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Meet Carli Cunningham

Today we’d like to introduce you to Carli Cunningham. 

Hi Carli, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstories with our readers?
I began my career as a stylist in 2012 working as an assistant in south Overland Park, Ks. From there I decided to join the Beauty Brands family to gain more clients and take extended education. I helped open the Beauty Brands Salon and Spa in Shawnee, KS in 2015. I continued my education there with their monthly classes and started to branch out with doing wedding hair and makeup. I have a passion for helping people and weddings have an entirely different vibe! During this busy time of branching out, I decided to also become a flight attendant. I joined the Southwest family in 2017 while also working behind the chair with beauty brands. I love people and this was right up my alley. Working as a flight attendant helped me understand people in a completely different environment and it helped me apply that behind the chair. I said a little prayer and took a leap to start booth renting behind the chair in 2019. Renting my own spot was a scary thing, but my fiancé is the brains behind the finances and one of my biggest supporters (along with my family and friends) with pushing me to reach my goals. He’s truly the best. I rented a small room in Overland Park, Ks inside Phenix Salon Suites (the owners are amazing), and had several ups and downs with juggling my own space, inventory on what I wanted to use for color, and of course my other career I took on, flying. I decided to take a step back from flying midway through 2019 and then the pandemic hit in 2020. I pushed myself harder than ever in 2020 to be the best I could be for my clients and myself and learned so much about who I am and what I really wanted in life. I took numerous online education classes to stay up to date with the trends on hair and finally got my favorite color line I wanted to use down. This entire journey led me to where I am today and I’m not stopping here! I finally took the leap to expand my own salon with three chairs and a private space for an esthetician, massage therapist, or lash artist to have in 2021. I am now located in the historic downtown Parkville area on Main St. I wanted not only a safe space and relaxing environment for my clients but an unforgettable experience that leaves them feeling good about themselves and the work I have done on their hair/lashes/wedding. I couldn’t be more proud of myself and everyone who helped me get to where I am today. I truly have the best clients, family, and friends consistently pushing me to achieve my goals. 

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
Some of my biggest struggles have been figuring out exactly what color line and products I feel is best for my clients. There are so many great options out there. Another struggle I have had and learned from is scheduling and making time for myself. 

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I specialize in Balayage lived in color, Lash extensions, Hand-tied hair extensions, and Wedding Hair and Makeup. I am very proud of extending my education to learn more things so I can offer them to my clients. I’ve had to learn to not jump into everything at once or my work will be mediocre. I want my clients to have the best experience and that starts with them walking in my front door. They trust me to make their hair, lashes, and even their wedding day amazing and that’s what I strive to do each and every time. 

Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
I listen to a lot of podcasts such as Thriving Stylist. I would say the most inspirational professional person who has really pushed me to find my creative side would be Sarai Speer (the platinum giraffe). She’s an amazing artist and human being. 

Contact Info:

Image Credits:

Swander photography

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1 Comment

  1. Carol McCrary

    November 4, 2021 at 1:32 pm

    Oh, Carli!
    You are amazing! As one of your 100 St. Joe moms, I am SO proud of you. Congratulations, sweetie. Onward & upward💚

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