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“When you are a stay at home mom, busy with four children, it can be difficult to make that transition back into the workforce.”

Essenza is a full service Day Spa located in the heart of downtown Ambler on Main St., with a very warm and relaxing environment.

Essenza Day Spa is well known for our customized airbrush tanning, bridal/event make-up application and affordable unique service menu.

The company is based on the belief that their customers’ needs are of the utmost importance. They are committed to meeting and exceeding those needs. As a result, a high percentage of their business is from repeat customers and referrals.

What inspired you to launch your business?

Being home for 6 years after giving birth to my 4th child, when he finally went to preschool it was time for me to go back to work. I thought about what I can do but didn’t really want to go back into my previous occupation because it wouldn’t allow me the flexibility with my children. After many years of tanning in the sun and tanning beds, eventually being diagnosed with skin cancer at age 30, I had a casual conversation with my husband that led me to do research on skin cancer and alternatives to tanning beds and sunbathing. Alternatives such as tanning lotions, machine spray tanning and custom airbrush tanning. After trying many different lotions and machine spray tans that left me with either orange or uneven and streaky skin, I finally discovered an airbrush tanning solution that I loved. I thought it would be a great business to bring to Ambler. I was exc ited to have the opportunity to spread the word to teens and young adults that there was a safe, natural looking alternative to achieve the tan you desired without risking skin cancer using tanning beds and/or sunbathing.

Do you have any recent success stories that you’d like to share with our readers?

I would have to say that the fact that Essenza Day Spa has just celebrated our 3rd year anniversary is a huge success, as not many people today can afford to spend money on pampering themselves or beautification. Also, Essenza Day Spa making the top 10 out of 50 nominated salons on Philly’s Hot list “Best Tanning” is a success to me. Obviously the goal is to be 1st place and I will continue to strive for that.

What issue does your core product help solve and how so?

Our custom airbrush tanning is our core product, along with our organic skincare.

Essenza’s uses all natural, anti-aging, enriched with essential oils, antioxidants and botanicals airbrush tanning solution, leaving your skin soft, supple and radiant. Brown with a slightly pink undertone that casts a natural brown color that looks as if you have just come in from sunbathing. Whether you are looking for just a hint of color or a deep dark tan, we have 30 different shades to suite all skin tones, we can customize the color just for you, without increasing your risks of skin cancer.

What has been your biggest challenge as a business owner and how have you met that challenge?

Starting a business, even a Tanning salon, is hard work. LOTS of tears and sleepless nights.

When you are a stay at home mom, busy with four children, it can be difficult to make that transition back into the workforce. It was difficult and there were a few bumps in the road, but manageable. I am very independent, some might say a “perfectionist”. I tend to take on too much, usually because I worry it won’t be done the way I want it or how I envisioned it to be. It took those bumps in the road to realize I couldn’t do it all and needed help both at home and in the spa so I could to focus on all that were important, that is spending time with my family and my business.

I’m definitely happier to be getting out of the house. I love having a job that is challenging yet rewarding. I also think I am a good role model for my kids. I have a 21 year old son, who just transferred to Temple Fox school of business and is taking business classes. I do make sure I’m home for the little ones, 5 and 7, after school and I can do that because I do own my own business. With computers and cell phones, it’s pretty easy to work from home. Having my own business gives me that flexibility.

If you can figure out that work life balance challenge, it makes your life so much more enjoyable.

What’s the most exciting thing on the horizon for you/your Company?

Offering new services, such as mani’s and pedi’s, laser hair removal and for those who want to stick with the traditional waxing, we will be offering a new “waxing” service, it is the next generation of hair removal… and for starters, it’s not actually wax.

We will also in the process of adding another skincare and bodycare line in the next few weeks.

Have you had any mentors or role models that have influenced you? Describe the impact.

In different stages of my life, there were different mentors, however, the most constant mentor, or role model is my Mother, Karen Cannon. My mother is a very strong and independent women. She was only 19 when she had me and was a single mother. Being a single mother, she didn’t have time to go to college with a baby at home, so she sometimes worked multiple jobs to be able to put me through catholic school, a roof over our head and food on the table. She eventually got a job in the car business as a title clerk and with no formal training or college education, worked her way up to be a very successful, sought after finance manager. If my mother could do that, with no high school diploma, or college education and my grandmothers could balance life, work and I should be able to do and become anything I wanted.

Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?

I would have to say no, not yet. I’d like to think I’m “on the road to success” At least, I hope that my passion, dedication and hard work get me there. Being an entrepreneur, there is much more to be learned and with that lies much more hard work ahead of me.

How do your competitors view you?

I’m not sure. I guess I would hope that someday while respecting me, they consider me a major competitor.

What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs and business owners? What do you wish someone told you?

1. Do not open a business you know nothing about just because you have the means to do it and “think” it’s a good idea. There is so much more work involved than you might expect. If you have no real passion for the core of the business, you will get bored and frustrated quickly when the business doesn’t take off as easily or successfully as you imagined it would.

2. Make sure you are financially stable at least for the first 3 years. I wish I had been given that advice so that I would been better prepared for the non-budgeted future investments I had no choice to make.

What’s the biggest risk that you’ve ever taken and how did it turn out?

Opening my business with all of my savings was a huge risk. I had no customer base and airbrush tanning was in the early stage of becoming popular.

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