Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Break Out of Your Comfort Zone!

HairQueen News


Are you in a hairstyle rut? Is the length of your hair the same as it was a year ago? Are you rocking the same color that you did 10 years ago? Perhaps you are in a style rut. It happens from time to time. We get used to a routine and time slips away from us. As the new season is here, now is a great time to refresh your look and step out of your comfort zone. It can be hard to change, especially a drastic one, but we all need to keep it new and fresh every once in a while. I challenge you to try something new the next time you are in the salon. Whether its a new color, a shorter length, or a new sweepy bang look, try something new to go along with the new season of Spring!


Product of the Month

With your new look you may need a new product to help you maintain your style. With that in mind, all my gels, mousses, waxes, and pomades will be 10% off through April and May. 



Runs Businesses with Scissors

In business it would be great if everything was running so smoothly that it just stayed that way, but that’s not very realistic. There are so many external factors that can affect various aspects of how you run your business that you have to stay on your toes and stay calm. If you panic with every change that comes along it will add stress and unnecessary strain. So stay calm, ready, willing and able to adapt to changes. 

I am excited to help you with keeping your business skills sharp, so you can continue to provide your clients with the best experiences, as you run a successful business for yourself and your team. I have simplified my consulting billing structure to a less complicated system.  Hourly rates are available for individual hours as well as discounted rates for more than one session. 

As always, for more information visit my website www.suzannevanhouten.com, and to book a consulting appointment please call me at 510-545-2955 or email me at suzanne@suzannevanhouten.com

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Less Is More

HairQueen News

Spring is in the air! It's time to weed and prune our flowers, plants, and of course, ourselves. It is time to take stock of our beauty regime.  Yes, even the Less Is More approach takes some planning and execution. So to keep it simple and help you stay on track here are some rules to groom by: 
  • Make and keep your salon appointment - plan for one hour or less for a haircut, two hours or more for a cut and color.  
  • Book your next appointment before you leave the salon.
  • Consider purchasing the products and tools your stylist recommends - they are probably just right for your hair type and will save you styling time.
  • Bring pictures of styles you like on your device and be ready to hear "if" that style will work for you.
  • Do not be afraid of a change but remember that a change is a change and change is good.
  • When at home use the products and tools you purchased to achieve your salon look! 
  • Go to your next appointment - hair grows and must be maintained.


Products of the Month

This month when you come to the salon you will find that I have all my shampoos and conditioners on sale, they are 10% off.  

There will be a retail sale every month as a way to say thank you for purchasing your hair care products at your appointment. 

Runs Businesses With Scissors 

We are in the third month of the year and almost through the first quarter, it is time to take stock of our businesses and make sure we are on track for a terrific year. Here are a few items for you to check off your to do lists and a few things to think about for the future.
  • Close out 2014 and get everything to your book keeper and accountant now.
  • Review your schedule and make sure it is client friendly and "you" friendly.
  • Plan your days off and your vacation - no one wants a burned out stylist or boss.
  • Look at your current income and expenses and see if you need to make price adjustments.
  • Plan your monthly promotions at least one to two months ahead.
  • Add or take out services from your menu if they are no longer necessary.
  • Tidy up/purge/dust/move things around to create abundance.
  • Feeling overwhelmed and over worked? Make an appointment with me or another business coach or consultant.
  • Make time to work on your business as well as in your business - it's smart business.
To that end I have simplified my consulting billing structure to a less complicated system.  Hourly rates are available for individual hours as well as discounted rates for more than one session. To get your spot on my schedule contact me:

Phone: 510-545-2955
Email: suzanne@suzannevanhouten.com

Let's help you have more with less.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Runway & Red Carpet Hair to Try at Home

Now that the runway shows are over and the red carpet season wrapped up a few weeks ago with the Oscars, I wanted to share a wrap up of the latest hair style trends. The best thing about the current trends that will carry into spring is that they are pretty easy for us "non-celebrities" to accomplish at home. From long tresses to pixie cuts there are trends for all hairstyles and I hope you try to tackle some of them to mix up your style this spring.

One consistent trend for the spring runway fashion shows in New York and London was length. So start growing out your bobs and lobs because long hair is back and its cooler than ever!

Boho Waves

Carefree, barely-there waves are easy to create at home. Use a texturizing spray or light weight foam or mousse when hair is wet. Work through your hair from the bottom up and use a diffuser until hair is almost dry. Let hair finish drying naturally.

