Katherine Goldman





Zenzi’s Cosmetology Training Center - Licensed Esthetician and Waxologist

When Katherine Goldman first decided to focus purely on waxing, she worried she’d be limiting herself as an esthetician. However it wasn't long after opening San Francisco’s Stript Wax Bar in 2009, that Katherine realized people loved her specialized, one-of-a-kind approach.

A few short, wax-filled years later, Katherine now boasts six Stript locations across southern California that share the same sexy, fun and totally luxe style that made her original store stand out from the crowd and elevate hair removal. It’s a feat that tells her she’s made it. As Katherine puts it, “To expand to other locations … was such an exhilarating feeling and I knew I had changed the beauty industry."

Set realistic goals for yourself.

What inspired you to start your own business, as well as focus on waxing exclusively?

My dream was to transform how the spa industry approaches the art of waxing and hair removal. Most people these days don’t have time for a true day spa experience, but they still want a little luxury when they’re getting waxed. I wanted to offer one thing -- waxing -- and do it really well. Stript Wax Bar gives clients a beautiful space and time-sensitive treatments (and bookings) to keep them happy and, of course, well groomed.

What does your job involve, and what types of responsibilities do you have in your position?

As the founder/owner of Stript Wax Bar I am in charge of overseeing all locations (Los Angeles, San Francisco, Palo Alto, Walnut Creek and Oakland).

What is your favorite part of your job?

I love making people look and feel beautiful every day. Knowing that I am providing a high-quality service with strict standards is important. I hear too many stories of waxing gone wrong and want people to know that they are in good hands at Stript Wax Bar.

What challenges keep you awake at night?

As an esthetician, we get to do what we love, which is serve clients and help them feel and look their best. Before owning
a business, I rarely had to worry about the day-to-day challenges of inventory, accounts payable or the fine print on a new five-year lease. As a business owner I’m head of the marketing department, the head of IT, my own hiring manager and master accountant. It’s a lot of hats to wear, but I have learned to enjoy the challenges and the frequent mistakes that come along with learning a lot of what feels like unfamiliar skills at first.

Is work/life balance ever a problem with you? If so, what is one no-fail tactic you use to create balance?

I think the best thing to remember when trying to create balance between work and your personal life is to be organized
so that you don’t have to take time at home doing work-related ths. Also, set aside some time every day to unwind.

Was there ever a moment in your career where you’ve thought, “I made it!” What was it?

I started San Francisco’s first waxing-only salon, and that in itself was very fulfilling. To expand to other locations across the Bay Area and Los Angeles was such an exhilarating feeling, and I knew I had changed the beauty industry.

What are some of the rules you live by?

Set realistic goals for yourself. When I first started in the industry I had 1-year, 5-year and 10-year goals for myself. This gave me a timeline to follow, and I was able to clearly lay out a plan to get where I wanted to be. I knew that it would take many years to get where I wanted to be and knew that I was in it for the long haul! I think many people give up their dream because it is not happening fast enough. It takes time to cultivate a good business, and having realistic goals is a huge part of that.

What qualities does it take for someone to be successful in your line of work?

You have to be determined and not let the stress and challenges of entering the spa world get the best of you. You have to be passionate and bring unique ideas to the table. Also, customer service must be your mantra and you should be prepared for unexpected twists and turns.

What one piece of advice do you wish you could tell a 21-year-old version of yourself?

Trust your instincts! I was really scared to focus only on waxing at first because I thought I could be limiting myself, but people loved that I specialized in it.

Also, learn from others. I started by washing facial bowls as an intern but was able to sit in on the estheticians facials and learn by watching.

Where do you see yourself five years from now?

I see myself doing more product development and expanding Stript Wax Bar to other cities!