TWO young Wirral entrepreneurs who opened a beauty business together have been honoured with two prestigious awards after just a year of trading.
Make-up artists Sian-Louise Auld and Robyn Turnbull’s So Coco Rouge won North West Beauty Salon of the Year and Make-up Specialist of the Year at the first English Hair & Beauty Awards.
They founded their hair and make-up studio in Liverpool early last year after a spell as freelance make-up artists.
Although both Sian and Robyn attended Weatherhead High School in Wallasey, they were in different school years and only became friends after meeting at make-up school in Manchester.
Sian-Louise, 25, from New Brighton, said: “When we went to the School of Make-Up everyone else was either from Manchester or Leeds.
“I said I was from Liverpool because I presumed no-one would know where Wirral was and then I found out Robyn lived here too.
“We decided we’d commute together to save money and we became really good friends.
“After leaving we both went freelance for a while. It can be really lonely so we’d take each other along on our jobs and it meant we had a support network.”
The friends talked about setting up a business and finally took the plunge in January 2011, opening within the Hahnemann Building in Hope Street in Liverpool city centre.
So Coco Rouge – a name inspired by their red hair and French chic – has gone from strength to strength and is moving to more accessible premises on Old Haymarket, near the Birkenhead tunnel.
Sian-Louise said: “Robyn said she’d love to have a place where people could come and be pampered. Sometimes women can be intimidated by going to make-up counters.
“We wanted it to be all about the experience and learning how to make yourself feel and look good. It is really rewarding.
“When we started off the building we were in was ideal but it was hard to find us because it wasn’t a shop front.”
Sian-Louise and Oxton-based Robyn, 27, provide make-up for TV and film and work with private clients and have big plans for the future, spurred on by their awards success.
Sian-Louise said: “Clients would say they really wanted their lashes doing and ask where we’d recommend and we decided we should be able to offer those services in-house.
“We were nominated by our clients for the awards and we never, ever expected to be up against some of the other nominees and win. We were absolutely thrilled.”