Ep 03 - Reopening for the Small Spa Owner - Interview with Gina Rivera

Join us as we get personal with Gina Rivera, founder of Phenix Salon Suites, beauty entrepreneur, and licensed cosmetologist. She shares what she’s been working on during her home state of Califorinia’s stay at home orders as well as her thoughts on what it will look like when small spas, salons, and suites start to open back up in a post COVID-19 world.

00:00 Tracy Donley: You are listening to ASCP Esty Talk, where we share insider tips, industry resources, and education for aestheticians at every stage of the journey. Let's talk! Because ASCP knows, it's all about you. Hi guys and welcome back to ASCP Esty Talk Back to Business, let your set back be your comeback. And I'm your host, Tracy Donley Executive Director of ASCP and today we are joined by Gina Rivera. So let me introduce you guys to her, not that she really needs any introduction. Gina Rivera is a well known icon in the world of beauty. Gina skyrocketed to success when the company she founded, Phenix Salon Suites became the fastest growing salon suite company in the beauty industry, and the only one to ever be named to Entrepreneur's magazine's top 500 franchise list. The company which has now been named five times to the list recently was ranked in the top 25. Gina is the only female that serves as a company president in this elite group, her company continues to flourish with over 250 locations nationwide and plans for international expansion.

01:15 TD: This success lead Gina to be featured on the Emmy Award winning Undercover Boss after receiving one of the highest Nielsen ratings ever for an episode. She was propelled into the limelight and generated a tremendous fan base inside and out of the beauty world, both domestically and internationally. At the core of her success, Gina is a hair stylist and artist. Her family has a 90-year legacy in the industry that includes 25 salon professionals working primarily as hair stylists and barbers. Whew Gina! I don't even know how you do it, that's a lot.


01:53 Gina Rivera: Aw, well, thank you so much! Hi!

01:57 TD: Hi! Welcome, welcome.

02:00 GR: Thank God for digital technology. I can see you, I'm giving you a virtual hug. [laughter]

02:04 TD: I know, I love it. You look amazing. How is it in California?

02:08 GR: Oh, it's great. It's finally... We had a lot of rain which is good, but the sun's out and it's beautiful. So it's good.

02:15 TD: Good, good, good.

02:15 GR: We're doing good. Hanging in there [chuckle]

02:17 TD: Well, we are just dying to know all your feedback and what some of your thoughts are. We're gonna ask you some questions about... What do you think about this? You've been in the industry for a long time, this is an unprecedented time. And so we wanna kind of hear what you have to think, do you mind if I just start firing some questions at you?

02:38 GR: No, let's go. Go ahead [laughter]

02:40 TD: Alright, well the first question I have is: What do you think is the biggest issue or issues facing cosmetology and skin care practices right now, as we're kind of dealing with this COVID-19 pandemic?

02:54 GR: Well, just like you said earlier, we are in unprecedented times. And my father who's been behind the chair for over 50 years, he said... When early on this had started, he said, "You know Gina. I've been through a lot of global crises and even some pandemics. And hair stylists and aestheticians and the beauty health and well-appearance world always, we always came through. And we could always still work through these pandemics, in these crises." And so it was so heart-breaking, then fast forward three weeks forward, when he was just like, "Oh my god, just in the history of even me being behind this chair for 50 years, hairdressers and aestheticians we could always work and now we can't."

03:43 GR: And I think it just... I always say that growing up in the industry and being at my first hair show when I was 11 years old, and I knew right then and there, I wanted to be in this beautiful industry. And I lived it, and I breathed it, it was my air. And I don't know about you guys, but I just felt like the air's been kicked out. It's shocking. And we are all in uncharted waters, and a lot of anxiety, and it's been impacted so much.

04:19 TD: Yeah, I know. And I think that's the thing, it's affecting our profession in so many different ways. And it's different and personal for each person, like some people can... They're in a different situation and can weather the storm a little bit longer and being closed down and having their businesses closed for a little while, it's not horrible. They miss their clients, but they wanna do what's right for everybody. But then there's other people who, they need this paycheck or they need... They're new and starting out their businesses and they need to pay their lease. It's difficult. So what would you say... I'm sure that you've had triumphs and tribulations in your career. So what would you say to, especially those sole proprietors or those independent business owners?

05:12 GR: So to tell you the truth I actually started a movement. It is called The Business of One.

05:19 TD: I love that.

