Marcy Sagorac’s passion for beauty was evident at an early age. Growing up in New Jersey, she did hair for her dolls, and when she started working in a salon at the age of 13, she spent her first paycheck on her nails. At 15, she had nail clients of her own, and by the time she moved to Florida at the age of 18, she’d already gone to school for hair and earned her cosmetology license.
Soon she was working full-time in a salon, doing hair, nails and just about every other cosmetology craft, too. Already knowledgeable and a sought-after talent, she traveled all over Florida teaching hairstyling techniques. Thinking big, she went to college for graphic design so she could create images to promote her salon work. She became a REDKEN certified colorist, a certified ARROJO razor craft expert and EasiHair Pro Extensions certified. She started a family, giving birth to two children, Mario and Adrienne.
Then, all of a sudden, life stopped.
Marcy had come into work on a Sunday in December 2004, helping clients look their best for Christmas. Mario and Adrienne were being driven to a Christmas celebration in Naples when the van they were in became unstable and flipped over six times.
Adrienne perished at the tender age of 6. Mario, who was 8 and a half, was so badly injured, he had to relearn how to walk, eat and use the bathroom. He spent a month at All Children’s Hospital in Tampa and another 30 days living in a rehab facility filled mostly with elderly patients.
Marcy didn’t work for three months as she tried to come to grips with what happened and put the pieces of her life back together. But, slowly, it all began to fall into place again. At work, she helped people find their beauty, inside and out. At home, she leaned on her boyfriend and future husband, Jeff Sagorac, who also had two children in the crash — Michael, who suffered a broken arm and still lives with glass underneath his skin as a reminder, and Anthony, who sustained severe eye and head injuries. Together as one family, they helped each other heal, grow anew, and dream again.
Soon, on a corner in Cape Coral, Marcy and Jeff began to see the future.
“We kept passing it and thinking, wouldn’t that place make a great salon?” Marcy says.
They put their savings together and poured it into building a place they could bring their vision to life. Jeff, a welder, did much of the physical work. Marcy focused on the beauty services. They named it Cre8 Salon & Spa, after a RUSK hairstyling cream and Marcy’s favorite number.
Still, close friends and family weren’t sure opening the salon was the best idea. And when the Great Recession hit in 2008, the doubt grew profound.
No matter. Marcy and Jeff forged ahead personally and professionally that year, getting married on the beach and turning to business consultants at Summit Salon. With their guidance, Marcy decided to give stressed-out clients the price break they needed.
“We almost gave away the farm, but we created a really great community of clients,” Marcy says.
Those clients stayed with Cre8 through the lean times and into the recovery, because they knew Marcy and Jeff’s commitment to quality meant making sure everyone has what they need, whether it’s skin care, a massage, a fresh new look, or just someone who cares.
When client Hilde Heard was stricken with Lou Gehrig’s disease, Cre8 began a series of annual fundraisers highlighted by a Guinness World Record-breaking haircut event that brought in thousands of dollars to help find a cure. When longtime Cre8 esthetician Nelly Truax contracted lung cancer, Marcy and Jeff began an online fundraiser and donated an entire day’s worth of services to her treatment costs. When someone needed Cre8 Salon & Spa, it was always there for them, because Marcy and Jeff lifted the salon to success through purpose and love.
Now, Marcy and Jeff are taking steps to ensure Cre8 continues long into the future. Experienced stylists and technicians mentor younger associates to become the salon’s bedrocks of tomorrow. Longtime staff members Talia Wiedman and Lily Nieves have become shareholders, incentivizing and empowering more members of the Cre8 family. And a family it is — Mario, now grown and fully recovered from the crash — is a Cre8 hairstylist with a passion for men’s grooming.
On Dec. 29, 2018, Marcy retired from doing hair so she could concentrate on supporting the Cre8 team and giving them all the tools they need. But she still makes cameo appearances behind the stylist’s chair, and in February 2019, she got to live out a lifelong dream and go to New York for Fashion Week, where she did hair for the Vancouver Fashion Week designers. The feeling was an absolute thrill.
“It was almost like getting off a rollercoaster — let’s go again!” Marcy says. “It was just like Adrienne was still here and saying, ‘Go Mommy!’”
Today, she infuses that passion, purpose and love into everything she does at Cre8. And together with Jeff, they nurture a place where beauty thrives, flourishes and makes a positive impact on the world.
With all her success and artistry, Marcy is simply motivated most by her desire, "to strive to build healthy, long-term relationships with the people in my life." Away from Cre8, when Marcy's not spending time with her loving family, you can find her and hubby Jeff training at the gym or gardening outdoors with their three dogs!