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Daily Inspiration: Meet Gayla Smith

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gayla Smith.

Hi Gayla, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
I started Cosmetology school in 88 and graduated in 89. I started my first job after I passed State Board of Cosmetology at a salon near my house. I worked there for ten years. Then when I left there, I actually went to salon. And for several reasons, I just felt like I would do things differently if I could have my own place but I didn’t want the overhead or stress of owning a large salon… This is when I found out about renting a suite at a place. I was renting at a place for about 13 years… Then turned 50 years old and we had the COVID pandemic. I felt I was ready for a change and my friend Nikki Fernando opened up Alkaline Suites and dry bar. And a year and half ago I started renting a suite from her. And I have been so happy and one of the best decisions I have made.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I have to say renting a suite has been much easier than working for someone. But with everything, there are obstacles. I had a small client base but still needed more clients to be able to pay my rent. I tried many advertising things and spent money on things that just didn’t work. But this is part of the learning process of something new.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I do haircuts for men and women and children. I specialize in color services and color corrections. I am known for my blondes. I specialize in creating the perfect blondes. I think what sets me apart from others is I have over 30 years of experience. And I started doing hair when mullets and etc. was in style. And I stay trained in the new trends… so if you want I a mullet, I can do it. If you want a root blend Baylage with teasy lights… well, I can do that too.

Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
Behind the Chair Thrive Stylist

Modern Salon

Contact Info:

  • Email:
  • Website:
  • Instagram: gsmith_alkalinesuitesanddrybar

Image Credits
Clients of the salon

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