If you’re someone who can appreciate a good “Made For TV” movie, you’re going to love the story of how Melissa Cavanaugh came to own one of the most successful laser and beauty lounges in all of New York City. A story which Melissa credits in large part to her love of beauty, and devotion to looking her best.
Now considered the program’s most notable success, it was only six years ago that Melissa, a single mother, was emerging from a lengthy battle to end her addiction to alcohol at St. Luke’s Addiction Institute, an organization she now gives back to on a regular basis.
“In the halfway house, they used to call me “Princess” because I would wake up extra early to do my hair and makeup before mopping the ﬂoors and emptying the trash cans.”
Seriously, does it get more Lifetime than that?
Since the age of ﬁfteen, Melissa had struggled with substance abuse. Yet it wasn’t until she was homeless and fearing the loss of her son that she decided to take steps towards signiﬁcant change by checking herself into rehab. However, when you spend more than half of your life intoxicated, waking up can be a scary process.
“It’s the emptiest feeling in the world. You don’t even know who you are. I had to do so much therapy just to ﬁgure out what kind of a person I was without the alcohol. It’s like I couldn’t remember.”
The one thing that was familiar to her though, was her love of looking her best.
“Looking good had always been important to me. In fact, even when I was a drunken mess, my skin had to look it’s best and I still had my nails done. So that’s what I focused on in recovery. Always looking my best.”
With her thirty dollar weekly allowance, Melissa would buy the cheap stuff. She splurged on one dollar Wet and Wild eye pencils and clothes from thrift shops, with the philosophy that if she looked good, she would feel good as well.
And it worked.
Slowly, by focusing on always taking pride in her appearance, Melissa began to feel whole again. And after witnessing the beneﬁts that implementing beauty in her day to day life could bring, she decided to pursue esthetics as a career.
While still residing in a halfway house, Melissa attended the Atelier Institute and went on to become an expert in the ﬁeld of laser hair removal. Only two months after receiving certiﬁcation from the Safe Laser Institute, Melissa joined forces with a partner to open Pulse Laser and Skincare Center. Shortly after, Melissa put Pulse on the map by not only launching the biggest Groupon deal that the coupon site had seen ever seen, selling over three thousand packages, but successfully managing to accommodate every last Groupon purchased, all without losing their ﬁve star rating. In fact, to this day, Melissa retains the highest customer satisfaction ratings of any spa on Groupon with her new business Deify.
Deify was born in October of 2012 from a desire to grow bigger. No longer content to just provide laser services, Melissa wanted to encapsulate all manner of esthetic services, so she set out on her own to create a one-stop shop for beauty.
Keeping in the philosophy that looking and feeling good are the building blocks of a healthy and successful life, Melissa is dedicated to helping others ﬁnd the conﬁdence that she did through always looking her best.
“I’ve been through some of the worst experiences a person can go through but treating myself like a goddess, even when I was scrubbing toilets, empowered and elevated the rest of my day.
That’s where the word “Deify” comes from. I wanted to empower others to do the same, by treating them like a god or a goddess, if only for a short while.”
And that’s exactly what you’ll get from this dedicated entrepreneur. Far more than a laser spa, Deify now offers everything from hair and makeup services to spray tans to Botox and ﬁllers. There is simply no need to go anywhere else.
Melissa has since become a mother to a second son and continues to thrive on her own. Always looking for new opportunities, Melissa is continuously expanding by staying abreast of the latest trends in the spa world and by providing a stellar work environment to ensure that Deify is consistently staffed with the most talented technicians the industry has to offer.
All of this begs the question, if looking and feeling good can rebuild a woman’s life, launch two multi-million dollar businesses and inspire a burgeoning beauty empire, what can it do for you?