The Boss Babe of James Street South

Kylie Campbell wasn’t always passionate about fixing bad eyebrows, but after reaching her dream of interning at Fashion Television, her plans changed.

“I was 21 years old I think, and I got to my goal and what my whole dream was,” Campbell says. “And I was like, ‘Oh my God what I am I going to do? I hate this.’” After realizing that working in television wasn’t for her, she moved to Toronto and decided to go to school to study special effects makeup.

To support herself during school, she began applying for jobs at spas. A receptionist position eventually opened up at a spa that focused solely on eyebrows so Campbell went in with her application.

“The woman who owned the business was Native, and said that she was good at reading people’s auras,” she remembers. The owner told Campbell that she should be doing brows, not makeup.

For two months they kept in contact and Campbell would come to the spa for brow training where she learned shaping and tinting.

“It was a month of drawing eyebrows on a piece of paper,” she says.

From there, Campbell moved back to Hamilton where she began doing brows from her parents’ kitchen. Just from doing that, she ended up with more than 200 clients. When it became too hectic doing brows from home, she walked over to a hair salon called The Parlour where she asked the owner if she could rent space.

“And that was that,” she says.

After working at The Parlour for a couple years and learning how to microblade brows, Campbell opened up her own business, The Brown Room, located on Hamilton’s trendy James St. South. Now, this boss babe is bringing together women from the community to create the ultimate girl gang.

Taking care of business

“Honestly if I never met Kylie, I wouldn’t be where I am right now,” says Stephanie Lynch, owner of The Mystic Peach sugaring and spray-tanning. Lynch says that because of Campbell, she was able to quit her 9-5 job and become her own boss.

It’s been almost three years since Campbell launched The Brow Room, and she’s created quite the following. Campbell rents space to other women entrepreneurs in the community.

Lynch says the women working at The Brow Room inspire girls in Hamilton.

“Their goal is to become a group of the same type of entrepreneurs, and become a boss babe group themselves,” Lynch says.

The Brow Room houses three women, including Campbell, who work for themselves as they build up their own businesses. Campbell covers all things brows as well as lash lift and tints, Lynch offers spray tanning, sugaring, brow shaping and tinting and Holly De Marchi is a hair extension technician running Hamilton Hair Extension Loft. Last February their team expanded with a permanent makeup artist.

“Supporting women that are the best at what they do,” Campbell says, “that’s my favourite part about any of it.”

Puppy love

But there’s more to Campbell than just fixing bad eyebrows. Campbell is also a philanthropist. If a client cancels a microblading appointment at the last minute, she keeps the $100 deposit and donates it to Ladybird Animal Sanctuary. Brow shaping and tinting cancellation fees also get donated, as well as cash tips.

“If anyone has a problem with donating to save an animal, see ya,” she says.

Campbell has worked closely with Ladybird for years, not only donating to neglected animals but even fostering some.

Kylie Campbell with her dog Buster.

 

Her most recent foster is Buster, a small, white, curly-haired dog.

“He was so malnourished,” she says, “he had no fur, he was covered in open sores.”  After spending the last year helping him get healthy and trying to figure out what his allergies are, she decided to adopt him. Campbell even had him registered as an emotional support dog so he could spend his days with her.

“He’s not sitting at home waiting for me when I work 10- or 12-hour days,” she says. But Buster does more than just lounge around The Brow Room all day, he’s also there to help relax clients who may be nervous about having a needle jabbed into their eyebrows.

The beauty fads

Campbell says the beauty industry is all about fads. When she first began doing brows everyone who came to her had over-plucked, thin brows. But over the last few years, that’s changed. Now, thick, bushy brows are on trend, and more people than ever have their own microblading businesses.

“You can get your brows done at the gas station,” Campbell says.

Despite the growing trend of brow shops on every corner, Campbell isn’t worried. She says there’s more than enough to go around and “the more you hustle, the better you’ll do.” At the end of the day, there are more important things than good eyebrows or personal gain, like supporting women, saving animals and being an all-around boss.

 

About the author  ⁄ Pearl Barclay-Currie

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