Beauty Launchpad Magazine

FEB 2018

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40 | BEAUTY LAUNCHPAD | FEBRUARY 2018 T here was never any doubt in Maryanne McCormack's mind about becoming a hairdresser. After graduating high school and completing an apprenticeship with industry legend Paul Mitchell, she opened her fi rst Long Island salon in the early '70s. The shop was pulling in $600 a week when she started; one year later, that revenue had skyrocketed to $6,000. Realizing she had a knack for both business and hair, in 1977 the budding entrepreneur moved to Texas with her husband, John, to launch a larger salon in Houston's Greenspoint Mall. "We had spotlights, music blasting, stylists up on platforms, and the place just took off," McCormack recalls. Today that single space has grown into a network of 16 cutting-edge Visible Changes salons (@visiblechangessalons) scattered around Austin, Dallas, Houston and San Antonio. While making others feel good was forever part of McCormack's plan, the breast cancer diagnosis she received in 2009 came as a complete shock. After starting treatment at Texas Medical Center, she was struck by the sight of fellow patients suffering from hair loss. "A woman's glory is her hair, and the crown you don't take off," McCormack muses. True to form, the fi erce fi ghter turned this diffi cult period into a bright opportunity by founding Thair For You, a nonprofi t group that has donated over 4,000 wigs to women battling cancer. Along with completing a required basic training program upon fi rst getting hired, all Visible Changes stylists also receive special instruction in the art of wig cutting, styling and care. They consult and console patrons, provide maintenance guidance and restore dignity. "This service is free of charge at all our salons throughout Texas, and it's free to anyone experiencing hair loss due to cancer treatment," McCormack reveals. Many of her stylists likewise volunteer their time and talents to the second philanthropic group dear to her heart, Brookwood Community. Located in nearby Brookshire, 40 miles west of Houston, the sprawling facility provides housing and vocational opportunities for adults with mental and developmental disabilities. On the second Tuesday of each month, these snip pros provide upwards of 60 free haircuts to residents. "This October we celebrated our 40th year in business," McCormack says. "It's essential to give back, especially when you've been blessed with the opportunity to do what you love for decades." Live & Learn/ Giving Back Maryanne McCormack, founder of the Texas chain of Visible Changes salons, alters lives through her philanthropic endeavors. —FM Visibly Changed A timeline of Maryanne McCormack's life in tresses. 1977: McCormack opens her fi rst Texas salon, launching a Lone Star State industry revolution with high-quality services by top-trained stylists. 1982: Intercoiff ure recognizes Visible Changes as one of the world's fastest-growing companies. 1990: 13 salons span the state. 2000: The salon family continues its expansion with a total of 16 outposts. 2006: Visible Changes wins "Salon Entrepreneur of the Year" at the Global Salon Business Awards in Barcelona, Spain. 2011: McCormack starts Thair For You to support cancer patients dealing with tress loss. 2012: With 17 salons in Texas, McCormack expands her philanthropic eff orts. COURTESY OF MARYANNE MCCORMACK/VISIBLE CHANGES The Woodlands Christian Academy, alma mater to one of McCormack's sons, donates nearly $32,000 to Thair For You. e to s o o n e The W McC o CHANGING TIMES (Top] Visible Changes stylists volunteer their time at Brookwood Community in Brookshire, TX, providing free haircuts to special-needs residents. A stylist with a Brookwood client.

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