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Meet the Faces of Sola Salon Studios

Have you ever fantasized about owning a salon and being your own boss? Twelve years ago, Kim Bennett Horvath made that dream a reality when she became the first stylist to sign a lease at Sola Salon Studios in Denver, Colorado. The moment would be one of the most life changing decisions of Kim's career. Even though no one had done this before, "I just knew right then it was all going to be okay because there was not one thing that felt wrong. It all was just right," she explains. For Kim, the experience has been a journey that is like opening a gift that never stops giving and growing. "I have been able to reach any goal I have set for myself and also evolve into a wife, mother, entrepreneur and educator. Sola is such a great platform for me to be a salon owner, but also to have become all of those roles!"

Kim's story has inspired stylists all over the country to accomplish their goals and join the Sola Salon Suites community. Sola provides beauty professionals with fully-equipped salon studios, support and tools to help them launch their businesses. We spoke to the Faces of Sola to take an inside look at the salon suite experience. Join us to get to know ten Faces of Sola Salon Studios, starting with Kim.

 

  • Kim Bennett Horvath

    Name: Kim Bennett Horvath
    Salon Name: Kim Bennett Studios
    City / Sola Location: Denver, CO
    Title: Salon Owner, Stylist, Senior National Educator for Paul Mitchell, Director of Education for Sola Salon Studios

    What are your specialties?     
    My specialty is to listen and give my guest the best overall experience I can. I love to customize and focus on the needs of my guest. I do not leave out the men either; they are some of the most fun and loyal clients I have had over the years.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    I always love when bangs make a comeback for spring. They are youthful, fun and can completely change someone's life! I like that some men are growing out their fades to more of a lived in sexy look. In color, my favorite trend is that there is no normal and so much is accepted now. Colorists have more freedom to play than they used to 20 years ago.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    12 years this July! I was the first stylist to sign a lease.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?     
    Just that, being a salon owner! I make all the decisions on all aspects of my business! Sola gives the dreamer entrepreneur the keys to a start at becoming a salon owner, the rest is up to us. Everyone's success looks and is measured differently. My favorite thing is I get to be the best me! Sola is inclusive to all different kinds of salon owners!

  • Lee Trevino

    About a year and a half ago, stylist Lee Trevino decided to make the move to Sola Salon Studios. After leaving a salon of 45 people, he didn't know if he would find the same sense of community he enjoyed at his previous location. "I didn't think anything could top that, but Sola did and I am very grateful for that," explains Lee. Meet Lee Trevino:

    Name: Lee Trevino
    Salon Name: Tonic & Tweed Salon
    City / Sola Location: Jacksonville, FL
    Title: Hairstylist

    What are your specialties?     
    My specialties are hair cutting, hair coloring and I am a professionally trained national educator.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    My favorite trends right now are shorter, textured hair cuts on women. I also like multi-colored undercut sections with partial designs and textured bowl cuts.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    I have been with Sola Salons for a year and a half.

    Can you tell us about your experience at Sola?     
    My Sola experience has been monumental for my growth as a business owner. The transition from stylist to owner has given me the skills to multi-task. It's given me more responsibility and ownership for the whole guest experience. My business growth is reflected in my work and it's the most rewarding feeling as a professional.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?     
    My favorite thing about being an owner at Sola Salon is the learning process, including getting to learn the business and getting to learn the client.

  • Derek Williams

    For Derek Williams, becoming a Sola owner was an empowering and fast paced experience. He started out with a small suite and after only four months, moved into a larger suite. Meet Derek Williams:

    Name: Derek Williams
    Salon Name: Groom My Style!
    City /Sola Location: Crofton, MD
    Title: Men's Salon

    What are your specialties?     
    I specialize in men's haircuts and straight razor shaves.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    Trending at this moment are shaves and beard trims.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    1 year and 3 months.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?     
    It's easy! What I mean is it's all sorted out for you. The startup and overhead costs are so low. Sola has already jump started your salon business model with a turnkey solution.

     

  • Holly Santelli

    Recently, one of Holly Santelli's clients lost her little boy to cancer. Holly treated her client and client's sister to color and cuts before the funeral. Closing the curtains gave them complete privacy to talk and to cry. "Where else could I give someone such an experience? I love that I can customize my environment to fit my clients' needs," Holly shares. Holly is grateful that she can offer customers a tailored service experience where they can come in frazzled and leave relaxed and happy. Meet Holly Santelli:

    Name: Holly Santelli
    Salon Name: Serendipity Beauty Parlour
    City / Sola Location: Park Ridge, IL
    Title: Owner

    What are your specialties?
    Color and updo hairstyles are my two favorite things to do. I love doing all color techniques from balayage to traditional foiling and grey coverage.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    I love the texture and curls that i'm seeing including razor cut textured bobs and long romantic layers. Fun colors from bold to soft all make me so happy. The men's grooming trend is really awesome as well.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    It will be 2 years in July.

