Tucked between Scribbles Coffee and the One Center on North Water Street in Kent is a spa. Walk down the steps and enter through the single door, Megan Konst the owner of Traveling Spa Girl will greet you with a smile. If it’s your first visit, she’ll pull out a clipboard, and direct you to the black couch in her sitting room, to fill out some paperwork. She’ll then guide you to her treatment room. She shares the building with other businesses, but once inside her space the outside world melts away, turning into a cozy, dimly lit room with the sound of relaxing music.
Traveling Spa Girl opened two years ago. Konst has spent about ten years working as an esthetician and massage practitioner. Before opening her own business, she worked at other local spas and as an independent contractor. Most of her clientele she has worked with for years. Now she has her own office space, and she travels for corporate wellness events. She’s done events at Howard Hannah and University Hospitals.
“I want to make people feel good about themselves, encourage them, help them with whatever issues they have,” said Konst.
As an esthetician, Konst has to oblige to the rules set by the Ohio Board of Cosmetology, COS. Estheticians focus on the beautification of skin, which falls under the cosmetology umbrella. To keep her esthetician license she needs to do a minimum of eight hours worth of continuous education every two years. She’s taken classes covering updated rules, regulations, and sanitary procedures, while also learning new techniques. Her most recent certification was in dermaplaning, a procedure that exfoliates the face by using a stainless steel blade to remove dead skin cells and the peach fuzz hair on the face.
COS requires all members of the cosmetology industry practicing in Ohio to have valid Ohio licenses and to only perform procedures they are certified in; while also acting professionally and following all state sanitary and safety regulations. To ensure procedures are followed a representative visits at least once every two years, but COS tries to visit as often as possible.
In an email Executive Director of Ohio Board of Cosmetology, Christopher H. Logsdon wrote, “The Board’s primary role is to protect consumers by assuring persons, entities and businesses that engage in the provision of cosmetology, one or more of its branch services, or tanning services follow the licensing, safety, and sanitation standards for each area of practice.”
Traveling Spa Girl is a one women operation. Konst sets her menu of services, her hours, and her business policies. Which only include her rewards program, charging 50 percent of no show appointments, and asking for a 24 to 48 hour notification for cancellations with a possible cancellation fee. She also doesn’t plan on bringing anyone else on. She likes knowing which services are performed, and that regulations are followed.
“I know what I am, I have OCD, I like to be cleanly, I want to obeyed by my state board. I need to make sure everything is in place for the safety of myself and my clients. I don’t want to have to hire someone who is going to jeopardize that and jeopardize my license,” said Konst.
Owning a spa also has its perks. Konst tests all the products in her spa before they join her inventory. If she doesn’t feel it’s a quality product she won’t use it. Her most recent addition was a placenta facemask. A product she acknowledges isn’t for everyone, but she believes in its quality.
“I don’t really see it as a job. I see it as, like I’m having fun with my clients, and they’re having fun with me. So I don’t think I would ever want to change that. I love, love what I do. I mean if I didn’t like doing it, I wouldn’t be doing it for this long, and hopefully I just continue to get better at it,” said Konst.
With that said there are some things she wishes she didn’t have to deal with. Like clients trying DIY face treatments because someone on the Internet recommend it. She went through extensive training where she learned how delicate the skin is and how to recommend skin care. It just annoys her how people turn to the Internet instead of trained professionals for skin care advice. She sees that as a dangerous practice. The wrong products and ingredients can aggravate the skin, or cause allergic reactions.
However, caring for skin hasn’t always been Konst’s passion. She struggled with acne throughout school. It wasn’t unheard of her missing class because of a bad blemish. She also used to go tanning. In her early twenties, she started noticing pigmentation and discoloration on her face. Now she gets her healthy tanned look without the sun and tanning beds. She uses SPF, and recommends everyone sunscreens to protect their skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays, skin cancer, and pigmentation. She has an intensive at home skin care routine designed to fit her needs. Konst is also more than happy to help others develop a routine to fit their skin’s needs.
“When people come in for a facial, I do a skin analyst. And I kind of figure out, like clarity, whether they have breakouts, where they’re having their breakouts. That’s going to be a clear sign of what’s going on,” said Konst. “For them to get home care is super curricle and typically I’ll email them and say this is what you’re going to do in the a.m., this is what you’re going to do in the p.m., and I’ll tell them specific steps, so they know what to do at home. And they can always email me or shoot me a text if they’re having any issues or questions.”
Konst spent years working in retail, which taught her to be customer oriented. Her top priority is ensuring an enjoyable experience that focuses on her clients needs. If they come in looking for one treatment, but she feels it isn’t the best for them, she’ll recommend a better fit. She also makes sure to go beyond expectations. Whenever someone comes in for a facial, she’ll give a mini massage to the face while also pulling out any tools that will help the client leave with radiant skin. When Konst goes in for a facial she expects to have all the bells and whistles pulled out. She wants to have her face steamed, scanned or to be zapped with special face lasers and LED lights, so that’s the experience she gives her clients.
Lucy Beder has been going to Konst since January of 2016, when she started preparing her skin for her wedding. She typically comes in every four to six weeks, usually for a customized facial or for dermaplaning, but she has tried a number of Traveling Spa Girl’s treatments.
“She is so knowledgeable about her craft, always staying on top of the latest trends and products in the industry. Also, it's such a great, convenient business right here in town. You don’t have to travel closer to Cleveland or somewhere too fancy for a spa where you might feel a little uncomfortable, as those places can be intimidating sometimes. Megan makes things extremely convenient, comfortable and relaxing” said Beder.
Walk out of her treatment room after a nice relaxing visit, and stop by her desk to complete your payment. Style Seat the online booking service Konst uses asks for your payment information when you sign up for an appointment. So after your service all you have to do is sign your name on her tablet and decide how much you’d like to tip. Then look for an electronic receipt and her skin care advice, if you got a facial, in your inbox.
A Day at The Spa
Hanging out with Traveling Spa Girl
July 7, 2017
by Julie Riedel