Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brittany Gainsley, Founder of Brittany Gainsley Beauty, located in Stillwater, MN, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I am a licensed hair stylist, makeup artist, and owner of Brittany Gainsley Beauty. I offer on-site hair styling and makeup for a variety of occasions and looks, including weddings, styled shoots, headshots, events, and family photos, just to name a few. My specialties are natural to natural glam makeup and elegant and boho style updos, but I am trained in and love to do a variety of different looks. I am also licensed in various salon services to add to my client's experience, including haircuts, custom colors, and hair extensions.

My services are for anyone that wants to look and feel their best in front of the camera, at a special event, or in their daily life. All kind-hearted humans are always welcome in my chair.

Tell us about yourself

I was always the go-to beauty friend growing up. I loved all things fashion, hair, and makeup, so it was no surprise when I attended cosmetology school. I started working in a salon in 2010 and spent the next few years really learning my trade. I had an amazing mentor who worked in the salon and did freelance hair and makeup work. I spent the next few years assisting on photoshoots, doing countless weddings, and honing my skills. I loved every minute of it, but I knew I wanted to go out on my own. I wanted more freedom to charge what I wanted, book the jobs I loved to do and spend time with my family on my schedule. The clients I work with motivate me every day. I know that is a corny thing to say, but it's true. Often, I get to share once-in-a-lifetime moments with people, and I am always honored they choose me to be such an important part of it. Some have the most inspiring stories and interesting lives. There is no better feeling than making someone feel beautiful.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

First, I would say just still being here post-pandemic is a huge accomplishment on its own. But building a business in a location where you just moved to and didn't grow up is hard. I did not have much for friends, family, or clients to get me started. I really built it up from nothing. I am very proud of that.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Work-life balance has to be the number one hardest thing about being a business owner. I try hard to keep a good balance, but it is a work in progress. You wear a lot of hats, and sometimes I forget to take them off. You don't just have to know your craft. You have to know accounting, social media, photography, and web design; the list goes on and on. You really have to have some serious self-discipline and a love for learning.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Find something you already love to do. It hardly feels like work when you are enjoying it.
  2. Be prepared to put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into it. You won't get "paid" for most of the hard work, but the sense of accomplishment is worth it.
  3. Don't listen to the haters! You can do it

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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