05:20 GR: It is the business of one. And you have your big businesses and your small businesses, but then you have this tiny business of one which include hairstylists, aestheticians, personal trainers, tattoo artists. And yet, we're this community that have been forgotten. And I'm talking about one million independent lifestyle professional, this tiny business of one, that we bring in an estimated $50 billion in revenue a year.

05:53 TD: Wow!

05:53 GR: So we make a huge economical impact and not only that, but we're paying an estimated $7.7 billion in taxes towards unemployment. And so I started the Business of One, because there again, I saw this small, big, small, but impactful group of people...

06:16 TD: Yeah, definitely.

06:17 GR: That couldn't qualify for any of the programs. And back in 2007 and 2008 actually, I have an art team, and I had a [06:25] ____ that he was homeless. And it was because they've never gotten... 'cause they don't have employees because he is the business of one. It's just them, themselves, their client. And so when the Cares Act came out, I thought, Okay, we're in the right direction here, but I hate to say it, but again, I am getting the thousands of emails of the denials. The... You have to have an employee to qualify for certain things, and unemployment offices are ran by the states, and the states are... There's no more left. Oh, go ahead.

07:04 TD: I was gonna say, that's even the hard thing, it's not even just with the PPE for the small businesses, but also to, like you're saying, the unemployment. It was great for the first time ever. They were able to apply for unemployment, but then what we're seeing is, so many of the states haven't... They don't have that set up that way.

07:26 GR: Well, yeah.

07:27 TD: They can't go. Even though they're saying, "You're approved to apply," but their systems aren't set up the right way.

07:34 GR: Exactly. And they're not, they're overwhelmed. And I have even had solo professionals reach out to me and not even from my locations, but from other areas. And people that have just said, they've even flat out told him, "We don't know how to process you guys yet. Like, we don't even know how we're gonna do it, so call back," and that's the problem. And so, that's why I started this movement, Business Of One, and it is because I feel like... Have there have been a system in place that these independent... Like this sector of people would have had an organization that could have taken care of them? And so, I am lobbying super hard at the federal level for Business Of One. We're definitely getting their attention, and we just start finding that, like I said, we kind of were in this right direction, but we're still in this fight, and we're not included.

08:36 TD: Tell me a little bit more of Business of One. I'm super interested in it, and I love it. I mean, that aligns up perfectly with everything that we do. Tell me a little bit about what that organization... Is that a non-profit?

08:49 GR: Well, so, it is kind of a quasi-union. Again, I actually dropped out of high school, but I have built a really good team around me with a lot of very, very smart people. The president of my company graduated from Ron University. And so, as we kinda sift through all of that logistically, which we're working very hard, I have a lot of smart people around us.

09:17 TD: Well, you're a smart girl. That's right.


09:20 GR: Putting this together and the details of logistics and just some of those details.

09:28 TD: Still kind of organizing it and putting it out there.

09:30 GR: Yes, however...

09:33 TD: It's pretty new then?

09:35 GR: Well, yeah, I started it right when I saw Ian and I panicked because I...

09:38 TD: Oh, okay.

09:40 GR: I'll never forget when this happened. Jason, kind of in his mind, being the CEO of my company, he was just like, "Oh my gosh, what about these salons?" And my first... My head went straight to the independent lifestyle professional.

09:56 TD: Yeah, me too.

09:56 GR: I'm like, "Jason. Oh, my God. What are these professionals gonna do? And I put my heart behind it and just started lobbying hard and putting together the Business of One. I do have a website that everyone can go on, it's www.businessofone.org. There, I have a letter, I have a template that they can look at, they can check it out. And, I highly encourage, as we are still making this a movement, to go and take that letter and flood their local representatives' offices with that letter, and, like I said, I've just gotten thousands, and thousands, and thousands of emails that, in all honesty, they're like, "Thank you, Gina, because I don't feel like we've ever had a voice."

10:40 TD: No.

10:40 GR: And so, "Thank you for being our voice and fighting for us." The businessofone.org is a great resource and hopefully, we can get some... And my goal is to bring permanent change. It might not fit into this bill, but maybe in the next. But, if there's ever a shut down again, there's a plan in place that these independent lifestyle professionals that are qualifying can have some reprieve.

11:09 TD: Well, and I think that's the thing, it's a real... It's very likely that we could be shut down again. I mean, it's not over and who knows how, and I don't wanna sound too scary, but, who knows what when they're talking about pile the flu on to this winter.

11:25 GR: Yeah.

