LINCOLN PARK — Bella Morgan, founder of Salon Glow in Lincoln Park, always knew she wanted to be a business owner.
At 7 years old, Morgan would accompany her aunt to her job at White Hen Pantry, where Morgan would stand on milk crates to ring people up on the register.
“Even then, I was dreaming of having my own business one day,” Morgan said.
With Salon Glow, which celebrates its 10th anniversary next week, Morgan is fulfilling her childhood dreams.
“It feels unreal,” Morgan said. “When I first opened my salon, my big goal was to make it to five years. It took me forever to get there, and now all of a sudden it’s been 10.”
Salon Glow, 2766 N. Lincoln Ave., will commemorate the milestone 2-6 p.m. Sunday with an open bar, hors d’oeuvres, a dessert table and live music by Kaleen Dolan of the Redhead Piano Bar.
The milestone comes as Morgan is looking to expand the business’ services and education program, she said.
Salon Glow offers hair and makeup services with a focus on blonding and extensions, Morgan said. The salon also offers facial waxing and will start doing teeth whitening in October.
“You have to be at the salon anyway sitting here, so why not whiten your teeth?” Morgan said.
Morgan plans to transform the upstairs loft area of the salon into a Glow Extensions lounge, where the business can expand on its extension services, she said.
All of the salon’s staff go through a training program, whether they have experience with hair or not, Morgan said. But the business could soon launch a Glow Academy where other salons can send their staff to be trained.
Morgan got the idea for Glow Academy after hiring three team members who left their previous salons because they were promised training they never received, she said.
“They were more utilized as assistants, but nowadays people don’t want to be an assistant for two years — they want to learn to do hair,” Morgan said. “So that’s what we do here. We want to get them there faster.”
Morgan opened Salon Glow in 2012 in a smaller space at 3050 W. Greenview Ave. in Lakeview, she said. She moved the business to Lincoln Park in 2016 to coincide with its growth.
The salon’s space has room for seven hair stations, two blow-dry stations and a few shampoo bowls, which are a favorite among customers because they have headrests with neck support, Morgan said.
“I’d love to expand even more some day,” Morgan said. “I have a lot of ideas from the Glow Academy to possibly a salon and spa, but we’ll see. I definitely want to dive more into education and extensions.”
Salon Glow is also a sustainably minded Green Circle Salon, meaning nearly all of the business’s beauty waste is recovered and recycled, Morgan said. Things like hair can be used to clean oil spills, as insulation or to make plastic, and the salons dyes are cleaned and recycled back into the water supply.
“Our main priority right now is that we recycle as much as we possibly can,” Morgan said.
Morgan went straight into beauty school after high school, deciding to pursue her interest in the beauty industry over her interests in dentistry and teaching, she said.
“It’s funny because now I do a mix of all three,” Morgan said.
Morgan, who is Creole and a lesbian, said she always “focused on working as hard as I could to ‘prove myself'” because she didn’t want to feel judged for her background, she said.
“I feel judged by many for not going to college, but I’ve hit every goal I’ve made, I have a career I love and I’m happy — that’s all I’ve ever wanted in life,” Morgan said. “I feel like it’s so important for other women to know that they can achieve whatever it is their dreams are no matter what their background is.”
Salon Glow is open 6 a.m.-8 p.m. Wednesday-Thursday and 7 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday-Saturday. The salon is closed Sunday-Tuesday.
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