Motley, Author at Candice Motley |
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As you may know, last week was my birthday and I wanted to take a moment to share some of my reflections on turning 36. For a long time, every year for my birthday it was about going somewhere or doing something. Now I’ve reached a point in life where I choose to go nowhere and spend as much of the day relaxing as possible. I’m officially a Dream House Hermit. I absolutely love being in my space and I love inviting people into my space.

This year, my mom came over along with some friends and their kids and we all just had a good ass time. When it comes to my mom, well, I’m the apple that didn’t fall far—we love so much of the same things, the most important one for birthdays being creamy delicious alcoholic beverages. She made me drinks and kept things going all day
long.

NBR Hair Extensions

NBR Hair Extensions

What struck me the most about this particular day might seem like such a small thing, but to me it meant so much. We spent the entire afternoon at the pool. No big deal, right? Well, I have never lived in a community that had a pool that I could just go to. To me, it was amazing to just get to go sit out at the pool, relax, not stress about my kids because this pool also has a kiddie pool, and just be there.
Then there was the after-pool nap.

You know the kind. The soft nap where you’re not like totally asleep the whole time, but just completely chill. My mom took care of my littles to gift me with said soft nap and it. Was. Everything.

Overall, 36 feels pretty similar to 35, but I can feel that I’m approaching a different phase of my life. It’s become all about finding the quickest, simplest way to get to the end result.

And for the first time ever, I actually enjoy time off. I have always been so much of a workaholic that not only did I rarely take time off, when I did I could never relax and enjoy that time. I’m finally finding a work/life balance. Raise your drink of choice (mine is a mudslide) and let’s cheers to 36!

I wanted to let you all in on something that’s been happening behind the scenes and why it’s so important to me as an extension artist and leader within the company I work for. Over the past couple of years I’ve delved deeper into the company that is Natural Beaded Rows Extensions alongside their business program, BMS.

At the end of last year they invited me to be one of just four platform artists within their company and I have been a part of their top tier trainings ever since. Most recently, I’ve been working undercover on weekly live trainings. These trainings are an opportunity to connect with, mentor, and guide the 180 extension artists within BMS. As one of the platform artists, I wanted to share a little bit about what that entails.

NBR

More than anything I am able to be a resource and guide for fellow stylists. I answer questions throughout the day as people DM me, assist them with problems that need solving, and guide them on everything from the tools I use to the tricks I’ve learned. I also dedicate every Monday evening from 4 to 6 to be on a weekly live training. This training can consist of up to 180 people at one time.

The owner, Danielle, lead trainer, Ani, myself, and the other 3 platform artists all take turns contributing to the training. I get to share knowledge along with some of my experiences. I listen to what other artists are going through to get to the position where their business is more affluent and specializing in extensions, and I’m able to help them find their own answer to their problems.

Inside of our program, Mastermind, we have events quarterly that bring our whole group together to reset, assess, get out of our businesses and be able to work on them effectively. It’s a dedicated day every 3 months to come back in and get reinspired, talk to fellow BMS girls, other artists going through problems and challenges and get to reconnect with people. The first quarterly earlier this year was amazing, and I’m really looking forward to returning in June.

If you’ve read any of my past posts about conventions, the masterminds are a completely different experience. Convention is a lot of new people coming on board and getting acquainted with the method. With BMS intensives, it’s all artists who have been involved in the company and program, who have essentially jumped through hoops to be there. It’s a different caliber of artist, which helps elevate the experience.

I can’t wait to continue to share this journey with you as I feel so excited and honored to be one the four trainers chosen to lead and guide within this company and program. Stay tuned for an update following the June quarterly!

Today I wanted to bring you all a message that’s a little different from my usual.

You may or may not be aware that the month of May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental health has not always been something I put a lot of thought and effort into, but recently it’s been showing up for me with both myself and people I care about. I’ve been realizing just how challenging it can be, and how much effort it can really take to maintain a healthy mental state. As it has impacted my life, it has become very important to me to contribute to bringing awareness to the mental health struggle.

I wanted to bring in someone who is familiar with sharing her mental health experience to shine some light for you all on the importance of the conversation and some ways to manage your mental health. You may remember our former studio manager, Kassy. She shares about mental health and the reality of living with mental illness on her instagram (instagram.com/coffeewithkas), and I wanted to share her voice with you all.

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The thing about mental illness is that it sounds like such a scary word, but we all know and love someone living with it. And the reality is that more than half of those living with a mental illness are not being actively treated for it. Which means that so many of our family members, friends, and ourselves are all silently struggling through each day trying our best to self-manage in whatever ways we can.

The two most common mental illnesses are depression and anxiety, both of which can show up in different ways for different people. Particularly anxiety, which is a blanket term for a number of different disorders such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Seasonal Affective Disorder, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, all of which look and feel entirely different. It’s important to remember this fact when talking to someone living with the disorder as it may look different than you expect, and it may feel different to them than it does for you, or it did for your mom, best friend, etc.