11:26 TD: It's a lot, so I think it's really great that you're doing that. I think... I just commend you. I think that's the thing we need to do, is any way we can give people tools in their hands, like you're doing with this letter, to flood their local governments and so forth, because if we're not doing that, you just don't have a voice. And I know that at our company, we do have a government relations team and they're a handful of people. But, what really matters is like you're saying, it's all the independent workers, and hearing their stories, hearing their stories in it, hearing from them. So, I love it. Keep it up, Gina.

12:04 GR: Yes, I do too. And stories are powerful. And I just broke down in tears and to hear these stories, and I didn't want signatures, they didn't wanna petition. I want these guys to hear our stories and hear what this has done, and impacted. We're artists. We really, in all reality, we don't save a lot to sustain ourselves because we're week-to-week, and maybe two weeks at a time. And so I'm really passionate about it, I'm prepared to fight, and the more we can come together and get behind Business of One, the more powerful we become, and I will tell you, we're already starting to get the ears of Congress, so it's not going away, anywhere, anytime soon, for sure. I'm with you. I honestly think, and I hate to be that way too, but it's almost like it's not if, it's when, next shut down. And so, even better, that we can get these in place, as quick as we can. So, if and when this does happen, again, hopefully, they're not having more struggle on top of their struggle.


13:11 TD: Right? Oh gosh, yeah, having it compounded. Well, how about another question?


13:16 GR: Yeah. Love it.

13:18 TD: We could probably just go on forever.

13:20 GR: I hear, yeah, I'm fine.


13:23 TD: So, maybe thinking a little more tactical now okay? How should a spa or a salon prepare their physical premise for reopening? And these are your thoughts, your opinions. Now, what does that look like from aesthetician standpoint, a client spacing? I don't know if it's a number of clients per square foot. What does that look like? Walk us through it.

13:50 GR: So, it's such a moving target right now because not only is it different state-to-state, but I'm finding that it's even different county upon county. My advice and my recommendation is just to keep on top and keep abreast of the CDC, the Health Organization, to follow guidelines because I will tell you in two different states, they're not the same guidelines. One state might require you to wear a mask and cover up in a cover, your clothes...

14:29 TD: Yeah, like a disposable cover.

14:31 GR: And in another state it might just be a mask. So, it's kind of hard to have one... It's just gonna be different for everybody. But getting back to obviously sanitizing, I know Barbicide has a really good online certification course you can take on sanitation. It's beautiful. I would highly suggest going on there and doing that, and practicing sanitation roles.

15:00 TD: And I think they also might have just put out a whole checklist to... Which is pretty amazing, which is nice 'cause it gives you kind of the steps from reception all the way to the salon.

15:13 GR: Right. And so, practice the social distancing, obviously, and keeping your salon or keeping your suite cleaning between clients, and washing your hands before and after and their hands. The good thing about it in our industry, we work with a lot of water and soap and shampoo and stuff that we're kind of naturally cleaning our hands, plus the masks. So, I think that there's just... You know, it's gonna be a new way to work, and hopefully it's not forever, but I would just go on your county and see the CDC, the Health Organization and just what they're requiring. And it's super hard for everybody, because every day it changes.

16:02 TD: I know, and that's what I'd just like to point. Yeah, it's like you almost need to be checking it daily sometimes. I mean, you just don't know 'cause you can't depend on the news. I guess you can depend on the Cosmo, your Cosmo board sharing details with you if there's been an update, but you've gotta be constantly watching.

16:23 GR: Right. But with that said, I think we all know, and I know a lot of us started those, putting those procedures before we even got shut down because I could see it. Hey, I'm cleaning, sanitizing my station every 30 minutes and I'm clean, and don't come in when you're sick and just kind of those obvious... So, I do think that there's a lot of common sense there, but as far as to each county, and I don't wanna keep saying that, but as far as each county is gonna just be so different, then my suggestion is just, like you said, keep on top of it every couple of days. It moves and changes, but we are in an industry that we do sanitize a lot, so a lot of that is already in place that we've had to have previous to this.

17:09 TD: Okay, let me ask you this. Sometimes these are... Questions are hard, because you're a public person, but you come from a really long line of hair stylists and barbers and some of the states are starting to open up, like Georgia for instance, right? And if you were to advise one of your family members who has a salon, would you say, hey, if your state says, "Open up," do you say "Open up," or what are your thoughts on that? It's hard, right?

