Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

First Look

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

First Look

Article excerpt

Byline: Karen Brune Mathis, Times-Union senior business writer


She's putting her best faces forward

Jennifer Walsh knows that a pretty face, in fact a lot of pretty faces, can be a good foundation for running a business.

Walsh, 33, combined a business degree with her make-up artistry skills and some honed investigative abilities to create The Beauty Bar in Neptune Beach three years ago. Surviving the critical start-up phase, the New York native expects to expand into San Marco in August, sharing the same entrance with San Marco Petites at 2002 San Marco Blvd. She plans a third area location before branching into two other cities by 2006.

Walsh stocks her Town Center store with exclusive, hard-to-find women and men's product lines, such as Kiehl's, Philosophy, LaMer and more, drawing customers from Georgia to Daytona Beach. The store is hands-on, meaning customers can try on the cosmetic, facial, body and hair products, lotions, powders, soaps, makeup, balms and fragrances.

"I'm constantly reading and traveling," said Walsh, who regularly scouts the latest in colors and textures and meets with industry insiders.

Walsh's work also shows up on stage, page and screen. She does make-up and wardrobe for television, commercial and magazine shoots and also works with visiting performers, including Beyonce Knowles, Nick Lachey and Mandy Moore.

She inherited skills from her parents, who moved to the Beaches. Mom was a wardrobe stylist and make-up artist. Dad was an FBI agent.

Walsh realizes, with some professional satisfaction, that competitive spies check out her North First Street shop. One visitor, however, was checking out more than the merchandise. She recently married PSS World Medical information technology director Tom Strubel, whom she met when a friend sent him into her store., (904) 359-4305

Contact Jennifer

@Write to Jennifer Walsh at


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Spend Thursday evening with Mayor John Peyton discussing economic development. He'll be at the Evangel Temple Assembly of God at 5755 Ramona Blvd. from 7 to 9 p.m. Among the topics to be discussed are the city's program for small and disadvantaged businesses and Super Bowl business opportunities. …

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