TEXARKANA -- A vending machine for beauty items is now located in Texarkana.
The Luxury Beauty Vending Machine is the brainchild of local entrepreneur Chelsea Soils.
The machine dispenses items such as lashes and hair extensions instead of candy or other snacks.
Soils is the owner of "Get Minky," a company that sells mink eye lashes, wigs, and other beauty products.
Soils was born in Texarkana and raised in Dallas. She has family here and returned a couple of years ago after a job in Dallas didn't work out.
"I came back here with a suitcase to get back on my feet," she said. "I ended up starting my own business."
Soils started selling beauty products part time while she worked full time at Dillard's Department Store inside Central Mall
She was able to go full-time with "Get Minky" business about a year ago and the vending machine is the most recent development.
Beauty vending machines are more commonly found in shopping malls and airports in larger cities, she said.
"This was something Texarkana didn't have. It also makes shopping for these products convenient for the customers. You have to be loyal to the client base and most of my clients are right here in Texarkana," she said.
With the vending machine, her Texarkana customers can quickly purchase an item they need even if Soils happens to be out of town.
The vending machine is also an alternative for customers who normally shop online for these products.
"They are products that are normally not as accessible locally," she said.
The machine holds more than 500 slots for items.
Items include 100% Siberian lashes that range from 16 mm to 25 mm, glitter and art supplies for nails, 100% virgin hair extensions and lash packs (including glueless lash adhesive). Products range in price and the machine accepts cash and will soon accept credit card payments. The beauty products are designed for all ethnicities and genders, Soils said.
The vending machine is located inside the barber/beauty shop Real Kutz and Fadez located at 2025 Summerhill Road and can be accessed during business hours. Soils visited a number of local businesses, looking for a place to house the machine.
The store's owner, Edward Walker, gave her a chance by allowing her to have the vending machine inside his shop.
"I wanted to partner with a small business and he (Walker) was willing to work with me," she said.
Soils has always been interested in beauty and the self-esteem aspect of a person looking their best, no matter what they have planned that day.
"A woman wants to look good all the time. I've always been interested in beauty and the mental aspect of it," she said.
She is excited about her future and where "Get Minky" might take her.
"I want to think globally with my business," she said.