A common complaint among Kazakh women and fans of beauty and self-care when living abroad is that they cannot find a decent yet inexpensive beauty salon. Back home, their monthly budget would account for at least one session of every basic procedure - professional hair styling, hair removal, nails, lash extensions, micro-needling and the likes. Looking good is not simply a luxury here - it has become the bare necessity.
Assel Akeljanova is 23 years old and a licensed esthetician managing her own studio, Magic Aesthetic Studio, @magicaestheticstudio, in Miami. She had found her new career during the pandemic after deciding to cater to the steady demand from Kazakh beauty lovers as her source of income.
About moving to the United States
I am originally from eastern Kazakhstan. I came to the U.S. in 2017 on a student visa to improve my English and see New York City. After graduation, I decided to stay.
At first, I worked in the service industry. I went to college to study tourism. And during the pandemic, I got the idea to make money from home, and I enrolled in a course in eyelash extension. In those courses, I learned that I needed to get my cosmetology license, so I enrolled at Brittany Beauty Academy in New York.
After graduation, I had to take the NYC State Board. It's a written and practical exam. I passed it and got my cosmetology license from the state of New York. Then I moved to Miami and opened my own studio.
You have to be prepared for the fact that the client base will not grow immediately. A business will not bring in a lot of income at first and will require a large investment.
To avoid mistakes at the start, carefully prepare all documents and tax reports. Allocate a budget for business development. Let go of all fears and believe in yourself and your business. This is the most important thing to remember.
In the States, you can open any business and it will eventually find its customers. Never give up.
About future plans
My plan: never stop learning something new and always be trendy. I also want to gain more experience and expand my business.