It was only a matter of time before Krista Pacheco opened the doors to The Cave. She has worked in men’s grooming for seven years and always knew she wanted to own a shop someday. Krista says she always had a vision for the shop in mind, but the services they offer now all came from listening to the needs of her clients.
The Cave opened at its own location in September 2018. Since then, Krista and her crew have been working hard to find ways to better serve their clients + the greater Northwest Arkansas community.
If The Cave was a person, what would its personality be like?
“I would have to describe it in the way of the personalities of all the people that work here. We have a bunch of really strong independent women, so there’s a lot of attitude and there’s a lot of sass in here, but there’s also a lot of heart.
We’re trying really hard to get involved with the local children’s shelter and Project Zero and different things like that. So overall if I could describe The Cave as a person, it would just be sassy but sweet. You kind of get get both sides when you walk in here.”
Can you tell me more about wanting to get involved with those programs?
“We just recently started having the children’s shelter come in, and we do free haircuts for the kids. They were having to pay for those services and then that resulted in a lot of kids not getting haircuts because it’s expensive. So we’ve just started providing those haircuts once a month. And, all the girls on staff volunteer to do that. We’re not paying them anything, so all the girls are choosing to give up their Sunday to be here.
With Project Zero, we’re just trying to figure out ways that we can help them as well. I know they have a lot of kids in homes like the boys home and girls home, and so we might start alternating months and doing one month for the Project Zero homes and then one month for the children’s shelter.”
Why do you think you have a heart for children specifically?
“You know, it was more so that these issues were brought to my attention. I knew that opening a local shop, I wanted to get involved with the community and help local families and people and kids.
As soon as I was made aware that this was an issue…especially Project Zero, it was brought to my attention first actually, of all these kids that are going to be aging out of the system and have never been adopted. And so once we got more information about this I was thought, this is terrible. There are so many kids that just don’t have families, so we just want to do whatever we can to help them.
To me, you feel good after you get your hair done. You feel like a different person. And so to see these kids sit in our chair and be kind of shy and timid at first and then by the time they leave they’ve opened up and they’re sharing with us and stuff—that’s just gold.”
Other than getting involved with those groups, what’s in store for the future of The Cave?
“Currently we’re trying to find other other things to get involved with community-wise and ways to raise money for charities and stuff. Other than that, at some point we would like to have a Fayetteville location. Probably in the next couple of years we’ll start working on that.
But really, my main goal here is just to create a family-feeling barbershop where our clients and their wives and their kids can come in and feel comfortable and feel like they know everyone in here. We also want to create a place where the girls actually look forward to being here eight to 10 hours a day, because that’s usually what they work. I don’t want the people that work here to feel like it’s a job. I want them to enjoy it. It’s a very artistic industry to be in, and so I just want them to be able to express that.”
You mentioned you want wives to be able to come in. Do you offer services to women also?
“We specialize in men’s grooming, but we do have many female clients. We have women that come in with really short hair and want men’s haircuts, and we have women that come in with long hair as well.
Because we specialize in men’s hair, if a female comes in and says, “I want all these highlights, then this fancy cut,” my response to her would be, “Hey, I can recommend you to a salon, but my abilities are not going to be as good as someone who specializes in women’s hair for your highlights or for whatever service they’re looking for.”
We also have a lot of moms that come in just to bring their kids in for haircuts or come in with their husbands when they get their hair. So again, we want it to be a family shop where the whole family can come in and feel comfortable.”
What’s your favorite part of living and owning a business in Northwest Arkansas?
“My favorite part about living here…I think just the community. People are nice in this area, and I love it. I love that you can go out and walk past someone on the street and they’ll smile and wave at you and you have no idea who they are. You can start a conversation with any random person and ninety-nine percent of the time, they’re going to be super nice and going to become a really good friend of yours, very quickly.
Anytime I’ve been in other places, especially bigger cities, I’m always the weird person that makes eye contact with someone and waves at them and people look at me like I’m crazy. It’s like, oh yeah I guess we’re not in Arkansas, I can’t do that anymore.
And then my favorite part of owning a business in Northwest Arkansas would be the fact that other business owners are so supportive. For example, we had the owner of Uptown Barbershop come meet with us and was like, “If you guys ever need anything just let us know. We’re happy to help.”
A lot of people would almost view him and his shop as our competition. So it’s incredible to have him come in and be like, hey let’s get your people and my people and go bowling. Let’s join together in this and be friends instead of being this ugly competition. I think that’s what I like about the businesses here in Northwest Arkansas and owning my own. It all feels really connected. Everyone wants to help each other.”
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