Danita Reed-Stylist at Generations Salon


Danita Reed-Stylist at Generations Salon

From school bus driver, landscaper, and cake decorator to highly sought-after beautician, Danita Reed of Madisonville has used her artistic and creative abilities to create a career which she loves.

“My grandfather always told my mother I would end up in a profession that involved using my hands,” said Danita. “I love the artistic part of it and going the extra mile for my clients. God gave me the hands to do it, so he gets all the glory.”

Danita can be found at Generations Salon, 2804 Lake Road in Huntsville. Generations Salon was opened in April 2015 by Lisa Shaw, Danita’s former coworker and friend. Danita joined the salon in September 2020 (shortly after the COVID pandemic started), where her friend and former coworker Bertha Taylor had been working since 2016. While she did not work at the JCPenney Salon with Danita and her friends, beautician Donna Rogers has also set up shop at Generations Salon.

 Danita offers a wide range of services and specializes in perms.

“I love working with curly hair, keratin treatments, and perms,” said Danita. “Curly hair is my favorite, but I also enjoy working with all types of hair, from extra short to long, and I also like doing men’s cuts.”

She also offers cap and foil highlights, shampoo sets and deep condition, balayage, updos, razor cuts, kids cuts, clipper cuts, color panels, bang trims, keratin treatments, and is also certified in Olaplex. Danita will also do facial waxing for her clients. Salon products such as Kenra, Olaplex and Matrix Biolage brand are also available for purchase.

She serves clients of all ages, ranging from as young as 2 years old to 95 years old.

“I have a 94-year-old customer who is just a pleasure,” recalled Danita.  “At JCPenney, we had a customer who lived to be 106 and was still driving at 99 years old. She would tell stories about when people used horse and carriages to get around in Huntsville.”

Originally from the Houston area, Danita moved to the Centerville area in the late 80s. She later made her way to Madisonville. She drove a school bus for a while, along with making and decorating cakes. One day her best friend suggested they attend beauty school together. So, the two enrolled in Sebring Career Schools, LLC in Huntsville, and as they say – the rest is history.

After working at some smaller salons, she got hired by the former JCPenney Salon in Huntsville and stayed there for 23 years, where she earned Master Designer status. 

“I watched every stylist there, asked questions, and learned how to develop my own style,” explained Danita. “I can pretty much follow any picture and add my special touch.”

Over the years, Reed acquired a client base that has followed her to Generations Salon and has remained loyal through the years.

“For instance, I still have my very first client, Robbie Smith, from when I worked at JCPenney,” recalls Danita. “She was six years old, and now I still do her hair, as well as her kids’ hair. I have customers who have been with me for 25 years.”

According to Danita, her clients come from as far away as New York, the Houston area, Wells, Midway, Bryan, Iola, and more.

When asked why clients stay with her for long periods and even generations, regardless of their geographical location, Danita humbly says she is a down-to-earth person, and she is honest with her clients.

“I’m not going to lie to my clients. If I can’t do the job or know someone more suitable, I’ll tell them. I’m not going to destroy someone’s hair. Integrity is important to me,” explained Danita.

Through the years, Danita says she has enjoyed doing color treatments, and her daughter has given her opportunities to practice her artistic style. From dying it canary yellow to multi-layered colors like crayon red and black, Reed says she has done about every color possible.

“My daughter, Brandi Miller, challenged me over the years,” recalls Danita. “She kept me on my toes for color treatments and different styles. She even had me shave her hair from the temple down one time.”

Danita says she enjoys educating clients and showing them how to take care of their hair.

“The most important thing to me is making my clients happy. They have to look in the mirror every day. I want to show them how to take care of their hair and give them the knowledge to style it at home.”

Typically, Danita’s hours are Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., but she will work around her clients’ schedules, which sometimes includes weekends. Being her own boss, Danita says she enjoys the flexibility of being able to make her own schedule and helping to accommodate her clients.

Danita not only made lifelong clients and friends while working at the JCPenney salon, she also found her beautician work can allow her to be a witness for her strong Christian faith.

“Once they are in the chair, I have a captive audience…and if we want to talk about God, scripture, or just pray together, we can,” said Danita. “I have certain clients who know they can come to me when they have trouble. Everyone at Generations Salon is a Christian.”

Danita has had her fair share of challenges in life, from surviving a house fire in which she and her family lost everything (including their vehicles), to a major car accident that totaled her truck.

“There is no way I could have survived these obstacles without God and the people he put in my life to help me through these times,” said Danita. “It is amazing to see him work, and I am able to share that testimony and stories with my clients.”

She even has a copy of the movie War Room, which she is willing to share as another one of her witnessing tools at work.

When asked about how much longer she will stay in the business, Danita says, “My husband asked me when I think I will retire. I just laugh. Besides, my clients would hunt me down.”

Danita is married to John Reed III, who is a deacon at Madisonville Christian Fellowship Church. Together they have five grown children, 13 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren.

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