Walking into the beautiful Winslow Salon, I’m soon greeted by stylist Cheraea McNichols, as she welcomes me in for her interview. Cheraea has been coloring my hair for several months now and I just adore her. The first time I met her it was clear that she takes her craft seriously and is exceptionally good at what she does. I was excited to sit down with her as my very first “Faces of Kirkland” interview! If you need a new stylist I highly recommend that you contact Cheraea – especially if you are blond or wanting to go gray as naturally as possible.
Question: Cheraea, I’d love to hear your story. How long have you been doing hair, and what is your specialty or favorite part of it?
Answer: “I’ve been doing hair for about 10 years. I got my start with a pretty big name company in Bellevue. I’ve had really extensive training and tend to specialize in Blonde hair and corrective colors as they’re my favorite thing to do! I love anything color related and I take as many classes as I can to stay educated and up to date on all the current trends. I like to kind of dabble in a little bit of everything, and make sure that what I’m offering is the best that it can be. So, especially with color and correctives I take a ton of classes They tend to be my passion projects and the things I get most excited to do for people that I feel I excel at.” (YES- she is!)
Q. What is your favorite thing… or something unique about Kirkland?
A. “The thing that I love about Kirkland, this is kind of silly, but I love how much coffee there is. Being someone on a hairdresser’s diet, I’m constantly drinking coffee. So there’s tons of different coffee shops & food spots. When I walk around town, I always see familiar faces and people I recognize, whether they come into the salon or they frequent the restaurants nearby. I feel like there’s always people that I recognize and it’s definitely a sense of community in the area, for sure. I love that we have a farmer’s market on Wednesdays – that’s awesome too. It just started last week, so you should definitely get down there!”
Q. Do you have a favorite restaurant in Kirkland?
A. “My favorite restaurant is Deru. They’re the best. I’m a sucker for baked goods, so, I love to get their coconut cake. It’s really good. Their bread’s really good too! I have pretty much loved everything I’ve ever had there. You can’t go wrong with it!”
Q. Who is the most interesting person you’ve met here in Kirkland?
A. “Oh Man. I feel like everyone’s interesting in their own way, right? I don’t have anyone in particular that stands out as being, you know, abnormally fascinating. But I definitely find things in everybody. I tend to think that I’m a little weird in ways and so I feel like I always find kind of little oddities in everyone, but I like those things about people. That’s what makes it interesting. – that’s what makes it fun!”
Q. That’s right. Can you think of anyone that you would like to see nominated as a ‘Face of Kirkland’?
A. “Let me think about that for a second… The Caffe Ladro right down the street. There are a few people who work there who are amazing – super friendly. Taylor is one of them. Always remembers my drink, super kind and always talks with me. They’re really cool and I feel welcomed there! Also, Santorini Greek Grill, three doors down – he’s amazing. He’s so kind too, the food is awesome, and it’s super consistent every single time you go there.”
Q. If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be and why?
A. “Right now I really want to go to Scotland. I’m planning a two week trip, hopefully next year to both Scotland and Ireland. There’s this thing you can do where you can walk from bed and breakfast to bed and breakfast, so you hike every day to get to your next location. I want to do that and I want to do some castle hopping and go see the old castles that are there. I just think that they’re beautiful.”
Q. What is your favorite movie, or the first movie you remember seeing in the theater?
A. “I don’t remember the first movie that I saw in a theater, but, one of my favorite all time movies is Edward Scissorhands! I love Tim Burton because he’s so creative and he’s just true to himself and he comes up with this off the wall stuff, but it totally works! So, yeah, Edwards Scissorhands. I also really love Wes Anderson and the Royal Tenenbaums is another one of my favorites.”
Q. What is something on your bucket list? I know about Scotland, is there anything even bigger than that?
A. “I always thought that I wanted to go cage diving with great white sharks in Australia. But then this year I saw this video of the shark getting inside one of the cages. So now I’ve kind of changed my mind on that! I’d also like to go skydiving. Really I’m pretty simple, the biggest thing on my bucket list is really just traveling! I want to see as much as I can, like Australia and Japan. I’d like to experience different cultures and different areas and see how people live. That’s more important to me than doing something crazy like thrill seeking thing.”
Q. What is your favorite music or three bands that you would like to see, either dead or alive?
A. “Music is like my go-to. My family is very musical. I listened to a lot of alternative, a lot of eighties music, a lot of classic music. Two of my biggest icons are David Bowie and Freddie Mercury, but they’re unfortunately not around anymore. My favorite band of all time is the White Lies, and they’re phenomenal. I’ve seen them in concert three times. Every band that I really ever wanted to see, I’ve made happen. City In Color is another one of my favorite bands. They’re incredible, Dallas Green is just, he just has the most beautiful voice. I have a lot of respect for people who can do their art and do it well. Especially when it comes to music, when you can do something live and it sounds just as good recorded, if not better. I have so much respect for that.”
Q. What advice would you give to the people of Kirkland if you had the attention for the whole 15 minutes?
A. “Oh my God. Yeah…. Look both ways before you cross the street! With so many pedestrians we really have to be careful. I really love the older and more historical buildings down here and I hope they don’t get torn down. They could benefit from some sprucing up but i feel like everything just gets torn down and rebuilt upon. While the new buildings can be great and attract more people, I feel like the older buildings are part of what makes it unique down here! There’s character to it!”
Q. What is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
A. “I’m really into crime scene investigating. Before I did hair, I was going to do one of two things. I was either going to be a zoologist or I was going to get into forensic crimes of some sort. So, I went to several workshops, when I was in high school and took a ton of different criminal science classes and solved different cases while I was there, which was really cool, but decided it wasn’t ultimately for me. Another thing about me that people wouldn’t know is that I do a lot of woodworking and home projects. I love interior decorating and building things from scratch.”
Q. Three words or phrases come to mind when you think of the word home?
A. “When I think of the word home, I think of stability, comfort and strength.”
Q. If you were cast into a major motion picture and have your choice of anyone to be your co-star, who would you choose?
A. “Michael Fassbender because he’s “Magneto” and a part of the “X-men” so you know, naturally I’d have to choose him.”
Q. Last question. If you could have a full time staff member fully paid for… who would you choose? A chef, housekeeper, driver, coach, physical fitness trainer or nanny?
A. “I would choose a chef because that’s not something I tend to find all that fascinating, nor am I particularly, skilled in that area. Because, if I could have someone that prepped super healthy Vegan plant-based options for me, that could just help me to always stay on track. Due to my days being so chaotic and busy, which I love – I wouldn’t ask for it any other way, but it makes meal prep really, really hard. Therefore I’ve always kind of fantasized about having a chef!”
To request an appointment with Cheraea, click here for contact info!