Before opening her electrology studio, Hilltop Electrolysis, in Cobourg, Ontario (Canada) in 2016, Ms. Brookes Brown was like many electrologists: she found her profession through being an electrolysis client herself. However after just a few minutes with Ms. Brown, you know that she is no cookie-cutter professional! Her warmth, her humor, and the infectious enthusiasm she has for her profession and industry simply shine.
How it started
I became interested in electrology after the electrologist I was seeing recommended it to me. She’d been helping me with my own moustache, which, before electrolysis, could put Tom Selleck’s to shame! Perhaps that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but I didn’t feel feminine in the way that I wanted to, so I began having electrolysis bi-weekly to remove the ‘hairy creature’ from my upper lip.
Imagine my anxiety when one day, I arrived at my appointment only to be told that my savior was moving to the other side of the country! I’d gotten so comfortable with her and only half of the hair had been removed. The panic must have shown on my face, because before I left, my electrologist suggested that I go to school and become an electrologist myself. In her opinion, I had the perfect personality and the right amount of empathy and compassion to be a great electrologist.
After further thought and a realization that there were no practicing electrologists within a 100 km radius to work on me, I resolved to go to school, buy a machine, and remove the rest of my ‘ladystache’ myself!
I got my education at the Lucy Caruso International School of Electrolysis (just north of Toronto) https://www.carusoise.com/ where the owner Lucy Caruso became an important mentor; she helped me fall in love with electrolysis. With the summer off from my job with the local school board, I was able to spend two months practicing my new trade on friends and family. I found peace and passion in helping my loved ones, and by the end of the summer, I realized how much happier I was working as an electrologist. Hilltop Electrolysis was born the following October, and I began building my business. I quickly discovered that my beautiful clients were, in a sense, just like me, and I made it my mission as an electrologist to ensure that none of them would ever have to feel ashamed by their unwanted hair the way I had been.
I’m so happy that my job now allows me to help others find confidence in themselves!
How its going
Since opening her business in 2016, Ms. Brown has expanded the services she offers to include other hair removal options and skin care treatments: “Listening to my clients’ needs and wants is what inspired me to bring additional services and products into my studio!” Additionally, she has recently opened Hilltop Skin Care, an online store for skin care products and electrolysis supplies (including Ballet needles!). <www.hilltopskincare.ca >
And when that’s not keeping her busy, Ms. Brown serves as the Vice-Chair of the Ontario Chapter of the Federation of Canadian Electrolysis Associations. https://fceaontario.org/
How she manages to fit it all in
Owning and Operating two successful business (Hilltop Electrolysis and Hilltop Skin Care) takes a lot of hard work, hours and dedication. Being on the Executive Board of the FCEA also takes time and commitment, but I believe it’s important that we help to set high standards for electrologists within Canada. I juggle my schedules by working long days (9am-7:30pm) in the studio with clients 3-4 days a week plus two office days. My husband is very supportive and often jumps in and helps with the ordering and distribution work of Hilltop Skin Care.
Ms. Brown on Ballet needles
I use Ballet needles because, to put it simply, they’re superior to others on the market and so very consistent. Primarily, I use the gold needles since I find them to be gentle on the skin, leaving very little swelling and redness on my clients. And, I love the smooth insertions I get from them. For areas of dense work, I use the insulated needles. I find I can clear areas without much irritation to the skin as they keep the energy focused. My go-to for Advanced Electrolysis or Thermocoagulation are the Ballet Stainless Steel F12 & F6 needles.
Thoughts for the future
I want an evolution for the profession of electrolysis; not only in the machines and products we use, but also in terms of our education, conduct, and publicity. Lifting up others in our industry rather than watching them struggle or looking at them as competitors is what will allow us all to succeed in business! That is why I welcome the opportunity to share the particulars of my practice with fellow electrologists. I welcome collaboration with others because I know that it doesn’t only help to make them better, but also helps me to improve myself.
Serving as Vice Chairperson of the FCEA gives me the opportunity to help protect the integrity of the electrolysis profession and community that I am proud to be a part of. It also gives me an opportunity to meet new graduates and visit schools within Ontario, and provides me with new colleagues to network, trouble shoot, or just geek out with about hair removal!
Quality electrolysis education is somewhat hard to find within Ontario. Some schools are only teaching one method of electrolysis, leaving new electrologists out of school and versed in only one modality but thinking they’re fully educated! Teaching has always been a passion of mine, and I look forward to getting more involved in this aspect of the business.
In addition, I have an interest in developing a mentoring program that any CPE within Canada could use as a platform to help mentor new and/or experienced electrologists. We have a few members in the FCEA that do mentor new electrologists, however there is no official mentorship program. I get many requests from senior electrologists that know the practice inside and out, but need help building an online presence, or setting up social media, payment gateways etc., so it’s not always about helping people simply perfect their insertions! I will be working to introduce this program as one of the benefits of FCEA membership in the future.
If you would like to be highlighted by Synoptic Products as an Electrologist of the Month, please get in touch! We love to recognize successful electrologists throughout North America. Send your request to info @ synopticproducts.com.