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Experience Beauty like never before with Amara

If you're looking for a high-quality hair salon experience, Amara is the place to be. Our stylists are passionate about hair and always stay up-to-date with current trends and techniques. We have a wide range of experience levels, from fresh out of beauty school to seasoned stylists. This means that we have someone to fit each client's needs. Our mission is to make each client feel heard and understood, and to provide them with a style that enhances their natural beauty. Book with us today to see what we can do for you!

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MICHELLE OKLAND

Owner 

My name is Michelle Okland. I started Amara in 2017 with a passion to create a welcoming salon with the best guest experience! I have done a little bit of everything in the industry. I worked as a commission based employee for five years, then a single suite owner for two years, after that, I started adding in employees in 2018. We now currently have 16 stylists at Amara. As an owner and boss I am passionate about raising up the next generation of hairstylists. I want my staff to be confident enough to stand on their own someday or fulfilled enough to be a part of a team! There are so many benefits to both! Business training is just as important for our staff as hair training. Teaching everyone how to build connections, and communicate a clients desires is at the top of our training list. Outside of the salon you can find me at home with my husband, Josh and our two kids, Kingsley and Elin. We call our kids the sour patch kids because one is always sweet and the other is always sour. We just never know who will pick which role everyday! My parents live in Ankeny and I love to spend time with my family as well. I’m obsessed with reading and trying new restaurants and I would love to hear your recommendations! Thank you for reading a little bit about me. I look forward to seeing you at the salon!

ig: @MICHOKLANDHAIRCOACH

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SHELBY PRITCHARD

Hairstylist/Mentor/Manager

Level 5

Hi! My name is Shelby Olson. My journey at Amara started when I was 13 years old sitting in Michelle's chair as a client in Huxley. When I was 18 and in nursing school Michelle convinced me to take a leap of faith and try beauty school instead with the promise to hire me if I liked it. Well, five years into working at Amara and I can honestly say I have loved every minute of being in this industry! My days are spent with the sweetest clients, stylists, and usually an assistant at my side. I love getting to work with clients and teaching at the same time!  You will rarely find me without a coffee in hand while at work! In my free time I enjoy spending time with my husband Cody and our two kids Stella and Roman! We are in the thick of it with our kids being just 14 months apart but we love every minute of it! I also enjoy listening to podcasts, more specifically anything true crime related! My absolute favorite places to shop are Abercrombie, Free People, and of course...Target! This year I would love to get my hands in more blonde hair! Thank you for taking the time to read and I hope to see you at Amara!

ig: @SHELBS.STYLES

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MIKAYLA WILSON

Hairstylist/Mentor

level 5

My name is Mikayla Wilson, and I've been a licensed cosmetologist since 2017. I've been at Amara since the fall of 2019 when it was just three of us in a tiny suite! I absolutely love my career, and I love coloring hair the most. Especially adding beautiful dimension with a balayage or highlight. Whether it's going lighter or darker, I'm your girl! If someone asked me to describe myself, I'd definitely say I'm passionate, a go-getter, and class clown. I like to make things fun for everyone! When I'm not working, I enjoy my time with my husband Vaughn, daughters, Logan and Lainey and our dogs Rylie and Veda. If I hear a catchy tune, you bet I'm shakin' my booty along to the beat!

"Mikayla is great at what she does. Truly and artist. It's wonderful to find someone you trust with your hair. Go see her! Let Mikayla be the person you trust with your hair." -Wynde P.

ig: @HAIRBY.MIKAYLAWILSON

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PIPER JOHNSON

Hairstylist

level 5

Hi! My name is Piper and I'm so excited to introduce myself and have the opportunity to get to know you as well! Growing up I was a tomboy so my choice of career may seem surprising to those who knew me when I was young! However, I can assure you, I love all things beauty, hair, and fashion. Behind the chair I stay busy doing rich beautiful brunettes, blonding, and gray coverage. I love to give a great blow out to really enhance your color appointments. I often search for new techniques for adding highlights and dimension into the hair. In my free time I like to go out with friends, shop, cook food, and hang out with my family. As one of six siblings there's always somewhere to be or something to do! I hope to see you in my chair soon! 

