Name: Sunny Nguyen
Years in the Wellness/Beauty Industry:
6 years Licensed Cosmetologist
Most Memorable Tip (monetary, gift or advise):
My most memorable tip was from a salon guest, a regular client of mine. She was always generous with her gratuities. But one particular time she was going to an evening event after her appointment with me. She had brought along a special occasion dress to change into after her service. She needed some help “wiggling and zipping” into the dress. I was there for her. It could've been an awkward situation. I was compassionate and tried to make sure she had a little fun with it. Afterwards, she left a $100 tip for me. I know it was because I went above and beyond to make her feel comfortable. That is what made it memorable; it wasn't about the $100.
How did you choose a career in the Wellness industry?
I started going to a salon when I was 17 years old. My first visit was for highlights. It felt so good to be there and I left looking so much better and feeling good about myself. I knew instantly I wanted to do that. I thought the salon Stylists were so cool and creative. Plus my mother and my sister were nail techs. So, I was already exposed to the beauty industry.
Greatest reward of doing the work?
The most rewarding part of my job is building relationships. My clients come in as strangers and over time become a big part of my life. Many of them are my friends. I’ve been invited to their children's birthday parties and their holiday get-togethers. It is very rewarding to see how much I mean to them and how much they mean to me.
Top two things you wish or would like to change in the industry?
One change I like to see in the industry is advancements in education. I would like to see more education required. I would like a community of people in the industry to connect with and inspire each other, outside of my own salon
Who is your Mentor and why?
My mentor is Lana Cyrus. She is the salon owner in Lincoln Park where I first went to get my hair highlighted as a teenager. She hired me when I was still in beauty school as her assistant. She taught me the ropes. She gave me such an incredible boost in confidence. I can still hear her say, “You should believe in yourself, I believe in you.” From that day forward I felt different. I really began to believe in myself. I can still hear her voice today.