Beauty is a piece of cake for former chef

May 10, 2010 8:55:20 AM PDT
Amanda Kezios is in the kitchen, but she is not cooking or baking.

Kezios is actually making a body scrub.

"I was a personal chef, I started off cooking for my roommates and I had a passion for cooking and baking. From there I developed this passion for ingredients and understanding that what you put inside and what tastes good, is what is good for the outside too," said Kezios.

Kezios is a chef-turned-beauty-product-innovator.

It all began with a lip balm. The ones she owned were not helping her get through the Chicago winter, so she decided to experiment and make her own.

"So I made it, I started using it, and my lips healed. And I started to have energy, and this woman that works with me said, 'Wow, Amanda, you are really getting through the work,' so I took out the lip balm and I showed her," said Kezios.

Once her homemade products became popular she opened Mojo Spa, a place she says is magical.

"I looked up what it meant and 'mojo' means magical power. I really feel like what I'm doing is magical. People call me the Willy Wonka of Beauty because I do all of these candy-related products," said Kezios.

One of her most innovative products is a multiple-use soy candle. It is both a candle and a body cream.

"It's very unique, you don't see that anywhere, I've never heard of it before," said Jacqueline Truchon, a Mojo Spa customer.

"I like homemade and natural products, and I think they do a really good job of advertising that in the store," said Emily Lusk, a Mojo Spa customer.

Mojo Spa also has a nail salon in the back of the store where customers eat carrot cake, drink mimosas, and get to test out the products.

"I wanted another avenue to pamper people so that they could experience the product, so they wouldn't have to take my word for it," said Kezios.

Bachelorette and spa parties are also very common at this Wicker Park spot.

And, as if the products aren't enough on her plate, Kezio also makes handbags.

In the future, she hopes to open a café, which should be a piece of cake.


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