Legacy Business: Heaney’s Barber & Hairstyling

Meet Jackie Heaney, owner of Heaney’s Barber and Hairstyling. Jackie took over the family business, carrying on the legacy of the original Heaney’s Barbershop which was opened by her father in 1956, making it the longest running business in Bronte. She opened the new location on Bronte Rd in 1994 and has been servicing men’s, ladies’ and kids’ hair ever since. The Bronte BIA got a chance to interview Jackie and talk about her business and thoughts about Bronte.  

What is Heaney’s secret to a long-lasting business?

Jackie says she could not have been in business this long without the help of her team to whom she gives a special shoutout. Pam, shop manager, joined Jackie shortly after she opened the Bronte Rd location. “Pam is like my rock, my right hand,” says an appreciative Jackie. She also provides a special shoutout to Sandy, a barber who has also been a key part of the team for 20 years. Another barber and hairstylist, Sally, joined Jackie and the team 10 years ago. And, new team addition Sam is introducing organic non-toxic colouring products to the business. In all, it makes the staff more than just co-workers, but a shop family.

What services do you provide?

“We specialize in family hair care,” says Jackie. Anything from men’s, ladies’, and kids’ cuts, perms and colour highlights are all available at Heaney’s.

Due to COVID and transitioning into a predominantly appointment-based business, Jackie knew she did not need a waiting room. She had room to start an additional venture, @take_away_treats. It’s a new Mexican popsicle store located at the front of the shop! The popsicles are all natural, made with real fruit, low in sugar and have gluten-free and vegan options as well. The new popsicle addition is completely separated from the barber shop and services its customers through the street-side shop window. Jackie has also included some vintage candies she used to enjoy when she was a child.

What do you love about Bronte?

If anyone knows Bronte, it’s Jackie. “I was born here… I am the youngest of 7 and 5 of us were born here,” she says. “We grew up on Marine Drive, and at the time, there were no apartment buildings, so we just enjoyed the outdoors and having the lake in our backyard. I love a lot of the changes that have been in Bronte. The lake is gorgeous, the chairs are beautiful. I love the patios, and the people are still really friendly. There is no better place to grow up.”

Besides the location, Jackie truly appreciates her customers and the community in Bronte. “Our customers are fantastic. I mean it truly brings tears to your eyes,” she says. “They are like family. You are servicing four or five generations of families, back to when my dad was cutting hair, to now with their grandkids who I cut today. You know with the pandemic it’s so hard for some small businesses. We will survive because of our loyal customers.”