This month’s Salon of Distinction hails from the Lone Star State – the land of longhorn cattle, beef brisket, the Dallas Cowboys, The Alamo, oil, chili and much more. In fact, there’s quite a divide amongst a lot of folks on whether or not true Texas chili has beans in it. Simple answer: NO. (This is also a division between Endless Summer Tan & Glam salon owners Kirk and Jennifer Henson!) Well, let’s dig in (pun intended) to the interview.
IST: Many owners get their start in the tanning industry by purchasing an existing salon where they once tanned. How did you get your start?
JH: In 2018, I bought a salon where I was once a patron, then bought a second existing salon in Canton, TX in 2020. This year, we opened our Lindale facility from scratch. We used the successes from our previous two salons as our business model and added a little bit more to it. We are really pleased with the way each of them turned out.
IST: Historically, females age 18-35 have made up the demographic of indoor tanners. What is the makeup of the clientele at Endless Summer Tan & Glam?
JH: Our clientele is centered around 20-45 year old females and probably about 15% are male. We’re not really located near any colleges, but kind of close to several small towns and have a pretty strong group of young, married and/or professional women who enjoy our facilities.
IST: During our Sun is Life classroom course, sanitization standards are covered at length. When it comes to cleaning protocols, how would you describe your “attention to detail?”
JH: We are just a bit “OCD” in regard to our sanitation standards – cleanliness is one of my top requirements, period! Our staff really works hard to make our salons shine, and that seems to be something our guests value in these post-pandemic times.
IST: As you passed the Sun is Life class with flying colors, you received a certificate of completion that I trust is now framed on your wall! What insights can you share about the training you received, how it was taught and the importance of salon operator certification?
JH: Completing the salon certification was definitely worth it! I learned a lot about general salon operation, sanitation standards, sunlamp life, different types of UV light, the actual tanning process and so much more!
It was really great to take the course in person and I would recommend the Sun is Life program to every
IST: Salon operations is also covered in our training, including ways to resolve an issue with an unruly or dissatisfied tanner. Give an example of a “testy guest” you have had (no names, please!) and how you resolved the situation.
JH: We had a guest who insisted that our beds were “just simply not working.” Considering she had only had two sessions at minimum times, we had to explain the tanning process to her – that it does take time to build a base tan over several sessions. I can also add that this was a subject you covered in-depth during our Sun is Life training, so we were quite prepared! We were finally able to get her to understand that achieving a tan in a tanning bed is NOT an overnight miracle!
IST: Time for the wrap-up. What are the 3-5 year goals for Endless Summer Tan & Glam?
JH: Our list of goals is long, but simple! We want to continue offering our current high level of customer service; continue educating our staff so that they are able to accommodate our guests with the best products to get the results they are looking for; to increase our revenues with marketing to bring in more new business, and last but certainly not least, we hope to upgrade several of our beds within the next few years. We plan to be busy!
IST: Wow, those are some admirable goals! Go get ‘em!
A 26-year industry veteran, Joe has taught certified salon operator training for the last 15 years, as well as advocating indoor tanning in many capacities. Joe is a sought-after speaker and presenter at both national & regional trade events, also interacting with the FDA, state & local regulatory agencies. During his most recent tenure with the ITA, he served as director of membership.
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