“Get up and get in the car—you are going to beauty school!”
Not exactly the way many life paths begin, but it was a case of Mom (the one doing the talking) being wiser than her then 17-year-old daughter, Lorraine—who until that moment was quite busy just hanging out and sleeping in. The next day, Lorraine found herself in class at the Sun Coast Beauty School in New Port Richey, Florida.
“My mother knew what she was doing—this is such a great career!” Lorraine says now, laughing. “It’s truly a craft—I love bringing out the magic that is in every one of us, and showing my clients’ inner glow through their hair.”
After graduation from beauty school, Lorraine was soon styling hair not far from her hometown of St. Petersburg. Her Florida experience was exciting and varied. She was part of the ManTrap Hair Salon show team, traveling and doing hair, makeup and facials. Later, working for Adrian Arpel, she became a skin care specialist and makeup artist, and did makeup and hair for models gracing the cover of Florida Magazine.
As a respected expert with a wide range of skills, Lorraine was asked to begin teaching. Her career in education included stints at a regional beauty school and then as part of Pasco-Hernando Community College’s cosmetology program.
Lorraine relocated to the Berkshires where she changed course—for a bit: she earned her social work degree from Elms College and began working as a counselor. But cosmetology, which she had grown to love, kept tugging. So Lorraine joined the staff at Palace Hair Design at the Berkshire Mall, and stayed until the mall closed in 2016.
Not long after leaving the Mall, she met Lori Kuczynski, who asked her to join her team at Meraki. “It‘s best thing that’s happened to me!” says Lorraine.
Her social work education and experience gave her new perspective and skills for the salon profession. “Every person is beautiful, and it’s all about making each one feel good about themselves,” she says. “I apply what I learned in social work every single day.”
The former teacher is always a student, too, and adding to her skill set. This now includes preparing clients’ makeup and hair for an Adams boudoir photographer, a woman who works just up the street from Meraki.
These days, no one is rousting Lorraine out of bed to get to work—she cherishes her time at Meraki Salon, applying all of her talents and experience to delight a wide range of clients.
“Here,” she says, “I can do everything!” And everything includes “children—even babies,” says Lorraine, who holds a Class 1 Cosmetology license. She now does keratin treatments, and color is a particular specialty.
So it turns out that for Lorraine, and now for her many Meraki clients, mother did know best.