MIDLOTHIAN — Bringing the fashion culture of Dallas to Midlothian, Eye Candy Boutique is appealing its avant-garde vibes to the ladies by offering luxe style with the latest trends. From a personalized color bar to adorable gifts and current styles, Eye Candy is a contemporary combination of hair care and swanky apparel.

“For me, I think my idea was, if I wanted to go to any other of the boutiques, they are very southerly driven. I actually really like that, but if I wanted to go on a Friday night to the Mavericks game and I wanted to find an outfit, a lot of it was a little too conservative. I wanted to bring something fun, so if you were going to Billy Bob’s and you wanted to find a cute summer dress, it’s kind of a little more fashion-forward than the southern drawl. A lot of the lines we carry seem to be similar but with a different flare,” said Jeannie Benner, owner of Eye Candy Boutique.

With her mother in the hair salon business, coloring and styling hair became second nature to Benner while growing up.

“I have always been that girl, so growing up I painted, and I was always the decorator. My mom was in this business for 35 years, so I grew up in the hair salon. But I always said, ‘I will never do hair,’ so I did two years of college and I thought, ‘You know what? I think I might try it.’ And my mom was like, ‘Really?’ I said, ‘Yeah, I know it’s crazy, but I only want to do color.’ She was like, ‘That’s weird,’ but I told her, ‘That’s what people do,’” she chuckled.

Departmentalizing her salon to specialize in flattering fashion and the latest fad in hair coloring, Benner partnered with Dallas’ Lure Salon to make her dream a reality.

“Eye Candy is the boutique and Lure is the pop-up salon. I went to them, and I was like, ‘Hey, I have this vision, I want to open a boutique, but I also want someone to bring current edginess to Midlothian.’ It’s like bringing a little bit of Dallas to Midlothian, without having to travel so far. And so we talked, and here we are,” Benner recalled.

Although partnering was only half of the dream fulfilled, Benner and her family knew home would be found within the 76065 zip code. Moving to Midlothian in 2014 after her husband retired from 20 years in the military, Benner knew this would be the perfect home for her boutique dream.

“My brother lives in Maypearl, and he told us about Midlothian, and my husband was getting ready to retire. He was on deployment, and I came here and had my second child in Dallas, and I was like, ‘You know what? That was a really cute little town. That would be good for a family,’” Benner explained.

“I’ve always had a dream of having a salon boutique, cause I’m big into the fashion side, as well as the hair. Now that we’re established and we’re in one spot and not moving every two years, I was able to do something like this,” she added.

Being in the salon industry for almost 16 years, Benner understands what separates the professionals from the amateurs — skill of a hair artist and the quality of the product. Using the finest hair products from an Italian based company, Davines, every product Benner uses guarantees beautiful results with high grade, natural based ingredients.

“I try to focus on the quality of the hair. I’m about integrity. I want you to have beautiful, pretty hair, versus broken, dry, not so pretty hair. I want to give my clients what they want, and sometimes it may take more than one application, but I am honest – that’s my specialty. I’ve done it for a long time, so I know how to get you there, but you may have to be patient because it won’t happen overnight. But you’ll leave here with pretty hair and not broken fried hair,” she articulated.

The quality of the Davines label matches Benner’s integrity of work and respect for the environment.

“It’s probably one of the most gentle lines on the market. It’s hard to come by, their additives and color are very driven and intense. So if you wanted a really violet-blonde, they have a line that specializes in that. But if you had someone with a scalp condition, we also have something we can put in the color that is very gentle to the scalp as well. It’s very friendly. It doesn’t smell, it’s not super strong, and it’s not harsh in the chemical line. It’s less ammonia than probably 95 percent of the market,” Benner explained.

Being dexterous in both hair coloring and fashion, Benner enjoys the versatility her profession brings in all departments of the business.

“I like this ever-changing industry, and there’s something different every season. Whether ombre, balayage, or hand painting – it just changes all the time," she said. "With hair color, you can change it daily or weekly, but with hair cutting, you have to wait for it to grow, so you have to be patient. If you’re an artist and love to change, I can do that with hair color. I can make you blonde one month, and then next month you could be a redhead. I just love the changing of the industry,

"Everyone’s coming here. This place is growing and what a great opportunity for me to start small and smart and in two years I can go bold and big.”

Although Eye Candy has been open for just over a month, Benner has big hopes for the future of her boutique.

“I actually see Eye Candy having about ten chairs in the next building. I really want to focus on the boutique side, but in the future, I see an organic, driven boutique salon in the next couple of years,” she envisioned.

As for Benner’s “city-vision” in a small, yet growing town, there couldn’t be a better place to bring an edgy outlet to.

“We wound up here because I think it’s very family-friendly. It’s small but it is growing uncontrollably, and we’ve been here for two years. I love the growth, and I think it’s great, it has a lot to bring. People are going to move here, and things are going to change for the better. And that’s how I picked Midlothian because it’s very small town and it was friendly, and great to raise a family here,” she finished with a smile.

Visit Eye Candy at 509 George Hopper Road, or call (214)-704-3027.

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Chelsea Groomer, @ChelseaGroomer

(469)-517-1450