By YVETTE C. HAMMETT
Sandra Caballero saw a lot of bad eyebrows while working as a dental hygienist for 18 years. “I’m thinking there has to be a better way. So many of them looked fake and not professionally done, almost a little theatrical,” she recalled, in deciding to open her own business.
“I started doing research and stumbled on permanent makeup. Then, in 2008, my sister got diagnosed with breast cancer. I figured out we could tattoo an areola and nipple, the final check-off to help someone feel complete after breast reconstruction.”
It wasn’t long before she’d opened her own shop. Fast forward a couple of years and now she and her daughter, Melissa Caballero, have a shop together — Blissologie in Apollo Beach, where she does permanent makeup and brows and Melissa does lash extensions.
The two recently opened their own new salon at 101 Flamingo Drive and the place is buzzing.
“We can help women look and feel beautiful, and we can also help them medically,” Sandra said.
During October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Sandra does her breast tattooing for free.
“My sister, Maria, is now 10 years cancer-free,” she said. It is her way of honoring that. “It’s something that helps a woman feel complete when she’s taking a shower or with her significant other.”
As for Melissa, her work with lashes is a passion, she said, and yet another way to help embolden women.
“Our space is about 1,500 square feet,” Sandra said. “We’ve done everything brand new. We’ve made it into what we wanted. It’s a little modern with clean lines, a place where women can come in and feel they are welcome. It’s beautiful and makes them feel beautiful. “
In the salon, the team and clients have a little fun. “It’s a little girl time, a social gathering,” she said. “It kind of makes you forget if you’ve had a long day.”
“I honestly always knew I’d do something in the beauty industry. That was the route I wanted to follow,” Melissa said. “I would see my mom do what she does, and I admired her work ethic.
“I went to aesthetician school to see what I wanted to do and what piqued my interest most was lash extensions. Once I finished, I went to get certification on lashes. I started working with my mom at the salon she was renting out at the time. From there, things grew. I was doing it more as a side hustle,” she said. “I never thought it would be my career, but I started getting busier and busier. I love making all my clients feel empowered and beautiful. It’s what makes me happy and keeps me going.”
The salon, which is open Mondays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. also offers facials. The women hope to add spray tanning in the future.
“We have classic, mixed and volume lash sets, which are more dramatic,” Melissa said. “The prices range from $175 to $250 for an initial set and fills are much less expensive.
Facials done by a medical aesthetician, run $50 to more than $200. The salon also offers its own line of brow makeup and permanent hair removal services.
“The great thing about Blissologie is we have clients from teenagers to old, old little seniors,” Sandra said. “Because we get a variety of women that’s what keeps things fun.”
To learn more, or to make an appointment, go to www.blissologiebeauty.com.