    Can you tell us about your experience at Sola?
    My experience at Sola has been a dream come true right from the start and still is! The transition from booth/chair rental to studio salon owner was seamless. I brought 95% of my clientele with me to Sola, and it has grown very steadily since week one! I set the tone in my studio. I am a pretty calm, laid-back person and my studio reflects that. I want everyone that walks in the door to immediately feel welcome and relaxed. People are so busy these days. I want them to be able to come in and have a little calm in their life in my cozy space. I feel like the experience matters as much as the hair. At Sola you have so much freedom to be yourself and provide clients with a great experience.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?
    There are so many things I love about being an owner at Sola and I am so grateful for all of them! One of the best things is truly being able to make someone's day better. I'm not just giving them a great color or cut, but I'm also giving them a chance to unwind, talk and let go.

  • Kim Schine

    Initially, nail technician Kim Schine found the move to Sola nerve-racking. She was about to become a first time business owner and finally branch out on her own. Once Kim joined the Sola family, doors opened and new adventures started. Her clients now enjoy the space, the one-on-one attention and her ability to provide a better service experience. Meet Kim Schine:

    Name: Kim Schine
    Salon Name: The Painted Ten
    City/Sola Location: Colorado Springs, CO
    Title: Nail Technician

    What are your specialties?     
    I feature natural nails with gel polish manicures and hand painted nail art. My specialties with nail art range from simple and classy designs to intricate and detailed art.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    Some of my favorite trends are glass nails, 3D nails, ombre nails and inlaid nails.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    A year and a half.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?     
    Sola is the best of both worlds. I get to be an independent business owner in charge of determining my own schedule and my own unique brand of my own services and products. At the same time, the community of business owners allows for daily networking as well as a diverse customer base. This unique experience has helped me set the boundaries of a well balanced life.

    Can you share a memorable moment that you've had at Sola Salon Studios?     
    My most memorable moment at Sola was celebrating with the Sola 5000 campaign. It's an amazing feeling to be with such an innovative company and other strong individuals! Knowing that each individual salon owner wanted to be a part of Sola and to help it grow to what it's become is beyond words. The support that we can provide each other, as well as the networking opportunities shows me why being with this company was the right decision!

  • Brandie Kekoa

    Brandie Kekoa credits Sola with helping her break into developing her own product line. "If I had been in a traditional salon, the restrictions on the product side of the business would not have allowed me to develop my own products. Had I opened up my own traditional salon, the overhead expenses would have been too punishing for me to devote cash-flow to product development," explains Brandie. Brandie believes that the Sola business model has made being a salon owner and small business owner attainable. Meet Brandie Kekoa:

    Name: Brandie Kekoa
    Salon Name: Be Kekoa Hair Studio
    City / Sola Location: Temecula, CA
    Title: Sola Salon Owner

    What are your specialties?     
    I specialize in cutting textured and curly hair. While cutting, I like to educate the client about their specific curl pattern and how to care for their hair. I feel like I inspire my clients to embrace their natural curls and to use their hair as a way of self expression.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    I love how people are expressing themselves using vibrant colors such as purples and pinks.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    4 years.

    Can you tell us about your experience at Sola?     
    Sola allows me to be me. I have complete autonomy over my business and the energy in my salon. It's also nice to be able to interact with the other stylists in the building.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?     
    Sola invests in its owners. They offer online education videos and seminars where the stylists can grow in their craft. There is also a Sola app for the phone which gives you the latest Sola news items.

     

  • Kao Vey Saephanh

    Stylist Kao Vey Saephanh says being his own boss is the best feeling! It allows him the ability to make his own schedule. Flexibility gives Kao the freedom to pursue his other passion, dance. Meet Kao Vey Saephanh:

    Name: Kao Vey Saephanh
    Salon Name: Salon KaoVey
    City / Sola Location: San Francisco, CA
    Title: Owner, Hair Artist

    What are your specialties?     
    My specialties are color correction, razor haircuts, Asian hair and updo hairstyles.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    I'm still loving the sombre. I also love Taylor Swift's blunt bob.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    5 years.

    Can you share a memorable moment that you've had at Sola Salon Studios?
    I had the best time at the photo shoot at Sola Salon headquarters in Denver. I got to meet some amazing Sola business artists from around the country. Their stories were very inspiring.

