Things were going great right up until around 2008 when the GFC (global financial crisis) hit and then business got really slow so I decided to take a holiday to visit my family in Thailand and at the same time thought I'd do an Eyelash Extension course while I was there just for fun.
I had always enjoyed making jewellery and other intricate things, so I thought I could take this course and at the very least do my mum's lashes for her (she'd been getting hers done at a local Korean hair salon and they were never that great) and business at my clothing store would bounce back and everything would be okay.
But... as you can guess, it was not okay.
Business at the store continued to decline and in 2009, I had to shut it down. This was a scary but exciting turning point as I decided to focus full time on my Eyelash Extension hobby-turned-business.
And so, "Brisbane Lashes" was born.I set up a very basic website on Vistaprint and a Facebook page (Instagram didn't launch until 2010. That's how long I've been in the industry!), and I was off and lashing!
In the beginning, my business operated the same way many new Lash Stylists still start out today, with a home-based salon as well as a mobile service where I would drive all over Brisbane (and sometimes further) to see clients.
I would literally do my client's lashes whilst they were lying on their couch or bed and because there was no proper lighting or seating, it meant if I wasn't lashing, I was getting massages to fix my neck and back!
First, I shared the space with three other beauty-related businesses. As time passed and they moved out, I had to decide whether to take over the full lease and quadruple my rent overnight or find another space. This decision was sprung on me during a holiday in Europe!
After a few sleepless nights and careful consideration, I took the plunge. I signed the new 5-year lease and spent the rest of the holiday brainstorming how I would expand without going bankrupt in the process!
This highlighted a huge gap in the market that I felt I was more than qualified to fill.
- I now have a team of 15+ and growing helping me to change the lash world!
- Featured on A Current Affair as an Industry Authority to speak about the Lash Industry
- Won numerous local and international awards for my Lash work
- Facilitated 300+ Lash Mastery events across Australia & Asia
- Taught well over 2,500 students and helped create countless award-winning and successful Lash Artists
- I've been a keynote speaker and competition judge at lash conferences all over the world
- I launched my own eyelash extension supplies company known as "LashJoy" which is now trusted by 25,000+ Lash Stylists worldwide
- I created the most comprehensive online beginner's lash course known as "Classic Lash Mastery Online" with 35+ hours of expert tutorials
- In 2017 I launched Australia's first LIVE Lash Competition, known as the Pro Series Lash Competition
- My business was officially recognised by the Australian Financial Review as one of the Top 100 Fastest Growing Companies in Australia
- LashJoy was crowned the winner of the 2019 ABIA "Best Business Performance of the Year" award
- LashJoy Academy was crowned the winner of the 2019 ABIA "Educator of the Year" award
- I started a YouTube Channel which is now a 2x internationally awarded channel that averages more than 100,000 minutes per month of watch time!
- I developed a world-first online scheduling system designed specifically for the Lash Industry known as "BookJoy" due to launch in 2024!
So, that's a snapshot of me and my journey in this wonderful industry so far. I look forward to getting to know you better if we get to meet at one of my upcoming training events!