We had the good fortune of connecting with Candace Hoegemeier and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Candace, how do you think about risk?
Taking a risk to achieve a goal requires courage to face the fear of uncertainty. No matter the outcome, either way, we grow through the process and become more resilient and confident. Better yet, building those skills helps in taking more risks and improves the chances of achieving future goals. To me, risks are required to be taken if you want to run a business. You can play it safe but that’s not going to get you where you truly want to be. Taking risks eliminated the possibility of me looking back and asking, “what if?” At the start of my career figured that even if I failed, I’d walk away with more experience and more knowledge, which would lead me to further success in other areas. If I weren’t to take chances and most importantly live/work authentically I would not be where I’m at today, and Tenderoni Lashes would not be based in West Hollywood, CA now. Every step I’ve taken with my small business, Tenderoni Lashes, felt like a game changing (and sometimes questionable) one. Last year alone I was a traveling lash artist, subleasing studios to take my lash clients out of in Hollywood, Santa Monica and San Diego. My husband, whom I affectionately call “my roadie” would drive me to San Diego every Sunday to take clients 10-6pm, then drive us back home to Hollywood. You see, our dream was to always move to Los Angeles. The beauty industry is much bigger and I would undoubtedly have much more opportunities here, working with those in the entertainment industry, than I would in San Diego. Despite Tenderoni Lashes being based in San Diego, and having retained a generous amount of clientele there, we decided to move in 2018. In all my 8 years of being a lash artist, our move to Los Angeles was by far our riskiest one. When you’re a beauty artist, your goal is retain clients. Leaving San Diego completely would mean completely losing the financially stability I took years to build. To remedy this, I never left, I only moved. My husband and I juggled working out of three cities for two years. We took clients from a theater room I rented out from an apartment complex, a private studio in Santa Monica I paid per day for and an office owned by a good friend of mine. When I reflect on how chaotic the past couple years have been I often ask, “Did we make all the right decisions? Was there anything we could have done better? Could we have waited to move?” Yes. However, we’re exactly where we want to be now and collectively Mike and I have no regrets. It takes guts to take the risks that we did to get to where we are now. Thankfully we are based out of just one city now.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I became a licensed Esthetician and certified Lash Artist in June of 2013. Eyelash extensions were the hottest new trend on the scene and finding a good lash artist took effort because so little people were offering it. One day, the owner of the salon I once worked at in La Jolla asked if I wanted to experiment with an eyelash kit she purchased from JB Lashes. She didn’t want it and figured I might have more fun testing it out than she did. That evening, without hesitation and total lack of guidance (probably bad on my end at the time) I had my first go with the kit and lashed my colleague Casey. For the most part everything in the kit was self-explanatory so I’m thankful I didn’t do any damage. Although I loved the eyelash extension application I gave, I wasn’t ready to commit full-time for it. At that point I already had a decent amount of clientele for full body waxing and facials so those services continued to take precedence over lashing. In the meantime, I would just continue to strengthen my lashing skills behind the scenes and work on family and friends for more experience. I wanted to strengthen my endurance and learn all there was to know about giving proper, long-lasting eyelash extension services before I officially added it to my services. My early days lashing were some of the most fun, cherished times of my career and laid the foundation for what I ultimately wanted my business model to be. I marketed nearly free eyelash extension services on social media and a lot of old friends from middle school came through to support me. Not only was I doing something I loved, I was getting to do it in the company of friends. It was then, that I discovered I cherished sisterhood and sense of community more than the actual services I was offering. A lash session can serve so many purposes for people. Yes we beautify lashes and brows here, but to me, our space is offers something special. It’s a place of rest for busy people who need to unplug and rejuvenate their spirit with a little beauty pick-me-up. It’s a space you can talk about anything in the world about and not feel judged. A space you can come comfortably dressed in sweats, a tee and no makeup to, and not feel out of place. A haven from the craziness going on. Tenderoni Lashes is not an upscale studio by any means. We have never wanted investors and we operate from a small studio. If there’s one thing that stands about us it’s that we treat everyone here like family. Everyone for the most part wants the best for their family, and we’re no exception when it comes to the care we bestow on our clients. We are mindful, attentive to the needs of our clients, and go the extra mile to making them feel at home. If our brand stands for anything, it’s simply kindness. Being a natural perfectionist, it was hard for me at first to separate business from personal life. I took a lot of things personally, like Yelp reviews. I learned throughout the years, however, to just “ride the wave” and focus on the things I can control. I am always working on ways to improve my artistry.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Los Angeles is such a beautiful city, quirks an all. The first day, we would grab coffee at Maru based in Los Feliz and go for a smoke and walk in Griffith Park. We’d drive through Los Feliz on the way to our next destination too, and admire the magnificent homes on the hills, exploring every little nook and cranny. For lunch, we’d order two Terry Gross sandwiches from Wax Paper (pretty sure my guest would entrust my choice of sando) to go and eat at Echo Park. Dinner time, pandemic-style, would be best spent of course, at Bob’s Street Tacos. In San Diego, I would take my friends to all the old school gems I grew up on: -Las Cuatro Milpas in Barrio Logan for the best authentic rolled tacos and beans/rice combo -Lido’s Italian Foods in Lemon Grove for the best lasagna -Pho Hoa in City Heights for the best authentic pho -Minh Ky in City Heights for the best roast duck egg noodle soup -Tita’s Kitchenette or Karihan for the best Filipino food All my friends are foodies so showing them all the best places to eat, on a daily basis, would be a heavenly experience…for the both of us. As for sightseeing in San Diego, I’d show them the less touristy spots first before places like Coronado or La Jolla: -Chicano Park, the park situated under the Coronado Bridge -North Park, South Park -Encinitas -Little Italy -Ocean Beach

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There wouldn’t be a Tenderoni Lashes studio without my husband Mike. He has been with a solid support system for me since my first Esthetician gig in 2013, working from a salon, fresh out of beauty school. I run a lot of ideas by him and he always lends me his honesty and mentorship. He has dedicated himself to this business and I would be foolish to not mention his guidance. There were many times I felt in over my head, as far as balance is concerned, but Mike continuously pulled me together so I could stay on track with my goals. My grandparents also played a role in the success of my career by inspiring and guiding me. They showed me how to be financially responsible and what the importance of teamwork means to a business. My Lola (grandmother) Pacita and Lolo (grandfather) Sergio owned multiple boarding care facilities in La Puente together for almost 30 years. Watching them work together all those years, while balancing family, taught me what great leadership is. I’d like to think of my business ethic is reminiscent of theirs. I also would love to shoutout all the beauty artists I’ve ever worked with, especially Arianne Barroga and Kristy Flores. Collaborating with other artists who are accepting of your business tactics, as passionate as you are about growing as a professional and best of all – have integrity, are all I could ever ask for. I have had the privilege of working with so many great folks in this industry. To my current beauty artists, Olga and Natalie, occupying Suite 39: Thank you for being such easy-going, sweet and hard working professionals. I thank you for being on board with me during such a difficult time. We’re in the midst of a whole pandemic and you ladies are still hustling, still working, still rockin’ for us. I appreciate the time and energy you put not just into your craft but our business as a whole. I’m grateful to host such talents at our studio.

Website: www.tenderonilashes.com
Instagram: @tenderonilashes
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/candacesuero
Facebook: Facebook.com/tenderonilashes
Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/tenderoni-lashes-los-angeles-7
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/candacesuero
Other: www.vagaro.com/tenderonilashes

Image Credits
I would like to upload my images in the next 7 days. I would like my new photos to be included in this interview, thank you.

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutSocal is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.