Whatever walk of life God plans for Tamara Harris, she said she always craves more, expects more from herself, and would someday carry out the dream of being a business owner.
Just last month, Tamara Harris celebrated her third anniversary as a small business owner of Plucked and More, a Heights boutique that specializes in full body waxing, threading, brow embroidery, and skincare. This month, Harris said she’s excited to announce that her Plucked and More brand will be expanding, adding more beauty services to the lineup and even a new product line.
Back before Harris started aligning the stars for her business venture and dream, she remembers working in the industry for 16 years, and the feeling of being in a rut.
“I worked for the government, I worked for the state, I worked for a franchise, but I’ve always known that I would have my own business,” Harris said. “I hate doing hair, but have always been obsessed with waxing; plucking hair is what I do. After graduating with a business management degree, I realized I had outgrown the franchise business model and it was time to make more happen.”
As a single mother of two girls, Harris was commuting to her daily gig in river oaks from Humble, for five years. And then, one day, she decided she had to quit.
“At the time, I knew I wanted more and needed to make something happen,” Harris said. “Six months had passed, I hadn’t figured out what was next, and at that point I was put into a position to where I had to find a place within a weekend.”
Harris reached out to her mom, something she notes she had never done before, just to have a safe haven. She explained to her mom that she had clientele on the books, but nowhere to do their services. So her mom jumped into action and helped her with her real estate search.
“A few of the places I looked at were around here, over on Washington, and they were averaging around $400 a week,” Harris said. “They were good places, but I didn’t have any start-up money or anything saved. I just had my clientele.”
Harris’ mom came across her current boutique property off of Heights Boulevard, located at 811 Heights Blvd. Suite 3, and knew it was the one.
“Once I came to see the property, meet the owner, I knew this would be the home of Plucked and More,” Harris said. “I also knew I didn’t have the money readily available for the rent and the down payment. The property owner met me, he met my whole family, and he gave me an opportunity. He told me to just bring the first month’s rent, and it was nothing but God that helped me with that step.”
Loyalty in numbers
Being in this industry, Harris said you meet all kinds of great people, in all walks of life. For some of her customers, she’s seen them through marriage, children, heart ache, blessings, and the spontaneity life brings. Building on these customer relationships, and being a positive impact for her customers is what Harris says she’s passionate about.
“My customers will pour into me, and it made me start to believe in myself,” she said. “That’s where my passion and confidence stems from – I get to walk through life with these people, through all phases of life, good and bad, I get to see it all. I feel like I’ve worn a lot of hats, or different types of ears to listen, but being able to have listening ears for my customers, and them listening to me at times, is something so special. I treat everyone the same, but yet all of my relationships with customers are different.
It’s a very intimate environment. A lot of unveiling, literally.”
Adding more to Plucked and More
Currently, Plucked and More specializes in full body waxing for men and women. Harris says she specializes in all types of hair, different ethnicities, different shades of hair, and listening and putting together a plan of action for someone who’s had a bad experience or wax job.
“I try to listen to my customer, and have them tell me, and show me, what they want,” Harris said. “I listen to the bad experiences they’ve had before so they won’t have that again.”
The lease across the way from Harris recently became vacant, and Harris jumped at the opportunity to expand her brand across the hall way. The Plucked and More brand will be adding eye lash extensions, spray tanning, an additional skin care line, and skin services.
“I’m going to provide that under the Plucked and More brand, the personal brand customers are used to having,” Harris said. “All of our operators are seasoned, and well knowledgeable in their craft. They will be their own company, but will have me to guide them under the Plucked brand.”
If you asked Harris five years ago if she’d ever leave her home town of Atascocita, she would probably laugh at the question and give a direct “no” – it’s where she was raised, where her family is, and where she bought a house. With moving her business into the Heights three years ago, came moving her and her family here, too, and now her and her two girls can’t imagine life outside the Heights.
“With me being a single parent and a business owner, having everything in such a close proximity lifted so much weight off of my shoulders,” Harris said.
The girls attend Harvard Elementary and love the neighborhood. So much, Harris said the girls are so demanding of how involved their family unit has to be in their school, and Harris said that’s a good thing.