17:41 GR: Well, it's hard. I think that it is a personal decision, and I think that as long as you're healthy and you follow sanitation protocol, you just ask your clients not to come in if they're sick, you wear your mask, and you personally feel comfortable going to work. And then, I think, absolutely.

18:11 TD: That's probably the key, right? It's like, how do you personally feel about it?

18:17 GR: Yeah, I think it's just how you... Personally feel. I think it's a personal decision and everybody is in a different place with it, so you've gotta be comfortable and if you're comfortable, go for it. If you're not, it's just a personal decision. And me, obviously I would take the sanitation protocols. I would... Social distancing in order. I think I don't have any underlying health issues, so praise God at least. That can, I know, be good, too. So, I think it's just a personal decision.

18:53 TD: Yeah, okay. I just wonder 'cause some people are like, "No, definitely until we have X, Y, Z amount of vaccines or testing... " You start to look at that and that could be two years from now. And that's the hardest part to all of this, is really figuring out what's right, right? And I guess, to your point, it's so personal.

19:17 GR: I would just follow your county, if you start feeling the ceiling lift and you feel comfortable, and they're allowing you to go back and then... Yeah.

19:29 TD: I think the one point I would just wanna make, especially for all of our members and anybody else who's listening out there, I'm not saying that, make a decision if you're under stay-at-home orders. I'm saying, make a decision after that stay-at-home order is...

19:43 GR: Yes. [laughter]

19:44 TD: So please, if your state is under stay-at-home orders and they haven't lifted anything, do not go practice because your liability insurance will not cover you. You will not be covered by your professional liability insurance. I just wanted to make sure that that was out there.

20:00 GR: Yes. Good point. Yeah. Because yeah, this does not mean... We're still shelter-in-place in California. So I don't even know when we're gonna get to go back.

20:08 TD: Yeah. And your governor's pretty... He's a pretty strict one. I really like everything he's doing. He's doing a great job. We're in Colorado so it's gonna be interesting. They're talking about going back the 1st of May, and I am... It's a really double-edged sword. Because personally, I really miss all my dear beauty friends, and I miss getting my hair done and my eyelashes done, and I really have been realizing how much I depend on everybody so much out there to make me feel good. But it's also another thing where I'm just like, "Oh, I'm just so nervous because I want everybody to stay healthy, and I don't want anybody to get hurt." And so it's such a mixed bag. It keeps me up at night, actually.

20:54 GR: Yeah, I know. It's tough. It's tough. And we just don't know what the future holds, but...

21:02 TD: I know. Hey guys, stop. Let's take a quick break.


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21:55 TD: Let's get back to the conversation. Okay. Well, let's get into another question here. Especially, since you are Phenix Salon Suites, how do you think that it benefits maybe a suite renter more than a fancy spa or a big salon? And what are some of the benefits of... From a suite renting standpoint as it relates to dealing with COVID-19?

22:23 GR: Well, sure. And the fact of the matter is, it is good and the fact that we comply with social distancing 'cause it's just you and your client. You're in a closed space. We don't have a lot of common areas. And so as far as the suites, it definitely fits under the social distancing. And for that, it's very good. And we have actually had a pretty... A good amount of interest in, for people that now want a suite.

23:00 TD: I bet. Yeah.

23:00 GR: And which is, on the other side of it, it's just so sad because there's gonna be the smaller mom-and-pop shops but they might not go back to something. And so hopefully, we can be... They'll have a place to go. And so, as far as the suites, we're compartmentalized and we follow the social distance part right in line with the social distancing. So it is in our favor.

23:32 TD: Yeah, definitely. It seems like it, just by its layout and its nature to what you're saying is that it just keeps everybody in their own spaces. I've been talking to a few people, and they've been even mentioning how they might have electronic door locks, in a sense, so that people can't just... So that it's very specific. And I didn't know if any of your franchise owners had been looking at doing something like that where there's codes, or... I don't know.

24:00 GR: Yes, absolutely. Like I said, I'm surrounded by a great team with our president, Brian and Jason, my CEO, who's my husband. And we have just worked around the clock non-stop, and we are definitely putting some things in place to just ensure that our professionals are staying safe, too, and doing our part in keeping everybody healthy. And so we have started implementing... Well, none of our stores have opened yet physically, but we are already on top with some specific guidelines that we're continuing to add and bounce ideas off of each other in ways that we will be able to keep them safe as well. And it's things like keeping our doors locked, and calling your client when you're there, waiting out in the car until your aesthetician's ready for you. So we are definitely, as a company, following recommendations in sanitation and things that we can do on our part as owners to ensure that all these lives of our professionals stay healthy and their clients, too. So definitely, definitely. And every day, the list is getting bigger but...

