MEDA Helping Mission Small Businesses Thrive: Imagen Beauty Salon

MEDA’s Strategic Plan 2017-2020 re-envisions its work via five measurable results to be achieved for the San Francisco Mission District community by 2020.


MEDA is committed to ensuring the Mission District retains its historic and current identity as a strong Latino community, and a welcoming place for immigrants and the generations of Latino families who have long called the neighborhood home. This means that Latinos of all income levels are able to call the Mission District their permanent home, along with the small businesses and community institutions serving them. We envision a family-friendly community offering affordable retail, restaurants, child care, housing, arts and culture, blue-collar jobs, parks and transit that create a neighborhood of opportunity.

Following is a story of a neighborhood venture representing the type of family-serving business MEDA looks to help thrive.

Owners: Luis Salazar and Francisco Mata
Business: Imagen Beauty Salon
Address: 3411 19th St. @ Mission St.
Type: Services
Product: Hairstylists

What gave you your idea to start your business?
We are a married couple who are the owners of Imagen Beauty Salon. When we arrived in San Francisco, we already had previous experience as hairstylists because we owned a hair salon in Mexico. We started working in the Mission District in different beauty salons, but we always had dreams to open our own business in the U.S. With hard work and savings, we accomplished that mission in the Mission.

What has your experience been opening a business in the Mission?
We love the Mission and have had great experiences working here. We are known by many people and have very positive relationships with our customers and neighbors, who offer us a sense of belonging. Our customers have become our family and social network.

How does your business/business idea relate to your life?
Imagen Beauty Salon means everything to us. For almost 16 years, we have been passionately dedicated to growing this business. Every day, we both spend many hours in our business location — we consider Imagen Beauty Salon our second home. We are thankful because through hard work at the salon, our financial dreams have come true, and have offered us the amazing opportunity to raise our three children, who are ages 12, 13 and 14.  Our children currently attend school here in the Mission. Our family and business are a positive result of being in this community.

Why should potential customers invest in small businesses?
We are very welcoming, providing services such as cuts, hair coloring, and permanents, with hairstyles for men and women. We also do makeup. We always look to satisfy our clients at affordable prices, plus offer beauty products with a detailed explanation of the benefits of such products. There is a high demand for our services, and while we prefer that customers make an appointment, we are committed to treating all of our customers with respect.

Where do you see your business in five years?
After all these years of hard work, we are seeking to renew our salon’s image, and we hope to continue to provide our services in the Mission.

What do you love about the Mission?
Everything!  The weather is nice, there is a diversity of food offered, our children’s schools are close and there are plenty of transportation options. We love the Mission!

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