CORAL SPRINGS, FL – As Alicia Shapira tells it, magazine models, reality TV show celebrities, and other glamour queens trickle in and out of her beauty salon in a not-so-fashionable retail strip in Coral Springs.
They come for her lash-lifts-and-tips, hair simulations, and a slew of other makeup and body services, but also to be part of Shapira’s growing fashionista stratosphere.
Coral Springs is no South Beach or Wynwood when it comes to social media influencers, but Shapira and her New Image Beauty Bar on Wiles Road stand out for their presence on Instagram and TikTok, where she’s gotten more than 250,000 likes.
“I treat my clients like family,” said Shapira, 42, who grew up in Coral Springs and now lives with her husband and two-year-old son in Parkland.
Her path to running a salon is a story of changing professions, re-inventing herself after a catastrophic accident, and following a childhood love of glamour and art.
Shapira is a fast-talking businesswoman who is in constant motion.
As her brand has grown, she’s no longer just applying makeup and getting women ready for big occasions in their lives.
Shapira is also making a name for herself as an educator in the beauty services industry and in the world of microblading, permanent makeup, and a procedure called Brazilian Stretch Mark Camouflage, which uses pigment to hide stretch marks. She said her treatment is drawing clients from all parts of the world.
Her salon offers free re-pigmentation and permanent eyebrows services to cancer survivors, she said.
“It’s amazing to see how people react after our procedures,” she said last week, pausing to instruct her staff member on a client appointment. “They are so happy.”
She found her calling in life after ending a short career as a speech therapist and before that a financial manager. She grew up attending Ramblewood Middle School and J.P. Taravella High School, and remembers, as a teenager, enjoying applying makeup on friends and being intrigued with the beauty and fashion industries.
But her vision crystallized following a fall in a store when she was 30 and newly married. Her injuries required hospitalization, surgeries, and intensive physical therapy. She was in a wheelchair.
“I thought my life was over. I thought I’d never walk again,” she said. “I did a lot of thinking and I changed my life and did something more fulfilling.”
Eventually, she got better, put her energy into opening New Image Beauty Bar, and used her marketing talents to grow the business and catch the attention of the right clients.
Shapira envisions opening another salon in Miami early next year and continuing to travel across the nation and to other countries to train others in beauty services.
“My life has gone in such a good direction,” she said. “I just want to help people feel happy.”
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