     

  • Autumn Morris

    Before Autumn decided to make the move to Sola, she was a booth renter beginning the process of developing a product line called Glamlocks. She was unsure if Sola was right for her, but eventually decided to make the jump. Autumn says, "From the moment I said yes to Sola, my career has gone from successful to rockstar status! I have a double studio and an amazing assistant. With the ability to sell retail, my income increased $17,000 my first year at Sola." Meet Autumn Morris:

    Name: Autumn Morris
    Salon Name: Glamlocks Hair Lounge
    City / Sola Location: Encinitas, CA
    Title: Owner

    What are your specialties?     
    I am a certified Redken Colorist. I specialize in color, cutting, styling, and hair extensions. I was taught by Chaz Dean, who said to me when I was 18, "Don't ever limit yourself to specializing in one area! You have the ability to conquer it all!" I have listened to his advice and am passing it on to my assistant as well!

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    In San Diego, the trends seem to come a bit behind. We have been doing a ton of balayage, but i am absolutely in love with babylights! I have always been a foil girl, so I love taking trends and making them my own! The trend in Hollywood seems to be a fresh shoulder length shattered bob.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    4 years.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?
    There isn't one favorite thing; there are many! As an artist, I didn't know I was capable of being a salon owner. Sola has made it affordable to become one on my terms, with my vision. I have always had the entrepreneur mindset and now I'm taking it to a level I never thought possible. Sola has given me opportunities that seemed unreachable before. Some examples include being featured in blogs, helping me become recognized in the industry and helping me brand my name and product.

    I have been able to share what was taught to me with my assistant and because we're one-on-one with no distractions, she is able to learn quickly. She is currently assisting me part-time and taking her own clients the rest of the week. We continue to be inspired through Sola. As we grow, our dreams grow. I have the options to expand Glamlocks Hair Lounge in other locations. Sola is the way of the future.

  • Joy Love

    Sola has become a second home for Joy Love as she conducts her business in comfort and peace. Her favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola is having a place where her clients can receive the best customer service and a one-on-one experience. Joy is thrilled to be able to connect with her clients, not only as a stylist, but as a salon owner. Meet Joy Love:  

    Name: Joy Love
    Salon Name: The Hair & Image Studio INC.
    City / Sola Location: Denver, CO
    Title: Owner

    What are your specialties?     
    Cut, color and healthy hair are my specialties. I educate clients on the proper ways to care for their hair. Healthy hair shines by itself, and I think there is nothing more beautiful than healthy hair.

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    I like the color fade and the sombre in the color world. My favorite trend in the styling world is all of the beautiful braided updos.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    Nine years.

    Can you share a memorable moment that you've had at Sola Salon Studios?
    I was grateful to be approached by one of the corporate professionals to receive recognition for my passion and get my story told. It made me realize that others watch and listen and want to see me do well. Sola corporate professionals not only wish you well and help you, but also encourage you and acknowledge you.

  • Kanani Yasui

    Kanani Yasui signed her lease with Sola fresh out of school, on the same day she became officially licensed. After 6 months, she was able to double her studio space and every 6 months since she's grown in big ways. Almost 5 years later, Kanani says she's still growing at an incredible rate and her goal is to expand into yet another studio with her partner this year. Meet Kanani Yasui:

    Name: Kanani Yasui
    Salon Name: LoCKs Studio
    City / Sola Location: Denver, CO
    Title: Owner, Professional Hair and Makeup Artist,  Co-Creator, Product tester, Educator

    What are your specialties?     
    My specialty is anything makeup!

    What are your favorite trends at the moment?     
    I'm loving the colorful lips and perfectly baked and highlighted faces I see more regularly as an every day look when I'm out and about.

    How long have you been at Sola Salon Studios?     
    5 years in August.

    What is your favorite thing about being a salon owner at Sola?     
    We have the freedom to create and bring to life any and all of our ideas. Being the co-creator of LunatiCK Cosmetic Labs, an up-and-coming vegan cosmetic company, I have the freedom to travel so I can introduce our brand to the world. My goals and dreams are never limited, and for the first time I feel completely in charge of my destiny!

    Can you share a memorable moment that you've had at Sola Salon Studios?
    I can't even begin to help you understand the amount of laughing that goes on in my Sola studio. It's an incredible amount. Every day is a great day! I love that just the other day, after a guest had received some bad news, she came running into my salon for a hug from me. She told me that I'm the only one that can make her feel better. My guests have grown to become my family, and I'm thankful every single day that I am so lucky!

Credits: 

Images courtesy of Sola

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