top of page

Ambika Pillai: A Resilient Journey to Beauty and Success
In the ever-evolving world of beauty and glamour, Ambika Pillai shines as a beacon of resilience and determination. Her journey, marked by setbacks and challenges, is a testament to her unwavering spirit and the indomitable human will to succeed. 

A Rocky Start:Ambika's story takes a dramatic turn when, at the age of 34, she discovered a painful truth about her business partner and friend of 14 years – he had been cheating her out of her hard-earned money. The partnership ended abruptly, leaving her with nothing – no salon, no financial security. This was not the first time she had faced such betrayal, but Ambika refused to be defeated.

She had been deceived and cheated repeatedly by people she trusted, yet she stood undeterred. Her journey was further complicated by the responsibilities of being a single mother, a role she embraced with determination. Ambika fell numerous times but picked herself up, refusing to surrender to adversity.

A Lesson in Resilience
"I have learnt my lessons the hard way, yet I am not disillusioned by people," Ambika asserts. Her unwavering faith in human nature is palpable in her warm interactions and her ability to connect with her staff and clients alike.In 2010, with a mere 11 employees and just five clients a day, Ambika embarked on a new chapter in her life.

She founded Ambika Pillai Designer Salons Private Limited, and the journey was far from easy. It was a humble beginning for someone who would soon become a formidable force in the beauty industry.

A Dyslexic Dreamer: Born in Kollam, Kerala, on November 26, 1962, Ambika faced the challenge of dyslexia throughout her childhood. Reading and mathematics were struggles she had to overcome. At the tender age of 17, she married, only to find herself in an unhappy marriage that lasted for seven years. However, Ambika's determination to provide a better life for her two-year-old daughter prompted her to take a bold step.She decided to leave her loveless marriage and, with her daughter in tow, she moved to Delhi. Here, she contemplated her future and made a life-altering decision to enroll in a hairstylist's course. Ambika was resolute in her pursuit of financial independence and refused to rely on her wealthy father's support.

A Journey of Self-Reliance:In 1990, Ambika took her first step towards entrepreneurship by working at a salon. Her salary of Rs 2,000 was divided between rent and household expenses. Nevertheless, she managed to save enough to purchase a moped, a momentous achievement for someone who was determined to make her own way in the world. Her entrepreneurial spirit soon led her to the realization that opening her own salon would be a more lucrative venture. To fund this dream, she borrowed Rs 7 lakh from her father. In 1990, her first salon, bearing her name, became a reality.

Betrayed But Not Broken Seven years later, Ambika encountered another betrayal when discrepancies in accounts revealed that her partner had cheated her once again. "When I decided to call off the partnership, I wasn't even returned the initial investment of Rs 7 lakh," she reveals. This setback forced her to start from scratch. Fortunately, a friend and godfather, Hemant Trivedi, a renowned fashion designer, offered unwavering support during this tumultuous period. This friendship provided her with the strength to rebuild her life and career.

Rising from the Ashes: Ambika's determination to succeed was unwavering, and she took another leap of faith in 2008. She secured a loan and launched Ambika Pillai, her eponymous brand. This time, she implemented a secure accounting system to protect her hard-earned assets. Over the years, she expanded her brand to include 12 branches throughout Delhi.

In 2022, she introduced Kaytra, a range of herbal products. The hair care products are already making waves in Kerala, with plans to expand to the Middle East and introduce a new skincare range.

A Legacy of Resilience: Today, Ambika Pillai boasts a dedicated following, thanks in part to Ambika's generosity in sharing beauty tips and tricks on her Facebook page, followed by 8.33 lakh people. Her accolades include the Bharat Nirman Super Achievers Award in 2007, Cosmopolitan Fun Fearless Female Awards for Best Hair and Make-up in 2009, and Vogue Best Makeup Artist Award in 2011, among others.

Ambika's story is a testament to her unyielding spirit and unwavering commitment to her dreams. She has not only built a successful beauty brand but also created a legacy of resilience. As she looks toward the future, Ambika plans to retire in a few years and explore new adventures, including starting her own restaurant, writing books, and indulging in her love for travel.

Through the trials and triumphs of her life, Ambika Pillai has held onto three things that no one can take from her – her talent, her name, and her daughter. These are the foundations upon which she has built her remarkable success story.

Address: H698+9V7, South Extension II, Block D, New Delhi, Delhi 110049
Phone: 0471 406 4412

bottom of page