Jessie Hoffman, 27
Why We Love Her: She cuts almost every lady on the CityBeat team’s hair and gives the best shampoo scalp massage ever.
“From as early as I can remember I wanted to be a hairstylist,” says Jessie Hoffman, owner/stylist at Parlour salon. “I always had my hands on hair — cutting my dolls’ hair very early on and foiling and hacking at brave friends’ locks in high school.”
Inspired by the positive reinforcement she received from those same “brave” friends and family, Hoffman decided to pursue hair as a career. “I felt like I found a way to share my creativity and talents in a way that made others feel good about themselves,” she says.
After seven years working as a stylist for another salon, Hoffman decided to go into business for herself and opened Parlour in East Walnut Hills in April 2012.
With exposed brick, industrial-style lighting and wooden workspaces handmade by local design studio the Brush Factory, the salon itself — which doubles as a gallery and creative space — feels clean, warm and inviting … especially after imbibing one of Parlour’s complimentary cocktails concocted by Hoffman’s boyfriend, chef and owner of Please, Ryan Santos.
The team at Parlour is not only well-versed in creative cuts and sophisticated color, they also provide waxing, makeup and manicure services, all in an effort to make their clients look their best (with before-and-after proof of their prowess on the salon’s Facebook page: facebook.com/salonparlour).
“My mom has memories of me pointing out bad hair in public and stating that I wanted to be a hairstylist because I wanted to ‘help them,’ ” Hoffman says.
“I remember being extremely distracted by bad hair, hoping that one day I could show people how to make their hair look its best.”
What aspects do you love about your job?
I am so grateful to do what I love. … I get to be creative and make others feel good about the way they look, relax, unwind and, with some, guide them out of their comfort zone. Most importantly, in some cases, I get to help boost a person’s self-confidence.
How do you define passion? What are you most passionate about?
Passion is motivation, longing, something you live for that gets you out of bed, that makes you feel alive. … I am most passionate about my relationships, my work and my business. I know that I put a great deal of energy and care into what I do everyday and it makes me proud.
If you had to pick several characteristics about yourself that you love, what would they be and why?
I love having ADD because I am able to hyper-focus on many things at once; my ambition and desire to achieve what I set out to do; and my creativity because it keeps things interesting.
What do you love about Cincinnati?
I love the growing list of young entrepreneurs and artists in the city and the support among them. I feel very encouraged and supported by my peers. I love people-watching at Washington Park in the summer, but my absolute favorite place in town is Prospect Hill. I especially love walks on snow-covered Corporation Alley in the winter; it’s magical.
Name someone that you love: role model, best friend, inspiration, etc. And tell us why.
My boyfriend. He inspires and supports me every day. He has such talent and passion for what he does, and it encourages me to feel the excitement in what I do every day.
What’s the best lesson life has taught you about love?
You will never be happy with someone else if you are not happy with yourself. If a person wants to be a part of your life they will make an obvious effort to do so. Don’t bother reserving space/time for people who do not make an effort.
What phrase or motto do you live your life by?
“Sometimes silence is the best answer.”
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