Monkseaton entrepreneur continues to break the mould with her beauty business

An entrepreneur is aiming to break the mould of the beauty business after a successful introduction of a new concept.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 24th March 2018, 1:30 pm
Updated Monday, 26th March 2018, 10:15 am
Ashleigh Hayes with Scott Dodds (front) from Mink Studios. Picture by Ian McClelland.
Ashleigh Hayes with Scott Dodds (front) from Mink Studios. Picture by Ian McClelland.

Ashleigh Hayes started Mink Studios, in Monkseaton, two years ago and has seen turnover grow by 75 per cent.

The 26-year-old has taken on four members of staff as part of her innovative approach to delivering nationwide accredited training courses alongside salon-based beauty treatments.

Ashleigh, who founded the business alongside business partner Scott Dodds, has worked as a freelance trainer, make-up artist and beauty therapist all over the world before family commitments led her to developing a more permanent base for the Mink Studios brand.

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She said: “When originally setting up the business, it was clear from the outset that in order to have a truly scalable business model I needed to look at different income streams beyond make-up artistry and beauty treatments.

“Training other beauty professionals has always been an area I’ve been particularly passionate about so our range of 40 courses has been created to help a real mix of people develop their professional experience.

“We work with salons looking to upskill their staff in new or existing treatments or individuals new to beauty and looking to enter the industry, or current professionals looking to sharpen their skills and learn new ones.

“The make-up courses in particular have been very popular and we have travelled the length and breadth of the UK delivering training.”

Ashleigh’s reputation in the industry for make-up artistry is a key asset to the Mink Studios brand and the team has delivered services to hundreds of weddings since the business launch in 2016.

Ashleigh added: “In addition to the wedding make-up services, our training courses have really built momentum over the past 12 months.

“Our fully functioning beauty salon is based in Monkseaton and we have extended it over the past year to now include four main treatment rooms, as well as a training centre.

“Our goal is to build the treatment side of the business in 2018 as we offer a full-range of professional beauty treatments and are hoping to grow full-time staff numbers over the course of the year.”

Mink Studios is now also taking steps to expand the business through a number of e-commerce deals within the beauty industry.

Ashleigh said: “It’s a really exciting time for the business as two years of hard work establishing our brand, delivering our courses and creating a solid online presence in the beauty community has really paid off.

“2018 is going to be a busy one, but we already have plans in place to start creating and selling our own beauty products for sale throughout the UK and help grow our brand further.”

For more on Mink Studios visit