We had the good fortune of connecting with Brittany Park and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brittany, what role has risk played in your life or career?
I came across this quote once that read, “Your current safe boundaries were once unknown frontiers.” Without risk, where do we find our reward? I’ve taken many risks in my life, one of the biggest would be jumping back into school after a 13 year hiatus. I had to leave the safe boundaries I had set of my (barely) comfortable paying job as a full-time bartender. Leave behind the life I had become comfortable, yet stagnant in. Get myself into debt which i had spent a decade plus staying away from. But this was the risk, the discomfort and the debt worth getting into. So I made a plan, went down to part-time work, found the school for me and in 2018 I started cosmetology school. Right out of school I got a job as an assistant and very quickly found out that handing foils and draping clients was just not for me, I love to have my hands IN hair I need to be learning, constantly. My next step was a commission salon. I would be given clients through the salon as well as bring my own in. I would receive 40% and the salon, 60%. Well, it wasn’t long before realizing that I didn’t take this huge leap, this risk to start school and get into debt in my 30’s to be making 40%. I am not a 40% profit type of person. It was time to start my own business, be my own boss and take home 100% profit. I started renting my own chair in a studio at Palette Collective in Chandler, summer 2021 and the rest is history in the making. Now this was another huge risk as I was basically starting over with building a brand new clientele. Well, only a few months in and let me tell you the risk is absolutely worth the reward.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I struggled between going to school for teaching or getting my cosmetology license. Both very different, I’ve had a passion for both since I was very young. I ended up going with the hair route (no pun intended) because it could give me the flexibility to eventually involve teaching/volunteering as well. Recently, I signed up to volunteer at an event featuring foster children that are up for adoption. I get to use my skills,cutting and styling hair, in a way that can actually give back. I’ve also reached out to share my skills with a local shelter for women who were victims of human trafficking. One of my goals is to get a group of stylist together that can regularly frequent facilities that could use our skill set. I find it extremely rewarding to do what I love while being able to help others.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would say to start off at a nice brunch spot. One of my favorites would be the quite, little Crepe Bar in Tempe. Everything is local and the menu is inventive and delicious. If you’re not visiting in the scorching summer months, a hike is a perfect mid-day activity. Check out Morman trail at South Mountain for something easy or if you’re up for a challenge, head over to Camelback Mountain. For the evening, check out one of the many restaurants in Downtown Phoenix. Angels Trumpet Ale House is a favorite of mine. To end off the night, go see yourself a show at the Crescent Ballroom! One of my favorite Phoenix Venues.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I absolutely give a TON of credit to a few special friends I made at school. We were a group of women, all taking a risk to leave our lives and families at home in hopes of making a better life. There were some days that their encouragement was what got me through that extra stretch of hours. Mostly, I have to give a huge credit to my boyfriend, Jake. From hair school to building my clientele. He’s my support system, model, web-designer, photographer…the list goes on. Jake pushes me in the best kind of way. He knows my potential and just my knowing that he believes in me, pushes me even further. It would be easy to say “Hey, maybe don’t start brand new when you have a gig and clients already.” Instead, he’s right there, supporting me and behind me and my decisions every step of the way.