Working in Clark County: Tara Lee, esthetician

By Kay Richardson, Columbian staff writer



After trying freelance photography and working as a stay-at-home mom, Tara Lee found a niche in beauty using a technique which many think is new, but in fact is ancient: threading, a noninvasive way of removing facial hair. “Sometimes people think we’re sewing on or adding hair. Usually they’re really wowed by the experience, surprised by how fast and intricate it is.”

Name: Tara Lee.

Residence: Burnt Bridge Creek neighborhood.

Owner, Beauty by Tara Lee, 1703 Broadway, Vancouver, established in June 2012.

Age: 32.

Education/professional background: I was a stay-at-home mom for a while and had some part-time jobs. I became interested in photography and did freelance work. Then I went to Manning Academy of Cosmetology here in Vancouver to become a licensed esthetician (a specialist in cosmetic skin care, spa treatments, and hair removal). I trained in threading at another salon here in Washington and over time I decided to work for myself doing what I enjoy. I love photography, but wanted to continue enjoying it as a hobby rather than as a job. Threading is enjoyable because it is quick and precise. You get a better line. It’s kinder to your skin than waxing, especially for those who have sensitive skin.

How the technique works:
We use sewing thread and twist it into a helix. As the esthetician tightens and glides it across the client’s skin, the twisting thread grabs hair and pulls it out. This method has been practiced for thousands of years.

Personal/business philosophy: Here at the salon we strive to help our clients feel beautiful and comfortable with each visit. This, along with communication, is key.

Most rewarding part of job: Meeting new people and establishing a great relationship with our clients.

Most challenging part of job: Balancing work, family and personal time.

Best feature of your community: We are small enough to know our neighbors and work together. I also love how we keep history alive.

What would make your community a better place: Consistency in customer service, stability, and prioritizing education.

Favorite restaurant/coffee shop/store: Crave Grille for burgers, prime rib, pulled pork and yummy cocktails. I love River Maiden Artisan and Mon Ami for coffee. I like supporting small businesses. Main Street Vintage is one of my favorite stores in the Vancouver area.

Favorite travel destination: Kona, Hawaii.

Most enjoyable book/play/movie/arts event in the past year: “The Nutcracker,” at the Keller Auditorium in Portland.

Something you’d like to do this year/within five years: I want to expand my business so I can share it with more people. I would also like to travel more.

One word to describe yourself: Dedicated.

Person you’d most like to have met:
Audrey Hepburn.