During last year's Covid-19 lockdown, housebound people up and down the country got creative with their time. One of these people was Zhaqueal, a fourth-year dental technology student and owner of up and coming hair accessory business, Glacé.
Zhaqueal’s hair accessories come in a wide range of colours, prints and styles. They span from pastel coloured scrunchies, to shiny, mystical looking claw clips and candy shaped barrettes. Each accessory is selected to add individuality to any outfit or style. Zhaqueal wants to make sure they are all available at accessible and affordable prices.
Zhaqueal’s idea for her accessory business started over lockdown after she shaved her head for the charity Shave for a Cure. “I shaved my head [for Shave for a Cure] and when I was getting my regrowth, I felt like I couldn’t express myself besides makeup, so I was like, “what can I do?” She decided to purchase a variety of hair clips to add to her look. But she found that there wasn’t any stock in Dunedin at affordable prices, that catered towards her own sense of style.
“I started to wonder whether other people have this problem,” she said. Zhaqueal then decided to order in unique accessories which couldn’t be found on the New Zealand market, and began growing her business from there.
Her business name, Glacé, stems from the sugar coating often found on preserved fruits or candy, like Glacé cherries. She said this translates into the idea of what accessories are. “I went with Glacé, the sugar coating on preserved fruit because it’s similar. I feel like accessories adds a sugar coating to your style.” Zhaqueal also says her business was influenced by her mother’s sense of style and fashion, who she admired growing up.
The main message behind her business is to empower people to express themselves through accessories. “I have a set uniform [as a dental student] and it’s so boring, but with accessories you can kinda bring a little touch of individuality into how you look,” she says.
Zhaqueal’s business model is inspired by Daiso, a form of Japanese $2 stores where customers can buy several small items for set prices. “I love the concept, so I’m trying to mesh that with my business, and create a fusion.”
Although Glacé is predominantly online, Zhaqueal hopes to expand to local market days and have her own space to sell her products. “I have been to one market in Fairfield, but other than that, I have just been online. But I want a corner or space where it can be all together. I want to take it further, expand what I’m bringing in and more types of accessories, and even manufacture my own designs,” she says.
You can find Glacé Accessories at glacenz.com, or @glacénz on instagram.