Instagram = ❤️

Are you on Instagram? If so…are you following your favorite waxx salon?

We love Instagram at Urban Waxx because it gives us a chance to show you who we are and what we do. We are a pretty fantastic team of women and we love to have fun.

Kaylynn is our Creative Director and she is also in charge of all things Instagram, so you will see her on there quite a bit. I also love to make an appearance, and one of my favorite things to do it to go in the salons and chat up team!

We also have announcements, contests, and all sorts of fun insider information so do yourself a favor and connect with us!

xo

Bossy Mom

 

“I think every working mom probably feels the same thing: You go through big chunks of time where you’re just thinking, ‘This is impossible — oh, this is impossible.’ And then you just keep going and keep going, and you sort of do the impossible.” -Tina Fey

 

Becoming a mother changed me. Opening a business changed me. Both of those statements are TREMENDOUS understatements. When I think about life before Urban Waxx and my kids all I remember is a long blur of free time and leisurely brunches and sleep. I am certain that there were lots of other things happening but WHAT HAPPENED TO SLEEP? Nothing changes more when you become a Mom than your lack of sleep.

I digress. I have always known that I wanted to own my own business. I did not always know that I wanted to become a mom. That came later in life, and coincided with Urban Waxx opening. I thought that I was the only crazy person that would decide to have a baby and open a business at the same time, however, over the years I have talked to SO many female business owners that have done both in unison. So, maybe we are a little mad. Or, we just like to see how much we can do on 2 hours of sleep a night. Or, we like to create.

When I moved to Portland in 2007, I decided to open Urban Waxx shortly thereafter. However, I wanted to do it on my own for a while. I wanted to be my own boss, set my own schedule, make my own appointments. I wanted to dip my toe in the water and see if I was really as good at managing myself as I believed. I wanted to make it perfect BEFORE I hired employees and became responsible for other people. And then…I got pregnant. We had been trying, but, like so many things to follow, Stella had her own timeline. I thought it would probably take at least a year (I don’t know why I thought that…I thought so many things about pregnancy and motherhood that were false before it happened to me), but instead, I got pregnant right away. Like, first month. I had only opened up my little one woman shop a few months earlier and I was NOT READY to expand. However, I was also not ready to go on maternity for 3 months and have all of the guests that I was seeing be unable to see me and then have to start over. So…I decided to open up the first Urban Waxx, and hire my first employees, and, well, the rest is history.

As soon as they laid Stella’s little body on my chest, everything changed. I had a purpose. Don’t get me wrong, I had a purpose before, but suddenly I had a reason to be better and do better. I wanted to be the best mom ever. The best boss. Create a legacy that my children could be a part of. Be the kind of mom that they would respect and love and they would know that she could build something from nothing. They would see my work ethic and my drive and ambition and they would know that their mama was a hustler. They would know that I could make magic.

Guess what? That isn’t exactly the way it has been. Being a mom is the best thing that has ever happened to me, closely followed by owning Urban Waxx. These two events are also the most challenging. They require the most humility. The most growth. The ability to see when I am wrong and change my behavior. Parenting and owning a business are surprisingly similar.  And for me, they are completely connected. I cannot imagine doing one without the other.

If I were not a parent, would I continue to grow and build and move Urban Waxx to the degree that I do now? I’m not sure, but I doubt it. My children keep me on the straight and narrow. They keep me focused. They make me better. They drive me to be the parent that I wished that I had. And now, Urban Waxx is 10, Stella is 10, and Dino is 7. Now, we can all relax a little. Now, when the kids get home from school, I tell them that my phone and laptop will go away until they go to bed. I have realized, after so many years of being permanently attached to my iPhone, that nothing is really more important than spending time with my babes. And, even though I would tell them that I am working on my phone, and sometimes I am, I am usually just messing around and not being present. And that is really sucky. For them and for me.

