The Monarch Brow & Facial Studio owner capitalizes on her childhood dream with skin care brand Cult of Reason
By Lindsey Ware
During her childhood in Houston, Angela Hugghins had a fantasy of owning her own skin care line. She would mix together ingredients such as egg whites, honey, cinnamon and flower petals in the kitchen and test her creations on her grandparents. Now, decades later, the experienced aesthetician and owner of Monarch Brow & Facial Studio in Carrboro has brought that dream to life with her skin care brand, Cult of Reason.
Angela got her start in skin care shortly after relocating to North Carolina in 1998 following her graduation from Baylor University. She accepted a job at the Chapel Hill Sephora before it even opened and worked there for 2 ½ years before discovering that she was ready for a change.
“During that time, I realized I wanted to be out of retail and actually doing services on people, so I went to aesthetician school,” Angela says. “It all seemed very natural. It seemed like the right thing to do.”
After finishing a program at Central Carolina Community College, Angela worked for a variety of local salons. “I was born to do a service job,” she says. “I really like it when people feel good when they leave. They may have come in with an anxious energy or a burden of some sort, and hopefully they leave feeling lighter. That’s honestly my favorite part of the job.”
The owners of Citrine Salon in Chapel Hill helped her realize her desire to own her own business. Finding a space for her salon was difficult due to specific cosmetic board regulations. The place Angela eventually settled in on West Weaver Street basically fell into her lap, and she has been there ever since (making the move to a larger space within the same building a few years back).
Word-of-mouth and PR helped Angela gain a loyal client base for her skin care treatments, waxing, lash and brow treatments, brow micropigmentation and body therapies. “We have an interesting relationship somewhere between client and friend,” Angela says about her clients. “Some of them become absolute best friends.” She even did the wedding makeup for a Chapel Hill client who she had done facials for since she was 18.
With her years of experience in the skin care industry, Angela decided to capitalize on her childhood dream and start Cult of Reason in 2019. The line, formulated with combination skin in mind, offers three skin care products, an exfoliating cleanser, a hydrating serum and a soothing oil, which can be purchased on the Cult of Reason website. Her vegan-friendly and cruelty-free brand has been decades in the making, and Angela is satisfied with the results.
“I need to be creative; it needs to flow out of me in some way,” Angela says. “It’s really joyful for me to be able to parlay my 20-plus years of aesthetic experience and knowledge into a skin care line.”