Senior graduate returns home to open salon
Graduate graduate and owner of Hello Beautiful Salon, Kaylee Ray, sort of stumbled upon a career as a hairstylist.
âHonestly, this is something that came about by chance. I’ve always loved doing makeup and everything, but I never thought of it as a career, âRay explained.
After completing her graduate studies in 2017, she continued her education at the University of Montana with a major in Commerce. Following an unfortunate turn of events, Ray knew she needed to be away from college for a while.
She said, “I didn’t want to waste a year so I went to cosmetology school to get a good job to help pay for my college education and then I fell in love with it.”
Ray completed his cosmetology training at the Bitterroot School of Cosmetology and decided not to look back. Looking back, she remarked, âWithout this event I would never have thought of this as a career, so I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason. I really enjoy every minute so I have never been back.
Last September, she opened her own salon in her hometown of Superior. Hello Beautiful Salon offers hairstyling services for men and women from cuts, colors and balayage. She also offers eyelash extensions, eyelash and brow tint, facial hair removal, and basic facial.
âGrowing up, my mom and I always had our nails done together, which is a great basic memory for spending time together. But I also had my hair done, I loved trying different colors, âRay explained.
Spending much of her childhood at Superior, she felt lucky to have connections with a small town and local support when she opened her salon.
Ray shared, âGrowing up here I knew a lot of people so the living room space was pretty easy to access. I wasn’t looking anywhere else. I was rather attached to Superior because with other stylists here retiring it seemed like a great opportunity with the timing.
One of her biggest challenges to date is building a clientele, but she feels she has a good balance between young and old. Ray also noted, âFinding the hours that work during the week with myself, as well as with students and workers. Learn to say no and keep limits so that I don’t work 7 long days but sometimes that’s the first thing to do to start a business.
Despite the struggles of her early days, Ray feels like she is doing something she loves.
She expressed, âI would absolutely say this is a passion of mine. I love meeting new people, and it’s crazy how the slightest thing like a flattering haircut or adding eyelashes can make someone a lot more confident. I like this. Improving functionality, making someone feel more confident and more beautiful makes it really enjoyable.
She appreciates that every day at the show is new. Ray said, âI love the variety of everything, never make my days boring because it’s always different. Some days are better than others, but that’s with any career.
Regarding returning to her roots in her hometown and establishing a life and career in Superior, Ray is grateful. âIt’s really refreshing to be able to have a salon in the city where I grew up. I love Montana and love the laid back energy here. Everyone has been so kind and supportive, it’s incredible, âshe added.
Right now, her career goals are to continue developing her clientele and maybe eventually another stylist will join her at Hello Beautiful. Ray said, “Building a job where you can be responsible for your time and everything is such a blessing to have.”
Rays’ mission for each of its clients is to help them feel welcome and develop their self-esteem. She shared, âI really hope all of my clients feel like the living room is inviting, comfortable, with good energy. I hope they will feel more beautiful and more confident by the time they leave. On top of that, they know they can come if they need a little help. Let them know that they can trust me and feel comfortable with me to render their service without hesitation.
In just a few short months, Ray feels secure in the future of the show. She said, âI absolutely believe my business will continue to do well at Superior. I think this is something we all need to be able to take care of and cleanse ourselves without having to drive to Missoula to be able to do it.
To get an appointment for a haircut, she would like to remind her clients: âMy schedules fluctuate from day to day because they are only appointments. Some days I’m there at 8am, some days I stay there until 8pm â
But starting January 1, Ray will be available Wednesday through Saturday. The best way to reach me is to text or call 406-515-9100, or message her on her Facebook or Instagram page at Hello Beautiful Salon MT. She frequently posts her availability a few weeks in advance to help with planning.