So, what are the similarities between opening a business and being a mom? Here are my observations:

  • When I opened a business I had no idea what I was doing. I kept waiting for someone to come in and either tell me what to do or tell me I was unfit to be doing what I was doing. Having a baby-same.
  • Both required putting something else in front of my selfish self. Once you open a business, your life is not your own. You are responsible for other people, and you need to have their best interests in mind. Being a mom-SAME. Although same to the 1 billionth degree.
  • All of that extra money you had laying around (if any)…well that goes away. Every penny you have goes into the business or into the kids.
  • Sleep-HA. Did I mention that you can kiss sleep good bye? And if you do sleep you will wake up in the middle of the night worrying about either the business and how you are messing it up or your kids and how you are messing them up.
  • Both are 24/7. That is a real fact. I think about my kids or my business on a loop 24 hours a day.
  • Both require a thick skin. Do you think you have a high self esteem? Awesome! Wait until you get your first scathing Yelp review or your child asks if you are going to wear make-up today (Stella). You just gotta let these things roll of your back, with grace.
  • You have to, HAVE TO, be able to take accountability. To say sorry when you are wrong. To evolve. To recognize your shortcomings. To ask for help. Be present. You have to be generous with your time and yourself. You have own your own crap.

 

SO THEN WHY DO EITHER???

Because, it is f-ing amazing. Both. The BEST. Both mean you are creating something from nothing. I still look at my kids and think: “I made you!” in this feeling of awe and wonder. When I am not dissecting Urban Waxx, I think the same thing. Damn. I did it. Both take a village. I mean, sure, you can raise a child alone or run a business alone, but doing it with people who love you and believe in you and support you makes things magic. Being a mom and a boss gives me the freedom to pivot. If I make a mistake, I can change my mind. I can say “Oh that was a terrible idea. I won’t do that again.” Plus, I get to create a life that I want. And, I feel pretty lucky.

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That was baby Stella and me, and Dino was in my belly….feels like 100 years ago!

Winter is coming, but your hair doesn’t have to!

At Urban Waxx our most busy season is the summer. We see SO many new guests during the warmer months that have decided to try out waxxing for the first time. We also see guests that only visit us once or twice a year (summer time and Valentine’s Day).

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There are SO many reasons to waxx all year round!

  • A regular waxx is SO much easier! Trust me, when I was pregnant with Stella I decided to take a break from waxxing. Between the 95 lb weight gain (yes that’s right) and opening up the first Urban Waxx…I just wasn’t feeling the monthly Brazilian. When I finally was ready to waxx, I had about 7 months of hair growth. Let me tell you…it was DREADFUL! I vowed then and there to never go longer than 4 or 5 weeks again without getting my Brazilian. Now…my waxxes are soooo easy! Regular waxxing on a regular schedule makes each experience less painful.
  • Your hair gets significantly more fine (usually). Each time you waxx you traumatize the hair follicle (it’s a good thing), and eventually the hair follicle could weaken enough that it just never grows back!
  • Winter is the BEST time to start waxxing! We always encourage new guests to start leg waxxing in the winter. That allows the hair to grow out without the fear of having to be in shorts or a bikini. Also, it gives some time to really get in the groove so that we can determine how long you will need before appointments. That way you will get the absolute best results when it’s time to get in that summer swimsuit!
  • YOU FEEL GOOD! So often we see guests come in for the first time because their partners have asked for a waxx or they want to look or feel sexy for their partners. That’s great…but how about feeling sexy for yourself? A fresh waxx always makes a person feel like a million bucks!

Waxxing winter skin is a great exfoliant also, but do not forget to keep up your weekly shower exfoliating routine! Winter skin is dry skin so make sure to scrub scrub scrub and load up on some seriously lush moisturizers!

Rain, snow, or shine, we got you covered, babes!

 

We Love Ban.do! And you will,too!

Have you heard about the incredibly cute, colorful, make you feel super happy brand Ban.do? If you haven’t, you need to check out the entire line.

I first stumbled upon Ban.do when I was in LA at another of my favorite stores, Sugarfina. Ban.do has the type of collection that is whimsical and totally shop-able. On that first trip I bought pins, phone cases, pens…you name it. Things that I thought would make the most divine gifts for my local girl gang…and they totally did!

Well, we finally got Ban.do in house! That’s right… you can now shop this amazing line at all Urban Waxx locations! Check out some of the amazing items we are carrying!!!

You have got to come and check the cutest line ever out! It really just makes a person smile!

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Urban Waxx Team=Team YAY!

