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Meet Jackie Ellis of Jellis Faces Beauty Team in Encinitas

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jackie Ellis.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I come from a long line of entrepreneurs and business owners, so it was only natural for me to follow their footsteps. I’ve been enamored by the beauty industry since I can remember, and once I was “old enough” to experiment with hair and makeup in high school, I quickly discovered I had a natural ability to transform myself and others. I did all my friends’ hair and makeup for all the high school dances growing up, and continued to delve into every Cosmopolitan and Teen Vogue magazine I could get my hands on to discover the next trend, makeup how-to, tricks and tips.

I became a mother at the young age of 20, and needed something that I would be able to do on my own time and be flexible. I decided to pursue makeup as my career, and enrolled in an online makeup academy, got certified and spent all my savings on a professional kit. I would work my 9-5, office job during the week, and weddings and photo shoots on the weekends.

Then came the internet explosion of YouTube where makeup tutorials were every girl’s go-to for makeup inspiration and instruction. I confess, I learned a lot from YouTube! I had friends in the industry that taught me their tricks, and I attended every workshop I could to perfect my craft.

As a self-taught artist, I doubted myself a bit when it came to finding clients, but as a business woman first, I quickly caught on how to position and market myself. I created a website, made all of my own flyers, did bridal shows, attended networking events, made connections, and worked for free to build a budding portfolio. Before I knew it, I was booking weddings left and right, and more than I could handle on my own.

That’s when I decided to call on other talented artists in and around the San Diego area, and build a beauty team. Today, there are 7 of us, and we are expanding into other cities like Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Orange County & Palm Springs. We plan to grow, eventually into other states surrounding California as well.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There were many struggles along the way, and every business owner faces obstacles.

The biggest things for me were branding, finding clients and knowing how much to charge. I have changed the name of the company twice, and logo three times! I’ve learned the hard way what works and what doesn’t work. That’s part of owning a business though, you have to take risks, but at the same time, be smart about your risks.

I’ve changed my rates more times than I can count to find my happy place and what I’m comfortable charging. I’ve never been comfortable charging people an arm and leg for my services. However, at the end of the day, I am a working mother and have children to feed. So I suppose that’s been another struggle to add to the list; being a working mom and finding balance. When you own a business it’s hard to push the “off” button.

Jellis Faces Beauty Team – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Jellis Faces Beauty Team is comprised of talented, certified stylists who provide hair and makeup services on-location for special occasions and photo shoots. We specialize in weddings and airbrush makeup. We have been in business since May of 2008, and have grown from a one-person company to an agency of 7 artists and stylists, and continue to grow every year. We started out doing maybe 12-15 weddings a year to 45+/year over the course of 9 years. We are different than any other beauty team out there because we pride ourselves on customer service, and years of experience in the industry. We have a tight knit of stylists that have been working with each other for years and do our best to make sure that our clients are left satisfied, and not just working for the money. We truly have a passion for what we do, and it shows in our work.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
When your client looks in the mirror and cries with joy because they’ve never felt so amazing, that’s when you say to yourself, “I’ve made it!” There is nothing more rewarding. Those are the moments when I love my job, and am confident in my choice to pursue this journey.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Melissa McClure Photography
Petula Pea Photography
Marie-Cecile Monforte
Michelle Lillywhite

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