Los Gatos Patch – 10 Questions for Rocks Blow Dry Bar Owner Karen Dayton

Third blow dry bar opens in December following growing national popular trend in styling hair quickly for busy clients.

Los Gatos Patch: What did you dream of being as a kid?

Karen Dayton: As a little girl, I secretly dreamed (in my room with my bed post microphone) of being a rock star. I wanted to be on stage making people happy.

Patch: How does your personality play into your business?

Dayton: My love of rock and roll music has been the driving force for the concept of ROCKS. Although I am a mom, a wife, and a business owner … I am a 50-year-old rocker chick at heart! As the lead singer in a cover band, I am able to live out my childhood fantasy of being on stage … singing my heart out. As the owner of ROCKS … I am making people happy with great, sexy hair. Knowing a client is walking out of my shop feeling great and looking great, with a rock and roll music video stuck in their heads … is a dream come true.

Patch: At what moment did you decide to open a business?

Dayton: I am a huge fan of a professional blow dry. In the late ’90s, I had an idea to open a shop that only did styling. No scissors … no dyes … just styles. I shelved the “just styles” idea and started staging pros instead. A few years ago, when the concept of “blow dry bars” started to blow up (pun intended), I was in. For a split second, I kicked myself for waiting so long, but in the next second I told myself, “It is not too late. Competition is good. Now is the time.”

Patch: What inspired you?

Dayton: If they can do it … I can do it.

Patch: Describe the biggest challenge of owning a business in Los Gatos?

Dayton: Locaiton. A great location in Los Gatos (perfect size, parking, exposure, etc.) proved to be a difficult waiting game. While I waited for the perfect spot, two other blow dry bars opened up. But that did not deter me … ROCKS was going to be different. Competition is good and keeps you on your toes.

Patch: Describe the best thing about owning a business in Los Gatos?

Dayton: The expectations of a business in Los Gatos are high, which keeps me continually striving to be better and meet the needs of my clients.

Patch: What is one thing you would never change about your business?

Dayton: If my team at ROCKS is happy, and my shop is a happy place, then my clients are happy. For me, it’s the perfect formula for success … and that I will vow to never change.

Patch: What is your business’ greatest asset?

Dayton: ROCKS greatest assets are my ROCKStar stylists … no question. I have been to many blow dry bars across the country and there is a special energy at ROCKS. We have worked hard to create a family-team environment for the stylists and it shows. My ROCKStars are the best and I am so grateful.

Patch: What is your favorite spot in town?

Dayton: Other than ROCKS, my favorite spot in Los Gatos is VIVA The Neighborhood Eatery. The food is great. The atmosphere is upscale yet casual. VIVA is a local hangout that just feels like what Los Gatos is all about … sophisticated fun.

Patch: What’s one thing the community should know about you?

Dayton: I am committed to this town. Although ROCKS is growing and I will have many other locations, this is home. I live here. My kids went to school here. My husband has lived here his whole life and has been a contractor here for more than 40 years and I now have two businesses here. My roots are deep in Los Gatos and it will always be my home. I could not be more proud.

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