Earlier this week, we gave you a reason to believe in one of our favorite New York beauty havens, ‘Cure Beauty Bar of Brooklyn. The more we learned to love ‘Cure, the more we’ve gotten to know it’s proprietor, LaShunda Davis, who is a true example of what type of lemonade you can make when you get thrown some sour lemons. Originally from Las Vegas, Davis worked her way through fashion as a stylist for Nike and market editor for Vibe Vixen Magazine before she caught the spa bug. Now that she’s getting ready to celebrate her 2 year anniversary, she sat down with Parlour to talk past, present and what the future holds.
Tell us the ‘Cure story.
‘Cure beauty bar came about from being tired of letting others control my future. After being “laid-off”, or we’ll call it what it is fired, I made a conscious decision that I would not allow myself to be in that situation again. So, I did some praying and soul searching and thought: ‘Where would I like to spend my day and for the most part, be stress free?’ A spa! I immersed myself into learning about the spa business. I went to nail technician school, wrote a business plan, formed a LLC with my sister, Tina and ‘Cure beauty bar was born. Of course it was not as easy as it sounds but essentially that’s how it all started. We wanted ‘Cure to be a relaxing spa get-away in our neighborhood, that offered expert service, a cool vibe and place where men and women alike could come and feel at home.
What is the full range of services that ‘Cure offers?
‘Cure beauty bar offer natural nail services, meaning we care for the natural nails and do not perform nail extensions, full body massages, organic facials, expert full body, hair removal, and our newest addition Minx nails! It’s a nail covering that come in all types of colors and designs, our personal favorites are the gold and silver metallic. We also carry Voluspa Candles, Cubannie Links Jewelry and host of other yummy indulgences.
There seems to be a new trend of “beauty bars” popping up, but we notice that they are just giving us the same services with fresh paint on the walls. What makes ‘Cure the spot to choose?
Our concept was designed around a bar-like experience. Your manicure is given at a bar and your pedicures are performed while customers relax on oversize chairs for a lounge type feel. In the background, cool sounds are played for your listening pleasure. And on any given day I am known to open a bottle of wine or prosecco for our customers to enjoy with their services. The beauty aspect comes from how you look and feel when you leave ‘Cure.
Did anyone think you were crazy for opening a space in Brooklyn? Or, at the time you did considering our current economic recession?
Well after getting “laid off” I was in my own personal recession and decided to take charge of my future. I was a year into my business when the recession hit. I did notice a decline in business and that’s when I introduced the $30 mani/pedi special on weekdays as well as other specials and packages. It was my way to give back to my great customers and attract new ones.
What are your future plans with the space? New locations? A product line?
The plans are to expand ‘Cure beauty bar in late 2010 to a second location in Brooklyn as well as in my hometown of Las Vegas. A product line for ‘Cure beauty bar is definitely in the works and Parlour Magazine will be the first to know when it launches!
What advice would you give to women who are looking to switch careers and/or start their own business?
Research, Research, research and pray, pray, pray! Understand where your funding is coming from and a having nest egg is important, especially when you have a service business. There are so many variables that dictate how people spend money. Given that I am in the service business, my biggest piece of advice would be, great customer service! Once you get that nailed down and that’s half the battle.
If you are in New York, come and get a taste of ‘Cure for yourself this Saturday, 10/10. In celebration of their 2-year anniversary, ‘Cure will be offering yummy sweets, music, drinks and $7 manicures or $10 off a mani/pedi when you mention Parlour. Hours are 11am to 7pm, we will be around so be sure to say hi!