created by the vivacious Fernanda Lacerda, Maria Bonita mixes services and innovative spa treatments that rival those of the best spas in Brazil. And for those of us obsessed with Brazilian treatments, it’s the only full-service Brazilian salon to offer hair, nail, and waxing services, as well as facials and massages under one roof. They are also the first salon to carry the entire Bio Supplements hair care line from Brazil. One of my favorite things about the space is that tons of regulars come here to collectively get ready for a nights out—which completely transforms the atmosphere of the salon.

Here’s what Lacerda had to say about her new package:

We are worried about your time so we decided to launch a package that will get you ready for a night out in only 45 minutes. The package consists of a Hair Treatment, Brazilian Mani and a hair styled to perfection, and is only $70.00. We’re open on Thursdays and Fridays until 9PM for you’re night-needs.

Good to Go Package $70 Includes hair treatment, Brazilian mani, and hairstyling. 2 Prince St. NY, NY 10012 212-431-1520

Just Get Pretty, Then Get Pretty Drunk on FNO

Invariably, the hip thing for jaded anti-Wintour types to do on Fashion’s Night Out will be to do nothing, or rather, to do some kind of debaucherous anti-Fashion’s Night Out carousing while still sort of participating in the event by virtue of spending dollars in New York City tonight. Whatever your plans, you will be getting drunk on Fashion’s Night Out because it’s Friday, and you may as well look perfect and pretty while doing it. Which brings me to my point: Go to Maria Bonita Salon & Spa on 12 Prince Street (between Bowery and Elizabeth), where you will be papered and prettified for your FNO or NO-FNO evening. For free. Spend the whole evening there, in fact, prepping to go straight to their afterparty at Goldbar. Complimentary salon treats you can receive just by promising to attend an afterparty after the jump.

Complimentary services you’ll receive at Maria Bonita Salon & Spa with your FNO visit:

• Luxurious mini facials with Women’s Health Advocate and Natural skincare expert, Tata Harper. • Sleek updos. • Bohemian curls. • Mini-manicures and polish changes. • Aromatherapy sessions utilizing clinical grade essential oils. • Cocktails and Espresso shots. • Tea from H.wood Tea. • Gift Bags.

There will be a guest DJ spinning, so it’ll feel like you’re getting ready to go out with your GFs, and there will be VIP access to the FNO after party at Goldbar.

Hotties at Goldbar Photo By Kirillwashere.

Brazilian Beauties at the Surf Lodge

There comes a time in a young girl’s life when she must use a relaxing beach escape for actual rest. Now is not that time. Though the spa treatments brought to the Surf Lodge in Montauk this past Saturday—thanks to the SoHo-based Maria Bonita Salon and Spa—for an event to fete the official launch of BrazilianSupplement’s Envix Deep Conditioning Hair Masque certainly helped me and my ocean-fried hair to feel refreshed, the open bar of Leblon Natural Cane Cachaça caipirinhas and a sexy live music set by Brazilian beauty Karina Zeviani had me, once again, hitting the sauce. The lovely and lively event, however, did afford me a closer look at the Surf Lodge’s more active alternatives to your usual drunk-in-the-sun-fun. An account of my day, which moved from clouds to sun to a particular, lime-scented kind of fog, after the jump.

A salty, surf-side rain soaks the Surf Lodge at about 4PM, but the dampness only seems to bring out the finer point of the beachy haven. The guests, in bathing suits and breezy dresses, squeeze into the front bar area to keep dry, while others huddle under eaves, tossing around soccer balls designed by contemporary artist Damon Johnson and chatting with their hands in a way only Brazilians can. (Later, they will raffle off a unique art piece designed by Johnson, to benefit the Brazil Child Health Organization.)

image Johnson and his balls.

There is something about an event full of Brazilians—they are a group that pulls you in and treats you like an old friend almost immediately. More importantly, they love to party. Some have changed into custom designed T-shirts resembling Brazil’s World Cup jerseys, and several have decided to slow dance to the acoustic entertainment. Nearly every guest speaks of Karina Zeviani, the former Ford model now singing a soothing set, as if she were a sister.

image Karina Zeviani.

Somehow, after countless caipirinhas, I manage a conversation with the amiable Fernanda Lacerda, founder of BrazilianSupplements, owner of the Brazilian model-ridden hotspot Maria Bonita Spa and Salon in Soho, and guru of all Brazilian beauty treatments. As it turns out, while we New Yorkers have become recently obsessed with Brazil’s beauty bounty, a lot of the products they swear by are not available in the states. As it also turns out, BrazilianSupplements is a well-known importer for all of those tough-to-find Brazilian beauty products, like the widely adored Envix Hair Masque. With a blend of 20 ingredients, like wheat protein, amino acids, soy, and keratin, it’s the perfect hair cocktail after a day of surfing and sunning.

The Surf Lodge was the perfect pairing for the event, being that the vibe, as one partier puts it, “is very Brazilian.” How so? “It’s disguised as very laid back, but that only creates a bigger party—you’re drunk before you know it.” Indeed, most of the venue’s devotees are also incredibly active during the daytime, surfing, kayaking, biking and using those stand up paddle board thingys. Sure enough, the laid-back vibe only heats up as the drinkers catch their second wind after a day of the outdoors.

image Half-eaten Surf Lodge fish tacos.

In case your second wind proves elusive, the Lodge offers alternatives to re-charge: weekly yoga classes held on a private deck overlooking the water, in-room massages, facials, and other detoxifying spa services. Additionally, bicycle rentals, surf lessons, sport fishing, and horseback riding can help you work up an appetite for chef Sam Talbot’s menu at The Restaurant, which, to further the healthy lifestyle of their active patrons, serves fresh local seafood. The healthy drinkers, as I found out late Saturday night, keep the party going, late into the night.

Main Photo: Anna J, Gabriel Ruas, Christina Carey. Photo by Hunter Muse

New York: Top 5 Beauty Spots

imageGet cut, colored, waxed, painted, and buffed at Manhattan’s top beautification joints.

1. Clarins Skin Spa (Upper East Side) – Where the Madison Avenue set gets that elegant glow. 2. Cutler Salon (Soho) – Shear ingenuity and uninhibited creativity sprawling from every snip. 3. Gansevoort Spa (Meatpacking District) – Get shined and decompress, celeb style.

4 Maria Bonita Salon & Spa (Little Italy) – Cute Nolita salon and spa beloved by Brazilians and Nolita fashionistas alike. 5. Valley Spa (Lower East Side) – Valley girls get their one-stop chic on.