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Reflections: Community Involvement

By Melinda Taschetta-Millane
Posted: March 26, 2008, from the April 2008 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

In January, I had the honor of judging “Transformation,” the annual statewide makeup competition that was open to all cosmetology and esthetic students attending member schools of the Illinois Association of Cosmetology Schools (IACS).
       There were two competition categories: Bridal Makeup and Club Makeup. Both required a before-and-after transformation designed to give the students—whose education has been focused on skin care and makeup—the opportunity to showcase their skills and professionalism.
       I’ve judged many different types of competitions, however this was my first makeup competition. I was impressed with the dedication and skill of all of the competitors, most of whom were quite young and just getting ready to step out into their professional careers. They were judged on theme, color usage, material usage, design, technique, costume, and of course, professionalism.
  Throughout  the competition, it kept crossing my mind how makeup, and the artistry behind it, can be a big portion of any spa business.
       According to Skin Inc. magazine statistics, 60% of you sell makeup at your spas. This year, 42% of you plan to bring a new cosmetic line to your retail mix. These statistics bring such importance to the future of makeup, and the need for events such as this one—where technique and professionalism are stressed. Don’t let your spa lose its makeup dollars to the retail giants such as Sephora and department store counters. The potential is there; it’s just up to you to tap into it and also to find the raw talent waiting for that first opportunity to shine.
       Clearly, the students competing in the Transformation competition were all winners in my book. I am pleased to announce the top three student artists in both categories.

Bridal Makeup:

     First place: Jolene Newton,
Carl Sandburg College, Galesburg, IL

     Second place: Alejondra Chavez,
Hair Professional, Palos Hills, IL

     Third place: Luz Arredondo,
Cannella School of Hair Design, Chicago

Club Makeup:

     First place: Stefanie Kim,
Pivot Point, Bloomingdale, IL

     Second place: Ashley Sawicke,
Pivot Point, Evanston, IL

     Third place: Weronika Bobula,
Pivot Point, Evanston, IL

Sense of community
       During this event, I enjoyed catching up with fellow judges and industry colleagues Debra Davis of Debra Davis Skin Care in Elmhurst, Illinois, and Bonnie Canavino of Spa Specifics in Aurora, Illinois. During the course of the afternoon we chatted about the importance of networking, as well as the need for community involvement, in particular for the spa professional.
       I am a strong believer in community involvement. Just the other night I was peddling Girl Scout cookies with my daughter at the local supermarket rallying support for Fox Valley troop 261. On that same personal level, I lend my communications prowess to head up the marketing committe for the elementary school’s annual fun fair, and even babysit for religious education teachers at church on Thursday evenings. All of this helps me build my own personal sense of local community, as well as my “parent” community. On the professional level, I enjoy volunteering for task forces and committees with the International SPA Association (ISPA) and the Asia Pacific Spa Wellness Council Professionalisation Task Force, as well as helping with events such as this makeup competition. It all brings balance of work and family into the mix, a very important ratio in my book and one that never seems to be easy to balance.
       Community involvement is important on so many different levels. It gets your name out into the public, plus provides you with a great opportunity to network. It also helps create a sense of goodwill, and also can establish you as an expert in a given area in the eyes of the community.
       Each month our Happenings section is filled with the community involvement of our readers. Be sure to share yours with us, too. You never know who you might inspire through your efforts.

Until next month,
Melinda Taschetta-Millane, Editor in Chief 

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