I spend a lot of time thinking about our guests, and how to make their experience the best ever. Is it the tiny details, like the pre-appointment wine or mimosa, or the handful of Jelly Bellies on the way out? Maybe. Is it the sweet smelling retail products that we have to peruse before your waxx? Possibly. Is it our team? Absolutely.

You know what was brought to my attention recently? We have a lot of employees at Urban Waxx that were once guests! I loved thinking about that! That means that someone came into Urban Waxx and loved the experience so much, that they decided they wanted to work here! Some of them are now GEMs, and some of them even decided to go to Esthetics School and become Waxxers. That really speaks volumes about the Urban Waxx experience.

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I LOVE CUSTOMER SERVICE. There. I said it. I love over the top customer service. I love walking into my local Starbucks and Patrick, my go-to barista says: “5 shot iced latte, Shannon?” I love being remembered. I mean, don’t we all? Doesn’t it feel good to be recognized when you go to the same store over and over? Doesn’t it make us feel like less of a number and more of a person?

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Great customer service is SO easy, and also, sadly, I fear is a dying art. When we hire, whether it be GEMs or Waxxers, we focus on their personality. Are they quick to smile, are they eager to please, are they just generally fun to be around? Are they someone that you would want to grab a drink with or have on your kickball team? Then we want them on our team.

Alix and Stephenie...totally zen.

Alix and Stephenie…totally zen.

People always say, when I tell them that I have about 80 employees, all female: “Wow! That must be a lot of drama.” And you know what? It isn’t. Our team is remarkably drama free. Our team is full of all different types, and ages, and backgrounds, and they all have a singular love in common: customer service. They love to please. They love to have fun. They love to laugh.


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After ten years of Urban Waxx, so many of our team members have become close friends, have watched each other get married, have babies, laugh, cry…you name it. Our Core Value #6 is “We Are Family,” and that is really true. Our team really loves each other.

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We have Megas at Urban Waxx. What is a Mega, you ask? It’s a team event! Some of our favorites are our yearly Halloween party (we REALLY get into costumes at UW), our movie nights (one of my favorites was when we rented out Living Room Theaters and watched Magic Mike XXL…that was a fun one).

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We have also done scavenger hunts, karaoke parties, Winter Formals, bowling parties, wreath making classes, craft classes…you name it. Also, we love team sweats, like yoga and MegaBurn. My personal favorite was the Warrior Dash last October. That was soooooo fun and so muddy and hard.

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We have grown from 5 people in 2007 (including me) to where we are now. So many people have come through our doors! So many different types of personalities! It is really fun to see people walk through the door on their first day and then see them a few months in, when they get comfortable, and they get to show a little of their real selves! These girls are just SO amazing and creative and dynamic!

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At Urban Waxx, we really strive to connect with our guests. That means from the moment you click on the website or call one of the locations, to the first few moments of your service, to your check out…you should feel taken care of. That will NEVER happen if the team isn’t happy! Have you ever walked into a store and you immediately feel…depressed? Like the energy is just down? I have. And I really never feel that when I walk into Urban Waxx. The vibe is always pretty fun, and like you are seeing friends!

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I have found that most of the team has a few things in common. Besides loving to give great customer service, these gals love to have a good time. They also love a photo booth and a chocolate fountain. And a dance party! They are FUN! And I think that you can feel that fun when you walk through the door.

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I just love them. And you will too. xo

Shannon

 

 

 

Oh hey, Vancouver!

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Vancouver! We opened our 6th location on Friday March 24 and we couldn’t be more excited to bring what we do best (dazzle you) to Washington.

I have to say, it was a looooong few weeks! That is the deal with construction: it’s a lot of waiting until the last few weeks, and then: BOOM! Everything has to fit together in just a few short days. We did it, but it was a close one!

I love opening new locations. It is the most exciting time, and also I get to be surrounded by my favorite people. There is a whirlwind of activity, and everyone comes together to just get it all done. It is really amazing to see how the space transforms in just a few days.

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Do Angie and I look like zombies in this picture? At one point I looked at her and she looked grey from lack of sleep! That woman is not only always on the go, she also has a one year old baby boy at home! I will tell you, when she is tired she thinks I am very funny…so that is a bonus!

The Vancouver Chamber of Commerce came on Friday and we did a ribbon cutting that was very fun. Big scissors? Yes, please!

