'Mumpreneur' expands her kids' hair salon concept


Cape Town - Children’s hair salon, Maddy Magoo – which focusses on innovative hair care, cuts and styling – was specifically designed for children from all ethnic backgrounds.

After successfully creating a strong brand presence in Gauteng, a gap in the market has been identified to launch the first Maddy Magoo store in Pretoria and in other parts of the country, with the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal being next on the list.

Maddy Magoo was founded by Lauren de Swardt – the "mumpreneur" who created Kids Emporium. She opened the pilot hair salon in Honeydew five years ago, and has since established four other branches in Gauteng.

“I’m a mother of two and I realised the need for a child-friendly salon after my then four year old son refused to go to the hairdresser. It dawned on me that not all hair salons cater for children’s needs and they can seem very frightening to a young child," explains Lauren de Swardt, founder of Maddy Magoo and Kids Emporium.

"I was also rather amazed that there were no hair salons that catered for people from all ethnic backgrounds under one roof – thus Maddy Magoo was formed.”

Kids Emporium has 30 stores and has recently opened its doors in the UK. The success of Maddy Magoo might create the opportunity to franchise this innovative salon.  

“What makes Maddy Magoo distinct is the fact that each salon is fun enough for little ones, but cool enough for tweens. It also caters for all hair types and uses a variety of child friendly, innovative products from eco.kid, Milk, Shampooheads, milk_shake, and Mizani. Furthermore, each hairdresser is not only trained to work with children but to cut and style all hair types, from curly locks and straight layers to afros and braids,” says De Swardt.

The salon provides a fun-filled experience for toddlers undergoing their first haircut and also caters for children’s birthday parties.

“The various activities children can experience at the salons include a before and after photograph, a personalised Certificate of Bravery for their first haircut and a lock of hair as a keepsake. In addition to this, Maddy Magoo offers glamour parties which caters for six to 20 girls, from the age of five and up. The birthday girl receives a CD of photos to remember the special occasion as well as a Maddy Magoo voucher as a birthday gift,” says De Swardt.

“Maddy Magoo is set to open its next store in Pretoria East with many more to follow."

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