New Jersey is home to many ambitious and talented women who juggle family, career, and home. A select few of these women are also extremely busy building their own companies to help better manage the balance of work and family. At NJMOM, we want to highlight these extraordinary women building New Jersey businesses, and learn the secret to their success.
Hair Salon Body & Soul Owner, Master Esthetician, &
NJMOMpreneur: Heather Hoffman
Heather Hoffman is a licensed Esthetician and the owner of Hair Salon Body & Soul in New Providence, NJ. Her background in skincare is global; she has traveled the world working with doctors to learn both holistic, natural approaches, as well as medical treatments. After 10 years of working at Hair Salon Body & Soul, she bought the business, and used her own touch to transform it into the modern salon it is today. Understanding the values of the industry’s latest technologies and trends is just part of what makes Heather a successful NJMOMpreneur, but knowing that her daughter, Valentina, is waiting for her at home at the end of each long day of work is what truly keeps her going. NJMOM had the opportunity to speak with Heather about her professional transitions from salon employee to owner, her favorite places to visit in New Jersey with her family, and how she manages it all as a working mom.
NJMOM: What do you offer to your clients and how is it different than other professionals in your field?
Heather: Hair Salon Body & Soul is a full service Salon, Spa & Medispa. We have been in the beauty business for over 35 years now, making us one of the leaders in New Jersey’s beauty industry. About one and a half years ago, we expanded our salon to the brand new, gorgeous 4,000 square foot facilty of my dreams!
We offer all of the latest techniques on the market today. We have every imaginable beauty service, from head to toe, all under one roof. Our hair stylists are all highly trained and certified with the most advanced cutting techniques, including Deva Cuts (a cutting technique used to achieve the most beautiful curls) and Dry Cuts, which can be used to achieve today’s highly desirable look, The Lob (long bob). Our Color Specialists use their creativity with techniques like Balayage (hand-painted), to achieve the highlighted reverse ombre look (light root to dark ends) with high intensity colors, or it can be used to give you a beautiful, natural look with our Organic Color line. We specialize in all types of hair extensions and have the most incredible bridal team that can accommodate any size wedding party. We can even take a professional headshot of you right before you leave the salon, when your hair and makeup is at its absolute freshest. Truly, our designers can give you the look you have always dreamed of with convenience and ease. Our Spa/Medispa has some of the most advanced treatments that you can see any number of celebrities promoting, including The Red Carpet Fire and Ice Facial or the LED light therapy mask with Oxygen and Microcurrent. We customize all of our facials to your individual needs, and I have created many of my own signature treatments that you can only receive with us; my Advanced Acne Facials are known to have the most incredible results. Our Medispa is supervised by our Medical Director. Some of our treatments that are performed are injectables, SkinPen, The Organic Facelift (which is one of my favorites), Lasers like Fraxel, Ultherapy, and one of the most sought out fat reduction treatments on the market today – Coolsculpting!
Our goal is for you to rejuvinate your mind, body, soul, so we encourage you to take a break in our relaxation room while we have one of our Meditation Specialists give you some great breathing and mind clearing exercises. We then would love for you to experience one of our Signature Diamond & Gold or Organic Citrus Pedicures and have our authentic Henna Artist create a tattoo for you that will bring luck and happiness. You can even get a new set of Mink Lashes or do Eyebrow Rehab all on the same day! We have so many more treatments to choose from. When you call, one of our Spa Coordinators create a day of beauty that is customized to how you feel and what is right for you. We want you to walk out out of our salon looking and feeling the best you have in years! There are many salons, spas, and Medispas, but it is very rare to have these three worlds come together all under one roof. That’s what makes The Hair Salon Body & Soul so special!
NJMOM: What inspired you to come up with the idea for your business?
Heather: I was in the beauty business strictly as an esthetician for five years before relocating into a salon atmosphere. After 10 years, I decided to buy the shop from the two male business owners, take on a female business partner, and start my new journey. I realized in those years that times were changing and technology was growing by leaps and bounds, so the Medispa was becoming more and more popular everyday. Here, I was fortunate to have a salon that offered hair and skin services, but we did not offer nails, nor did it even come close to a MediSpa. At that time, there was so much competition – literally a salon on every corner! I knew that my next expansion had to be something so innovative and unique, something so different, that I would have to be one of a kind in order to succeed. I had to create that place, and I sure did!