For hair that is hard to hold wave use a large sized barrel iron to enhance texture and volume.

Long Tails

Ponytails went from high and sleek to looser and lower, but length all over. A sleek, wet look, high on the top of your head is a strong look. If you want a little more softness try a looser look that has an "un-done" look set lower on the nape of your neck. 


 Braids & Twists

Rope braids, cornrowed buns, or loose beachy side braid there is a twist or braid out there for everyone. Tight braids with a wet look work for a stronger look while loose braids with a few loose pieces around the face make for a softer more casual feel to your style. A twist or braid is also something that can be styled with a bob or shorter lengths.


Out of the Water Look

The slick, shiny hair on the runways varied in degrees of wetness, going from lightly gelled to fresh out of the water. Part it down the middle, comb it back or pull it up in a tight bun. For those with a short bob or pixie cut this is probably the easiest trend to pull off until you get your length back.




Bombshell Blowouts!

Go big or go home with big luscious curls. Channel some old Hollywood glam with a side part or for longer locks do a side swept look by pulling your hair over one shoulder.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Happy Prosperous 2015!

Hair Queen News

I don’t know about you but I can’t believe January is half over. I’ve finally decompressed from the holiday madness and hope you are back in the swing of things as well. For those of you coming to see me at Swans Studios I wanted to give you some helpful reminders: 

  • Parking - There are several options for parking in the Swans Studio area, including one hour meter parking on 9th St., two hour meter parking on Clay St., a lot at 7th & Clay that is all-day parking $7 on weekdays & $4 on weekends, and a lot between Clay & Jefferson on 7th St. for $1.50 an hour in the lot behind the police station and directly across from Mexicali Rose. 
  • Also, Parkmobile is a new service available in the Oakland area which is a pay by phone parking service so you can add money to the meter without running out of the salon. Click here to learn more about Parkmobile in the Oakland area and to download the app. 
  • Bathroom info - there are public men and women bathrooms inside Swans Market, which can be entered from Swans Courtyard or from Washington St. We also have a key to a unisex bathroom located across from Swans Studios and near the Clay St. Entrance. 
I am delighted to reintroduce Lorenzo Carmagnola, my assistant in the salon. He has been working with me for over five years and is continuing to be a vital member of my team. Some of you may have met him when I owned my previous salon, Topps and he has now continued his journey with me to Swans Studios. Lorenzo assists me on Thursdays and Saturdays, which enables me to have more time on my books for HAIR appointments.
Slicked back and held with a binder clip
(I've been dying to use this photo somewhere). 

Speaking of HAIR I have been looking online at the projected trends for 2015.  According to the runways, long hair is back; serious length is the prediction. With this length comes waves, specifically the BOHO wave, carefree barely there waves.  Maybe it is time to try that body wave or time to smooth your curly waves, lets talk next time you are in the chair.  

PONY TAILS, BRAIDS and BIG BUNS were also big runway looks, along with one of my personal favorites, the OUT OF THE WATER look, yes just slick that hair back.  


This is the year of GEL and HAIRSPRAY. You guessed it for the remainder of January and for the month of February I am offering 10% off all my GEL and HAIRSPRAY retail products.  It is important to have the tools for your 2015 look in your personal products toolkit.



Runs Businesses With Scissors

As  most of you know I have lived and worked in the Swans Market building for 15 years. Swans 
Market is enjoying a great revitalization period (check out more info here). I consider myself a pioneer of this neighborhood and hope you get a chance to enjoy the varied restaurants and shops that continue to open up at Swans and in my neighborhood, Old Oakland. 

As a Small Business Owner I am no stranger to the ups and downs of the business world.  I am excited to continue my Business Consulting Practice into 2015.  I love working one on one with other entrepreneurs and helping them reach realistic and attainable goals.  

If you or anyone on your team are ready for your next step, contact me and tell me and share your situation so together we can help you grow your business and make your dreams come true.


I would also like to thank my clients that have checked out my Yelp page and left a review for me. It is always great to get feedback and interact with my clients online, as well as on my Facebook page. If you could "like" my fan page that would be a great marketing boost for me.

Thank you for reading my blog and here's to 


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Happy Holidays!

Hair Queen News

The holiday season is here! I love this time of year and hope you are enjoying the sights, sounds, and smells of the season. I know it is only a few days into December but this month is so fun but goes by in a flash. So take some time to soak in the holiday spirit! Savor it, I know I will.

