Twenty years after arriving in Australia ‘with very little English’ from Moldova, Sofia Amirova is now ‘living the dream’ running her own salon in Sydney. We therefore couldn’t resist the opportunity to her a few questions about her amazing journey.
When and why did you establish Amirova Cosmetic Clinic?
“Amirova was established in 2017 and I have never looked back. Every day that I come in to work I can’t believe that I am living the dream by owning and operating a business all the way in Australia.
“I had my eye on this location for years and began imagining how amazing it would be to open a clinic here. It had been vacant for 10 years and was thoroughly unloved but I had such a clear vision of what it could be. After two years of driving past, I finally gathered enough courage to call the real estate agent and make an appointment for an inspection. My budget wasn’t very high, so I was hoping the builder would agree to my terms and conditions. In reality, I actually left him with no choice. After the assessment, he gave me an estimate of the cost, and I said to him ‘Listen, I don’t have the money but you are going to help me and you will start the renovations in two weeks’.
“Most people think I named the clinic Amirova because it is my family name, but I specifically chose it to honour my dad – to show him that what he saw in a five-year-old girl in a small country on the other side of the world has actually become a reality. It took me 10 years, but with hard work and a clear vision, I was able to do it. I look at the salon name every day and think of him.”
Tell us about the design/interior?
“Our clients refer to Amirova Cosmetic Clinic as a peaceful getaway from the high demands of reality. It’s a calm oasis that allows them to unwind while feeling blissfully unaware of the outside world for a few precious moments.
The whole clinic has been designed to work with the senses. Every sight, sound, smell and sensation has been carefully considered in order to provide as much relaxation as possible.
The luxurious two-tone black and rose-gold décor creates a calming backdrop that helps soothe clients’ minds and lets them switch off from their worries and responsibilities. Likewise the lighting adds to the serene mood.
We take the utmost care in setting lights as dim as possible for clients in relaxing services such as facials but still have strong enough light for our team to work safely as they strive to provide impeccable service.
We have also placed fully stocked product cabinets in each of our treatment rooms so clients can take their time to peruse our range and discuss their concerns with us in private rather than in a public reception area.”
What equipment/devices do you stock?
“Venus Versa, Regen lab centrifuge for PRP, Ultrasound BT Specular and Dermastamp 2.”
What skincare brands do you stock?
“Amirova Cosmetic Clinic, Zo Skin Health and Dr Spiller.”
What does a typical working day involve for you?
“Well most importantly ‘coffee, coffee and more coffee please”… Seriously though my day is non-stop cleaning, answering phones, filing, restocking, business analysis, performing treatments (the most enjoyable and rewarding part), writing notes, following up clients, researching, delegating tasks to my team and playing cello to calm down and balance myself… Who said running your own business is glamorous? Sometimes at the end of the day I look at myself and say ‘Is this what I really look like?’ and laugh as I was looking sort of OK this morning.”
What are some of the biggest successes you’ve had in your career (so far)?
“Starting from absolutely ‘zero’ money and business knowledge to be where I am today! I am truly blessed to be doing what I am doing as I have this amazing privilege to change people’s lives. I, along with the rest of the industry, help to empower women and make them feel good about themselves. We are so often held back by how we see ourselves, but the work that we do has the key to unlocking something very important. We can provide a transformation on the outside for our clients to reveal something very special on the inside. When a client comes to me and walks out feeling more beautiful, she starts to think differently. She may have the confidence to rekindle a relationship or even start a new one. She may begin to shop differently, start an exercise regime, or do something completely new. We help women to move away from whatever is holding them back, so they can become the real, powerful version of themselves. I’m not saying a brow lift will change a client’s life, but it may allow them to approach their days with more confidence and optimism. Transformation – that’s what we do. That’s my passion. That’s my business. That’s our industry.”
What are some of the challenges that you have faced in your career/clinic?
“Two renovations in one year; a rebranding; a new website; and taking on the latest most innovative techonology. I push myself so hard and have such big expectations and find myself in most uncomfortable situations, but I am truly a believer that it is the only way we grow. If you want to succeed you’ve got to get used to being comfortable in the uncomfortable!”
What are your future plans for the clinic?
“I am working on a couple things, so stay tuned.”
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