A Super-Minimalist Beauty Salon in Osaka

Photo by Stirling Elmendorf.
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Photo by Stirling Elmendorf.
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Photos by Stirling Elmendorf.
Photo by Stirling Elmendorf.
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Slide 1

Japanese architect Yasunari Tsukada transforms a long and narrow space into a dramatic hair salon with a shelving and display system that resembles fragile scaffolding. 

The first mission that Yasunari Tsukada set out to accomplish for the End…Link salon in Osaka was to maximize the functionality of the narrow interior, which measures four metres wide and 28 metres long. The beauty boutique was seeking to accommodate a growing team of stylists, and Tsukada’s solution was to strip away any signs of bulkiness, by limiting the number of partitions and employing a minimalist’s go-to palette of finishes: white paint, timber shelving, concrete walls and glass counters.

The salon’s defining feature, however, is the flexible wood grid that spans the styling area and forms the basis of seven workstations. Resembling construction scaffolding, the lattice system supports mirrors, configurable glass shelves and hooks, with compartments for hair products and tools.

Stripped-down white pendants dangle within the structure, and two thin light tubes hover below the ceiling and stretch across the styling area. Perhaps the ultimate minimalist gesture: the Hans J. Wegner Wishbone chairs, which might seem more stylish than traditional styling chairs but are surely nowhere near as comfortable.

Besides the main work area, there is a reception with a monolithic desk clad in plywood, and a space at the back with basins and a spa room. The pared back aesthetic of these zones ties together with the rest of the salon to create a cohesive whole.

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