ASTP Member Feature | Meet Carissa Serylo

ASTP is proud to have some really outstanding sunless business owners who make up our membership base. Each week, we feature one of our members so you can get to know them and their business.

This week, we would like to introduce you to Carissa Serylo, owner of SprayChic Airbrush Tanning in  Wixom, MI.

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Type of Business: Retail Location

Amount of Time in Business: 9 years


Biz Social Media Links:
IG:  @spraychic

Solution(s) I Love (what you use in your biz, if you don’t mind divulging): Norvell, Aviva Labs, Sjolie

Tools of the Trade: Norvell Z3000 Pro HVLP, Norvell ZGun and Norvell TGun

What I Wear: Norvell Venetian ONE in the Summer and Aviva Labs Winter Glow in the Winter

Best celebrity airbrush tan award goes to: I'm not sure who to choose for best celebrity airbrush tan, but I was recently crushing on Carole Radziwill's tan on RHONY when they went to Tequila. Gorgeous!!

I chose to be an airbrush tanner because: I was a motivated to start airbrush tanning because I am a redhead and grew up in the 80's/90's when everyone was going to the tanning beds. I envied their golden brown skin and felt like such a misfit. I had family members that had skin cancer scares and it inspired me to research alternatives to UV tanning.

If I wasn’t an airbrush tanner I would be: Website Designer, Social Media Marketing

My most embarrassing moment as a business owner: I was mortified when I showed up to a client's house without my gun. Thankfully this was a repeat client from when I was home-based years ago. My husband was able to bring the gun to me and that client has been loyal still. I'm ashamed to say that I forgot my hose last year when I went to travel appointment and that was when I decided I really need to scale back at offering travel since I had just moved into our new larger location.

Favorite social media outlet: Instagram

The one thing I could not live without for my biz: Vagaro

The part of owning my own business I am not very good at: Financials

The one thing I wish I knew when I started my business: I wish I would've known how valuable metrics would be to my business. I didn't imagine that my business would grow to the point that it has, so in the beginning I just used a different system to track appointments and client data. I converted to our current system in 2010 after 2 years of using other systems. Over the years I have found such value in knowing the numbers and I am still learning the impact of the reporting. I'm thankful to have had the system in place for 7 of the 9 years that we've been in business, but I wish I had true figures going back to the beginning.

Where I plan to be in five years: Running my current location with my 2nd location in full swing. I would like to be spraying less, but growing my SprayChic family and brand on a deeper level.

Business owners who inspire me: All the ladies of ASTP! Gary Vaynerchuk, owner of VaynerMedia

Quote I love: "No beauty shines brighter than that of a good heart."

When I’m not working, I love to: Binge watch reality TV! Such shame in this, but it's such a great way to just turn off.

My favorite thing about owning my own business: The connections and networking. I love my clients and being part of important events in their lives indirectly. The relationships that I have built with clients that I see on a regular weekly schedule are so important to me and I never knew that this job would result in such amazing friendships. It's also been great to see my employees reaping benefits from the connections we have through our SprayChic network.

The thing I dislike most about owning my own business:  I dislike being a boss, but moreso, having to put my foot down with clients that abuse our policies or take advantage of how nice we are. I hear all the time that I am too nice. I am proud of that. I'm not proud that I am seen as someone that can be taken advantage of, so finding that backbone has been difficult. Firing employees is difficult, but I dislike having to search for reliable employees more.

If I could share some wisdom with someone just getting started in this biz it would be: Always being kind and understanding that clients coming for an airbrush tan are in a vulnerable position. Being patient and listening (to the same thing over and over) and genuinely wanting the client to have great results from educating them during consultation and throughout their tan will help your business grow. Word of mouth is where it is at!

Any parting words?: I am so thrilled to have the ASTP group and know that the pros that are in this group are experiencing success and some struggle the same as me. Growing the industry together is so exciting and shows that working together will only improve the common misconceptions.

A few of Carissa's favorite client photos...