Eight years after the business began, Perfect You Eyelash Extensions and Permanent Makeup has become a monthly habit for thousands of students, dignitaries and celebrities in Ottawa. When customers walk up the narrow staircase, Perfect You appears to be a nondescript but beautiful space. There is a lot more than meets the eye at this modest Byward Market spa.
“I met so many wonderful women in the beauty industry. I realized beauty is something that women truly care about. And I also saw that there was a lot of opportunity to change the way spas operate, for both clients and beauty professionals,” says Aleksandra Stewart, the original founder of Perfect You.
“I tell people that Perfect You is not a spa, but a beauty empowerment platform,” Aleksandra’s business partner Melanie Nim explains in a recent interview. “We wanted to build a business that would empower our technicians, so they would want to offer the best service possible. This translates to an environment where everyone, especially the client, is empowered.”
While the rest of the province argues over minimum wage increases, the owners of Perfect You calculate that their technicians make around $30 an hour.
“All of our technicians choose when they work and have the flexibility to care for themselves and their families. They literally develop friendships with clients, so it doesn’t feel like work,” adds co-owner Aleksandra.
On top of their progressive “platform approach” to skills management, Melanie and Aleksandra are also answering the call of today’s “need it now” modern consumer in some extraordinary ways.
“When a woman decides that she wants to improve her appearance, there is no waiting. We were receiving calls at two in the morning for eyelash emergencies, and even calls on Christmas day! I realized we needed to do something to service clients on their terms,” Aleksandra exclaims.
Perfect You has spent the last three months training a call center so that clients can book an appointment literally 24/7. Each technician also live-publishes her schedule so that consumers can book an appointment online at any time.
“We also have a team to respond to Facebook and Instagram messages. We find that Facebook is a great way to respond to clients, rather than shoulder the responsibility on one administrative assistant,” Aleksandra adds.
But is the business model too good to be true?
“We live in Canada, a country itself that is almost too good to be true. So I think it’s natural for Ottawa customers to expect this from any service provider. We are doubling revenues year over year now too, so we’re probably doing something right,” Melanie responds.
“I don’t look at numbers in business. I’m terrible with numbers. I just treat people the way I would like to be treated, and then I figure the money will work itself out,” Aleksandra adds.