April Allen opened Spoiled Spa and Salon, a full-service day spa and salon, in 2011 and ran it as a single mother of two boys. In 2015, her now-husband Skylar Allen got on board to help with general operations, and today he serves as operations director.
Spoiled Spa and Salon demonstrates a commitment to the community April had been looking for in a salon since she became a licensed hairstylist in 2007. When she opened her own salon, she held a fundraiser for a local cosmetology scholarship and decided each anniversary to hold a fundraiser for a local nonprofit – it was her way of saying thank you to the community that supported her success.
In addition, April and her staff at Spoiled Spa and Salon have volunteered time and services and given funds to local youth sports, Boys & Girls Club of Southwest Washington, Courts for Kids, Cameo Vancouver, the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Dog Paw, The Children’s Center, Share, NW Battle Buddies, the Pink Lemonade Project, NWCAVE (National Women’s Coalition Against Violence and Exploitation) and more. Employees are encouraged to help choose donation recipients.
“The advantage of owning a business is the flexibility I can create when I work hard. It allows my husband and I to work with our children’s schedules for school and sports,” said April in a statement to the Vancouver Business Journal. “We also get to be flexible in our creativity to try new things in our business.”
April is a first-generation business owner. “I did not grow up with any entrepreneurs in my family so everything has been a large learning curve,” she said. “I am grateful that my husband and children admire my hard work and support me when I have to miss out on things or get distracted with unforeseen workloads.”
April cites challenges as finding affordable commercial space. Today, her space is rented, but she would like to invest in owning a building for the salon. She also finds it challenging to keep up with the “ever-changing labor laws and requirements while turning a profit.”
Spoiled Spa & Salon provides continuing education classes for employees that develop skill in the trade, business development and management.
“Our business is unique because we support employees looking to grow, as well as transition professionals into small business ownership with the option to rent space after they feel they want a different challenge.”