Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in the area?
Jill – I was born and raised in New Jersey and spent the majority of my life in this beautiful and diverse state. I also spent five years living along the banks of the Delaware River in Pennsylvania, enjoying everything the river has to offer. I’m now living back in New Jersey with my family.
Marina – I immigrated from Russia 25 years ago and first settled in Brooklyn. Shortly after i finished cosmetology school i moved to Newton area and reside here for 23 years now. It’s fascinating to see how life’s twists and turns can lead us to unexpected places and opportunities
Children and ages?
Jill – I have a 4 year old Daughter and a newborn Son.
Marina – I have a 30 year old Son.
Are you involved in a business venture or corporate world?
Jill – Yes I am! I am a co-owner of a modern hair salon in Mendham called MaJi Hair Design. We opened in October 2016.
Marina – Yes, I have always had an interest in the business world.. I am a proud co-owner of MaJi Hair Design and it’s been 7 years of amazing journey
When did you decide you wanted to open your own salon?
Marina and Jill – It happened out of necessity. When the salon where we worked was closing, we had two options: either find a new place to work and hope that we would enjoy it, or take a chance and open a salon where we could truly love what we do every day. Thus, MaJi Hair Design was born – a place where we have the opportunity to love what we do, refine our skills, and provide a beautiful space for our valued guests. We turned a challenging situation into an opportunity and created a salon where we could
fully embrace our passion and creativity.
Has hair and beauty always been part of your life?
Jill – Yes, it has. I began learning and honing my skills when I was 15 years old. I distinctly recall attending a competition, and at that moment, I realized that this was my true calling. I was enthralled by the idea that a person’s hair could be seen as a blank canvas, eagerly awaiting transformation into something beautiful. In the beauty industry, creativity knows no bounds.
Marina – Since I was a little girl, I always admired curly hair, probably because my own hair was so straight. As a teenager, I began learning all the tricks to make hair look
beautiful. I think that was the time I realized my passion for working with hair. Witnessing the instant transformation of my creative efforts and seeing people thrilled and excited about their new looks has always been incredibly rewarding.
What do you recommend for someone looking for a new salon?
Jill – When someone is in search of a new salon, I always recommend conducting thorough research. This can be achieved by exploring the salon’s website, reading reviews, and checking their social media pages. Once you’ve found a place that appeals to you, go ahead and schedule a blowout appointment with one of their stylists. During this appointment, take the opportunity to get to know the stylist and ask any questions or share your concerns about your hair. This way, you can determine whether this particular salon is the best fit for you.
Marina – To add to what Jill said: I suggest to my clients that they consider observing people’s hairstyles and colors while shopping locally at supermarkets or taking a stroll in their neighborhoods. If they admire someone’s hairstyle and feel comfortable, they can politely inquire about the salon they visit. This approach can be a valuable way to discover salons in the area.
If you could give one tip to fellow mom entrepreneurs what would it be?
Jill – Give yourself some grace and take a minute to breathe. Raising a family is a full-time job, and deciding to embark on a new venture is a significant commitment in itself. You will have a lot on your shoulders. There will be good moments as well as some challenging ones, but always remember to be kind to yourself and enjoy the entrepreneurial journey!
Marina – Figuring out how to grow your business while simultaneously being a devoted mother is a significant challenge in entrepreneurship. My tip would be to create a strong support system. Don’t panic, don’t be intimidated, and do not be afraid to ask for help when needed. Try to take it one day at a time – you can do it!
One thing people would be surprised to know about you?
Jill – I raced go-karts on a dirt oval track for a few years, and I truly enjoyed the adrenaline rush and the overall challenge of how the track would evolve from the start of the race to finish. It was an absolutely thrilling experience!
Marina – I’ve never really been a fan of chocolate. I have a sweet tooth for pastries and cakes.
10 Fun local favorites!
1. Favorite thing to do with your kids? Kid and Caboodle Play in Morristown, nature walks and bike rides.
2. Favorite coffee spot? Simple Coffee in Mendham
3. Favorite lunch spot? Sushi at Domo 7 Japanese Restaurant in Chester
4. Favorite farm to go fruit picking? Riamede Farm in Chester
5. Favorite date night restaurant? Thai Kitchen in Chester
6. Favorite boutique? Windswept Boutique in Mendham
7. Favorite spot to grab a drink? Rosie’s Trattoria Chester
8. Who has the best bagels in town? Mendham Bagel
9. Best slice of pizza in town? Dante’s Italian Restaurant in Mendham
10. Favorite spot for ice cream? Taylor’s Ice Cream Parlor in Chester
This interview was done in partnership with MaJi Hair Design, be sure to follow them on social media below: