We had the good fortune of connecting with Adriana Mangum and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Adriana, every day, we about how much execution matters, but we think ideas matter as well. How did you come up with the idea for your business?
I grew up in a house hold full of “Leaders”. At least in my eyes, that’s what they were to me. My mother came to the United States at the age of 15 from Montevideo, Uruguay and my father grew up with his single mother and sisters in Austin, Tx. My parents always taught my brother and I as we were growing up, that our family was always a “Team”. That you always gave a helping hand, that you always gave love and compassion, that you praised one another for all the small and big accomplishments, and that one was never better then the other. Their standards they always carried through in life eventually turned them into executives in their own careers and they still kept that same belief system within their staff. Naturally I grew up with that same passion. It didn’t matter if you were someone I was a teammate with, a family or friend, If I was mentoring you at the salon I worked at before, or you were even working for me. I wanted you to WIN!!!! I worked for a corporate commission Salon for ten years and then went on my own which now I have been doing for 12years. There were so many benefits to being in a commission salon. The teamwork, the accountability from your manager and peers, the commission in selling retail, the back bar, endless capes and towels that we never had to worry about purchasing, the free advertisement, and the guaranteed clientele, but with all that, it came with a price. I missed out on a lot of family time, mile stones, and memories. I finally went on my own and took those next 10years molding what I wanted in my own single suite salon and really started learning and studying what makes us “entrepreneurial hairdressers” successful and what fails us? I knew the benefits for sure was you could have your own schedule, you could make it to all the past lost times, and you could pretty much do whatever you wanted, but that came with a price also, you didn’t have your “Team” anymore, you didn’t have accountability from your manager and peers, you had to wash all your own towels and capes, and everything cost, your supplies, your retail, your booking system, and any possible advertising. After the 10year mark of being on my own, I was busting at the seams in my suite and knew it was time for growth. Did I want a commission salon or did I want a gallery full of entrepreneurs? I finally made my decision and went with a gallery salon. At the time my dad had fallen very ill and I knew at the time to be someone’s “Boss” I knew I couldn’t give that much attention as I was still a Hairstylist my self and a full time caretaker and I could already see the future of a commission salon going totally wrong, but there was still something I loved about the blue print of a “commission salon” and I then realized it was because a lot of it I spoke about earlier was what I grew up being taught. So this is when my idea came to flourish-in. I knew I didn’t want to be a boss, but a “LEADER!!!”. My next thought was what all did I love about a Commission salon? Of course the way it flowed, Back bar being stocked, capes and towels always at your disposal, laundry always being available, the elegance of being at a “Salon” and Commission retail, to make those paychecks bigger. So, that is what I did. I stepped out of the norm from other gallery salons and pursued my roll as a Leader to offer all those amenities and more to help a thriving artist that wants to make it on their own so bad and give them no reason to fail. The Leaders in my life whether my parents or individuals I looked up to are definitely part of who I am and what I have become so My only hope and goal is that one day these same thriving stylist that walk through Evolution ‘Aire Salons door become great leaders them selves.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
As a professional hairstylist I take great pride on what I can provide for the integrity of each one of my clients hair. Whether that may be at-home care or right in the salon during their service. My passion for this industry and what I can offer my clients has pushed me to always stay up to date on my education which leads me to my most proud moment, Wella’s “Master Color Expert” program Which is a title given once you have completed the industries most prestigious color program. The course is equivalent to a 12 month intensive Masters degree in coloring at Wella Studio’s. It involves in-depth science to the structure of a strand of hair, examine how different colors effect it, diets and hair growth/loss, and how the hair becomes grey. It also involves In-depth knowledge of color and structure of the hair for color correction, to how and why certain colors are used, and expertise to what is achievable without compromising condition. Getting to this point in my industry definitely came with hurdles, as I mentioned before I started in a Corporate commission salon which