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Small Business Spotlight: Exhale Salon and Massage Therapy

Updated: Dec 3, 2022

By Deanna Ryan



A little over ten years ago Cindy Cochran was on a lunch break from her job as a hair stylist at Changes Hair Salon. She drove over to West Main to pay her insurance with State Farm at the office. In the same building was an empty office. She looked into the window and could imagine herself there. Within two weeks, she began setting plans in action for Exhale Salon and Massage Therapy.


Having been a practicing certified hair stylist for over thirty years the area, Cindy was able to keep a steady flow of customers. She hired on Becky Davis as a part time receptionist. Becky helped with appointments for awhile, then one day her car “just went to the Tech” and a year and a half later she had a degree from Southeastern Tech. Today she is cutting hair with Cindy. Becky doesn’t just cut hair though, she bakes lemon cookies that are sweet but “not too sweet” says Jill Scarboro, a long-time client of Cindy’s who has taken a day to take care of herself with massage and a hair styling.


If you walk into Exhale Salon you are just as likely to meet Cindy or Becky or 15 year old Mattie Cochran standing at the front counter. Cindy’s daughter who knows her way around the salon and likes to keep things organized and clean and is happy to pencil you in for an appointment.


Even though Cindy has been a licensed hairstylist for 30 years and licensed massage therapist for twelve, she didn’t feel she could keep a steady flow of customers doing both. After the pandemic she decided to hire on a message therapist. Lisa Mikell, born and raised in Stillmore, fit the bill. Lisa averages six to seven massages a day. The services offered are hot stones, huffing, scraping, deep tissue and Swedish. If you are in need of a lighter touch, choose the Swedish massage.


On Friday the regular customers roll in like clockwork without needing to make appointments. What Cindy loves about her job is the way people in the community have become family and she can help them feel good about themselves.


If you are looking to pamper yourself, come out to 305 West Main Street and visit Exhale Salon and Massage Therapy for your cuts, colors and massages.

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