organic salon helped her realize something greater than her childhood dream: a chance to boost women's self-esteem and help the environment.
The vibe in , is serene and peaceful. The spa is dressed in earth tones, bamboo décor and soothing music. Flowing, white curtains frame the entrance to the spa's main area and its four treatment rooms.
In the center of the spacious spa, a low-rising bamboo table and chairs sets a natural and relaxed atmosphere. Guests can plan spa parties, complete with individualized treatments and catered food.
In each room, vases of flowers, white robes, soft lighting and muted colors set the stage for private get-aways. And to each guests surprise, a bright orchid rests on each snowy white pillow.
The salon is Holland's childhood dream.
The road wasn't a straight forward path, though in retrospect, it's a natural choice for someone who longed to own a hair salon.
As a fourth-grader, Holland wrote about her goal to be a hair stylist. Later, she became the go-to friend for hair and makeup whenever her girlfriends had a big night out.
When Holland graduated from , she wanted to go to cosmotology school. Her parents wanted her to attend college and get a degree- something that would secure her future.
Holland majored in business and after college became a corporate business analyst.
“I was happy. It was a good job and I traveled all over,” Holland said.
After a stressful period of working sixteen weekends in a row, Holland realized she wasn’t living her dream.
“I started thinking, what was I doing? This wasn’t what I wanted,” Holland said.
She traded corporate life for a fresh start on her childhood dream. Though it wasn't easy to convince her family and friends she was making the right choice. They thought it was making a huge mistake.
A concerned co-worker called and questioned her sanity. "How can she leave corporate life to cut hair," asked a friend.
Holland knew the beauty career involved more than snipping locks, even if her friends didn't see the bigger picture.
In the midst of making her dream a reality, her life long allergies and skin sensitivities erupted worse than she’d ever experienced.
“My knuckles would crack and bleed. I’d go home on Saturday night and wrap my hands,” Holland said.
“About the time they were healed, it would be Saturday again and it would start all over. I started thinking I had made the wrong choice,” she said.
Not willing to toss in the towel, Holland researched salon ingredients and looked for healthier options. That’s when she discovered organics.
“I started offering my clients the organic color system. Some switched,” she said.
When the majority of her clients had made the switch to organic, Holland realized that it wasn’t a big enough change to help her allergies.
“Everyone else in the salon was using regular color. I knew if I was going to do this, I had to have my own salon. That’s the only way everything would be organic,” Holland said.
Holland opened Midori Salon and Spa three and a half years ago. Though the word "organic" is trendy these days, the term is serious for Holland.
“I’m very picky… a manufacturer can add just one organic ingredient to their formula and call it organic,” says the savvy salon owner.
Not only can a single ingredient meet the organic label requirements, the ingredient only needs to be seventy percent organic to qualify.
Holland only uses products that are certified organic, a more rigorous analysis. It certifies everything in the product, from start to finish, is organic.
“They look at the plants, from how they’re planted, produced … all the way through manufacturing,” Holland said.
She examines the entire product and asks herself, does the product use minimal packaging and soy ink? What's the company's environmental philosophy and commitment?
“Everything we use can be reused. It’s less waste and cleaner,” Holland said.
Holland's dedication to organic inspired her to donate funds to Largo’s , where designers create fashion from resuable materials. This year, her contributions were honored with a at l.
Chatting in the lobby in one of the salon's director chairs, Holland feels the salon is truly her dream-come-true.
“This is a phenomenal profession. It’s so great to be able to do something where you help women feel better about themselves. It’s about their self-esteem. I can help a woman who has cancer, or thinning hair, who didn't think she could get her hair done. Now, she can [with], and she leaves here feeling better about herself," Holland said.
"What other profession can you spend your entire day making women feel better?” she said.