Sumita Batra - As a family business, it is very much our passion and indeed goes well beyond the basics of business development! Kundan Sabarwal, Suman Patel and myself, have our eyes on the future and are poised to grow Ziba Beauty in two primary areas : First, store expansion. It means that, with a keen eye towards the national scene, we lead hundreds of employees and are rapidly expanding the Ziba Beauty brand presence in California. Second, based on the increasing demand for The Art of Threading®, we have developed a plan that allows a unique specialized art form to grow our locations by constantly bringing new clients into our studio’s, as well as a strong, loyal repeat client base. In addition to the core management team, we have an enviable list of industry experts in the areas of branding, retail design and real estate.
Premium Beauty News - What is The Art of Threading® exactly?
Sumita Batra - The Art of Threading® is a non-invasive hair removal technique used primarily for eyebrow shaping. A piece of cotton thread is twisted and run along the skin to grab and remove hair from the follicle. This type of hair removal is prevalent in all parts of Asia, and is a common method used to remove unwanted facial hair. Compared to waxing, one does not have to wait for the hair to be a certain length to be removed. When using The Art of Threading®, a Ziba Artist can remove a single hair or even an entire line of hair in one quick twist. This allows for the brow to be precisely defined and customized to suit each individual.
Since the face is the most sensitive area of the body, The Art of Threading® is the ideal application for hair removal. The swift movement of thread by a Ziba Artist also exfoliates dead skin. Fans of threading attest that the service does not cause any rashes or skin irritations common with other hair removal techniques. Regular threading can maintain a clean and sharp appearance of eyebrows without the usual side effects of waxing and shaving.
Premium Beauty News - You also have another specialty which has greatly contributed to your reputation too. The one you call The Art of Mehndi® which also extends to The Art of Glitter Mehndi®. A few explanations for the layman...
Sumita Batra - The mehndi is a temporary popular form of tattoo, used in various Muslim Arab countries and in Asia. It is often designed, according to ethnic models of varying complexity, especially on the hands and feet, because the skin is thicker in these areas and because of a desire to increase the hold of the colouration over time.
In Bangladesh, Kashmir and Sudan, this form of body art is used for weddings for both newlyweds. In Rajasthan (northwestern India), the mehndi is a folk art, and it is common for women to perform designs on them just as refined as those of newlyweds.
The preparation of the henna paste is made by grinding the dried leaves of henna to obtain a powder. According to traditions, the powder is mixed with water or a darker liquid such as tea or coffee to darken the colour. Lemon juice can also be added (to release the dye) and sugar (for consistency). The resulting paste is applied, often in very fine drawings (using a small pouch or even a syringe). The contact time with skin having an influence on the hold, the paste is often left on the skin for up to 6 hours before being removed. To increase the drying process of the residue, hands are not washed for several hours. The tattoo can stay as long as a few days up to two weeks depending on the drying time but also the nature of the skin (perspiration or heat promotes discolouration), red-brown colours naturally change to orange before disappearing. Henna mehndi is temporary on the surface of the skin while the tattoo is a permanent and surgical insertion of a dye under the skin.
Premium Beauty News - The Art of Glitter Mehndi is an even more sophisticated form with the addition of real jewels on the skin?
Sumita Batra - Yes, that’s right! Glitter Mehndi can be enhanced with Crystals and other sparkling jewels to create spectacular body art. It started as a new form of accessory for brides, and has now become the most sought after service for special occasions at Ziba Beauty.
Premium Beauty News - You also created your own Academy?
Sumita Batra - We invest heavily in education and training for our technicians and we have developed a program called the Ziba Way®. The artists are certified through the Ziba Academy in a paid training program, with a focus on the study of facial structures and eyebrow shapes to suit different faces. Ziba Artists must follow stringent guidelines to become a threader. The rapid growth at the stores has created opportunities for students to learn from the Ziba Academy and to build lucrative careers.
Premium Beauty News - You also designed and developed your own brand of products including a line of make-up products.
Sumita Batra - Yes, and we currently achieve about two million dollars in sales in this niche. This line is a “must have” collection of contrast pencils, brow tools and body art. This line is sold at Ziba Beauty locations and is becoming a brand extension into the retail market.
Premium Beauty News - Your vision of development is not confined to the U.S. market alone. What about Europe?
Sumita Batra - We are interested in global expansion, and have developed a strategy that would allow us to grow smartly in key areas around the world, Europe being one of our geographical interests. Our plan it to expand in the US, then roll out to international markets with presence, leveraging our expertise and elevating the experience of clients all over the world when it comes to our services and products.