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The successful company that won one of Elmbridge’s Independent Retailer of the Year Awards in July this year will be revealing its new name on Wednesday 2nd December to begin a forward-looking phase concentrating on its achievements, and leave behind a period of abusive phone calls and heckling of staff arriving at work which have been fuelled by its current name of Isis Beauty Academy.

The award-winning beauty academy, which trains students in industry-recognised beauty therapy qualifications, was originally named after Isis, the ancient Egyptian goddess of re-birth, who was known for empowering women through teaching them skills and knowledgeis2 to become independent. The founder of Isis Beauty Academy, Carolyne Cross, felt this goddess encapsulated perfectly what she’s trying to achieve with her academy. However, current affairs have resulted in the name becoming a liability with negative repercussions for the company.

“We’ve been receiving phone calls from some people who’ve been rude and abusive accusing us of being racist among other things. What’s more, several times a day we’ve had local people taking pictures and posting the photos on social media with negative comments. I also believe that negative connotations with the name has caused the 50% drop in student numbers this term – one new student even arrived with her parents in tow as they’d wanted to be certain we’re not an undercover grooming place for Islamic extremists.” said Carolyne.

She continued “Ever since I began my academy nearly eight years ago, originally on my own in just one room, I’ve been passionate about training future beauty therapists to the highest possible standard and giving them the best start I can in their new careers. I now employ 10 staff and we offer our courses from three different venues around Surrey and London. We’ve transformed hundreds of enthusiastic individuals into dedicated professionals practising a whole range of therapies from manicure and skin care to holistic treatments and sports massage. I did vow not to be swayed by the extreme reaction shown by some individuals to our name but now I’ve decided that if the name is stopping students from benefitting from our high standards then it has to be changed.”

In June this year, an Ofsted inspection ranked the academy’s apprenticeship programmes as worthy of a ‘grade 1, outstanding’. In the following month, the academy won the award of ‘Best in Hair and Beauty’ in the annual Elmbridge Independent Retailer of the Year Awards thanks to the many votes cast by satisfied customers.

The academy’s new name will be revealed by the Mayor of Elmbridge, Cllr Jan Fuller, at 10.30am on Wednesday 2nd December 2015. Its doors will then be open to the public from 12pm until 8pm for anyone who’s interested to find out more about the training on offer and have a look around. At 6pm, a former student and now therapist with Clarins Cosmetics and Skincare will be demonstrating the latest trends in Christmas make-up.

So what is the new name for Isis Beauty Academy? That’s being kept under wraps until the 2nd December due to the competition running at the moment: any member of the public who guesses the new name correctly could win a mystery prize. Entry is via the academy’s Facebook or Instagram pages or via Twitter (@isisbeautyacd).


Jayson Firmager 

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