Meet the team

Who make it all possible

Gwen Aguilar @gwaggs_cuts
Senior Stylist

Working at Alchemy since its inception, Gwen is one of the original four who were present on the morning our doors opened. Gwen specializes in constructing a style uniquely individualized for each consult. Although she is known for above the shoulder-length styles, she is certified in Japanese straightening, Wella color, Vidal Sassoon creative cut & color and more. With more than two decades of experience, she keeps things simple. In hair, Gwen is an advocate for classic styles with an updated urban flavor to keep things fresh. An affinity for all things art, she spends time outside of Alchemy seeking inspiration in places like nature, live performance art, galleries, and at her own desk working art of her own. She maintains balance in life through a daily mindfulness practice and volunteer work. As one of the few senior cosmetologists at Alchemy, Gwen makes it her mission to lead by example in and outside of the salon.

Jeremiah Jackson @jayjstyling
Senior Stylist

Jeremiah joined our team in 2011. His grandmother was a hairdresser so he grew up surrounded by hair and was greatly influenced by her. After attending college for a little while, Jeremiah decided he wanted to pursue something that would allow him to express himself creatively.

He went to beauty school for a year and then apprenticed for a year. He worked in Georgetown for several years, where he got the opportunity to work for Wella. He is now a part of Wella's Design and education team and gets to travel to salons all over the world to teach and attend classes. His favorite projects are makeovers and he loves the instant gratification he experiences when his clients love their hair. Outside of the salon, Jeremiah enjoys art in all forms, including music, fashion, museums, and architecture. He believes in enjoying life and looking good doing it!

Shereen Said
Senior Stylist

Shereen has been with Alchemy since 2011. She started her career in hair in 2001 when she attended Graham Webb Academy. Extensions, highlights, and special event hair are her specialties. Her favorite part of doing hair is that she gets to come to work everyday and be creative and express herself while

making people happy. When she isn't in the salon, she loves to travel and explore new places. One of her favorite charities is helping underprivileged kids by donating back-to-school supplies and Christmas presents. Shereen's positive, caring, and outgoing personality are a great contribution to the energy of the salon.

Madinah Ali @hairbymadinz
Lead Stylist

Madinah joined our team in 2014. She originally wanted to do makeup for movies, but after attending the Paul Mitchell School in Rockville, she decided to switch to hair. She has always had a passion for making people feel beautiful, and loves that she can help change the way that people view themselves in a positive way.

She loves makeovers, and has a knack for knowing what changes, even if they are simple, will make her client feel like the best version of themself. When shes not at the salon, Madinah spends a lot of time in her basement art studio, working with acrylic paints on a canvas. She also loves trips to the beach and hiking. She believes that "The best revenge is good hair....and good eyebrows!"

Nikki Perez @paintedbynikki
Lead Stylist

Nikki has been at Alchemy since 2007 when she started at the front desk. She was inspired by the creative energy of the salon and decided to start her apprenticeship. She apprenticed for four years before becoming a stylist. She has a knack for styling and finishing, as well as catering to curly textured hair.

Her problem solving skills give her the unique ability to figure out exactly what issues clients are experiencing with their hair so that they can come up with a solution. She pulls a lot of inspiration from the drive and energy of coworkers and other hairdressers. Her free time is spent with her 4 year old son, Niko having outdoor adventures together. Nikki was born and raised in Silver Spring, MD. She also loves to help people in her spare time, dedicating a lot of down time to teaching or helping the apprentices and junior stylists with any questions or projects.

Leah Pinnock @hairto.dyefor
Lead Stylist

Leah’s passion for the arts has allowed her to pursue creativity in hair. From drawing, painting, and sculpting, to balayage, highlights, and precision haircuts. Leah has found true expression through creativity. She takes her time with clients to give them exactly what they ask for and what she professionally recommends.

Leah loves to cut hair, particularly bobs and very long layered hair and finds that she excels in balayage and highlights. Her passions are spirituality, self love, and growth. She is thrilled to make people feel beautiful and good about themselves. Outside of Alchemy, Leah spends time with her closest friends, her beloved dog, and can usually be found at home painting. She genuinely cares for people and it is translated in how good they look and feel.

Desirea Sprouse @dezinhairland
Lead Stylist

Desirea has been playing with hair since her teens. Finally following her heart, she loves her career behind the chair; there is nowhere else she would rather be. Staying inspired and informed, she loves taking classes. Color excites her from naturals to unique fashion colors.

She loves anything artsy, weird, and eccentric. Both of her grandfathers were barbers, so it is in her blood.

Alvina Sutherland @hair_by_vina
Lead Stylist

Alvina is a color specialist who enjoys making people feel good. Her favorite part of each interaction is making an impact and witnessing a transformation. Not just with looks but helping to boost self confidence and self esteem. She trained at Bennett beauty and barber in DC & Graham Webb.

She then pursued advanced training at Vidal Sassoon Academy and remained there for 11 years as a stylist and educator. When she's not having fun coloring Blondes and Reds, she's doing yoga, hanging with her kids and enjoying nature outdoors. Her ultimate goal is to move to South Africa and open a salon and wellness center for women.

Brittney Anderson @brittpaintss
Junior Stylist

Brittney loves building relationships with each client to uncover their most beautiful self. Her journey started with the Alchemy Guest Services team in 2013 and it was then she realized her passion for styling hair! After training at Graham Webb Academy,

she continued building her foundation and technique through the Apprentice Bridging program here at Alchemy Salon. Now, she is a cutting edge Junior Stylist who loves creative projects including creative color, balayage, and fun blonde hair! When she's not at the salon, she is outdoors enjoying hiking and reading.

Alyssa Lawson @hairbyalyssakay
Junior Stylist

Alyssa takes a hands on approach to making each guest happy. She is fulfilled when she can make someone feel good about themselves. Alyssa loves being creative and knows that not all employers give room for creative freedom and self expression.

That is one reason she loves being a member of the Alchemy family and a part of a learning salon. The salon encompasses diverse ages, peoples and cultures who continually lift each other to higher heights. Alyssa started getting into hair and makeup because it made her feel good. Her dad encouraged her to go to beauty school and she fell in love! She really enjoys creating bright and crazy fashion colors as well as blow-dry and styling. She loves anything from beach waves to loose curls on long and medium hair lengths. She likes using the razor for edgy cuts as well. When she's not behind the chair, she loves volunteering at animal shelters & spending time with family.