25:10 TD: I know. That's the part that's crazy...

25:11 GR: It's great and it's gonna keep everybody healthy at the end of the day, as much as we can.

25:17 TD: Yeah. Well, very good. I love that you guys are constantly just brainstorming. And it's an ever-flowing document, I'm sure, of just tons and tons of things as it... It's just a lot. Again, going back to unprecedented, right?

25:34 GR: Yeah. We're all navigating through it together.


25:37 TD: I know. And sometimes I feel like I'm like...


25:41 GR: I wake up and keep thinking, "Okay. Is this really real or... " [chuckle]

25:47 TD: I know. I do. I do that. I know. And then I also, and then I flip on the news, and it's CNN, and I'm like, "Oh, it's totally real. It's real." [chuckle] So maybe chat a little bit about, how do you get your teams on board? How do you make them feel really confident about being back at work, and maybe easing anxiety and stress? And what does that look like, do you think?

26:12 GR: Well, I've been... Since we've all been so socially connected over social media, and what have you, I have to tell you, I have friends that have salons in other cities. And I have been so impressed by how everybody's come together and the amount of creativity people are bringing to the table and different thoughts and ideas, and you're like, "Oh, yeah." And I was just... It's so interesting that you even brought that up, because just the other day I was on Facebook, and one of my very good friends has this salon of three girls. And their safety protocols that they put in place were so good and so well-thought out.

26:53 TD: I love that.

26:54 GR: And so, I am seeing... My point to that is this is very encouraging because we're seeing who we are and what fighters we are and the strength through this time, and coming together, and really everybody taking those extra steps and really educating themselves to make sure that we all stay healthy. And I think when you have measures in place that your anxiety drops a little bit. Because I think when you don't have a plan in place, or you're just like, "Okay, I can go back to work tomorrow. Oh, my God, you know what I mean... Are they doing what they're supposed to be doing?" I think it can add a lot of stress. And so I think that any type of educating yourself, sanitation-wise, what is your salon doing, what are you gonna with your clients? It's your choice, too. I think that that can alleviate some type of stress to just have a plan in place.

27:57 TD: I like that. Yeah. And so very structured, it sounds like. Have something that makes people feel safe, that they can follow. And then it sounds like, just be a crew. Be a group and find that support. I like that. Okay, so how do you suggest handling some of these changes that maybe the salons and spas are gonna be making? So just handling that and communicating those changes to the clients? And is that a prior to them ever coming into the salon or spa, or is it once they get there? What does that look like?

28:37 GR: Well, again, I think it goes back the more you can prepare before you go back to work, the more everybody is gonna be on the same page. Again, getting back to us chatting, we know it's a moving target every day, and things are changing and guidelines are changing. So if you're in a place of leadership, to make sure you're on top of that. I think that any type of information that you can give out to your clients, what protocols you are gonna be taking, what protocols you expect of them, whether that be a mass email, maybe you do one video and send it to everybody...

29:15 TD: That's a great idea. Yeah.

29:18 GR: Of just, what I'm gonna be doing, what's expected of you. But I gotta tell you, if you can, I love FaceTiming. I think that this is a time where we're home that you could possibly have time to start FaceTiming, especially these initial clients in the next couple of weeks, you're gonna be seeing first because I feel like not only does it give them a virtual hug, but you can talk, you can ask them how they've been. You can also look at their skin or their hair, or what you're gonna be dealing with. Because scheduling is gonna be getting back to sanitation. Your schedules, you're not gonna be able to book back to back, because you're gonna have to have more time between clients to sanitize. And so...

30:08 TD: And it's gonna be crazy. Think about how many people are gonna want your attention back.

30:14 GR: Well, exactly.

30:14 TD: So even from a scheduling... I mean, take two months worth of clients and they're gonna all wanna get in in one week. [chuckle]

30:22 GR: Right. And getting back to that, me personally, I was in... A few years ago, back when my mother got sick, I was in a terrible dark place, and I was in a big depression. And that's when I actually cut my long brown hair off and went to a platinum blonde mohawk. And because they want something new, or something fresh. So you've got to... And I know I'm just thinking of hair, but really, skin too.

