ORLANDO – While some businesses have unfortunately closed during the coronavirus pandemic, Stephine Jean is getting ready to open up her second “Luxurii Nails” salon location on Princeton Street in just a few short weeks.
She says it’s all thanks to a few people who have believed in her, and she actually just started getting into the nail art business last year.
“Even though all retail shops were shut down, the demand for the product did not, so I was able to continue to provide services from my home in a safe, clean environment,” Jean said.
She says throughout the year she worked hard and saved up money with the help of her business partner working behind the scenes on her behalf. She then saw a great opportunity that she knew she couldn’t pass up, an open space at a local Walmart.
“I believed in myself that I could be the one to occupy that space and when perseverance and a little bit of luck paid off, I was not only able to open my second store, but step into history as well,” Jean said.
Stepping into history definitely has a deep meaning for Jean. Historically, nail art has been a big part of Black culture.
“It’s almost surreal to be a part of the deep, rich history that Black culture has had on fashion and to be included in the names of people helping to continue it into the future. We have always had the creativity and ingenuity but being able to merge it with the business world, like the brilliant Madam C.J. Walker did, should be the ultimate goal,” said Jean.
She says she’s from Miami, but was raised at a young age in Orlando. The local community means so much to her. When she’s not working at her nail salon, she’s teaching an elective class on nails at Jones High School.
She also helps out at Parramore Kidz Zone. She recently participated in a back-to-school event where students were treated to a full day of food, haircuts, nail services and even received a brand new backpack full of supplies.
When it comes to other young entrepreneurs, she has this message:
“Constantly work on and hone your craft to perfection, be relentless in your goals, don’t be resistant to change, embrace it and innovate to stay relevant, your name is your reputation, always keep it blemish-free and highly esteemed and always have faith in you and your abilities.”
Her location inside the Walmart on Princeton Street officially opens on Sept. 1. For now, you can also find her nail salon at their location on Colonial Drive.