I set forth in my career after my son was born, I had finally graduated High School attending the night adult classes. I was a loser in my family’s eyes. Pregnant teenager running off to get married and moving to New Hampshire at 17 was not cool. But it was what I did.
I had decided that I wanted to be a Hair Stylist when I was at home watching my baby and TV simultaneously, I had seen the commercials about Beauty school and it looked amazing, and something I knew I could possibly have fun with, I finally signed up in September of 1999, my son was 6 months and I was finally 18, my whole life changed for the better.
I was alive, I was making people happy, I was getting hugs, praise and awards, my whole inner light was ignited, I was on fire. I had found what made me feel like a good person, finally.
How I Became the Biggest Cheerleader at Hair Excitement
I went to work at a salon hair chain, it was called Hair Excitement, it was great! It was a really big company, I loved being part of it! I was their biggest cheerleader! I attended every team meeting, I went to every company event, I was memorized by the industry.
Everyone was like me in a way.. a bit different… creative, kind, imaginative, colorful, energetic, I was a goner to the industry, they had me by the ponytail… haha. I was a top retailer in my salon, a staff of 28 stylists, I was in the top 10 for my salon weekly! I was climbing the ladder, I was gaining experience and respect from fellow coworkers, I loved every day working as a stylist. Being a stylist fed my hungry heart to be part of something and making people happy. I was hooked.
I was fired from Hair Excitement...I deserved it.
After I earned my associates degree I was fired from Hair Excitement for gathering client’s addresses and phone numbers, let’s be honest, I deserved it.. My plan for this departure however wasn’t going to be for a few more months and I still hadn’t known where to go, I contacted an older coworker who had opened up a salon in Portsmouth and she said Come! Booth rent! So I did it! It was a whole new chapter in my young life/career.
I was 23, renting a chair and learning and living the dream, I was building and growing so much, I had been so nervous, so scared to fail that I lived and breathed my career and my raising my two boys.
How I Went From Losing My Job In A Salon To Building A Salon Of My Own
Finally, I was 26 years old when I decided I wanted my own salon. I finally decided I was going to do it! Life is short, I needed to do it, I wanted more, I had so many ideas, I would do it different and better! I started a plan, searched and dreamed of how it would be, what I would name it, keeping my journal filled with the all the idea and plans, I started working on my credit, opened up three credit cards for all my soon to be needed expenses!
I tried booth rental from 2008-2012, that was a journey on its own. I learned a lot about managing people, business management, customer service management, marketing, promoting, retail, inventory, and I realized it was a lot of work for little in return, I contemplated what it was I was missing, It dawned on me that I needed to have more like minded people around me. I needed to be an employer, I must create the positive, family-oriented atmosphere that I needed to be surrounded by. And that was the turning point to when the success of Vanity truly happened.
The route that I took was hard, but it allowed me to be able to make steps to gain the momentum to build my salon to the capacity it is Today! I was so afraid to be an employer, the rules, laws and the level of responsibility for another’s paycheck, I was jumping into something that I was so nervous to mess up,
Five years we have won awards, our work has been displayed by many photographers, we have been in many magazines for our work, and are in many professionals portfolios.
One of our biggest accomplishment was earning recognition by a very well-known Magazine, two years in a row we were chosen as top 100 salons in America by Elle Magazine! I am so proud of my team, I am so proud of the atmosphere, the true team focused and friendly helpful environment that is Vanity, we are a really talented team, we all share common things, we love education, we all have genuine love for our craft, and everyone here is truly kindhearted, open, sweet person, we are always learning and striving to be a better human beings. I am sincerely so proud of my team.
It will be our 10 Year anniversary on Feb 6th 2018 and it has been a hard 10 years, but the past 4 years has truly made it worth it, the atmosphere, the talent of my team, everything, Vanity, has given back to me for all my efforts as well, I have been on several vacations with my boys, I have recently bought my first home with a huge yard! I am so happy that I made the leap I did at 26 years of age, Boy was I nuts, and some would say I still am….because I am considering expanding again…shhh… it’s top secret.
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?