First of all, I just wanted to personally welcome you to our blog - something that’s been a LONG time in the making. I’m excited to share with you all that happens around this little shop of ours, introduce you to new brands, give you tips on how to treat your skin at home, and introduce you to each artist on our team. If you’re new to the Pop squad, here’s a little bit of our backstory.
Growing up and graduating from Huntington Beach H.S, every time I drove into Costa Mesa and saw the Paul Mitchell school, I always knew I belonged there. So in 2006, with hopes of becoming a makeup artist in LA, I worked by day and attended school by night and immediately became a lead esthetician after graduation. But owning something of my own, where I could showcase my own specialties, style, and passion for skincare, was always in the back of my mind. Fast forward to 2011, I was done working for other people and ready to step out on my own.
I opened our first shop in 2012 as just a salon with me as the only esthetician on staff. I was booked back-to-back, six days a week, after just having a baby. Because that’s what logical people do, right? Open a brand new business after they find out they’re pregnant? No? Just me? Yes, I must have been crazy but I’m so happy I took the leap when I did - it’s turned out to be a dream come true.
Within two years, I had a team of girls working alongside me. It was around that time I started to get really into sustainability and became more conscious about the types of products my family consumed, which eventually bled over into the shop and I changed how I approached everything at Pop. In a way, I think it really prepared my little family for the scare we were about to encounter. In late 2015, my husband was diagnosed with cancer. Owning my own salon meant I couldn’t stop working, I had to be strong for my husband and then four year old son. Thankfully, we had him in remission within 103 days and he’s been cancer free ever since.
A month after my husband was diagnosed, I had an opportunity to expand my business to a space in Long Beach. It was the scariest decision of my career - to invest in my business while my husband was battling cancer. I chose to move forward and it was the best decision I’ve made to date. It allowed me to grow my team of girls, gain a classroom to start teaching, and dive deeper into independent, small-batch products. Even though we had to close our second location (thanks 2020!), I learned so much about my business, myself, and the direction I want to see Pop moving in.
In 2019, we were forced to move our Costa Mesa location and, while I was sad to say goodbye to the salon I had been in for seven years, this move offered new opportunities for us. We gained more boutique space, more room to teach, and a way for me to keep growing our team of artists. As the Head Master Trainer for Elleebana USA, I offer classes and workshops to licensed professionals through Pop Lash Academy - fulfilling a big dream of teaching the craft I’m so passionate about.
It’s been a wild ride (to say the least) and I couldn’t have done it without the support of my team and our community. I’m so thankful to be here, to keep getting to do the things I love, to support other small businesses, and to help our clients feel their best with products I truly believe in. I’m so proud of this little business and can’t wait to see what the future holds for us.
With love and gratitude