We had the good fortune of connecting with Noa McMahon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Noa, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
When I was still in high school my junior year, I hadn’t applied to any colleges. I had been to a few different schools just to visit and I just honestly didn’t see myself in that environment. Once I made it to my senior year, it was very clear to me that I wanted to be an entrepreneur and I wanted to start as soon as I could, I had a passion for making people feel beautiful and being their therapist along the way so, one month after graduation I enrolled and started beauty school. It wasn’t easy and the commute was over an hour everyday, to and from school. But I knew what I wanted and I knew what it would take to get me there. Also, learning to start and run my own business successfully, would allow me to independently make my own rules and treat my clients how they’re supposed to be treated. Not having to follow anyone else’s rules.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I started off taking any and every kind of client I could. I wanted to be well rounded and be able to tackle any hairstyle requested. As time went on I started to put in perspective what I leaned in beauty school and that it was smarter to start focusing on what I truly loved about hair, and how I could enhance my skills and stand out a little more as a stylist in Chicago, which an overly crowded industry. This journey has not been easy and I honestly never expected it to be. Beauty school was a hassle everyday taking over an hour to get there and get home. I was up at 5am to make to school by 9am, and didn’t make it home til almost 8pm EVERYDAY. talk about exhausting and no time for any kind of fun, especially if I wanted to go too school on Saturdays to pick up any extra color classes or skills. After graduation I worked at a couple upscale salons in Northern Chicago/Downtown, and it was not my style. The money was good but the people were not. I eventually started working in a studio salon of my own. Lost that studio and started working in a salon in the south suburbs and its been amazing since then. I started making wigs in 2017-2018 and I fell in love with the process and results. Wigs are what have me at the point I am now, and my clientele is well within 10-15 states now. Ive learned thus far to always follow my first mind and do what makes me happy. However that doesn’t mean it doesn’t come with challenges, but when you are busy making yourself happy, the challenges are like tiny roadblocks that always have a solution to make a way. What I believe sets me apart from others, is my character and my skill. Many people can pass for having a skill until its being put to use. I get real client review daily of the longevity of the hairstyle and how low maintenance it was for my client. That MAKES MY DAY!
What I want the world to know about me and my brand it that you’ll be hearing it as a household name very soon! And if you’ve never worn a wig and want to try it, RealPrettyCollections will be there to assist 🙂 !
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take her to a really good breakfast spot to start the day, called Scrambled. they have some of the BEST mimosas. Then we would definitely walk to the strip because who doesn’t like walking in beautiful weather and grabbing drinks from the many bars! We’d get a super good slice of pepperoni pizza and a slice of red velvet from Pizza Cake! UGH AMAZING! Vegas has what’s called ” Lake Las Vegas” and we’d definitely hit them up, considering were from Chicago and we love the beach. Before it gets dark we’d go check out Red Rock Canyon, the MOST BEAUTIFUL scenery you’ve ever seen. Later on I the day depending on her mood, we’d either go to Drais Nightclub or The Blue Martini lounge to have a nice nightlife experience.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My mother will always get the credit she deserves when it comes to helping, encouraging, and keeping me on the right path. Especially when things got rough. She made sure made it to my destination everyday, even though I was out go high school and barely making money at the time. She always made sure I continued to believe in my dream when everyone else thought I was crazy and ” too smart” to not go to college. She is my motivation aside from my newborn and she will always reap the benefits of my lifestyle and business.