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Meet Tiina Troberg of Lash Bar By Dermacilia in Silver Lake

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tiina Troberg.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Tiina. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Since I was a little girl, I have always loved perfumes, cosmetics and skin care products. I worked as a makeup artist for a couple of years and then worked on cruise ships, mostly in the shops, where I learned a lot about retail. I did miss the real hands on contact with clients, for instance being able to change a look with just a few brush strokes. Once, a woman started crying after the makeup application and said she did not know she could look so beautiful. There are so many memories like these from the makeup years. When I started with lashes I had another woman telling me -“Tiina. I came here for lashes, but you gave me self-confidence.” It is amazing what lashes can do for a woman, when they are correctly applied of course.

I moved to Los Angeles from Sweden May 2013. At first, I was unable to work due to my visa situation and that was horrible as I have always worked and made my own living. While I was applying for my work permit I went back to school and became a California licensed aesthetician which you must be if you are going to work with eyelash extensions in the state of California. It was hard work and I read the books over and over to really understand what I was reading. I could not fail! English is my third language and studying the medical terms in English was tough for me, I still remember the sentence “sebaceous glands”, which gave me sweat drops on my forehead!

When I finally had my work permit and the aesthetician license in hand I clicked on many buttons. For example, the “publish” button to Dermacilia’s website, that I had created myself during the time waiting for all my papers. Studying, planning and preparing was the only thing I could do when I wasn´t allowed to work. That is how Dermacilia was created. I added “Lash Bar by” so people knew lashes was on the menu.

Has it been a smooth road?
I would be lying if I said it has been a smooth trip. The hopelessness that I have felt many times, mostly over things that has been hard for me to affect, has been very challenging. The immigration bureaucracy for example. Just to open a bank account for me as a house wife was a challenge because everything was written in my husband’s name, I did not have the right to anything. It was horrible. To get a social security number was a hustle. Luckily, we had Elektron, the company my husband works for, behind us. Without them we would not be here for sure. That is why I felt I could not let this opportunity of starting my own business go away. I live in a city with millions of people and where there is plenty of room for everyone to create a successful business. I am always thinking, “as long as I have the strength and the health, I can do anything. Just keep on building, keep on moving, keep on doing, keep on planning, keep on going.” There is still challenges of course, but I am sure I can overcome them. Some takes time. Luckily, I have wonderful support from my husband as well, but I try to do as much as I can myself.

Another disappointment was when the rent doubled at my first location on Sunset Blvd and I had to find a new location. I of course found a better one and Lash Bar by Dermacilia is now located at 2894 Rowena Avenue, with one designated parking spot exclusively for Dermacilia’s wonderful clients! It is not a storefront, it’s a bit hidden in the back but it is nice, exclusive and quiet. Everybody loves the space!

So, let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Lash Bar by Dermacilia story. Tell us more about the business.
I call it “Lash Bar by Dermacilia” as lash extensions is the main business, however new for this year is also micro-blading and waxing services. Waxing is an add-on services only, before or after your eyelash extension appointment. I also do eyelash extension training for those that wants to learn how to apply eyelash extensions safely and correctly. I see bad eyelash extensions every week. A properly performed eyelash extension should never hurt. It should feel light and not heavy on your eyelids. My specialty is custom tailored eyelash extensions and I often ask new clients to bring photos of the kind of lashes they aim for. There are so many different thicknesses and curls available, so communication is very important.

I am known for taking very good care of my clients. I never apply glue on the skin and I never suffocate the hair follicles, these needs to be able to grow freely. Eyelashes grow in cycles, just like the hair on our heads. Most of my clients have better lashes now than what they had when they first started seeing me. I guess what I am most proud of is the quality of my work and the feedback from my clients. My clients love the cozy and calm vibe I offer, and they usually fall asleep during the 1-3-hour application.

Dermacilia will also have own products soon. I am working on creating an exclusive catalogue of beauty products, tailored for specific needs. I have big plans and I feel I am on the right path with the business and brand that I am creating.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I think we are going to see more use of natural hair and less use of mink hair. Dermacilia does not use mink because of ethical reasons. The trend is going towards more and more natural looking lashes. My clients usually want a lot of lashes applied, but it still needs to be natural looking and that is possible with the thin eyelashes that are available on the market today. I think there will also be more colorful and artistically leaning eyelash products available. The application of the lashes is a true art form. You need good vision, patience, steady hands and a sense of form and design.

Pricing:

  • Custom tailored volume set $200 (2 hours)
  • Custom tailored signature set $250 (2,5 hour)
  • Volume small fill $95 (1 hour) within 5 weeks from the last appointment
  • Volume medium fill $120 (1,5 Hour) within 5 weeks from the last appointment
  • Volume large fill $150 (2 hours) within 5 weeks from the last appointment
  • Volume extra large fill $180 (2,5 hours) within 5 weeks from the last appointment

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Robin Laananen

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