30:46 TD: I love that.

30:47 GR: Or maybe there's that client that hasn't been wanting a peel that's like, "You know what? I've been cooped up. I wanna sit in your chair. I want you to do anything to me. I know I've always wanted to be a redhead, and I never have done it. So let's do it." And with that said, you don't wanna get caught not having enough time for them, because my hair was not a two-hour appointment.


31:08 GR: So I do feel it's very important that your first set of clients, whether it's your first week, whether it's... You're planning out your schedule, that you get in contact with them if you can FaceTime. I know that there's other ways you can do it... See each other.

31:28 TD: Yeah, yeah. Tons of, yeah.

31:29 GR: And take a look at their hair, and have a plan what you're gonna do. And make sure you schedule enough time because the last thing you wanna do is start running behind, where it cuts into your sanitation.

31:39 TD: Well, and then if you... You can't have people waiting in your lobby. So that means that maybe they're waiting in their car for 30 minutes. And yeah, that's such a good point.

31:50 GR: So scheduling, I think, and being prepared of mapping out your schedule will help alleviate that stress, too, that you're not at work going just like, "Oh my gosh. I don't have time to do a full peel," or what have you, so...

32:08 TD: Yeah.

32:08 GR: Planning ahead, again. Just being prepared as much as you can. And I love FaceTime, I think it's so personal.

32:15 TD: And I think you're so right, though. Think about it, clients haven't seen you forever. They are so excited to see you and they wanna spend probably as much time with you as they can. And so then the next thing, like maybe you're getting a facial and then they're like, "Oh, but can you wax my lips... "

32:31 GR: Oh, yeah. [laughter]

32:32 TD: "And how about my brows? Oh, actually, I know I didn't make time for it, but can I do my bikini, too?" And it's like...


32:37 GR: "Oh, I'm here, can you... " And I don't know about you, but I'm always the one that can't say no.

32:44 TD: I know.


32:45 TD: "How am I gonna do this? I'm gonna speed through it."

32:49 GR: As I'm like, "Oh, my gosh. I'm now gonna be 30 minutes behind."

32:53 TD: I know, I know.

32:53 GR: And I think the biggest point of that is just giving yourself enough time than what you would in a different world.

33:00 TD: Yeah.

33:00 GR: Don't set yourself up to cut down into your sanitation, because that's gonna be the most important part of your day.

33:07 TD: Gina, so we've been talking a lot about business and strategies, and things of that nature for getting back to business. Tell us what you've been doing while you've been under quarantine. What are some of the things that... The fun things, I'm sure. I know you have a child. You have two, right?

33:23 GR: I do. I have two boys. I have Phenix, who I actually named my company after...

33:29 TD: I love it.

33:29 GR: He's 16.

33:29 TD: And I got a peek at him, he's so cute.


33:32 TD: So cute.

33:33 GR: Thank God I have them around to help me with all this video and Zoom and all this stuff. I'm in uncharted waters with just that.


33:42 TD: I love it.

33:43 GR: So, thank God. And then I have Priest, who's 13. And so we've been... They're home, too, and it's been tough on them. They're doing great but just homeschooling and it's different. And they're trying to navigate through all of this, too. And as a parent, it's hard because we haven't been through it. And so it's like, it's hard to... I was like, I wish I could say, "Oh, yeah. This happened 10 years ago, and this is what we did. And this is what... " But we're just all learning and getting through it together, but they're doing amazing. So lots of homeschooling, going on lots of Zoom classes and some fun things like that. The biggest thing that I probably have made myself do is, because it just is good for me and my mind, is just doing some type of exercise every day.

34:33 TD: Oh, that's so good.

34:34 GR: Right when I get out of bed... Well, right when I get out of bed I actually, you know, my devotions. I think you know I'm not shy about my faith whatsoever, and so I get up and my devotions get me through the day and the Lord... So I love spending time, just quiet and spending time with the Lord, and asking for guidance or discernment or anything that I might be struggling with that day. And exercising, we've gotten super creative at my house with exercising. I'm tying bands around trees and I gotta tell you...


35:08 TD: I want pictures.

35:09 GR: I'm so glad that I'm talking to you and I have front teeth because I almost knocked them out the other day accidentally 'cause my band, it swung back and...


35:20 GR: Stung my face.

35:23 TD: And you're like, "What just happened?"

35:24 GR: I'm gonna have to have two new teeth now but...