ig: @PIPERJOHNSONXHAIR

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ADDI MOORE

Hairstylist/Mentor

level 4

My name is Addi Moore. I was born and raised in State Center, IA where my parents, sister, and brother still live. I am the oldest child and with that comes my OCD and love for organization and all things beautiful. Behind the chair you can find me doing lived in luxury blonding, extensions, and keeping up with my amazing clients! I also have the opportunity to help teach by having my own assistant. I love working together to create amazing hair! When I'm not behind the chair you can catch me working out, or hanging out with friends, boyfriend, and family. I live in Ankeny and I love it! . I'm looking forward to continuing to build my clientele at Amara and meeting new people everyday! I look forward to learning more about YOU and creating the best color and style for you! 

ig: @HAIRBY.ADDISON

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Hope Girling

Hairstylist

level 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IG: @hopegxhair

Hi! My name is Hope Girling, and I have been at Amara since March of 2022. I grew up in Bondurant, Iowa, and currently live with my boyfriend Blake here in Ankeny. 

Behind the chair, you can find me doing lived-in and natural colors, but I also love me a good copper or platinum blonde! 

Outside of the salon, you can find me at my favorite Mexican restaurant, Hidalgo, shopping, or snuggled up on the couch watching any kind of thriller movie!

I truly can’t wait to have you in my chair and to chat about finding the perfect look for you. Helping you feel beautiful in every way is ALWAYS the goal!  

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GRACE MAZNIO

Hairstylist

level 2

 

IG: @_gracedoeshair_

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Amelia Sullivan

Hairstylist

level 3

Hey, my name is Amelia! I grew up in Knoxville, Iowa with my parents and two sisters! I currently live by myself in Ankeny, so I spend a lot of my weekends traveling to visit friends! Outside of the salon you will usually find me at the gym or making content for my social media! Behind the chair I love blonding and extensions! As a natural blonde I will always have a special place in my heart for my blondies!

 

IG: @ameliaxhair_

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Lauren Ellingboe

Hairstylist

level 3

Hello there! I'm Lauren Ellingboe, originally from Des Moines are and a graduate from Waukee High School. After high school, I pursued my passion for cosmetology at the Aveda Institute in West Des Moines, graduating in 2022. During my time at school, I had the pleasure of meeting Mrs. Michelle and discovered my love for Amara, where I've been working since October 2022!

Outside of the salon, you'll often find me at home doing house renovations, whipping up delicious meals with my boyfriend, spending quality time with my three adorable kitties, or tending to my garden during the summer months. And if you see me without a McDonalds Dr. Pepper in hand, well, that's just not possible- it's a staple! I love running errands, so that's how I typically spend my days off. 

When it comes to work, I'm deeply passionate about creating beautiful, natural-looking hair color that enhances your features. I'm also certified in Aqua extensions and offer hand-tied extensions for those looking to add something extra to their hair. It's incredibly fulfilling to be able to boost your confidence and bring out your natural beauty while you're in my chair. I can't wait to meet you! 

 

IG: @locksbylaurenashley

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Hailey Chernik

Hairstylist

level 4

Hey friend, I'm Hailey, a self-proclaimed nomad from Louisiana, California, and now rooted in Iowa. I have 13 years of experience as a hairstylist and I’m just as in love with the profession as I was in 2011! 

 

As a mom, I know the importance of self-care and offer my guests a space to relax. Whether you want to chat, listen to a podcast, or just unwind, it's your time. I specialize in seamless dimensional color, (such as balayage or lived-in inspired natural looks), grey coverage, and grey blending. 

