Opening a retail business was a natural move for Tarrytown resident Anna Cangiano, having grown up in Brooklyn where her parents owned an Italian retail food store.
“I don’t think I stumbled upon the retail bug, I think it’s in my blood,” she said. “Being in the store and watching my parents work hard to build their business inspired me.”
Cangiano didn’t want to follow her parent’s footsteps in the food industry and considered many options before a personal need for products that didn’t affect her sensitive skin led her in mid-September to open Au Naturel Health & Beauty at 7 North Broadway in Tarrytown.
“I always wanted to have my own business, do something in Tarrytown and have something to offer the community,” she explained. “Realizing my dream and opening Au Naturel Health & Beauty allows me the opportunity to combine my passion for retail with my belief that providing healthy alternatives to the poisonous products we use every single day will lead us all down a healthier pathway.”
“There’s really nothing in CVS or Walgreen that I could use on my body,” Cangiano said. “I said to myself wouldn’t it be great if there was a place in Tarrytown that I could go and get this stuff that I need? The idea was born at that time.”
Au Naturel offers personal care and beauty products, health and wellness vitamins and supplements and a pantry of natural, organic and non-Genetically Modified Organisms food choices.
“I have no doubt that everyone is gravitating in this direction,” Cangiano said. “I’m not trying to change anybody. We often wonder where cancer comes from and everything we put in and on our bodies has a direct effect on that. The town has welcomed me. They’re so happy I’m here.”
A health coach will soon be at Au Naturel every Monday from noon to 4 p.m. to answer questions from customers and Cangiano is planning a “Spring Cleaning” event in May for mind, body and spirit.
As in all industries, technology drives innovation. In dentistry, the new rage is Snap-on Smiles, an easy, painless way to obtain a beautiful, Oscar-worthy smile. “I went to a seminar not too long ago and got really excited about this product because I can see a lot of applicability,” said Dr. Henry Orchier.
While Dr. Orchier began operating his practice from the Amenta Professional building at 245 North Broadway in Sleepy Hollow 18 months ago, the Irvington resident has been working in the area since 1978. “I started with a home office in Tarrytown for a number of years, and then moved over to Phelps for 16 years and recently moved to this location,” said the avid golfer and graduate of Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.
Offering general, cosmetic and implant services, Snap-on Smiles appealed to the seasoned dentist for a number of reasons. Chief among them were the success rates and costs as opposed to other procedures. “With Snap-on, we take impressions in the office and the laboratory fabricates the device,” he said, adding that “It is more affordable for most people than the other options.” The cost is approximately $3,000 for both upper and lower teeth, which is far less than other cosmetic procedures such as veneers or implants, which can run $1,000 to 4,000 per tooth, respectively.
But what exactly is a Snap-on Smile? The product is made from a slightly flexible material (acetyl resin) that expands over patients’ teeth and hugs them tightly so the patient can eat and speak without the device coming loose or shifting. They literally “snap” in place. Usually requiring two visits to the office, there is no drilling, no shots and no change to a patients tooth structure.
Dr. Orchier explained that this solution is a good choice for those patients that have gaps, crooked, stained or missing teeth or those that have been informed they are candidates for bridges or implants. Also, those patients that currently use an otherwise antiquated removable partial denture can use this device as an alternative.
The patient selects the style and shade of his or her new smile. The temporary or permanent solution is an easy to care for cosmetic solution. “There is a buzz about this product as it is somewhat new to the market and we have only been offering it for a few months,” said Dr. Orchier. “But I have given the pamphlet to many patients and they come weeks or months later ready to do it because they realize the benefits. The responses have been great,” he said, adding that he offers a complimentary consultation or second opinion regarding any and all dental needs.
No sooner did she retire after 27 years as a successful businesswoman than Deirdre Sheeran partnered with her daughter, Kathleen Cassidy, to open the New York School of Esthetics & Day Spa, Inc. in Tarrytown.
“It’s the story of how a single mother raised two children and, after retirement, bought and ran a successful school for the past 10 years,” owner/associate director/senior instructor Cassidy said of her mom, Deirdre Sheeran.
“She’s my secret weapon, a talented business woman,” Cassidy said. “Anyone can do anything they imagine with commitment, perseverance, and no doubt on your mind.”
Its two-year process to become state-licensed nearly 10 years ago helped make it a fully-accredited and federally-recognized facility. The financial aid director at the school is Joseph Mattimoe.
“We felt that most schools only provided basics for state board purposes, or, that a (corporated) school only taught its theory and product line,” Cassidy said. “We are not a beauty school; we do not do hair or nails, skin only.”
She and Sheeran aimed to create a school that put students first, and that offered well-rounded education in medical and traditional product-based treatments.
Students take 600-hour courses for skin care certification and a 30-hour program for laser technician training. After graduation, they can work for doctors, plastic surgeons, and dermatologists, or at a medi-spa using learned techniques with lasers, chemical peels and microdermabrasion.
The school has a student-run day spa that is supervised by instructors, offering deep discounts for senior student-administered facials, waxing and make-up applications. Techniques learned and skills required for esthetics treatments differ within the industry.
“It goes anywhere from applying make-up to advanced chemical peels,” Cassidy said. “This is the reason we offer all modalities in our undergraduate program — so the learners can find their strengths and weaknesses and develop a passion for what they are good at.”
The field of esthetics is misunderstood, Cassidy said.
“With regards to beauty, some think it is a slumber party with all the right equipment. We treat skin conditions, acne, and hyperpigmentation, maintaining the integrity of the skin. The knowledge needed to take it from ‘candles and slippers’ to real results is extensive,” she said.
Cassidy’s advice to anyone who aspires to start a business is: have experience or partner with someone who has it. “Also, there are free entereperenurial courses you can take that can help create a business plan, which is key to opening.”