Meet Sarah Collins of Lucky Locks
After I graduated college in 2009, I took my first full-time job at an ad agency as a graphic designer & photographer. I quickly realized the 9-5-at-a-desk type of job wasn’t for me, so after three years of that, I quit and traveled solo around Europe for several months.
During that time, I discovered a lot of energy and drive within myself I didn’t know I had, and it gave me the courage to start dreaming about what self-employment would look like for me when I got home. But I returned with no money and a need for health insurance, so I shoved away all the dreams and courage I built up and took another corporate job doing design on the marketing team of a large footwear brand — which set me back with 2.5 years of anxiety and depression, knowing I had betrayed myself and was now building a life in the opposite direction of where my passions were pointing me.
I had kept up a little freelance design and photography work on the side of my full-time job, so when I got laid off a few years later, my boat was hardly rocked… it was actually an answer to prayer and I had no choice but to take this window of opportunity to get back on the track of my dreams.
So, I built up Neon Grounds — a tiny visual marketing studio. And even though I was working at a desk far more than 40 hours a week, I began to feel freedom and energy pulsating in my life again. I felt myself growing at a rapid rate, learning and stretching so much from building out this company. It was hard, but it was fun. I loved each challenge that was presented to me, and I loved solving problems even more.
Over the four years of running Neon Grounds, I began craving more human interaction and tangible creating than what the career of digital marketing was offering me. I wasn’t actively trying to make a professional pivot, but it just happened, and here’s how… An hour away from where I lived, I met a whimsical woman who shared my name and passion for magic and beauty, and she asked me to work alongside her to put sparkles in people’s hair. “Sounds fun” I simply thought. I had no idea it would have taken over my life in the way it has. It started just as I originally thought — simply something for fun. I had the time, and it fulfilled my need to connect face to face with others, to do something non-digital with my hands, all the while still doing what I did best — sharing beauty.
In 2016 Lucky Locks was born out of the serendipitous convergence of my growing needs and passions. Putting sparkles in people’s hair for appointments rolled into an amazing event partnership with Nordstrom, which rolled into more corporate partnerships with brands like DryBar, Lululemon, Macy’s, Google, Squarespace, Kiehl’s, Victoria’s Secret, Prana, Dillard’s and more, which grew into excitement and inquiries from salons and individuals asking how they could be a part of Lucky Locks. So I built the Partner and the Salon Program to pull more people into this magical world.
The Partner Program is the heart of the company — offering those with my same dream of self-employment the opportunity to run a successful and fun business… all without having to do the hard work of the branding, the marketing, the product sourcing, the problem solving, etc. Because the path of entrepreneurship has grown me so much, I wanted more than anything to create a way for people to experience that same growth in confidence, contentment, professionalism, and in their community connections.
I’m proud to say that two years after the Partner and Salon Programs were launched, we now have a total of 34 Partners & 16 Salons in 15 states and across three countries. Our goal for 2020 is to provide Lucky Locks in every major city in every state across the US. If you know of an individual who could use this self-employment opportunity in a state (or even a country) we have not yet established, please send them to our website to inquire about becoming a Partner of our brand!
No road is perfectly smooth, and it wouldn’t be an adventure if it were! Since beginning, we’ve been so lucky to have great exposure through our corporate partnerships, but it has also triggered individuals (former friends, former clients, and complete strangers) who have tried to piggyback off of the hard work we have done. Yes, they do say imitation is the highest form of flattery, but it doesn’t feel so flattering when your work is plagiarized in a way that causes brand confusion and potential harm to your business.
Because of my background in design and photography, I’ve worked hard to create a unique voice for Lucky Locks’ brand, so it has felt especially violating when you find your photography pulled and advertised with by another company or individual, or you notice a similar business with a twist in your brand name, or your website copy duplicated, falsely advertising a lower quality product that looks very similar to yours.
Lucky Locks is several things:
1. We are a hair sparkling service for appointments and a unique, interactive experience for events.
2. We provide a fun and magical self-employment opportunity to the entrepreneurially motivated.
3. We supply and train stylists with our high-quality product and installation method.
Lucky Locks is known for supplying the highest quality, longest-lasting, most durable silk-based hair sparkle you can find on the market. We call our product “hair sparkles” rather than “hair tinsel,” as tinsel is a cheaper plastic-based product that is rigid, unnatural looking, does not always stand up to the heat and chemicals we often subject our hair to, and only lasts up to a few weeks in hair. Lucky Locks can be heat and chemically treated with no effect to the strands, goes with the flow of your hair no matter the texture, and generally lasts for several months up to a year for our clients. We also carry the largest range of colors of hair sparkles on the market — there are over 30 colors currently in our line-up.
We have spent much time perfecting our installation method as well as sourcing a quality product that looks great while in your hair and will biodegrade after you shed the strands. We also spend months testing our strands before supplying them to the public, to ensure that every new color we release is as quality as the last. We are proud of each and every one of our Partners and the respect they hold for their clientele and the energy they each pour into their craft and their business.
Success to me is earned trust within your community (whether that be friends, business partners, clientele, etc.) Success also is constant growth and not letting speed bumps stop you from forging forward because there will always be speed bumps along the way. Success is when you choose to let challenges make you better, not bitter.