Sun Spotlight On: TresseNoire
Owners: Regina Gwynn and Dr. Octavia Pickett-Blakely
Location—Web Based: www.tressenoire.com
Natural hair services for flat twists, coils, cornrows & bantu knots, two-strand twists, weaves, children’s styles, loc maintenance, braids and twists with added hair and rod sets. Offers service coupons, pop-up salons, bridal party services and assists with coordination of special hair events.
Email: [email protected]
By Leah Fletcher
Twenty-eight-year old Dina Marsh is what can be described as a “time-starved naturalista.” The Philadelphia based grant writer routinely works 10-hour days, six days per week. Her schedule is jam-packed with meetings, campaign proposals and foundation reports. “I am constantly under the gun to meet deadlines,” she said. “It’s almost an industry requirement.”
If you are imagining an exhausted, weary workaholic with a dry, disheveled natural hairstyle, think again. Marsh, despite time constraints, prioritizes and balances her professional and personal time, to schedule the beauty services necessary to maintain her professional image. Marsh, like so many other women, can now avail herself of emerging mobile salons that connect busy women (and men) with top-tier stylist, who deliver luxury hair salon experiences to their doorstep (home, office or hotel).
In the Philadelphia area, TresseNoire, an online mobile hair salon, allows busy women like Marsh to keep their natural hair styled and maintained. The company, staffed by a team of stylists that visit clients in their homes and offices, allows busy women (and men) to integrate their beauty routines into their hectic schedules.
“Women are so busy with their jobs, families and lives that it becomes harder to find a couple of hours to go to your stylist on a day and time that works for you,” said Regina Gwynn, co-founder of TresseNoire, which allows its clients to book and pay for their appointments and services online.
TresseNoire, the brainchild of Gwynn and her partner Dr. Octavia Pickett-Blakely, was born out of the desire to connect busy naturalistas with top-tier stylist who would deliver a luxury hair salon experience in a more expedient manner. Gwynn and Pickett-Blakely, both who have been natural for decades, witnessed that getting hair services as a working woman was a chore. “We had to duck out at lunch, rush home before the beauty salon closed or spend hours of our hard-earned free time on a Saturday to get a hair service” noted Gwynn.
The landscape of the traditional salon and spa industry, according to Gwynn, has contributed greatly to TresseNoire’s success. She might be on to something. According to industry analysts, the salon and spa industry is heavily driven by repeat business. While their services–hairstyling, color, cuts, manicures/pedicures, massages, etc.—are important and frequently sought after, the industry itself is extremely over saturated with somewhat identical competitors.
Those features, along with industry trends, prove advantageous for the mobile salon industry. According to a report by Franchise Help, the beauty industry is known to be resistant to economic downturns—even faring well during the Great Recession of 2008. Although, consumers tend to be more price conscious during those times, they do not stop spending. So in today’s environment of rising per capita incomes the beauty business is booming.
In its ‘Analysis of 2016 Costs and Trends,’ Franchise Help, also reported sobering financial projections. For instance, in 2015 the industry generated $56.2 billion in the United States alone. Hair care is the largest segment, with skin care reported to be a close second. The former is expanding rapidly and is expected to have revenue of almost $11 billion by 2018.
It is against this industry backdrop that TresseNoire, after operating for over two years, is realizing its expansion goals. Beginning its operation in Philadelphia, the firm has expanded to offer services in Manhattan, Westchester, NY and the states of New Jersey and Delaware.
Although the focus of TresseNoire is natural hair care, its stylist, with combined professional experience that exceeds 40 years, are experienced in servicing a variety of hair types and textures. The stylist, according to Gwynn, do not perform chemical relaxers, however, they do shampoo, blow-dry and style chemically relaxed hair. TresseNoire stylist also can assist anymore who wants to transition from chemically relaxed hair to natural hair.
The concept of the mobile salon is working, according to Gwynn and Pickett-Blakely. “There is an overwhelming demand for timely, superior hair salon services,” noted Gwynn, who said some patrons complain about a breakdown in the convenience and quality of the services provided by some traditional hair salons and braiding shops.
TresseNoire’s services and pricing are consistent with standard salon and braiding studios. “Everything is structured to offer time and convenience which are important factors for most women” noted Gwynn, who believes the mobile service is an ideal solution for those customers who can’t always schedule a salon visit.
For the person with a busy personal, professional and social life, a mobile salon might be the answer. There is no need to experience the anxiety of rushing to a hair salon appointment. You can merely have a mobile hairstylist recreate the ultimate salon experience in the comfort of your home.