Brows and Beyond: OFF & ON

Reading Time: 6 Minutes

Since its launch in 2008, OFF & ON has quickly skyrocketed to become one of New Zealand’s leading wax and laser hair removal services, as well as game changers in the brows department. Mollie Edwards caught up with Head of Retail Brands Hayley Williams to discuss the company’s latest offerings, the importance of customer service and the brand’s new flagship store.

NEWMARKET: Could you tell us a little bit about how OFF & ON came to be?

HAYLEY: OFF & ON was born from the notion that hair removal could be enjoyable and that the unsung hero of the face, brows, deserved a lot more kudos and expertise. Launching in 2008 as the first of its kind in NZ, we bucked the trend for fru fru, Enya and water fountains. Since this time OFF & ON has become one of the NZ leaders in hair removal (laser and waxing). Our evolution continued to bring customers some of the best in technology and new treatments such as microblading and dermaplaning. And the more recent acquisition of OFF & ON by industry leaders, Skin Institute Group, has further extended our expertise through the addition of our Injectables menu of treatments, all of which are offered by our highly trained appearance medicine nurses.

N. You joined the OFF & ON business as Country Manager in 2021. How has your journey with the business been so far?

H. Busy! The industry itself is in growth and despite the impact of Covid, we have been busy working away on several exciting initiatives that have come to fruition including online booking and our own ecommerce platform with a raft of new and exciting retail brands, which have all hopefully made life a little easier for our many customers. We are always on the lookout for new treatments that don’t fall to fads and as such launched brow lamination last year (one of my personal favourites). It’s been fantastic to cap off this busy period with the opening of our stunning new flagship Newmarket store, I think our best yet and one the team and I are super proud of!

N. Speaking of your flagship store, can you tell us about the new space?

H. It’s amazing! Gone is the old split-level location and replaced with a gorgeous single level architectural space. High ceilings, polished concrete floors and stunning natural light. We have introduced our new individual brow bars giving both comfort and space to our customers. And to top it off we are just a stone’s throw from our old location and surrounded by great retail stores.

N. Having had a successful career working as a Brand General Manager for brands like M.A.C and Jo Malone, and now in your new role as Head of Retail Brands with OFF & ON and Lovely by skin institute, what are some things you’ve learnt along the way that you consider vital in terms of both beauty and customer experience?

H. 1. “Sell an experience, not a service.” How a customer leaves you is more important than how they came to you and will determine if they return to you.

2. “Know your customers and place their needs at the centre of all conversations”. Utilising the expertise that our team bring to the table, we hope to anticipate what our customers’ needs are going to be.

3. “Surround yourself and customers with the best people”.

People who bring fervent energy to what they can do for our customers. Period.

N. Although OFF & ON is known for incredible brow work, you also offer other services like injectables - could you tell us a bit about these?

H. Yes! It’s an area we’re immensely proud of! As part of Skin Institute Group, our menu has extended to include clinical treatments of anti-wrinkle and filler treatments. Anti-wrinkle helps to soften and temporarily relax the facial muscles that cause wrinkles in the forehead and the corners of the eyes, whilst filler provides lift and structure to restore contours of the face. And at OFF & ON our talented team’s mantra is about “keeping it real”, think less not more, NZ not Hollywood, real not reality TV.

N. Laser hair removal has only become popular in recent years. Why do you think many women are turning to this in favour of shaving/ waxing?

H. There are several reasons but for many the convenience of dealing with hair once and not repeatedly is probably the most compelling. The treatment itself, when done correctly with the right technology, is relatively painless and at the end of the day when compared to years of waxing is financially a better option. We tend to find that customers who start on one area are so thrilled with the results they continue to other areas.

N. Where’s your favourite place to grab a coffee in Newmarket?

H. The Candy Shop (they also have the best polenta fries with truffle oil).

N. We seem to be in an era where people are ditching the fake eyelashes, and instead, opting for a lash lift. Could you tell us about how a lash lift works and the benefits it has?

H. It is a lower maintenance way to achieve length and curl with your own lashes. It’s just like a super gentle perm for your lashes. I’m always amazed once you lengthen, tint and curl your lashes how long they really are! Highly recommend!

N. What are your top tips for creating the perfect brow at home? 

H. Don’t do it yourself! I’m a big believer in leaving things to the experts. I personally love brows big and fluffy, and these are best achieved with store treatments. Brow lamination is my go-to for effortless brows. Just a slick of OFF & ON Brow Powder at home and tamed with Brow Glue to hold in shape.

N. Do you have any exciting plans for OFF & ON in the near future?

H. Yes! Despite these challenging times we have been busy planning both future treatment and promotional opportunities. As our tans begin to fade and autumn approaches, we are heading in to perfect laser treatment season. As such over the next couple of months, we will be heavily focused on hair removal across waxing and laser. Watch this space!