Owner, Jailyn Sawyer, traveled to Oahu, Hawaii in 2019 while in college and quickly recognized the lack of ethnic hair services and items on the island. After returning to the island in 2020, she began doing hair out of her room and received insight from her clients on what products they were searching for. Fast forward a year later, in February 2021. Right downstairs from that room she started from, Yaya & Pop Pop's Beauty Paradise was born. Named after her grandparents, Jailyn has turned YP Beauty Paradise into a safe space for all girlies! For all hair types, with emphasis on ethnic hair, to be able to receive products and services that fit their hair type.
GP: What adversities do you currently face being a black owned business on a not-so diverse island?
Being on a not-so-diverse island has had a lot of pros and cons. For me, I didn’t see it as an obstacle but as an advantage to corner the niche market, bring my business, educate my consumers, and bring a sense of home and understanding to those who are here and look like me. Bringing a black owned beauty supply store and hair salon to the island was not easy. Getting people to understand the different products, understand what their hair can do, and simply seeing the need to take care of their hair in general can be a challenge. Being a young black woman also inspired some but turned eyes to others. When you walk into a beauty supply store you usually see an asian owner who knows nothing about black hair care. Getting my customers to understand I am a real business, just like the Asian beauty supply stores was a challenge. People have tried to bargain with me, not respect boundaries, or simply take me serious. I never got discouraged, every loss I took it as a lesson and it made me more motivated to keep going and growing. My business may not be for everyone, but for those for value and support me, keeps me going. 2 years later I learned, if there’s no space at the table you can create your own. Now a days, Yaya & Pop Pop’s Beauty Paradise is still doing better than ever!
GP: How have you been able to maintain a brick-and-mortar location? Any marketing tips and tricks?
I have been able to maintain a brick and mortar location by simply being authentic to my vision. Many people will give suggestions and opinions but in the end I make the decisions that’s best for me. Finding my ideal customers is important and understanding my why helps me maintain. I wanted a positive salon setting that my customers can in and get their hair done & have affordable products that will help them maintain their hair at home. Or if you’re not getting your hair done with us, our customers can come in and be greeted by other African American women that know their hair type. Social media and word of mouth has been our best marketing tactics. The old school leaving flyers on cars and door tags front doors works wonders!
GP: Describe your average/ideal clientele ?
My ideal clientele is a girlie excited about learning what her hair can do! Being on an island where black hair is scarce I aim to find girlies who have been searching for a new hair home. I love having motivating clientele that are business owners, college students, or career driven girl bosses! We all learn from each other and I love being able to refer one another.