It was a great day and we cannot wait to see you there! Now…onto our next Vancouver location! Hazel Dell will be opening in July!

xo,
Shannon

Urban Waxx
16415 SE 15th St
Vancouver WA

 

 

Sadie Update

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In September, one of our favorite Waxxers, Sadie, was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer. We were stunned with the news, and we wanted to do everything that we could to help her. It was amazing to see the team and the guests rally around Sadie, who is beloved by so many.

Last week Sadie got some incredible news. After months of intensive chemotherapy and a radical mastectomy, Sadie’s tests came back clear! She is officially done with chemo! After she heals up from her surgery, she will start 4-6 weeks of radiation.

We are all SO happy to get this amazing news about Sadie. We are sending all of our love and prayers to Sadie and her family. We cannot wait to see her smiling face back at Urban Waxx!

If you would like to donate to Sadie’s Support Fund head over to her page. https://www.youcaring.com/sadie-o-neill-662642

5 Ways to get the best Waxx!

pexels-photo-261360Summer is right around the corner, and with it comes our busiest season at Urban Waxx! Suddenly, we all look down at our winter white skin and think…I am going to be in a bathing suit soon. I need a waxx and a spray tan, stat! We get a lot of new guests in the warmer months of the year, and for each guest, we like to let them know some insider information to really get the best Waxx they can. These tips are excellent to ensure your hair removal experience is the best it can possibly be.

1. EXFOLIATE! Yes, this is the most important step to remember. Exfoliation of your skin will slough off dead cells, and help ingrown hairs come to the surface. As we get older, our skin turns over slower, so it needs help to exfoliate! Our number one, absolute most FAVORITE exfoliation product is our very own Serious Serum. This serum is jam packed with soothing ingredients like Coconut, Aloe, and Green Tea so that it keeps redness and irritation on the down low. It is also has the unique combo of Glycolic, Lactic, and Salicylic Acid to slough off dead cells all over your body. It is a MUST use for any area that you are waxxing. It also helps with breakouts, fine lines and wrinkles…you name it. If you are waxxing, you need to have a bottle of this magic potion in your bathroom! Use it every day, and add a manual scrub down (like scrubby gloves, dry brushing, a salt scrub) every 3 or 4 days. If your skin is exfoliated, you will get a much better result during your waxx. And, your ingrown hairs will be a thing of the past!

2. Don’t DIY. Look, I have been waxxing guests for 20 years. And yes, I will occasionally be in a pinch and waxx myself. Can it be done? Yes. Do I recommend it? NO! Especially when it comes to bikini waxxing, the angle is just all wrong. It is almost impossible to get a good waxx when you are doing it yourself, and you will probably be left with stray hairs, bruising, and ingrowns. Not to mention, you could throw your back out from trying to get in all the more awkward areas. When it comes to waxxing, look for the best Waxxer you can find. Research. At Urban Waxx we do more than 35,000 Brazilian waxxes a year, so we really know what we are doing!

3. Prepare! Get ready for your service. Ok, so we all know there is a little pain involved with waxxing. We advise taking an over the counter pain reliever about 45 minutes before your waxx. The pain should be quick, like pulling off a band-aid. If the pain is lingering, tell your Waxxer!

4. COMMUNICATE! We want every guest to leave 100% happy after their appointment. It is so important that you are honest with your Waxxer. Are you taking any medication that could compromise your skin? Speak up! Is the waxx too hot? Do you see a hair left behind? Do you want your brows shaped a different way? Let us know! Our entire goal is giving you a service that you are completely thrilled about. If we don’t know something, we can’t help. So please, now is not the time to be shy! Tell your Waxxer everything! Don’t worry…we have heard it all before!

5. Rebook. Yes, this is really critical. Waxxing gets so much easier over time. If you commit to being on a schedule (usually 4-6 weeks) you will see a noticeable difference in your re-growth and your experience during the appointment. Over time, waxxing will thin out your hair, so it will appear that you have less coming back. Huzzah! Before you leave your appointment, have the next one on deck. One less thing to think about!

pexels-photo-242663Pretty simple, huh? Remember, we are here for you! We love talking about hair removal. If you have questions, we have outlined a bunch of FAQs here. And if you still have questions, give us a call!

Happy waxxing!
Shannon