Today we’d like to introduce you to Anna-Leigh Zinza.
Anna-Leigh, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I am someone who struggled with acne all of my younger years and was lucky enough to have professional care with an esthetician starting at age 13. I loved the treatments and the process of watching my own skin heal itself. It set me on a path and I fell in love with the idea of making people “feel good in their skin”.
After graduating esthetics school in 2003 I quickly got a job at a salon in Hillcrest. I was fortunate to receive training with professional skincare lines and high-end spa treatments. I felt like something was missing though. There was a part of me that really wanted a college degree, so I studied Art History at the University of Texas at Austin and graduated in 2012. I moved back to San Diego right after.
I worked hard to earn my degree so I decided to try and use it and was employed by a prominent arts organization here in San Diego for a while, but really wasn’t happy. My friend and salon owner Laura Rice encouraged me to get back to doing what I loved most and offered me a spot at her place. I jumped at the chance and worked there for four years. During that time, I got several advanced certifications, honed in on what skin services I enjoyed doing the most, and trained directly with celebrity brow artist Kelley Baker.
Focusing on what I love doing (skin and brows) and having welcomed an amazing following of dedicated people, I decided to start my own brand this year, Wonderface Skin Studio. I am always thriving to learn and expand my knowledge with the latest and greatest, my thirst for the best is never ending. I am also grateful to be here today doing what I love and making people feel good in their skin and bodies.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Making the transition back into esthetics after being in college and having a “professional job” was the most challenging. I felt a lot of pressure to make the most of this expensive degree I had sought after. I was fighting thoughts of going back to a career that “doesn’t even require a degree.” I even had people very close to me that doubted my transition because I had worked so hard for my said degree and wasn’t going into that specific field. In the end, I listened to my gut and am so glad I did. That has been something that has served me well, listening to my gut instincts. Don’t ignore them!
Being a small business owner there are lots of struggles, (real and self-imposed), things you have never encountered before and have to figure out. Sometimes in the moment, it can seem really big, however, when I think back on all the unsure situations, I am reminded that if I handled that situation, I can handle this next one too. I know that sounds cheesy, but I have to remind myself of this ALL the time.
For the record, there are many amazing badass boss babes out there who run great business without a college degree. For those that think you “don’t use it” though, that’s not true. I use mine every day and have no regrets that I went back to college. I feel like it should be more attainable and affordable for all though, and am fortunate to have had my experiences and to have a successful business to pay for my loans.
Wonderface Skin Studio – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Wonderface Skin Studio specializes in skincare, brow design, and wellness. Skincare is focused on where science and nature intersect and taking into account a holistic approach when thinking about how we take care of our skin – it’s more than what we apply topically. Master Brow designs stand out because each person and their brows are unique and that’s what I seek to enhance with each service.
I’m most proud of my ability to connect and communicate effectively with everyone that comes through my door. I want everyone to feel heard and feel they are being taken care of above and beyond what they had hoped for.
There is also a great pride in the level of honesty and genuineness that I hold as a standard for this company. I find in this to be something quite unique and hope to hold on to as it grows.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Hands down having the courage to branch out on my own and create a brand and solo business for myself. It’s not easy but has been the most special thing I’ve ever done in my career so far. I’m looking forward to how much farther it will grow.
- Address: Wonderface Skin Studio
3067 Reynard Way
San Diego, CA 92103
- Website: wonderfacestudio.com
- Phone: 619-309-8723
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @wonderfacestudio
Stacy Keck, Nichole Brauer