MERIDEN — Two former classmates have come together to open their own skin-focused businesses in a South Broad Street storefront.
Carmen Roach’s The Dapper Gentleman & Elegant Lady and Tasha Pye’s Brows by Design TLC fill the space at 425 S. Broad St., formerly Edible Arrangements.
“This has been an adventure,” Roach said. The two opened for business in early June and are preparing for a formal ribbon cutting in late September.
The women met while studying esthiology at the Paul Mitchell School in North Haven and joined forces when finding the space too large for just one spa business.
While both women offer facials and chemical peels, they also have their own niches in the skin care and beauty worlds.
Roach’s The Dapper Gentlemen & The Elegant Lady caters to men, in addition to the traditional female clients.
The 41-year-old Branford resident offers body treatments, facials, waxing, and airbrush tanning.
In September, she will also start providing men’s shaving, trimming and shading, on top of facials and body treatments made specifically for men. Roach will travel to Ireland this year to train for a certificate in beard trimming and shaving.
“I'm finding more and more... there are some men out there that are more inclined to take care of their skin,” Roach said.
She said the majority of her male clients come in because a woman in their life recommended it, but more men are starting to seek out treatments themselves.
She recommends an express facial for spa-newcomers — male or female — to get a feel for what’s going to happen. The facial is about 30 minutes and doesn't include steam or extractions or facial massages.
“It's just really good deep cleanse, a light exfoliation,” Roach said.
“It's kind of like healthcare. If we're relatively healthy and exercise and take care of our body, it does well for us,” Roach added. “It's getting people to just take care of their skin.”
Pye, 37, is an army services veteran and certified tattoo artist living in Wallingford. While she doesn’t do traditional tattoos, she’s trained in microblading, which uses ink to draw on natural-looking, semi-permanent eyebrows.
“Once you’re sick of putting on your makeup… it’s tedious, it’s time consuming and expensive… the women invest in their eyebrows one time and do zero maintenance,” Pye said. “My whole philosophy is wash your face and go.”
Microblading lasts up to three years and can be helpful for both men and women. She said she’s designed and created eyebrows for clients from their 20s to their 80s.
She said the custom brow can help frame a face or make someone look more awake or fresh. One client cried when she saw how much it changed her face in such a good way.
“It’s rewarding to help somebody feel wonderful about themselves,” Pye said.
Pye said she is continuing to learn new techniques and will be able to offer powder ombre brows as well.