It’s the perfect setting for her business.
Jill Yvette Painter couldn’t be happier with her premises at tranquil Lockwood Park – and clients of her business, Jill Yvette’s Holistic Beauty Ltd, share her opinion.
“I know I’m at work, but it never feels like I’m at work,” she says. “It’s the perfect place. Clients who arrive a little early for their appointments are happy to listen to the birdsong and the running water.”
“Some clients are happy to hang around a bit after their appointment and sit outside to enjoy the surroundings. I often turn my music off to listen to the birds.”
Jill’s business occupies part of the former stable block at Lockwood Park.
She has converted a boardroom used by the previous occupants into a welcoming consulting and treatment room.
A large picture window has been replaced with something smaller and more suitable for private consultations and a water supply has been laid on.
New flooring has also been laid over the original stone flags.
Jill said she had been looking for new premises for some time after running her business at Crosland Moor.
“I saw this place on a Wednesday, said ‘yes’ to it on the Friday and went to Thailand on the Sunday for two weeks to attend a family wedding,” she says.
“When I got back, it took just three weeks to get the premises open.”
Jill was brought up in Fenay Bridge and attended Almondbury High School and Greenhead College, where she studied maths, biology and domestic science.
But she says: “I always wanted to do this kind of work ever since I was 11 or 12.
“I had several health problems myself, particularly eczema and allergies and it was suggested that I start using skin care, so I started to look into the subject more deeply – and find out how I could help myself.”
Jill attended a 12-month course in beauty therapy at Nottingham, qualifying in 1981.
Her research led her to investigate holistic methods of beauty treatment and skin care, which she now uses as part of her range of treatments.
They include her unique ‘I Wish…’ treatment which combines beauty therapy with holistic methods to help tackle skin problems, signs of ageing, stress, aches and pains and lethargy – and help clients achieve younger-looking skin, increased energy and vitality and make a fresh start in life.
“I find now that I can really specialise in the things I like to do,” says Jill.
“What I do is more about well-being and what’s going on with people internally, mentally and emotionally.”
Jill’s 32-year career began with her first job working for hair and beauty salon Steiner in Leeds. From there, she joined Ralph Cuthbert in Huddersfield.
The business was principally known as a retail chemist but also had a salon at Greenhead Road as well as its own Lady Esther range of beauty products. Jill helped run the salon for some years before launching Jill Yvette’s in 1984.
“I bought the salon from Ralph Cuthbert,” she says.
“I had always wanted to have my own place and build up my own little empire!
“I had about half a dozen staff there, but eventually it became a bit too much because of health issues.
“The most important part of the business for me was working with the clients.
“That was the biggest reward for me – not the man-management. I decided to take a step back.”
Hunting for new premises, Jill hit upon the Lockwood Park site.
“I came by this place almost by accident,” she says. “I had come to look at another site, but that had gone and these premises became available.
“I opened for business on May 8 this year and had a formal open day launch in June.
“Having so many of my clients there made me realise how many families I have – with two or three generations coming to see me.”
Clients range from young girls who need advice about how to apply make-up for the first time and young adults who need treatments for skin problems to busy mums looking for relaxation therapy and older women seeking treatments to care for ageing skin.
Jill has built her reputation on client recommendation and repeat custom – while she spreads the word about her business via social media.
Jill is also a qualified reiki practitioner and runs reiki sessions as well as providing training in reiki techniques to small groups of students.
Jill says helping her clients – and seeing their confidence grow as a result of her treatments and skills – is the biggest reward.
“I can get people coming in who are feeling a little bit down and depressed,” she says.
“It’s lovely to see them progress over the course of treatment with a tailor-made plan, guidance and lifestyle advice, that looks six months to 12 months down the line at how they want to look and how they want to approach life. It’s great when they’ve been able to take control of their lives again.”
Jill, who lives at Linthwaite with husband Mark, has her own ways to relax.
“I like to go driving or walking over the tops,” she says. Although she’s holidayed in Australia and Thailand, Jill says she can be just s happy taking the sea air at Whitby.
If Jill has one regret in business it’s what she sees as a lack of help for other would-be entrepreneurs.
“When I was developing ‘I Wish…’ I got a lot of help from Business Link.
“Now Business link isn’t around and there doesn’t seem to be much help for busionesses.”
Family: Married to Mark
Holidays: We’re just back from Thailand. I also love Australia – and Whitby
Car: Nissan Juke
First job: I was a Saturday girl at British Home Stores
Best thing about the job? Coming to work every morning. Working with clients is the biggest reward
Worst thing about the job? There isn’t anything I don’t like about it
Business tip: If there’s something you don’t like doing – and keep putting off doing – there’s always someone else who can do it and make a better job of it! Never stop learning.