35:27 TD: Oh, my God. And then trying to find a dentist, during this time.

35:30 GR: Oh. Yeah.

35:32 TD: Right?

35:33 GR: But all seriousness aside, I think it just creates good endorphins and obviously keeps you in shape. And it's just a time where I think you can get away from the news and blare your music and dance. And I don't know about you, but music just, it makes you feel so connected to the world. And it's just such good therapy, and so I really enjoy that time. I also, myself, has been doing online classes, weekly classes.

36:09 TD: Nice.

36:09 GR: From two salon professionals. Those have been really fun to do because I do obviously think that this is a... I think through adversity there's always opportunity, and I think that it would behoove you to use this time to jump online, review those classes, whatever they are, the skincare classes or whatever, and keep your mind growing, because this is... You train in the off-season to become a champion in the season. And so this is our off-season. And I think this is a wonderful time to get online, get on these classes, start learning new techniques. Start sharpening your skills. Start trying things out. If you are at home and you have a spouse or something... Because I also do believe that when your clients come back in, they're gonna want something new, something refreshing. They're gonna want a new energy, just like we all are. The minute you hit that front door of your spa or salon, it's about moving forward and not about staying back where we've been.

37:20 TD: Yeah, absolutely.

37:22 GR: So I think anything new that you can... Technique that you can bring to the table, a new energy, a new excitement. Because I do, I think in a lot of ways this is gonna be a rebirth for everybody.

37:34 TD: I know, I love that. That's why we're saying, don't let it be your setback, let it be your comeback. Come back big, people. I think all of those bits are such great advice. I love them so much. And I think that's what we need to hear a lot, too. It's not all the clean, clean, clean, do this, this, and be scared about that. But it's the bits, like you just said, of just staying inspired, staying healthy, all that good stuff. Okay, but you have to tell me 'cause I can't believe that you're healthy 24/7. So what is the one gluttonous thing that you've done during all of the quarantine? Like a thing that you've eaten or like...

38:14 GR: Do I have it? I have about a list of 30.

38:16 TD: No, you don't. You're always so healthy, stop.

38:20 GR: Okay. Well, I don't know about that. I've never been a huge chocolate person. I would eat maybe half of a candy bar every once a year. Chocolate every night has been really comforting for me.

38:35 TD: No, you're kidding me. [chuckle] I love it.

38:38 GR: Oh, my gosh. And jalapeno kettle chips. They've just...

38:42 TD: Oh, my gosh. Those are amazing.

38:44 GR: If I open them up, they're gone.

38:47 TD: What is it about chips? Can I ask you, though? What is it about chips and COVID? 'Cause you are not the first person. I have a handful of chips every night at 5 o'clock. I literally will take a stack of Pringles and have them and at least I can measure them out. It's like about this big of a stack. And I never eat chips... What is it? It's the carb thing...

39:09 GR: It's the carb, salt thing, I don't know. But that... And I have to admit, I have a really good friend and his name is Tito. [laughter]

39:17 TD: And he's not the one wearing feathers, right?

39:20 GR: Tito and I have... Yeah, we've bonded. [laughter]

39:26 TD: I know, it's crazy. I would think that it would be not a bad business to be in the alcohol business right now, the adult beverage business.

39:36 GR: I know. [laughter]

39:39 TD: Well, I wanted to wrap this up a little bit, but I think we would really love to hear from you, just like maybe one or two resources that you can share with our members and our viewers and listeners, something that you think would really inspire them or could change them, change their careers in any way.

40:00 GR: Well, the first resource that I think is... There are so many online apps and things of maybe daily devotionals or daily meditations or something. And because I am a firm believer in when you can get your mind as right as you can, it really helps you have the strength to get through your day. And I think that it's really cool that you can get on your phones now or your computers and there are so many free downloads and devotionals. And I personally love Joyce Meyer and so I love to listen to her and get some spiritual food and ideas. I think that they're really... I've seen that more now than ever. I think that they're just out there free to use, for people to use. So there's opportunity there. Also, I think it's a great time to... A lot of us are gonna be scheduling, a lot of us still kinda do it the old-fashioned way, pencil and piece of paper. And I think that this is a great time to maybe explore a track platform and I actually even launched my own...

41:10 TD: Of course you did, Gina. What don't you launch?

41:15 GR: [laughter] Yes.

41:15 TD: Gina launches everything. It's gonna be like, we've got Gina's sanitizer, we've got Gina...