was departmentalized. So in those 10years of doing hair, I only cut and styled hair, did treatments, and was certified in Extensions. When I finally left “The nest” as they say, I left still with just those skill sets, which I was very proud of, but in time I knew I would need to expand my skills if I wanted to keep my business running. After two years on my own, I took the plunge and went straight into color. I taught my self the color wheel, I watched any of my hair friends that would allow me to, do their clients hair, I practiced my foiling before work, during my lunch breaks, and after work sometimes until 1 or 2 in the Morning just so I could keep giving my clients the best of me. After a year and 1/2 of doing this, I was blessed to know someone who could Guide me in bringing my skill set in color to another level and that is where I started the “MCE” program. I graduated from this program November 2016. What I learned from all of this, is that it truly is never to late to pick up a new technique or skill set, a new passion, or a new industry. As long as you can tell that voice in your head that there are no other options but “YES AND UP FROM HERE” and you truly know your “why?” Your limits are endless. My why has always been “My family” because they deserve a life of endless possibilities and if I can provide that, my life is complete. As I live that in my life, I carry that same energy through my career, into my clients, to all the artist that work in my salon, because there’s always room for more endless possibilities.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Now we all know Houston has some of the BEST ENTERTAINMENT AND FOOD!!! So, let’s get to it!!! So if my Bestie was coming in town for a week to visit, FOOD, would definitely be a top priority!!! So for Brunch, we would more likely go and try places like “A’Bouzy” for a Chic and bubbly experience and that’s where the mimosas would come to play, now if we’re looking for casual, but really want those fluffy pancake feels, it would have to be “Dish society”. Now if you want some amazing fruity pebble French toast, head over to “Bosscat Kitchen and Libation”, now for some afternoon entertainment and hangouts, I would say we would go and try “Axelrad Beer Garden “, do a little sight seeing at the “Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern”, go do a little shopping in the Rice Village Area and possibly have some drinks and lunch or early dinner at “Sixty Vine”. Now for the Night time entertainment I would say if we are trying to get all dolled up, “Joey Uptown” would be a great vibe for the start of an evening, a good casual sneaker night, with a sight seeing experience because of all their neon accented surroundings and they’re lively cocktails would be “Present Company”, now I can’t forget to show love in my area “Clear Lake”, so I would say for a chill and trying to catch up with a few drinks “Bar Louie”, if you wanna go a little more south in San Leon “Pier 6” for some good vibing music, appetizers and frozen margarita flights, and we can’t for get Galveston, “The strand” or even the “Spot or Rum Shack” for a day of hopping the day time seen, now if you want to just totally skip lunch and get that Night time vibe going for dinner and drink in Galveston I would totally suggest “Rudy and Pacos” or “Vargas Cut and Catch”. There’s so much to share in Houston, that I can proudly say, you’ll rarely be disappointed in what you’ll choose!!! There’s definitely a vibe for everyone.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d like to give a HUGE SHOUT OUT!!! To my husband, Kevin Mangum, Jr. for being my biggest cheerleader. You always have taken my career very serious and always believed there was more for me in the hair industry and when I was ready to go on my own, you were ready for any challenges. You’ve never wavered on if I could succeed or not. You held our little family down when we needed it. You have always seen what at times I can’t even see with-in my self, “The best”. Secondly, I’d like to give a shout out to my Parent’s Felix and Susana Aguirre, Jr. Y’all believed in me from the very beginning, when I first said I was going into Cosmetology School Y’all were so proud and treated it like I was getting a degree and I’ll never forget y’all saying that I will do so great in this career. It was y’all’s confidence in me that gave me the fuel I needed to pursue a passion I sometimes didn’t even know I had. Thirdly, to all my clients and past clients who have helped me grow in this industry, with out y’all’s, dedication, learning curves, and just flat out love, I wouldn’t be here today to share my story, and to My salon, “The Artist’s” thank you for choosing Evolution ‘Aire Salons to be your home for your small business. It brings great joy to be apart of y’all’s success.
Instagram: 1) Adri_evolutionaire 2) EvolutionAireSalons
Facebook: 1)Adriana Mangum 2) Evolution ‘Aire
•Lacy Peña with “More than an image and Lacy Dagerath Photography (professional head shot) •Tara Ames with “Restoration Marketing” (salon and candid photos) •Adriana Mangum (hair photos)