esthibar PENCIL ME IN



(Esthibar, est. 2018 - "winging it" beginnings)

The time has finally arrived. I have succumbed to the call of the “blog”, where thoughts are shared and are desired to be read. (Why the obsession to watch and learn all about another individual’s life/thoughts beats me). As an old soul gal who dislikes social media, it was puzzling when blogs were “in”.
I am doing this now, for the sake of my baby biz, because it supposedly helps gain exposure and traffic. SEO crap. Hopefully it does because I’m an outcast of sorts and I doubt the internet “likes” my content. I’m told clients, customers want to know the person behind it all. Thus, I present to you, the background.
To begin, I’m somewhat of a private person, so writing this blog puts me in a bizarre state. Here it goes.
Let’s travel back to high school years. I knew I wanted a career where I could help people. Medical is usually the first route. I was considering nursing at the time but then I realized it takes a special person, and I’m not that kind of special person. I did still want to stick to medicine so I thought, maybe dental hygienist. (My sister was a dental assistant). Less messy and good pay.
Spent some time in that area to learn how competitive it was. As I was attending college (thinking I had this grand plan laid out), I realized I needed a backup plan, in case college wasn’t going to turn out. I knew I wanted to hit the ground running with a skillset and not be millions in debt. This meant I had to go learn a trade.
My interest in aesthetics was piqued when I got my first wax. There it was. Esthetics school was going to be my backup plan. I enrolled while I was also going to college, testing out different majors, trying to find my calling and ended up switching from dental to pharmacy. Dropped out of college after I graduated from esthetics school, got a job at a wax salon. Worked there for a year and then got cold feet...
I was also a young'un. An insecure, diffident 21 year old with my first real job, wondering what I am doing with my life. Pre-life crisis moment led me to go back to college to finish what I started. Didn't want to quit halfway. Landed my degree in pharmacy tech and worked for a year in a hospital before I discovered my calling was actually ripping hair off private areas. The instant gratification and clear canvas was my jam. Thus, esthibar was born. 
When I was brewing this baby, I wanted to be different because honestly, I'm different as heck. I just never seemed to fit in with any crowd, young or old. I’ve always felt like the odd duck. Typical Asian family dynamics, plus cultural clash when moving to the states will do that to ya. Furthermore, I was a shy, timid push over, non-confrontational kid. Confidence, why didn't you hang with me? So I NEVER imagined being a business owner. Just thought I would take the conventional "get a degree and get a paycheck" route.
There were also a saturation of skincare/hair removal spas that operated the same way. I was tired of that. My long term dream goal is to open up a salon that incorporates food (my first passion) and skin, creating a "bar" environment. A place where people can just start talking to other human beings. Maybe even score a date? Esthibar is a full-service salon bar where you enjoy skin loving snacks, sip on a healthy, non-alcoholic beverage while you chit chat away with a fellow sugaree, right before you get your hairs yanked out of you, or before your relaxing massage. No fuss, no muss. Smooth skin, belly satisfaction, make friends. Great hangout! What's more to love?
My desire to open a studio, where you come in for a service like you’re on a date with your best friend originated from life itself. Life has evolved to this go, go, go and work, work, work monster. It used to be simpler. Yeah, people were poor, but people are poorer these days (in terms of debt, quality of life and enslavement to the grind, etc, etc.) At least people were happier, if not slightly? I think about how women would frequent the salons, get their perm on, sit under the dryer and chit chat. Men had their barbers. You go in, get what you wanted, then leave happy.
None of this selfie, posting crap. None of this sell, sell, sell, buy, buy, buy. (Advertisement overload). I wanted a space to offer a service that you NEED or WANT, not because I’m “selling” it to you. (I'm also a terrible salesperson...) You don’t like your leg hair? I’ll take care of that. Want some of your wrinkles ironed out? Come on in. Love being a hairy dried up raisin? (nothing wrong with that if it floats your boat.) Sure! There’s no pressure, no trend, no fancy bells and whistles. Life is already complicated enough, plus the way society has been evolving and pfftt, technology? I want the opposite. I was sick of human disconnect. I'm old school.
Because of that, and my old school values, this baby wasn’t doing so hot the first 6 months. I refused to participate in social media. Didn’t hop on to IG til 6 months after opening. I still hate SM and only really use IG. I have no clue or intention of using other platforms. Word of mouth y'all is the way to go. Help a sistah out and spread them words, birds!  (Also, I have no business background, no family business experience, no connections like some of y’all lucky bastards. Yes, this is directed at you know who.) I was on my own. Literally.  Did I also mention pre-life crisis? Yeah, my head was TOTALLY in the game.
Everything I completed myself. From licensing, finding a space, signing a lease, painting the room, coming up with the money, ordering, you name it. It was a long trial and error on the first anniversary. Made mistakes, not learned from them, made them again, and learned. Went about it initially TOO different of a way, More trial and error, more mistakes, until now (where I face COVID and all. Life of a business owner. I do miss that 8hr employee life). So, that was the birth of my baby. 
To keep it simple (ha!), this first blog post will end here. Maybe I'll write some more when I feel “inspired” to, or I begin to see the marketing results of this blog. Book your appointments!