We help young women living in poverty find their beauty and earn a sustainable income through the vocation of beauty.
People love to look good. Every successful person knows that how they present themselves makes a big difference in the way people they meet respond. It is an essential ingredient in success whether you are man or women, rich or poor. More than just the presentation, beauty is also something that emanates from the inside. The finishing touches we put on our hair, our skin, or our clothes are really just enablers for how we feel inside. Give a down-and-out man a clean shave, a nice haircut and put him in a sharp suit, and you’ve enabled someone who feels different and starts to once again believe in his inner self. Take a poor, destitute woman and style her hair, accent her beauty with some make-up and dress her up in fine clothes and you’ve created a woman who feels reconnected with her inner beauty and confidence. The truth throughout the world is that beauty is not a vain sin, or a marketing tactic, but rather an amplifier of the light we all have inside of us.
After spending 17 years working for beauty companies and traveling the world, Douglas Wood, founder and CEO of Beauty+++, saw this everywhere he went. Whether it was a remote farming community in Cambodia, or a high end salon in New York City, the same truth emanated from both the artists who practice its application and the clients who enjoy its results: beauty is an enabler that opened doors inside and out. Yes, it could be misdirected and exploited but in its purest form was an amazing trade. Watching the smiles, seeing the results and feeling the confidence, Doug became an avid admirer of the art.
In the Spring of 2009, while traveling to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Doug stumbled upon something even more beautiful. It was at a small salon run by former sex trafficking survivor who was using her skills as a beauty artist to not only earn a stable income for herself, but to help others who suffered like her learn the trade so they too could be independent. More than just applying beauty, this young woman’s inner beauty was using her skill to make the lives of those around her more beautiful too. It was at that point that Doug saw a connection between all artists he had missed: although the art was what was made their success, it was the connection they had with people that truly made them artists. And it was that discovery that brought Doug to bring about the first Beauty+++ solution in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
The first Beauty+++ Salon was enabled through generous support from Doug’s then employer. The internal support from avid stylists and make-up artists within the company led them to try out the concept. It was a beautiful venture that connected brands, executives and artists with young women in Cambodia from very distressed circumstances who had a desire to become beauty professionals. The full service salon and training center was built for under $20,000 and now employs 3 full time employees and up to four interns. It is a full training center with all the tools, supplies and equipment needed to aid students learn the art. A great success, this first Beauty+++ Salon has served over 2,000 clients and trained over 30 young women in its first year. One of the students, turned employee, saved her money and has now opened her own “Beauty+” solution that has expanded the network and started to reach even more students and clients.
Perhaps the most amazing facet of the first phase of The Beauty+++ Salons was the love that was unleashed between the students and the educators. The connection between established beauty professionals and the young woman who were their students was unbelievable. Most of the team would leave the training sessions streaming tears of joy as they saw their time empower women who now had the opportunity to change their lives, and the lives of those around them, for good.
In an industry where money and sales objectives cloud the art and heart of beauty, The Beauty+++ Network rises to fill the void. Now entering its second year of operation, the Beauty+++ team is seeking social investors who share our vision, passion and art to make the world a more beautiful place.
Location: United States, New York