No one set of coping mechanisms will work well for everyone, and finding the right formula for your particular mental health can be an ongoing process of trial and error. For many people medication is a vital ingredient to the formula that works for them, but for many others medication is not even an option. What works for someone with depression may not work for someone suffering from PTSD, but here’s just a small sampling of ways to contribute positively to your mental health.

Exercise


This could even mean taking a five minute walk in the sunshine, getting up from your desk to stretch, or dancing around in the kitchen while you cook dinner. Of course, the more traditional “working out” such as going to the gym or yoga or swimming works, too, but just moving helps. If you ever saw Legally Blonde you know all about how exercise gives you endorphins and endorphins make you feel better. This is why it’s always one of the first recommendations for mental illness. THAT SAID, part of depression and anxiety can be chronic fatigue, and exercise isn’t always a possiblity. Do what you can, give yourself grace when you can’t, and know that even a little bit makes a difference.

Meditation & Breathing Exercises

As cliché as this may sound, proper breathing techniques REALLY do make all the difference in the world for when you’re experiencing the physical symptoms of anxiety. Meditation and mindfulness, which focus on being present in the moment and utilizing awareness of your body and surroundings, also help negate the effects of anxiety.

Support System

This is absolutely crucial to maintaining your mental health and coping with mental illness. Whether this is family, friends, really great coworkers, or a combination of, having people to lean on when you’re not feeling well can make all the difference. Whether it’s just calling someone on the phone, or texting if that feels like too much, or if you’re able, meeting up for a cup of coffee, spending time with people who care about you can be a really great way to help counteract the feeling of being entirely alone in your struggle.
There are tons of different coping mechanisms and resources available. I encourage you to seek out what works for you and continue trying different combinations until you figure out the best fit.

More than anything else, though, I want to talk about “the conversation.” When it comes to mental illness there are huge amounts of stigma surrounding it, and coupled with the fact that people experiencing it often feel alone, it can be incredibly difficult to reach out for help. This is why so many people suffer in silence. It’s also why I passionately believe in being open and honest about how you’re feeling, even when you feel like “no one wants to hear that.”

As a culture, we’ve become so obsessed with the idea of “positivity” that we’ve forgotten how to empathize and recognize that “positive thinking” doesn’t make the pain of mental illness just go away. Of course, mindset can make a huge difference, but it’s all about balance. I believe one of the most powerful things we can do to help people heal is to be open and honest about our own struggles. It’s when we see our pain mirrored by others that we feel validated and no longer so alone.

If you’re experiencing depression, anxiety, PTSD, or something you don’t know how to describe or label, I encourage you to reach out to someone close to you. A partner, friend, parent or sibling. If you have someone in your life that you know is experiencing mental illness, reach out to them. Send them a text or a card, take them out for coffee, let them know that even if they don’t want to talk about it or know what to say that they are not alone.

If you don’t understand or don’t know what to say back, that’s okay, too. Just letting them know you are there can make all the difference. And if you hear someone else say that they are struggling, instead of staying quiet because it’s easier, have the courage to stand up, and say, “Hey, me too.” It’s only when we all start to share our stories that we begin to recognize how much of our pain is shared, and how much healing we can find in one another.

Springtime Hacks

Between the warmth and rain we all know that it’s definitely Spring here in North Carolina. With the ever-changing springtime weather, how you style your hair can make such a difference. So I’m bringing you my top FOUR fave Spring hacks for this new season.

First up…

Big beautiful ponytails

NBR Hair Extensions

Every time I wear my hair up in a high pony (and yes you can do that with NBR Extensions) I receive so many compliments. Even more importantly, it’s so easy to style. Sometimes I even sleep in my pony so that by the time I wake up it’s just tousled and fluffed up enough to look even more amazing. The final benefit is that for all these humid and rainy days… you just really don’t want to wear your hair down. The big, beautiful ponytail is the perfect solution.

Next on the list…

Braid Magic

NBR Hair Extensions

Braids literally never go out of style, but having NBR extensions in just makes them that much more amazing. I’ve found that throwing in a braid and just fluffing it and making it look really really full gives a really beautiful and polished look. Also great for the humid and rainy days, but just as perfect for sunny days on the go where you’ll be out and about a lot and don’t want to have to worry about your hair being anything but a beautiful accessory.

Trust me on this next one…

The Bardot Bang

NBR Hair Extensions
What exactly is the Bardot Bang? It’s that gorgeous center-part long fringe made famous by Brigitte Bardot. If you’re willing to trim a fringe around the front of your face, this look provides a finished quality without having to do a lot to the rest of your hair. Besides, we all know Spring and Fall are the best times to try out bangs!

