Chula Vista

Chula Vista Families Facing Harsh Financial Realities of Pandemic

Alfaro shares how this pandemic has really impacted her family and the business she runs with her co-owner, Martha Mondragon

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The team running Hair Slayers Studio in Chula Vista share why they are not shy about asking for help, this as they are hoping federal relief and community support can help them out during a tough financial time.

“Just because I’m a salon owner doesn’t mean I have all this money, no I struggle too,” said Tanya Alfaro, the co-owner of Hair Slayer studio.

Alfaro shares how this pandemic has really impacted her family and the business she runs with her co-owner, Martha Mondragon. Alfaro said while they are struggling to make rent on their Chula Vista beauty studio, she said it’s also tough at home.

“Now, it’s like I can’t pay my mortgage and we can’t pay the rent for the salon so we’re kinda stuck,” said Alfaro.

Hair Slayer Studio is a vegan hair salon, run by two Latina stylists who are dedicated to what they do.

“I’ve had clients that cry with me that are like, ‘Oh I’ve never had someone do this,' and I am very passionate,” said Alfaro.

The salon like many others has had a tough time bouncing back following nearly a year of on again, off again closures. They also have not been able to retain many stylists, as many are choosing to work fully on their own.

“You want to work, as a hairstylist who truly has the passion for it, you want to work,” said stylist Paulette Estrada.

Estrada shared how if 2020 wasn't hard enough, 2021 came in with its own set of challenges. She's a mom of three including to a newborn and her husband is finally just recovering from a severe battle with COVID-19.

“Not only did it affect us health-wise, but it was just a big hit financially,” Estrada said. “He was on paternity leave and now on a little bit of COVID leave.”

The Latina entrepreneurs say their motivation lies within their family and they're grateful they have this support, even if they are close to losing their business.

“That’s another thing that keeps me going that he tells me we can lose everything, we can take away everything, but we’ll always have a roof over our heads and food,” said Alfaro about the motivation she receives from her husband.

While these women put on a brave face and open up about how they are not sure about the next days ahead of them. They want other entrepreneurs to put on a fight before giving up.

“It’s hard, trust me. I’m trying to hold back my tears, my feelings because it’s hard but I’m sure a lot of people are going through the same thing,” said Alfaro. “I’m happy to at least tell them it’s not just you, there’s a lot of us going through the same thing.”

The hairstylists share that the best way to support them is by coming in for an appointment or it can be as simple as following them online via their social media for free.

“We all have families and that’s all we need,” said Estrada. “We need some bit of help.”

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