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Two decades of Shine on Church St

Shine Holistic recently celebrated 20 years on Church Street.

As founder Carla Octigan reflects on this milestone moment, it was Brexit and the Covid pandemic that altered things the most.

She said: “Each week we cut someone’s hair who hasn’t been to a salon for three years. People’s habits changed – not only did the pandemic make some anxious about coming to the salon, but people got used to simply tying their hair up, last week I cut 15 inches off for one lady.”

“Over the 20 years, we’ve grown up with our clients – I’m one of those stylists who shares what’s going on with my clients; I’m very open. Some clients tell us things they don’t even share with their friends. Hairdressers can have a very special relationship with clients so it’s lovely to see people returning to salon life finally”

Shine has become so much more than just a salon. The beauty and health rooms upstairs cater for a multitude of health and wellness concerns.

Carla trained as a shiatsu practitioner and was about to return to Melbourne, when she spotted a complementary health centre for sale on Stoke Newington Church Street in 2002 - Shine Holistic was born.

She said: "Throughout my hairdressing career and Shiatsu training, my clients were interested in complementary health, but didn’t know where to go or how to know if someone was good. I wanted to put holistic healthcare into an environment everyone was already familiar with, the Salon. Bringing what some people saw as alternative into a more modern, contemporary space.“

Today Shine has more than 40 practitioners working across a range of fields; including physiotherapy, nutrition, reflexology, massage and beauty therapy.

The first 5 years saw amazing growth and Shine on the Green, in Newington Green was opened in 2009, with the addition of Alessandro Conforti, Shine began to offer training.

Carla added: “We have team members who have been with us since 2003, quite an achievement in this now transient world”

Seeing the impact of long-covid on her team and clients and having used many complementary disciplines within her own cancer treatment, Carla and her Shine team are now offering multi-disciplinary residential retreats in the Umbrian countryside. She added: “After 20 years, it is time to explore the next path for Shine.”


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