41:22 GR: [laughter] Yes. So I did...

41:22 TD: I feel like we've got the good idea.

41:24 GR: Yes. I know, right? But I did, I launched Gina's Platform and interestingly enough, I launched it obviously before this. And I did it because I was really struggling with all of these platforms that were nickel and diming us into... Lifestyle professionals to death. And so as a stylist and I saw that where they were saying no, it's free, but they ended up it was $20 and $30 and $40 dollars a month of subscription fees. So again, everything I do, I do it from the heart. My own experience...

41:54 TD: Yes, you do.

41:55 GR: In being an independent lifestyle professional. And so I have Gina's Platform that is amazing. It's not just for hair, it's for all health wellness appearance. It's...

42:07 TD: And if I could just jump in there and just say everybody who's listening, we have partnered with Gina's Platform. We're super excited. So ASCP, ANP and AHP. So Associated Hair Professionals, just so you know. And it's amazing, ladies and gentlemen. You need to check it out. And it's so much more, Gina, than a scheduling platform, that's the craziest part. It's like everything.

42:33 GR: It's everything, lead generation. We have even added... I am super excited, I need a drum roll. I'm so excited about it. We actually just added a discount prescription drug card on Gina's Platform. So now you can go, if you download Gina's Platform, there's a discount prescription card on there for you that you can use that obviously would help you save money. Any way I can help save stock professionals money in any way, I'm about it. And just there's no monthly subscription fee. All of our resources are 100% free. We're the lowest on credit card processing. And to that, we're gonna go to less contact and so there's gonna be a lot of card swiping and Venmo, PayPal. I don't foresee a lot of cash being exchanged.

43:26 TD: Well, people are even saying things like that you should be encouraging your members to prepay for their appointments. So like this would be a way that they could do that then, right? So that you don't have to exchange anything.

43:40 GR: Right. They can go on Gina's Platform. It's super easy to export all your clients. So you might be with another digital platform, but if you wanna check out Gina's Platform and fall in love with it, and I already have thousands of salon professionals that are using it, and they love it. It's super easy to export your clientele. Sorry.

44:04 TD: Well, I'm just surprised that the cat hasn't walked through my screen or a child popped in and been like, "Mommy can I have a Milkybar?" [laughter]

44:12 GR: Yes. But, so you can go on, and you can download Gina's Platform. It's all there. It's super easy to navigate...

44:19 TD: And that's for everyone, right? So that's aestheticians, hair stylists, massage therapists, it's for nail artists, it's everyone, right?

44:28 GR: Yes.

44:28 TD: And there's tons of... Didn't you say that there's tons of... You guys are populating with all kinds of content, too? So it's really a one-stop shop?

44:37 GR: Yeah, one-stop shop. And lead generation, scheduling, credit card processing, it just goes on and on... Prescription discount drug cards and so. And too, with that said, we're continuing to add new resources on that as well. So check it out. It's great. I have inspirational quotes on there, there's just really cool stuff on there. And this is a great time because you're home, and we're gonna all examine ways we can cut money, cut down on spending, and so I would encourage you to check it out.

45:14 TD: Well, I love it. Okay, before we let you leave, tell all of our listeners and people here where they can reach out to you. Give us your social handles and all that good stuff.

45:25 GR: Okay. So you can follow me on @beautyexpertgina on Facebook and Instagram. Gina Rivera, my public page on Facebook, and then you can also follow me on Colours by Gina Facebook and Instagram. And then of course you can always log on to businessofone.org. So beautyexpertgina, Facebook, Instagram. Gina Rivera Facebook, Instagram, and Colours by Gina Facebook and Instagram.

45:57 TD: Well, and you know, you guys, we will have all these details, all of those many handles of hers in the show notes and all of the resources that she's mentioned will be in the show notes, too. So thank you, Gina. You are amazing. I love seeing your face.

46:12 GR: I love you. I love seeing you and I'm so excited about partnering and it's amazing. You guys are a true blessing. So thank you.

46:18 TD: Well, we're gonna be talking to you soon. So take care.

46:20 GR: Yes. You too.

46:24 TD: Okay. Bye.

46:25 TD: Thanks for joining us today. If you like what you hear and you want more, subscribe. If you wanna belong to the only all-inclusive association for aestheticians that includes professional liability insurance, education, industry insights and an opportunity to spotlight your six skills, join at ascpskincare.com. Only $259 per year for all this goodness. ASCP knows it's all about you.

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