Evette Ingram established her business, Evette’s Beauty Supply, in 2013 and has grown it to four locations. She has one of the Valley’s largest selections of 100 percent human hair and synthetic wigs. She specializes in cranial prosthetic and medical wigs.
What inspired you to start your business?
My love of wigs and assisting women, men and children that experience medical hair loss is one of the inspirations for starting my business. I also have a passion for entrepreneurship and creating generational wealth. I always desire to bring a much-needed business to the community and provide products, medical wigs and wigs for fashion.
Do you like being your own boss?
Do you ever think about trading it
for a steady paycheck?
I absolutely love being my own boss!
I have been my own boss since 2000. I
love providing jobs for high school and college students and teaching them about the beauty supply industry and how to one day become an entrepreneur themselves. I have never thought about going back to work for someone else.
What is the best aspect of running
your own business?
There are many awesome aspects of me running my own business. It’s a great feeling to be able to provide jobs in the community, meet the community and create generational wealth. One of the greatest aspects is assisting those who are experiencing medical hair loss feel good about themselves again and gain their self-confidence back.
What is the biggest challenge that your business has faced and how do you deal with it?
For me some of the biggest challenges have been funding, getting accounts with some of the top vendors due to my race. I deal with the lack of being able to achieve funding from banks by stocking my stores as they make revenue.
What is your favorite story about running your business?
One of my many favorites just happened recently while I was working at my Agoura Hills store. A lady came into the store and asked if I was the only one in the store because her 91-year-old mother wanted to come in and shop while the store was empty. I replied, “Yes, it’s only me here today.” She went to the car to get her mother and brought her into the store as well as the mother’s nurse. As they entered, I was playing Michael Jackson Radio on Pandora. I could tell that they all were pleased with my choice of music. I proceeded to assist the mother and daughter and the daughter came up to me and said, “You are playing my brother’s music. Thank you for playing his music.” Kind of stunned I didn’t realize what she was saying at first until she lowered her mask and I said “Rebbie Jackson?” and she replied, “Yes, it’s me and that’s my mother Katherine Jackson.”
Has your race or culture affected your business?
Being a Black beauty supply store owner has been a challenge getting some major accounts in a predominately Korean-owned industry. Getting fair wholesale pricing from vendors is constantly an issue.
How has the pandemic affected you and your business?
The pandemic had affected my business on a wide scale. While being forced to close my doors during the shutdown, I had no income. Rents, utilities and other bills fell behind and still need to be paid to be able to keep my doors open. One of my stores was robbed and my Tarzana store had the window shot out twice.
What advice would you give someone wanting to start their own business?
I would advise anyone that has the desire to start their own business to follow your heart, pray about it. Educate yourself on the industry in which you are seeking, put together a business plan and make sure that you have funding in place. Never give up and believe in God.