Interview With Jessica Stuart, Owner & Founder of Glowgetters Custom Spray Tans

  • Published on:
    April 17, 2022
  • Reading time by:
    5 minutes

Glowgetters is all about promoting positivity and lifting women up.

Originally from Maine, Stuart moved to Los Angeles in her early 20s to try something new. In LA Jessica Stuart discover her passion for spray tanning. Her clients included reality stars, guests on late-night talk shows, athletes, and more.

And when she moved back to her hometown something felt like a death sentence to her. Stuart bought all the equipment to bring spray tans to her hometown and struck out bad her first try. After regrouping during quarantine and figuring out a marketing technique Stuart relaunched in February 2021. She built her business on lifting women up and empowering them for their big events or their daily lives. 

Since February 2021, Jessica Stuart has had 1400 different clients walk through her doors, 302 of them were brides. Stuart saved every penny she made and opened her own salon in August. Jessica Stuart proudly expanded within the building last month for a private spray tan party room and offers party rentals of the vintage furniture and cool decorations that are in her salon. Later in the journey, Stuart started to receive many spray tanning requests and wishes from her out of town clients. 

‘’I started my search for a self tanner that wasn’t orange. I got samples from many labs, brands, private label companies and almost gave up’’.

Stuart finally found a color that she could say was perfect. She teamed up with a YouTuber in the area and launched Rylee jade by Glowgetters on February 1st and sold out in less than 2 days. You can purchase or have a look at the collection via glowgetter207.com.

‘’I’ve had a ton of influencers reach out to me to try my self tanner and I am so excited to see how far this beautiful color will reach. Meanwhile our private spray tan salon for bridal parties is almost completely booked for 2022. I want it all. I want everything this life has to offer me and I won’t stop until I have it. I built this business on lifting women up and in return all of my clients have lifted me up. I feel like I have 1400 people cheering me on every time I get tired or frustrated and want to give up. 2021 was the best year of my life but 2022 is already giving it a run for its money.’’

Tell us about your business of spray tan and teeth whitening salon what makes it so unique? 

Glowgetters is more than just a place to get your tan and teeth whitened. Everyone who comes in the door becomes a friend. I try to promote positivity in our lives. Positivity for yourself and positivity for the other women around you. I am everyone’s hype girl and because of that I have 1500 clients that are hyping me up for every move I make.  That energy comes back full circle. 

What was your thought process behind starting your own business? 

Before I opened there were only booth spray tans in my hometown. Booths give you 4 passes and you’re done but real bodies have rolls and curves and 4 passes isn’t going to cover their entire body. I wanted to open a place for all bodies, all ages, all skin complexions to come and get a spray tan that is handmixed for them that is carefully applied to their entire body and where they can leave feeling glowy and beautiful. 

How did you first become interested beauty industry? 

I was an avid tanning bed user for years. I worked at a couple of tanning bed/ spray tan salons and I really took a lot of interest in the business side of things. I managed a salon in West Hollywood and after I had my son and moved back to Maine I just knew that it was my calling. I have always loved being tan but now with spray tanning, I’m able to educate people and also give them a beautiful color. 

Did you have any setbacks, challenges, or epiphanies along the way? 

Oh definitely. When I first moved back to Maine I could not give a tan away. I was so confused on marketing. There’s only a big chain booth tan in the area and they give their tans away 6 weeks a year. I felt like I had to compete with their prices and I had to undercut them and then I could raise my prices when people saw how good my tans were.  I cringe thinking about posts I made “cheap and affordable spray tans only $20” I was losing money and who really wants the cheapest tan in town?! That sounds awful. During covid I think we all did some self reflecting. I was on Pinterest looking at spray tan business posts when I saw one that said “market for the clients you want not the ones you have.” That moment really felt like an ah hah moment for me. I stopped using cheap, affordable language in my posts and started marketing myself as a luxury tan… and my books started filling. 

Tell us about your work? You have your own salon. How did you decide to take the leap to work for yourself? What are some of the greatest accomplishments thus far?

I quickly outgrew the room I was renting in the hair salon, I had at least 100 clients a week coming in.. and spray tanning appointments are fast 30 minutes or less in and out. Hair salons are longer services and the energy just wasn’t the same. I had started carrying retail products at this point and I was running out of space in the small room to put it. I was totally terrified to go out on my own but it came to the point when I realized that I was going to start losing clients if I didn’t find a bigger spot.  Luckily I spray tan a few realtors and once I had made the decision I had to get my own spot I had found one within two weeks.  My salon is definitely one of the biggest accomplishments I have so far. I had been embarrassed of my tiny overcrowded space for months and I was really focused on providing a luxury experience. I had taken on two assistants to help with teeth whitening and spray tanning at that point so I had help when I moved into the space.. the transformation photos are really something. We worked so hard on that salon. I had an artist from Boston come and do a skin tone mural on the ceiling and the plant shop came in to make the waiting room into a jungle feel. When we opened the salon the news came in for an interview and I would say that day was just pure bliss. To see everything come together after all the hard work was a dream come true. 

What are you working on currently and why? 

I spray tanned just under 300 brides last year for the wedding season. People came from different states and hours away to get a spray tan with me that was totally flawless for their big day. I kept getting asked if there was a self tanner that I suggested for them to use back home.. and there wasn’t. Self tanners are notoriously orange but I hated to say no. I started searching for a self tanner I could retail in my salon.. I tried so many. I reached out to private label companies to try their self tanners and I was disappointed every time. Finally I found a lab that was skilled and willing to make the perfect formula.. and we did. We made a self tanning mousse that looks great with all skin tones.  I played with color combos and levels of dha until it was absolutely perfect. I put a slimming additive in the solution that smooths out cellulite and makes it disappear.. it’s the perfect self tanner.. I would put against any big brand any day.  I launched it with Youtube influencer Rylee Jade on February 1st and it sold out in 2 days. It had been less than a year since I made the decision to change my marketing techniques and I sold out my own self tanner.  Our second drop just sold out again. Working on a third drop currently. This stuff is seriously so good.

What is the best advice you can give people wanting a career in beauty salon?  

Always make it about the client experience. You’re in the beauty industry.. aesthetics matter in every aspect. Marketing, salon design.. it is worth going the extra mile to make it a vibe.

What are the company’s plans in the next 5 years? 

I plan to keep developing my own retail line. I already have spray tan safe cleansers and lotions in the works.. I love the quote “the sky was never the limit”. I have seen so much success in the last year that it just motivates me to want more. I have seen what happens when I work hard for something and I plan to keep working harder. I also train and mentor other spray tan artists.. I love helping other women reach their goals. 

If you could go back and tell yourself one thing before beginning your career what would it be? 

I would definitely tell myself to get more organized when it comes to money. I started making more money than I ever had and every day in the salon there was more coming in. When the slower season started I really had to look at my finances. I was playing catch up to get my personal and business finances separated, I had to figure out that in someplace where I thought I was making a good profit I was not. It’s hard when you have to go back through  things.. to start organized is so much easier to maintain. 

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