NJMOM: What is your favorite part about your business?
Heather: I absolutely love seeing the new looks, the smiles, and sometimes even the tears of joy! When someone walks out of the salon so incredibly happy, telling us they have not looked or felt this good in years – that’s what I love about my work. I also love being able to give back to my community in so many ways. I created a new foundation called ReBorn. We give a very deserving person in our community a day to come relax and enjoy our services to help make them look and feel better about themselves. It has already made such a huge impact on so many very deserving people in our community, and I am very proud of it.
I also created a Youth Program in New Providence that teaches life skills to children in grades 7 – 12. I had a pretty rough childhood, so I find it extremely important to instill in kids that anything is possible. I teach them skills and show them things that they will not learn in a traditional school setting. We let the teens know that we are here for them and that we care. We find that they interact with us so openly, because we are not their parents or teacher, but their friends! It has been so fun and rewarding, and I hope I can continue to bring this program to more and more schools one day!
NJMOM: What is your background in your business expertise?
I am an licensed Esthetician by trade, but my expertise, knowledge, and training of the skincare world goes beyond traditional training. I have traveled all over the world learning about different technology and techniques. I am certified in many different treatments that range from organic and natural, to working with medical doctors in skincare. I am extremely knowledgeable with many different product lines and create many of my own treatments with specific specializations, particularly acne treatments. I am in the process of being contracted by a very big pharmaceutical company that would make me their head Esthetician. So I am very proud of my background in skincare, but the funny part is that I have never actually attended any business classes. A lot of our business operation is learned from everyday trial and error; and trust me, we still learn a new lesson every single day!
NJMOM: Who is your role model?
Heather: My mother is definitely my biggest role model. She was a single parent when I was growing up, and she unfortunately had to work seven days a week to feed her four girls. Being the oldest, I always got stuck watching my three little sisters (which I absolutely hated at the time!) but it made me become a very mature kid early on. I developed my amazing work ethic from my mother, and even in the toughest times, and there were many, she always had a smile on – I mean always! Even in the hardest and toughest times she never showed her children the stress she endured. To this day, I always say that she wears rose colored glasses! She will walk by a tree and say, “look how gorgeous the color of the leaves are,” or tells me constantly, “how beautiful it is to be alive.” She just loves her daughters and four grandchildren so unconditionally that it makes me realize every day that there is so much to life and so much to live for!
My mother’s inspiring outlook on life has definitely made me see things through her rose colored glasses.
NJMOM: What’s the best piece of advice your mom ever gave to you?
Heather: As my mom continuously says, just never give up! Since my business started off small, I have faced so many challenges, as so many small business owners will understand, and it can be absolutely grueling with endless nights of sleep, worries about how I am going to pay my next bill or where that next client is coming from. My mom has always been the one to push me and get me through those very tough times by reminding me how strong I am and how I can make it through every challenge by focusing, working hard. And of course, by having faith in God, you can get through anything!
NJMOM: Do you have a favorite quote you live by? Why is this quote so important to you?
Heather: There has been one quote that seems to hit home for me. Of course being in the beauty industry, I respect all the women that made the industry what it is today, and one of those women is Estée Lauder. One of her famous quotes that I love is, “I never dreamed of success -I worked for it!”
Growing up in tough times with money being very tight, I remember as a child some of my friends would get their haircut at a place called The Hair Salon. At the time, it really was the “in” and cool place to go and I used to beg my mom if I could get my haircut there, too. Of course, we could not afford it, so I would have my haircut in my aunt’s basement. In my wildest dreams, not only would I have never expected that I would some day own that little salon, but that I would take it to a whole new level of innovation and make it into one of the biggest and most desirable salon & medispas around! When I look back on my life, those kinds of dreams didn’t exist for me; I never thought it was possible to achieve what I have with growing up without a single penny. With countless hours of hard work, dedication, loving what you do, and a huge amount of moral support from a very loving family, you can achieve the world!
NJMOM: What are your favorite things to do in New Jersey with your family?
