Women’s Business Center Training Brought Focus and Passion to Salon Owner

Mariatu “Tu” Browne discovered her passion for hair at the early age of 9 while braiding in her home country of Sierra Leone. As an adult in California, a generous investment from a friend helped her open her first salon. A series of personal hardships compounded by the economic downturn forced her to close her doors. She continued to improve her cosmetology skills by working at other salons and decided to go back to school to earn a bachelor’s degree in entrepreneurship and marketing.

Still feeling the pull of entrepreneurship, Tu went to the Inland Empire Women’s Business Center, an SBA-powered resource partner, and completed their 13 week “It’s Your Time: An Entrepreneurial Training Series for Women” (IYT).  Despite the pressures of school and work, the ever positive Tu remained keenly focused on achieving her goals and she received second place in the competition for the best business plan in the IYT program.  Her professional training and continued education led to a new focus for her passion and her future business: organic hair care.  Her mission was to unlock the natural beauty of hair salon clients with an environment free of dangerous chemicals for younger children, pregnant women, and people with chemical sensitivities, while at the same time protecting the environment. In pursuit of this goal, she found an existing salon in Rancho Cucamonga willing to sell. With excitement, passion and a $10,000 start-up business loan, Tu Organics Salon and Spa officially opened in October 2016.

Tu is known for her creativity and precision with scissors, clippers and razors as she creates innovative unisex haircuts and styles. She is also a certified educator for a well-known provider of organic beauty products.  With over 12 years of professional cosmetology experience she has earned the trust of her loyal customers and supports her staff in continuing the salon’s mission of dedication to organic and sustainable beauty. By providing sustainable salon solutions to recover and repurpose beauty waste, Tu Organics Salon and Spa is a local leader in working to drastically reduce harmful impacts of dangerous chemicals and products on the environment in the hair care industry.  This commitment towards environmental sustainability earned her a Certificate of Recognition by the City of Rancho Cucamonga for being an active participant in their Green Business Recognition Program.  Along this journey, Tu also discovered her second passion, motivational speaking.  Also an instructor for the cosmetology department at Riverside City College, she loves sharing her knowledge, experience, and accomplishments within the cosmetology industry and sharing her story and successes with other single mothers and students to make a positive impact on their lives.

Company Name: 
Tu Organics LLC / DBA Tu Organics Salon & Spa
Location: 
Rancho Cucamonga, CA