Eyelash extensions are the latest fashion trend to hit the beauty industry. Jeannie Owens, founder and owner of Lash Out!, is an innovator in this growing field, and is not only a skilled eyelash extension professional, but also creates and distributes her own line of eyelash products and runs a training school. Her boutique is booming in fashionable La Jolla where she has served such celebrities as Lisa Marie Presley.
Jeannie was already in the salon business, when a friend of hers got eyelash extensions right as they were breaking into the market six years ago. She saw the growth potential in this product and decided to specialize. Jeannie took out an ACCION SD loan in July 2008 to develop and distribute her own product line and begin her training school. Business grew to a point where she needed a larger space, and in July 2011, she took out another ACCION SD loan to more than double her retail space.
Being a single mom, Jeannie works hard at growing her business to provide for her son. She often wakes up at 5 a.m. and goes to bed at midnight running all the various aspects of her business, such as answering phones, doing finances, and seeing clients. Receiving an ACCION SD loan has allowed her to grow business to the point where she has hired an employee to assist her with running her boutique. Because Jeannie has maxed out her client capacity, seeing over 30 to 40 clients a week, Jeannie has also hired two contractors, both trained and licensed by her. She does this to not only grow her business, but extend business and economic opportunity to others.
In the future, Jeannie hopes to begin licensing her Lash Out! store name and to continue expanding the reach of her unique Lash Fresh product line. Because this industry is only about six years old, there are not many products in the market specifically designed to care for eyelash extensions. Collaborating with an organic chemist, Jeannie designed specialized products to keep lashes looking fresh and beautiful for as long as possible. This line has been extremely popular and is already on its second production run.
Jeannie is extremely passionate about what she does and is committed to expanding the reach of this industry to help women feel beautiful. What makes Jeannie stand out from her competitors is both her efficiency- what can take others 3 hours, she can do in 1.5- and her creative approach. For Jeannie, eyelash extensions are not only a service, but an expression of art. Her work is unique and tailored to the creative desires of her clients.
The Lash Out! story is a great example of how financing, along with hard work and a little risk taking, can be used to grow a business and expand economic opportunity. What is great about Jeannie is her strong desire to help other aspiring lash extension professionals get their start. She is not only committed to the success of her business, but hopes to extend to others the same opportunities that have been given to her.
When asked if she had any advice for aspiring business owners, she answered, “Just do it. Don’t put so much thought into starting something because if you wait till all the conditions are perfect you will never do it... if you start breaking down everything that goes into starting a business you will never do it… You just need to go for it and take risks. If you don’t take risks you’re never going to get anywhere.”
For more information on Lash Out!, call (858) 456-1100 or visit www.lashoutpro.com.