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The Rebound Detroit: Beauty supply store reinvents itself with Personal Protection Equipment

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Posted at 6:09 PM, Jun 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-22 18:24:07-04

Hairdressers, barbers and nail techs all closed up shop due to the pandemic. And they weren’t the only ones hurting.

Beauty product suppliers also lost their clients and the future of their business was uncertain.

Now one local company quickly reinvented its beauty business to get back in action.

It’s a company that used to exclusively serve industry professionals, but when COVID-19 knocked out the industry altogether, this beauty supplier found a way to survive -- all while providing for those depending on them the most.

“March 17th we got the stay at home order from Gov. Whitmer, we actually had a town hall meeting, and that when we laid off our people,” says Larry Gaynor.

Gaynor owns TNG Worldwide. Headquartered in New Hudson, the beauty product supplier has been in business since 1985, with its Farmington Hills retail location turning into a one-stop-shop for local spas, and hair & nail salons.

But when the pandemic hit, Gaynor wasn’t sure how long his business of 35 years would survive, that is until calls started coming in from doctors and frontline workers needing personal protective equipment or PPE.

“Now because of COVID-19 I pivoted the company in April,” he says. “And we opened TNG Worldwide store, now it's open to all businesses.”

It was about surviving and providing a community with the supplies they so desperately need.

Gaynor went to the factories and quadrupled production of hand sanitizer face shields, KN95 masks, gloves, and thermometers, and today, he’s relaunched as one of Michigan’s first personal protection equipment stores.

“The demand was so great; I brought all the employees back within two weeks and we were in full production,” he says.

Michelle Maxwell has been employed at TNG for 2 years.

“We have 4 different face shields, 3 different types of masks, everything you need to feel safe,” she says.

She was grateful to return to work and be able to help other metro Detroiters in the process

“Our world has changed since the virus and we're able to service restaurants, funeral homes, schools, salons, barbershops,” says Maxwell.

And now that personal service shops have been cleared to reopen, regular clients too are finding their way back.

Salon Enigma owner Julie COtton is a neighbor of TNG and now that she’s open she’s shopping once again, delighted to find the products that were once out of reach just steps away.

“Completely shocked when I walked in when they transferred their way of doing business,” she says. “with them being literally right next door, it worked out pretty well to get out last minute things. I also think it's important for us to do our part and stay clean and provide people with this so our world can move forward.”

So, here’s The Rebound Rundown:

  • You are still expected to wear masks or facial coverings in public enclosed spaces.
  • Businesses that reopen must have sanitation plans, employee screening protocols, and plans for social distancing.
  • TNG has stores open in Farmington Hills and Rochester with upcoming locations opening in Shelby Township, Waterford, and Orchard Lake.

If you’re looking for more information, you can visit their website.

And if you know of a small business that’s made some big changes to the way it operates to adapt to the times; we’d love to hear from you.

Send us an email to rebounddetroit@wxyz.com.