Charli Day has an eye for detail, which is perfect when her passion is eyebrows.
The 24-year-old Oamaru beauty therapist has recently opened her own salon, Thing of Beauty, offering a full range of beauty services but specialising in eyebrows.
“Brows make such a huge difference. They help to shape the face and can actually bring out eye colour,” she said.
“I think that’s why I like doing them so much – you can really bring someone’s face together by giving them nicely balanced, natural brows.”
Miss Day is fully-qualified in microblading, after training through PMU Academy.
The form of eyebrow tattooing was gaining prominence in New Zealand and there was “definitely” a gap in the Oamaru market for the service, she said.
“I think it’s so popular because it creates such a big difference,” she said.
“I’m keeping my [style] really nice and natural, almost to the point you can’t even tell that they’ve been done.”
Brow laminations, an alternative to microblading involving chemically setting hairs, had also been popular, she said.
Miss Day has always been interested in the beauty industry, working as a freelance make-up artist from the age of 15.
“I think the reason I really liked it is I can make people feel pretty, or feel better going out than what they did coming in.
“I think everyone’s beautiful, but sometimes you just need a little bit of something to perk you up.
“It’s more just making people feel good about themselves.”
After leaving St Kevin’s College, Miss Day studied beauty therapy at Aoraki Polytechnic and went on to work as a beauty therapist and complete a hairdressing apprenticeship in Oamaru.
Then she secured a “once in a lifetime opportunity” working as a hairdresser on luxury cruise ships, based in New Orleans.
“I did that for nine months. We cruised around the Caribbean, which was pretty amazing,” she said.
When she returned to New Zealand last year, moving to Oamaru was one of several options she considered.
Having an existing following in Oamaru, she decided to return home. Some of her clients had followed her for the six years she had been in the industry and the rapport and trust she had with them was something she really valued, she said.
“Once you find someone you like, and you get comfortable with that person, you often stay with them,” she said.
“It’s nice. You have that rapport – you know about each other’s families, you know what’s going on in their lives.”
Her friends Devin Familton and Caidee Pennycook and sister-in-law Beatrice Day also owned their own businesses in Oamaru and had inspired and supported her a lot over the past few months.
“Hopefully we can inspire other people as well,” she said.
“You don’t necessarily have to go out of town to do something that you love.”
Miss Day opened Thing of Beauty in the front room of her Greta St home just before lockdown, while working part-time as a hairdresser at Jacqui’s Hair Salon.
She had been happy keeping it “small and boutique” at her home, but as the number of clients in her books kept increasing, she would be focusing on her own business full-time from next month.