WRITTEN BY: ALLISON CHUDINA
The Fox Den Hair Hangout is not your typical hair salon. Here, clients can receive a variety of cuts and styles while kicking back in a relaxing environment and chatting with the owner, Foxy, who hopes to be your friend as well as your stylist.
“I choose to call it a hair hangout because I feel like hair is personal,” Foxy said. “I create relationships. I want my clients to feel comfortable and relaxed in my space.”
Foxy says her favorite feedback to receive is when first-time clients say they feel as if they’ve been friends with Foxy for years.
“There’s just something about making people feel good that brings me joy,” Foxy said. “If you don’t feel like the best thing since Beyoncé after leaving my place, then I didn’t do my job.”
Foxy is a diverse stylist who prides herself on being able to offer a variety of services to her clientele, regardless of the client’s ethnicity or culture.
“Hair is hair,” Foxy said. “Just like there are different fabrics of clothing, there are different fabrics of hair, and if you call yourself a stylist, you should be able to do all fabrics.”
Foxy grew up in the Nashville area before moving to Knoxville in 2006 to attend the University of Tennessee. She decided to enroll in cosmetology school in Knoxville to pursue hairstyling, which was a life-long passion of hers.
“Growing up, I played ‘beauty shop’ with my dolls and only wanted dolls that had hair I could play with,” Foxy said.
Foxy has been professionally licensed for eight years, and she always knew she wanted to be her own boss. “Part of the reason I decided to attend college first was because I knew I would eventually own my own business, and I wanted to be able to run it efficiently.”
She first opened the Fox Den in December of 2019 after her previous salon closed unexpectedly.
“It was really abrupt and, honestly, a little traumatizing because I had literally just moved back to Knoxville from California two months prior,” Foxy said.
Foxy spent some time practicing hair styling in Los Angeles before settling back in Knoxville. During her time in LA, she worked for the Benjamin Salon franchise, the House of Lange Hair Design located in Irvine and participated in other freelance collaborations throughout Southern California.
“I was fortunate because, during my time in LA, I was still able to travel back to Knoxville every three months to take clients, so I retained a good portion of them,” Foxy said.
Foxy initially got her business started by reaching out to people who she knew believed in her vision. “I put my pride aside and asked them to invest in me and my business,” Foxy said. “I am so grateful for those individuals because they really helped to cover all the costs I couldn’t afford.”
Foxy says she thinks the hair industry is falling short in terms of inclusivity, and she hopes to change this with her hair hangout.
“I worked at one of the top salons in Los Angeles, and I was one of only two African Americans within the company. I have had clients not feel comfortable in those kinds of spaces because they feel out of place.”
Foxy also had advice for young entrepreneurs who have big dreams without any idea how to execute them.
“Ain’t nothing to it but to do it,” Foxy said. “Baby steps are still steps. It’s going to be hard, you’re going to lose sleep and you’ll always have haters. But do you. Let those fears push you to succeed. As long as you believe in yourself, nobody can stop you.”
The Fox Den is a space Foxy hopes will inspire people to realize beauty comes from within. She aims to enhance clients’ natural beauty rather than making them feel like they need to change who they are. She likes to call her style “effortless” for this very reason.
In the future, Foxy hopes to have her own brick-and-mortar building in East Knoxville.
“I want a chance to be an example to my community that we can own our own high-end businesses, and we don’t have to be on certain sides of town to do so,” Foxy said.
She also hopes her hair hangout can be a community space where traveling artists can come and bring their own clients.
“I would love for some of my LA hair friends to build a clientele here.”
Foxy also has dreams to open her own cosmetology school in East Knoxville one day. “Somebody once said you have to be the change you want to see, and a lot of that starts at the beginning,” Foxy said.
The Fox Den Hair Hangout is located at 4928 Homberg Dr., Suite 28, off Kingston Pike.
For more information, check out Foxy’s Instagram, @foxyroxhair, or follow the hair hangout’s Facebook account, @thefoxdenhairhangout.