Maryland

Long-time downtown Hagerstown hair salon closes at end of year

Owner and clients reflect on the good times

HAGERSTOWN, Md. - A long-time hair salon in downtown Hagerstown will be closing their doors after decades of pampering their clients.

At just 22-years old, Charlene Gearhart bought Charlene’s Hair Gallery, and now over 40 years later, she is preparing to close it down.

“I’ve just loved everything over the years, but it’s just been in the past several years that I’ve gotten this neuropathy that's been terrible for my legs and feet,” said Gearhart.

She said most of her employees worked for decades, and some clients have been seeing her since she was in beauty school.

“Oh my goodness. I was one of them that got the perms and had it longer. I went through the 80s with the perms and everything, but I’ve been short for a long time,” Debbie Everhart, a Charlene’s Hair Gallery client, said.

When Charlene first started out, she said most people got perms, but now, she said people go for more natural treatments and looks.

“People were getting their hair set in rollers and teased, but now, we have no roller sets anymore. That has been a big change. It's blow drying or flat ironing,” Gearhart said.

But no matter what era, hair style or color, Charlene's customers said she and her team knew how to make them feel better than when they first walked in.

“People want what they want, or they are not coming back. That is the bottom line,” Gearhart said.

For the past 40 years, customers have been constantly coming back to Charlene because of the welcoming environment, and they leave feeling and looking like a whole new person.

“It’s like coming out of the spa. It’s definitely something we do to pamper ourselves,” Everhart said.

Customers are sad to see the business closing.

“It’s like a landmark disappearing from downtown,” Everhart said.

Charlene sold the property last year but is hoping another hair stylist will take it on.

Dec. 22 will be the last day Charlene's Hair Gallery is open for business.


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