Our Story

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The Webb family’s hairstyling legacy began three generations ago when Thomas Webb returned home to England from World War II. Upon his return, Thomas began styling women’s hair and creating his own shampoos, conditioners and peroxides. At one point, Thomas was known for his ability to set 20 women’s hair in one day — servicing three to four women’s hair at the same time.

Meanwhile, Laura Breakwell, a hairstyling pioneer in her own right as an entrepreneur salon owner, had a daughter named Shirley. Shirley took an early interest in hairstyling because of the time she spent in her mother’s salon, and over time Laura sent Shirley to train with Thomas and his son, Peter.

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Shirley and Peter showed a high level of skill and creativity at a young age, and soon began to train for the world’s most prestigious hairstyling competitions. Earning awards and fame for their unique and creative hair styles, the two remained competitive against one another as their relationship grew. At the time, hairstyling competitions were primarily dominated by men, so when Shirley beat Peter in a competition, she gained a high level of fame. The two married in 1967. After working with royals and celebrities throughout England (among them Ozzy Osborne), Peter decided to bring their European successes to the U.S., investing in a salon in Rochester, NY.

20 years later, Peter and Shirley’s sons, Simon and Jonathan, continue this tradition of high-level, creative hairstyling in Rochester. With the addition of Simon’s wife, Maggie, the Webb family continues to place a high value on training and striving to be the best hairstylists possible. They pass along three generations of passion and expertise to every guest that enters W Salon.

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