 

Follow me on Instagram to learn more @hairstylisthailey 

 

I can’t wait to create magic together. 

 

IG: @hairstylisthailey

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Kenadi Songer

Hairstylist

level 2

Hi my name is Kenadi Songer. I am originally from small town southern Iowa, but graduated from Ankeny highschool. I have 2 older siblings and 2 beautiful nieces; Swayde and Saylor. I am the youngest child, which comes with being spoiled, you can always find me online shopping! Behind the chair I love reds, coppers, dimensional blondes and brunettes and all things extensions. When i’m not behind the chair you can always find me, shopping for baby clothes or hanging out with my friends. I am always looking for something new to try whether that be good food or something new with your hairstyle! I am looking forward to building my clientele at Amara and meeting new people! I look forward to meeting you to learn more about YOU, and creating a look that makes you feel most like yourself! 

 

IG: @kenadisongerr.hair

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Ellie Ferlitsch

Hairstylist

level 2

Hi!! My name is Ellie and I’m so happy to have you here! I am originally from Ankeny and graduated from the Aveda institute in January of 2023! I absolutely love ALL things color, blonding, dimensional brunettes, lived in blondes! I work Tuesday- Friday! On Saturdays, I do hair for weddings! I love creating hair that you have always dream of, whether that’s color or for your wedding! When I’m in the salon, you can find me hanging out with friends + family and doing anything outside! I hope to see you in my chair soon, so I can create the hair of your dreams <3

IG: @elliexhairr

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Bella Clos

Hairstylist

level 1

Hi I’m Bella!! I’m originally from Bondurant but, live in Nevada with my fiancé Christian, my cat Casey and dog Yadi. I started at Amara May 2023! I’ve found love in making people leave my chair feeling their absolute best and building relationships with clients! I love all things extensions, lived in, blondes, and brunettes! Outside of the salon you can find me hanging out with friends and family, playing with my dog, or finding new crime documentaries! I’m so excited to build my clientele at Amara and meet so many more amazing people!! Can’t wait to have you in my chair!

IG: @hairby.bellaclos

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Jade VanPolen

Hairstylist

level 3

 

IG: @jade.x.beauty

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Katelin Goetz

Hairstylist

level 1

 

IG: @katelinkolors

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Madelyn Jaeger

Hairstylist

level 1

Hi, my name is Madelyn Jaeger! I grew up in the country outside of Stuart, IA.  I have 1 older sister who was my best friend growing up. I graduated from the Aveda institute in 2023 and started at Amara soon after. I love blondes and lived in colors! I take clients Wednesday’s, Fridays and Saturdays. Outside of work I love to do anything outdoors. From taking walks to kayaking down the river, I love it all! I spend a lot of time with my boyfriend, friends, and family. I also love watching any reality tv shows, shopping, and recently I’ve taken up cooking! I hope to see you in my chair soon! 

IG: @hair.bymadelynj

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Lauren (Ren) Veit

Hairstylist

level 1

Hey there! My name is Lauren Veit, also known at Amara as Ren. I grew up in Chelsea, Ia with my my parents and two sisters VinLee and Vanessa. After high school I attended PCI Academy in Ames, Ia where I got to pursue my love for all things hair and beauty! During beauty school I quickly realized Amara was exactly where I wanted to be once I graduated. While in the salon you can find me assisting Addi a couple days a week. While taking my own clients Mondays and Saturdays! I love that I get to continue learning and further my education in this way. Behind the chair I’m very passionate about blonding, natural colors, and lived in looks. I am always watching tik toks to learn new tips and tricks! Outside of Amara you can find me at Starbucks as a barista, taking naps with my dog Berkley, or getting margaritas with my girlfriends. I’m obsessed with movie nights, target runs, and getting all dolled up! And as many would tell you, I always have a lipgloss close by! I look forward to chatting with you in my chair and making you feel as beautiful as ever!

 

IG: @by.laurennveit

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