Spuce and Honey waxing parlor

By Taylor-Ann Smith Explore Big Sky Staff Writer

BOZEMAN – Keely Degenhart always visualized opening a business that would reflect her passion for esthetics. In March of 2013, her dream became reality when she opened her waxing parlor Spruce and Honey on Wallace Avenue in Bozeman.

“I had this vision of the brand and wanted it to evoke an emotional connection to nature,” Degenhart said. “The scent of spruce and vision of honey makes you feel comfortable, which is my first priority.”

Degenhart is a Billings native and learned her skills at esthetician school in Bellevue, Wash. before moving to Portland, Ore. Her husband found a job in Bozeman that gave them a perfect excuse to move back to the area. Degenhart says she was inspired by Bozeman’s thriving small businesses, a connection to nature, and a sense of community.

This community sense, she says, ultimately gave Spruce and Honey its success since opening a year ago.

“I’ve only ever used one ad in a bridal magazine,” Degenhart said. “I will have a client come in whom I make a great connection with and then she’ll go tell all of her friends about me. It’s so great that people want to spread the word about something they love.”

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Spruce and Honey embodies the notion of mastering a trade rather than being a jack of all, as it specializes in waxing and skin care services. With 15 years of experience and more than 25,000 Brazilian waxes under her belt, Degenhart has perfected the art of waxing. Her choice of an intimate, unique space sets her apart from other waxing businesses in the area and allows her to build strong client relationships.

Walking into the refurbished brick building – built in 1925 as part of the Lehrkind Bottling property – one gets an immediate feeling of nostalgia. White walls and original wood floors are paired with vintage, wood furniture. A set of antlers rest on the windowsill next to an old suitcase filled with modern skin care products.

Spruce and Honey’s walls are adorned with vintage recreation photos that echo the outdoors and the natural splendor of Montana. Degenhart offers quirky products such as Campfire Cologne as well as small batch items like MCMC, a Brooklyn, N.Y.-crafted perfume by Anne McClain, who studied perfumery in Grasse, France.

Degenhart’s favorite item is Antipodes Manuka Honey Mask, a facial product from New Zealand that she uses on most clients. The mask, which Spruce and Honey carries exclusively, is derived from the manuka bush, an indigenous plant that bees pollenate and use to create honey.

A traditional remedy of New Zealand’s Maori people, the antibacterial manuka honey hydrates by drawing moisture to the skin’s surface. The facial mask delivers an intensely moisturizing, cleansing treatment that is the ultimate solution for spots and blemishes. Fragrances of vanilla and mandarin also bring peace and balance to your aura, Degenhart says.

With her calm demeanor and nurturing, holistic approach, Degenhart makes clients feel at a home away from home. Her passion for natural skin-care products, holistic ingredients, and beautiful design make Spruce and Honey an enjoyable experience, despite the pain of waxing. While you may be stopping by to get rid of some unruly hairs, plan to spend time with an amiable esthetician and browse her charming collectibles.

Spruce and Honey is open Tuesday through Saturday. Visit spruceandhoney.com for more information and list of services.