Dermalogica Q&A with Kaffee Keldie of Kaffee’s Garden Spa
1. Number of years with esthetics license (you or salon):
I received my Esthetic license in 1982 from Golden West College in Huntington Beach, California.
2. Number of years with Dermalogica:
In 1988 I was helping Edward set up the Esthetic Department for his new salon in Palm Beach and I chose Dermalogica as the treatment line because of my earlier association with Jane Martin Wurwand in California. I have continued to use and grow with Dermalogica ever since.
3. Tell us a little bit about the history of your career ‘journey’:
After I finished my education at Golden West College I was hired as a staff aesthetician at Kerstin Florians Skin Care Salon in Laguna Beach. (The term “Day Spa” had not been coined yet!)
I meet Jane Martin in 1983 when she arrived in Los Angeles before the opening of the Dermal Institute. It was one of those instances of being in the right place at the right time! If I am correct the lecture that Jane gave on that first meeting was at the Belvedere showroom in somewhere like Compton was her first in the USA. She was brilliant! I became a fan right then & there.
In 1986 I relocated to Florida and was employed by Elizabeth Arden Salons to work in their Palm Beach, Florida and Southampton, New York locations.
In the Fall of 1988 Edwards of Palm Beach, FL opened and Jane Martin came to our location to train us.
In 1994 I rented a space within The Thomas Morrissey Salon in Palm Beach and continued to work in Southampton NY for the summer season at a private salon called Steven Deering after the Arden Salon closed. In total I worked 12 consecutive summers in Southampton, which allowed me to care for many of my clients year around who lived both places.
In those years the first Dermal Institute opened in Florida. As a result I felt confident enough to take the “leap of faith” to begin my own facility with the vision of building a staff. I thought ,”with the assist of The Dermal Institute we can do this”!
In 1998 I founded Kaffee’s Garden Spa in West Palm Beach, Florida. Twelve and half years later we have 6 Skin Care Therapists on staff of which some have been with us for 9 and 10 years.
4. What kind (size) of business did you start out with?
I started out with 4 treatment rooms and most of the first year just me working. I had a few part time people during my earlier years who were on call as I tried to develop the concept and encourage clients to receive other services along with their facials and waxing. I can remember a time when I would lock the front door while I was in treatment and my next appointment would just knock on the window. Fortunately, even from the beginning, my business has been profitably operating in the black. I attribute my success to two things: 1) I opened with a dedicated following & 2) The service to retail margins gave us a healthy profit. From a product position my #1 selling product line has consistently been Dermalogica.
5. What kind (size) of business is it today?
In 2002 we were able to double our square footage which gave us an additional treatment room, a couples/massage room, a pedicure room, salon and relaxation room as well as a staff kitchen.
6. How many employees do you have today?
Today our team consists of myself and 5 other aestheticians, 4 massage therapists, 3 nail tech’s, 2 hair stylists, desk support and a housekeeper; there are 16 of us total.
7. Describe what role Dermalogica played in helping you succeed in business.
Dermalogica has played an integral role in the success of my spa by providing products that continually meet the needs of our clients in a big way. We have dedicated Dermalogica users who walk in for supplies daily. Additionally, they provide me with excellent business consultants, which is far more comprehensive than I have seen provided by any other manufacturer. I’m astounded by the educational support via classes at the Institute as well as on site training. Dermalogica continues to evolve, improve, and grow their product portfolio. I feel like they care about their distributors and have remain committed to the growth of our business. From the very beginning Jane was able to relate and identify with the challenges of the Aesthetician. She empowered us to raise the bar by teaching us how to.
Not only have I and my staff benefited by Dermalogica’s inspiration but I believe the entire Industry has grown positively as a result.
Thank you Jane and all at Dermalogica!