TYPE : Abstract Noun

LANGUAGE: Japanese


ETYMOLOGY : a combination of yo (extra) and yuu (ample, abundance)

MEANING : Yoyuu is the presence of a momentary pause that allows us to recharge and prepare for life’s next event. It’s an imagined space you take for yourself to arrange mental (or physical) clutter — yoyuu conveys the accompanying feeling of calmness when you’re mentally prepared for challenge and change.

USE : In noun form, yoyuu represents a balancing act where external actions are guided by internal stability. As an adjective, yoyuu describes the clarity and confidence breathed into its subject’s foundation.


Just like the Japanese word yoyuu, YO:U carries many meanings —


YO is Yolanda’s nickname, the Spanish word for “I.”

The U being a modern, abbreviated spelling of “you.”

The : signifies a ratio; sitting between YO (I) and U (you).

When combined, these three different identities represent the shop. YO:U is a lifestyle, an experience, a culture — it is more than a salon. The vision of YO:U is one in which we are growing together and changing every day.


The story of yo:u

“I started the vision of YO:U when I came out of my mother’s womb.”

Raised in Hastings, Minnesota, with 3 amazing sisters and a large extended family, Yolanda Trejo’s love for community and beauty was something she had in her blood. She can’t remember a time that she didn’t enjoy playing with hair; her first client was either her sister, a Barbie, or a Cabbage Patch Kid.

After high school, she attended Louisiana State University for one year before she decided to move back to Minnesota to attend the Aveda Institute in Minneapolis.

A year later, Yolanda settled into the hustle and bustle of Chicago in 2006.

After moving, Yolanda made Salon Blue her first “hair home.” She then spent the next 9 years honing her craft and experiencing the magic of Chicago. In 2013, Yolanda decided to go back to school for her barber’s license. During this time, New York City had started to occupy a big spot in her heart. Visiting NYC often for Bumble & Bumble education as well as doing hair for New York Fashion Week, this had her contemplating her next move. Yolanda wanted more — should she move to New York or open her own shop in Chicago?

YO:U opened on October 31st, 2015, setting out to cultivate a lifestyle of beauty and balance through the artistry of hair.

Opening on October 31, 2015, YO:U has been a home for hair, community, art shows, photoshoots, yoga, how-to classes, dance parties, and meetups, networking, and so much more. Yolanda discovered the word yoyuu in the entrepreneur issue of Kinfolk magazine, lent to her by a client. She knew that this was it — twisting yoyuu into YO:U so there was no association to gender, race or ethnicity.

During YO:U’s first three years, over 40 events have been hosted, over 100 artists have showcased their work during YO:U’s monthly art receptions, and a lot of hair has been done.

As of October of 2018, YO:U has taken a break from hosting art shows, focusing on growing their team and refining the shop.



“I can’t remember a time in life that I wasn’t fascinated with hair and human beings. Turning a career into a lifestyle and an art is such a blessing. La Jefa LLC — which is what YO:U runs under — means female boss in Spanish. This journey began 33 years ago, the shop only opening just 3 years ago. But here I am today; grateful for the journey and the support from all of you.”

- Yolanda Trejo