Finally…

Embracing more of your natural texture

When it comes to humidity, curls and waves always react to the weather. This often makes it difficult for women who wear hair extensions, as traditionally extensions didn’t come in very many textures, so as their natural would start to frizz, their extensions would go limp making a big difference! NBR extensions can be completely customized to match the texture of your hair. Why is this a Spring Hack? Because every time you have to go outside when your natural hair is reacting to the weather, your extensions will respond just the same making it SO much easier for you to not have to worry about the affects of the weather on your hair and hair extensions. It’s really a game changer for anyone who has bend or body to their hair.

I hope these Springtime Hair Hacks help you move through this season smooth and stress-free, and if I’m missing something, drop a comment below and let me know what it is!

Around this time last year I was just beginning to take the first steps towards transitioning my business into our specialty niche of hair extensions. Along the way there have been so many steps and changes, and I am thrilled to announce our latest big step towards completing the Garnish rebrand. I have always loved our website, but as with all things, it had started to get a little outdated. Not to mention, we needed to completely rewrite it to match our new focus and goals. I also realized there was a lot more information we could provide to our guests and future guests and I wanted the Garnish website to be a resource.

When it comes to hair extensions, my passion began long ago and I’ve spent the last 12 years delving as deep as possible into becoming an absolute expert in my craft. I love being able to share the gift of beautiful hair and greater confidence with as many women as possible, and I realized that providing more information and transparency on the Garnish website was just one more way to contribute to that. My team and I worked to create a beautiful, seamless, easy to navigate site designed to best serve our guests.

It was important to me that our new site have a few key details that would really make it stand out. First, hair is a visual art, so I wanted to showcase it by having a beautiful gallery as well as adding video to the site. It was also important to me that all of the photos on our site were hair that was actually done by the artists in my space.

The images you see throughout the entire site were created by the hands that work in our studio. I also knew that I wanted our site to be a resource for hair extensions information. We detailed our process, the methods that we offer, and all of our services. Our stylists also updated their bios and we integrated their instagram feeds in order to bring fresh content to the site daily.

I wanted anyone who visited the Garnish site to know exactly what we were about, to be able to research whether hair extensions are right for them, and which method they are most interested in, and to really get to know our business and team before they ever walked in the door to the studio.

I would love for you to check out our new website and be sure to subscribe to the blog while you’re there. My team has also been tailoring the blog content to speak more to our expertise in hair extensions in order to provide more detailed information and transparency for our craft and process.

Don’t just check it out, really explore everything our new site has to offer… garnish-studio.com.

 

Hair Extension Investment: We’ve got all the deets!

 

There’s one question we get asked far more than any other questions when it comes to hair extensions. The number one thing everyone wants (and needs) to know is what exactly is the ACTUAL investment of hair extensions. We’ve found that there’s not a lot of information out there that really breaks down the cost of quality hair extensions, so we wanted to go ahead and lay it all out there for you. We never want anyone to feel like they don’t understand what’s involved or they aren’t prepared for both the time and cost commitment of hair extensions.

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Continuing the theme of love from last week, I wanted to do a spotlight on my very first baby. He doesn’t get much attention usually (and trust me, he prefers it that way), but I wanted to show a little love to the guy who’s been with me for the past decade.

Introducing, my pup FoXx. Yes, with two Xx

FoXx is of unknown age and origins, and came to me sort of out of the blue, just about ten years ago. A friend of mine’s husband found him on a military base and brought him home as a surprise to her. Little did he know, she had an even bigger surprise for him. She was pregnant with her daughter, so they decided they couldn’t keep their new pup. So I showed up for a lash appointment with Jill (of company name) and left with a whole ass dog. Seriously.

Natural Beaded Rows

Confession: I wouldn’t exactly call myself a dog person. But somehow, FoXx just fits. He’s a very quiet man… he rarely ever barks. He’s the most chill dog I’ve ever met. After I got him, I spent some time researching his breed (he’s a Shiba Inu) and now I can’t imagine having any other dog.

He’s been with me for so long—before kids, before Garnish, he’s moved multiple places, been to every party hosted at my house—he has truly been a part of my life for the last ten years.

Other than the fact that he was my first baby, he is the lowest maintenance relationship I’ve ever had and he’s the perfect man because he’s great with kids. He doesn’t want much from me, but yet he’s always there.

Basically, everyone needs a FoXx in their life!

I wanted to introduce you all to my newest love, the one I’ve got butterflies over, and the one I’m pouring all of my time and energy into. It’s bright and beautiful, and I’ve been dreaming about it for a long, long time…

Introducing, this year’s Valentine…

Just like a new relationship, I’m definitely in the obsessed and in love phase with this new adventure that is home ownership. Even though I’ve lived here for just about six weeks now, I still get a high every time I walk in the door.

