Cosmetic Studio Owner, Giselle Burgos, On Self-Employment And Finding Purpose

Estimated reading time ~ 4 min
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Giselle Burgos, Owner of Fancy Faces

Quaint and cozy, Fancy Faces NYC resides in the heart of Greenpoint, Brooklyn on a residential Java Street. For Giselle Burgos, founder and owner of the cosmetic service company, location and convenience was the most important way for her to connect with her clients and deliver the experience that they deserve. “I used to work out of my home, in Williamsburg, but I wanted people to have a more well-rounded experience when they came to me and I decided that renting a studio space was the best way to build professionalism,” said Giselle.

Amid an ever-changing beauty industry and a global conglomerate often relying on superficiality, Giselle has managed to create an inclusive space where people of all backgrounds and beauty regimens can feel comfortable. Her entire mission is about accessibility and creating looks for people based on their own beauty. She focuses on keeping looks natural and adding her dose of expertise to the beauty that she sees in her clients by bringing it out of them so they can feel fancy in their own right.

“I initially started Fancy Faces because I was tired of working for someone else. I wanted to offer the world something I was passionate about.”

Giselle has been doing her own eyebrows for years and always knew that she wanted to empower women through beauty. After several trainings and certifications, she began her journey—offering natural cosmetic services including, but not limited to: microblading, brow lamination, freckles, brow grooming, training, and she continues to expand.

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On a busy weekday, I left the Jopwell office excited to get my eyebrows done by a familiar face and I got so much more from the experience than a few hairs tweezed off my eyelids.

Not “small,” “modest.” The space is decorated with a huge neon sign that reads “Fancy Faces,” which she crowdfunded by one day jokingly writing on her Instagram story that she wanted a sign and adding her cash app account in the caption. “Neon signs are so expensive, but I really wanted one and I wanted to decorate my new space so it looked like a studio that people could feel comfortable in,” said Giselle. “I didn’t think people would actually donate and help me get one.” Giselle laughed and began speaking about how overwhelmingly amazing it has been to receive the support that she has gotten. But it has also taken hard work, patience, and many challenges to sustain her entrepreneurial journey.

As I lay back in her dental-like chair with my head tilted and eye’s closed, we began discussing a myriad of topics, like the feedback that she has received, her “regulars,” and how she’s working on being more open about her life experience and being more present on social media as a small business owner. Day’s before, she did her first photoshoot and it was one of the most challenging things that she’s done.

“I am not the type of person who likes to be on the forefront, but I know for my business that I need to do more of that.” said Giselle. “I’m too hypercritical of myself so I’d rather not do those things. The whole time I was thinking about what I would have worn differently.”

20 minutes go by after a careful brow cleanup and it’s time for my "brow lamination." Giselle uses organic products for all of her services, and right away asked me if I had any allergies—something I’ve never been asked before while getting my eyebrows done. I wasn’t able to get the walnut treatment, but the coconut oil moisturizer sufficed. I haven’t had my eyebrows done in months and as someone who is always nervous when people touch them, I was pleasantly surprised at the big reveal—cleaned and full with natural shape still intact. Beyond the end product being satisfactory, the service is what enthralled me.

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Although challenging, Giselle has figured out her business strategy and after months of planning she finally feels solid, but in the wake of COVID-19, she’s completely shifted her focus, which has forced her to put on her creative marketing hat. “Since I can't physically work, I've been thinking of ways to keep my clients connected to the brand. This current pause has caused me to really explore the different things I can digitally offer,” said Giselle. “I think the biggest thing that has kept me afloat and sane is sharing knowledge. Little fun facts have increased engagement and the feedback I've received has been great. It has allowed me to connect with new potential clients and existing ones. I've also been offering virtual consultations where I ask for a clear picture and draw on the eyebrow shape that fits best.”

In times like this, self-employed people are in a position where they have to think creatively in order to sustain their business. “I personally feel it's a bit selfish to push sales during this time as everyone is so uncertain of the future, so right now I'm focused on educating as much as I can and connecting with people,” said Giselle. Although it’s been a challenging few weeks for her, she’s trying her best to stay positive with daily affirmations and recognizing her accomplishments.

The self-proclaimed introvert has found her calling in enhancing natural beauty through permanent makeup and innovative services. Her goal continues to be to make women and all people feel fancy with the smallest of difference even on bad days.

How can you support Fancy Faces? Follow on Instagram.

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