Heather: My husband, six-year-old daughter and I are definitely summer people. We make sure that every single Sunday in the summer we get in the car and go somewhere fun! I always read NJMOM.com to find out what’s going on around us and we love the recommendations. It’s so fun to go to places we have never been before and we always end up finding a great new restaurant, too. NJMOM is a huge help in keeping us in the loop of finding amazing things to do. We go to our regular spots like the Turtle Back Zoo or any of New Jersey’s beautiful parks. We love to find a quaint little stream to go fishing or just hang out on a beach and relax!
You know you live in such an amazing place to grow up when every weekend you can find something different to do while enjoying every aspect of what New Jersey has to offer!
NJMOM: What is the best part about being a mom for you?
Heather: After a long hard day, coming home to see the most beautiful smile that I created. When driving home, I can’t wait to step through that door knowing all my problems will go away! My daughter gives me that joy and happiness that I can not get from anywhere else. During the day at work, I go to meetings after meetings, which I do enjoy, but it’s nothing like being the “class mom,” walking into that classroom and seeing your daughters face light up with pure excitement. I was so blessed at age 39 to have her and she is definitely my miracle. I can truly say that I never knew what true love was until I laid my eyes on her, and I continue to love and cherish her more and more each and every moment!
NJMOM: What are your favorite businesses in New Jersey?
Heather: That is such a hard question to answer which businesses I love cause there are so many! I am a very big advocate for supporting all of our local businesses; I even created a town forum that lets our local businesses showcase themselves and keep the community informed of what they have to offer. It’s so important to help keep them going. There are a few places we seem to frequent more often. One is right in my own town of Union called Van Gogh’s Ear Cafe – they have the absolute best coffee, food, and the most incredible homemade, yummy desserts – and such a cool atmosphere. It’s one of my top favorites!
My husband is straight from Italy so he is way more picky about food than I am, and he likes to visit restaurants that always remind him of being back home. The owners of Gusta Rosso Trattoria & Bar in Union know us very well and create dishes that are sure to please. Arturo’s Osteria & Pizzeria in Maplewood is another fantastic restaurant with very fresh ingredients, the best pizza, and really has that authentic taste of Italy.
We love visiting Long Branch and taking a stroll around the awesome Pier Village before heading over for a delicious lunch at one of the great restaurants overlooking the ocean – such a fun day! Oh, can I throw in shopping? There’s nothing like NJ shopping! I love to window shop at The Short Hills Mall and make sure that before I leave, I grab me one of my favorite treats – the frozen yogurt at Bloomingdales (I know it may not sound like the treat of your dreams, but trust me, anyone that has tried it knows what I mean.) My favorite shopping is at The Mills at Jersey Gardens, and at all of the quaint, little stores from town to town in between. I want to thank all small business owners for working so hard to create an amazing experience for all of us to enjoy. This is what makes New Jersey great.
NJMOM: Where do you reside and vacation in New Jersey?
Heather: I grew up and lived in a few different New Jersey towns including Summit, Madison, and Rockaway, and loved each one of them. I am currently living in Union. I chose to live in Union mainly because of the convenience to my work. I didn’t expect to love it as much as I do – I originally thought it was too congested, but actually, it’s been great because everything is so very convenient for us! We are so close to all of the major highways, we are 15 minutes to the airport, 45 minutes to the city, 45 minutes to the beach, and an hour from a ski resort! Wherever we decide to go, it’s so easy, and that’s a big plus. I also love Union because daughter’s school is absolutely amazing. That is one thing that us moms are very fortunate with – NJ schools rock! One of our very favorite vacation destinations in New Jersey is definitely Point Pleasant. No matter where we decide to go, we have to make sure we take a few days every year to hit the Jesery Shore. It wouldn’t feel like summer vacation without making a stop there. For us Jersey girls, you all get it; going “down the shore” with your family brings back nothing but great memories and tons and tons of fun. It’s in our blood!
NJMOM: Is there anything else you’d like to tell moms in New Jersey?
Heather: I want everyone to know how grateful I am to be able to raise my daughter in such a beautiful state, with everything I could possibly ask for: beaches, convenience to the city, the mountains, experiencing the change of seasons, awesome shopping, great communities, excellent schools, and a successful business are what keep me loving this state more and more every day.