I’ve spent years talking and dreaming about buying not just a house, but my dream house, and this is truly it. For one thing, the closet… y’all, my closet fits ever-y-thing. All of my things aren’t scattered throughout the house anymore… they are all actually living in my closet together. Then there’s the patio… Oh man.

Let me tell you something about the screened-in patio on this house. It’s almost resort-style in its level of relaxing, and for me that means so much. I travel a lot for work, but don’t actually get to take a lot of vacation, and when I step out onto my patio, I get the same kind of vacation vibes, but in my own home. It’s nice to have that kind of space to get to experience that feeling, but still have it be your own space.

More than my favorite aspects of the house though, I love that this is a home for me and my littles. The way they talk about the house gives me all the feels because I can just tell that they are super proud of it. And in addition to being special to hear them talk like that, it also gives me the opportunity to talk to them about being grateful. There’s not a lot of ways to explain that to a toddler, but it’s a concept that’s so important to me. I’ve been able to teach them that we say “thank you” because this house is important to us. And, how to care for something that means a lot to you.

Talking about buying a home, as much as I wanted it, used to stress me out. All you hear about from other homeowners are the challenges of owning your own home… it’s easy to forget about the high that comes with buying it and investing in it. I’m thankful to get to experience that for myself. It may seem like finally purchasing the house is “the end” of a journey, like—Yep, I did it. It’s done now. Instead, it feels more like the beginning. It’s a milestone of what I’ve been able to create in tangible form, but there’s still so much more to go.

I hope you enjoy this little mini virtual tour of my new love, my Valentine.

January began my extension studio’s official first year as just that—an extension exclusive studio instead of a full-service hair salon. As amazing as it feels to have made it to this achievement, you all know I don’t ever stop striving for even more growth, so I really considered what my studio needed to be the absolute best at what we do. We offer a luxury service that is extremely detail-oriented, and requires not just one, but many skillsets in order to really provide a top-quality service.

I knew I had a team full of talented artists, but each of their backgrounds and skill levels is very different and I wanted to find a way to bring everyone up to the same standards not just in the hands-on aspects of our services, but in the quality of service as well. As the owner of the studio, I wanted to set aside time to really pour into my team and my business.

Enter: Level Up Wednesdays

Each week from 5:00-7:00 pm, my entire team comes together to focus solely on the business of hair extensions. This can mean hands-on training, but we also cover verbiage, troubleshooting, efficiency meets complexity, and more in order to prepare every single stylist to be able to best offer the exceptional standard of service that is the norm at Garnish. My stylist team has learned differently than my apprentice team, and I wanted to find a way to bridge that gap and offer the same knowledge and experience to every member of the Garnish Squad.

Our most recent Level Up class consisted of a lesson on connectivity. This is something I value so much and consider at the core of my business, so it was important to me to sit down and work through it with my entire team. Within connectivity we talked about relatability with our guests, prescribing not just extensions, but game-planning their entire journey towards their hair goals.

We talked about making sure that we understand our clients’ needs, and how to find the “nugget”—that most important core of what they are looking for—and how to translate that into finding the extensions that will be the best fit for them. We talked through different scenarios and hair needs to prepare the team to best be able to both communicate with different guests, along with troubleshoot and find the best possible solution for each individual.

It’s so important to understand what each person wants and doesn’t want and what’s going to be a good fit for them. This process is imperative to achieving beautiful extensions and have an incredible experience with wearing extensions. Investing into this process and becoming better communicators is why I feel like we have so many people who keep coming back.

Here’s a sneak peek…

We are continuously leveling up to offer better extensions methods, better service, quality control, and consistency. I’m investing in my team and they are committed to putting in time and effort into growing and making sure things are consistent with one another.

I love that my entire team is committed to this leveling up experience. Everyone from my lead stylist to my newest apprentice is sitting down together to listen, learn, share, and grow. This is exactly the kind of environment I have been striving to achieve within my salon, and I am so grateful to be surrounded by such passionate, inspired individuals.

Okay mamas, this one goes out to you. Particularly working moms.

I wanted to share about some difficulties my kids and I are currently experiencing, and how we’re navigating such a pivotal time inside their lives… Because maybe you can relate. Did you know as a parent that you have to preregister and apply for schools THIS early if your child starts school for the first time in August? I did not know this until a fellow mom told me. So as Kingston turned five earlier this week, this is the year he will start kindergarten… and let me tell y’all… having to find a school for him has been very tumultuous. Not only have I been looking at schools for him, but am now having to figure out what to do with Houston as they will now have completely different schedules.

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C A N D I C E G R A M

Owner of @GarnishHairStudio | Transformations are my Specialty | Fashion is a hobby | Fun is a Necessity
So you need a revamp huh? Info@Garnish-Studio.com - Garnish Studio + Extension Bar

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