Lash a go-go: eye-opening cosmetic services Business

Amy Connelly and Carrie LaPenta run Lash a go-go in Fountain Hills, but only Connelly is allowed to provide eyelash services.

“We don’t want Carrie to make eyelashes,” says Connelly. “We joked that we were teaching her just so she could do mine, but I don’t believe her.

Before starting a business together, Connelly and LaPenta had been best friends for some time, and their joke had kept them close over the years. With their love of eyelashes, one can even call them addicted to eyelashes. In fact, when Connelly lost her job in March 2020, she wasn’t crying because she no longer had a job, she was crying because she couldn’t fix her lashes.

As a licensed esthetician and former manager of a large hotel chain, Connelly was beside himself when, in 2020, all non-living businesses were ordered to close their physical locations. Although Connelly may claim that the eyelash business sustains life, she had to find a new way for people to make eyelashes. Living in Pennsylvania at the time, Connelly moved to Fontaine Hills, where her mother and LaPenta lived, and devised a plan to start a lash business on wheels.

“We were all trying to orient ourselves to the ‘new normal,’ wearing face masks,” Connelly said. “So our whole concept behind Mobile Lash Artistry was when you talk to someone, you can’t see their face and smile, but you can see their eyes.”

Despite the slow start, the business began to grow. Last year, the two launched the Pro Lash Training Academy, where eyelash lovers could attend a comprehensive, hands-on training program that gave them the expertise to “get on as a boss.”

Through a personal or online platform, Pro Lash Training Academy provides theory and practical application of both classic and voluminous eyelash extensions.

With the success of the academy and the easing of COVID’s constraints, Connelly couldn’t wait to move from a mobile eyelash studio to a physical location in Fountain Hills, and LaPenta provided the perfect space for that. In addition to being the private owner of Lash a go-go, LaPenta has been in real estate for 18 years and owns CPL Properties on 16858 E. Avenue of the Fountains.

“We really don’t like each other,” said Connelly sarcastically, who moved to LaPenta’s office about two months ago. Since most of their clients live in the city, the two naturally promote and share their business.

“It’s like empowering women,” said LaPenta, who runs the financial side of the business.

The atmosphere at Lash a go-go is soothing, perfect for what Connelly calls an “eyelash nap” on their quilted eyelash bed. Connelly has enough lighting to be able to skillfully apply light extensions using a safe, professionally certified adhesive. The sliding door and linen curtains provide privacy during the sessions, which usually last 45-60 minutes. Eyelash filling is planned for two to three weeks depending on the wear and retention, and the length of the extension, diameter, curl and volume are chosen based on the client’s wishes.

An additional eyelash studio is nearing completion, and the waiting area and swag shop contain clothes, glasses and other treats for sale. Lash a go-go gift certificates are available on their website and the duo said they make perfect gifts for birthdays and anniversaries.

“We offer loyalty programs with a sweet punch card, and after 10 visits you get half of your next visit,” Connelly said.

“We always try to thank the main workers and we always have discounts for the military and students – we want to get to know our customers,” said Connelly, who recently gave discounts to seniors.

For Connelly, the best part of the job is the expression on her clients’ faces after they open their eyes and see themselves in the mirror.

“That’s all for me,” Connelly said.

She talks about a client who lost his hair due to chemotherapy. She was overworked and exhausted from her job as a nurse.

“She just had to feel good about herself,” Connelly recalled. When she opened her eyes, she cried and said, “Actually, I feel beautiful again.”

As their business continues to grow, Conoli and LaPenta are exploring charities to support, especially if it involves empowering women, veterans, or just those who have gone through the bell and are trying to start over.

After some research and recruitment, the two are considering plans to reopen their mobile eyelash business and provide their services to people in their own homes.

“Everything is still evolving,” said Connelly, who likes to get to know her customers. Although returning customers are important, her “special occasion” customers are just as unique.

“They’re just as important as the people who come back every two weeks.”

Lash a go-go is located at 16858 E. Avenue of the Fountains. The service is by appointment and can be done by visiting their website at lashagogo.com. For more information, visit their website or call 908-295-3009.

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