This year has really been amazing and I just want to take the time to thank all of you, whether friends, salon clients, or business colleagues, each of you have contributed in some way to my year and I deeply appreciate each and every one of you. I wish you all a joyful and blessed holiday season with your loved ones. In order to enjoy my loved ones a bit, I will be on vacation from Swans Studios from December 23 thru December 29.

Product of the Month

With the holiday season comes all the glorious holiday events so in honor of that my December product special is 10% off all shine products. Add some shine to your holiday do with Pearl Shine Hair Spray. Anyone who comes into Swans Studios in December will receive 10% off all shine product purchases.







Story of the Month

Over the weekend I learned about a new trend this holiday season focused on the GIVING SEASON. As we all know there is Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and now a more honorable tradition of Giving Tuesday. Now I know Giving Tuesday was a few days ago but I really loved the idea of a national charge to really enhance giving this year among all the consumer driven advertising. Don't get me wrong, I love to shop as much as the next person, so the geniuses over at NPR put together an incredible list of products that when purchased, the funds go to some really worthy causes. I hope this inspires you in your gift giving this season to buy products that have impact. Click here to read the NPR article.


Runs Businesses With Scissors

And finally a note to my consulting clients, it is not too late to plan for 2015.  Is it time to adjust your prices, change your schedule, relocate, add a service, a product, expand or downsize your business? You get the idea and you don't have to do it alone.Contact me directly to set up a consulting session to plan your best year ever. Together we can implement those goals you have been wanting to achieve.  Remember, in order to grow your business, you need to work on your business as well as in your business.  Last year my goal was to grow my overall business by at least 10%, I achieved that goal on November 29th, one month ahead of schedule! Let's prosper together in 2015!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

What Do You Have to be Grateful For this Year?

"He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has." ~Epictetus

This time of year always gets me in a reflective mood. With the holiday season approaching and making plans to see my friends, family, and other loved ones I try to take a moment each day for gratitude. As I suspect it may be the same with you, I can get very stressed and exhausted this time of year trying to balance my work life and my personal life. I love to attend and host parties and events, but even for me an extroverted Leo, I can get overwhelmed trying to juggle the holiday season along with running my businesses.  

This month I am committed to focusing on gratitude. I plan to take moments throughout my day to take a few deep breaths, calm my body and soul, and reflect on all the amazing and wonderful aspects of my life that I have to be thankful for. This really helps me function on a better level, keeps me focused but relaxed, and gives me the energy to serve my clients and to enjoy my friends and family.

I encourage each of you as you go about your busy lives to take some time each day to relax, breathe, and reflect. Is it the beautiful setting? Is it the fact that your family and friends are hopefully happy and healthy this year? Whatever it is that you have to be grateful for, let it fill your soul with good vibes. Don’t let the holiday stress machine beat you down.

As I reflect on this past year I am overwhelmed with gratitude for Swans Studios.  I love seeing my hair and consulting clients in my studio space and having colleagues to work alongside; it is the perfect co-working space.  As we go into our second year at Swans Studios I am enjoying the pace, and planning for the future.  Yes it is that time of year, to plan for 2015!   Stay tuned for news for next year. 


Product of the Month

In the meantime, one quick reminder let’s shop local this year! I know I mentioned it in last month’s blog but please encourage your neighbors and friends to do the same and support our local small businesses this shopping season, especially on Black Friday. In the spirit of shopping,  I’m running a new product special in November on all my brushes and styling tools. If you come in for a visit this month all brushes and styling tools are 10% off. These make great gifts for stocking stuffers! 

Hair Queen News

Its time to book now for holiday hair! Make sure if you want to get into the studio to see me for a special holiday event, please book now. My schedule is filling up very quickly. Visit www.suzannevanhouten.com to book an appointment today. If you have questions or can't find a time that works for you please email me at suzanne@suzannevanhouten.com

Runs Businesses With Scissors News

And finally I am feeling very inspired as I just attended an all day workshop at East Bay Score focused on the subject of How to Start or Improve Your Consulting Business.  I am excited to share what I learned with my consulting clients.  All small business owners juggle several roles and as a long time business owner and hairstylist I have been in your shoes.  My coaches and mentors have helped me navigate my path to success.  Are you ready for the holiday season and to think ahead to 2015?  Let's work on your plan to increase your profits in 2015! Call me at 510-545-2955 or email me suzanne@suzannevanhouten.com to book a consulting session.