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Life and Work with Mirella Manelli

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mirella Manelli.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Mirella. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I started in this industry about 20 years ago when I learned I had a passion for hair. After years of working behind the chair, working as a salon manager, then a traveling educator for a large hair brand, and building an online influence with digital hair education, I knew it was time to make my dreams of opening a salon a reality.

My journey of entrepreneurship started in 2016. When my passion for digital education was at it’s peak and the idea of a salon was still in it’s infancy phase. I had thought about a salon before many years back (the plans failed a few times) but the feeling had resurfaced into a completely new concept. It needed to be different, completely different. Not “just a salon”. There are plenty of those. We needed a media room, education space, and of course the salon itself.

So, in January 2018, we opened our doors as a full service salon. My team of hairstylists not only offer amazing hair services but the salon itself is a hub in South Orange County for monthly professional education. This keeps us and stylists in neighboring salons inspired; promoting community over competition.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It took us nearly a year and half to open our salon and nearly a year of construction. Dealing with the city and city plans was the most stressful part. If I could do it all over again, I would have researched the city and interviewed local business owners to learn any tips of overcoming city hurdles. I have learned that each city is different and having a good contractor that knows the local city building department will help tremendously.

Please tell us about Rebel Femme Salon.
I am a stylist, educator, hair blogger, and salon owner based out of Orange County, CA. I have worked on various projects for ad campaigns, artistic collections, photoshoots, and hair shows. One of my top highlights in my career has been working as lead stylist in Bravo TV’s Vanderpump Rules for Katie Maloney’s wedding. I specialize in haircolor with a love for pink and whimsical upstyling; creating and bringing the first ever upstyling education to Kenra Professional’s educational platform. Most recently I opened Rebel Femme Salon in Mission Viejo, CA as a way to make space for my love of creating digital content and online education. I am also a notably recognized stylist in top industry magazines, online, and have been awarded the 2017 Behind the Chair upstyle award.

Being that I have a strong passion for education, I love my team that I have built at Rebel Femme. They are an extension of me; hungry to learn and have a passion for making people feel beautiful. Whether you are a salon professional seeking education or a client looking for a new look, we welcome you to our tribe.

At Rebel Femme Salon, we pride ourselves on being more than a salon. It’s a place where individuality is celebrated and encouraged, starting with us. Each of our stylists brings their own unique strengths to the business and to the client.

Because we heart our community, we heart education. It’s not only important that we stay up to date on the latest trends but it’s also important for us to stay inspired. That’s why at Rebel Femme we’ve become a hub for beauty professionals in South Orange County bringing monthly education in a fun and innovative environment.


Often it feels as if the media, by and large, is only focused on the obstacles faced by women, but we feel it’s important to also look for the opportunities. In your view, are there opportunities that you see that women are particularly well positioned for?
People often times think our name “Rebel Femme” stands for extreme feminism but on the contrast, we celebrate our design. Women come in different shapes, sizes, emotions, but that’s what makes us women! We believe women can truly do anything they set their hearts to. The reality is that there are always going to be hurdles regardless of gender. This is not to say that some hurdles may be larger than others but if you want it bad enough you make and demand your own path.


  • Haircuts $65+
  • Color $110+
  • Blowdry and Style $45
  • Updo’s, Braids, and Special Occasion $75+

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

Hair by Mirella Manelli, Ashley Wyrick, Yadira Munoz, Caitlyn Long

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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