POCATELLO — You might think that eyelash extensions and tarot card readings have nothing in common — and usually you’d be right. However, one Pocatello woman has combined her passions into a business that includes services that you’d find in a typical beauty business and also services that are more spiritual.
Kailee Volk owns Intuitive Wellness and Beauty, which operates out of the Federal Building in downtown Pocatello. Formerly Luxe Lash Club, the business — which has the motto “Embracing Feminine Divinity” — has recently undergone a rebranding so that Volk could branch out into more of her passions.
“The spirit, the universe, God, whatever you want to call it, has pulled me to what I’m supposed to be doing,” Volk said. “I’m supposed to help people awaken to the light inside themselves.”
Volk opened Luxe Lash Club — her first foray into owning her own business — three years ago this month. She says the main reason she started working for herself was so she could have greater control over the environment.
“Lashes are really finicky,” she said. “If the humidity is too high or the temperature is not in a certain range, (lashes) are like, ‘No, I don’t want to work.’ And then don’t even get me started on hormones and all that stuff. So I just need to be in a place where I could control the environment so that it wasn’t affecting my clients.”
After a while, she says she “kept getting messages from the universe, little hints” that she should be doing something a little different.
“I have always been really into the occult ever since I was little,” she said. “At Halloween, I was either a black cat or a witch every year. I just got pulled into it. I started doing tarot readings for myself. … (People said), ‘You should do this for everybody.’”
So she did. She officially rebranded in February and had her grand opening at the beginning of June.
“As soon as I decided to list it, I hadn’t advertised for tarot readings at all, but I had two people book for it,” Volk said.
Since the rebanding, business has been taking off.
“I struggled a long, long time with my business to get it off the ground,” Volk said. “When I was like, ‘OK, well, maybe this isn’t what I’m supposed to be doing specifically,’ now all the things are just falling into place.”
While Volk still does lashes, she also offers tarot readings and reiki sessions in a separate room from where she does lashes. The room is carefully designed to be a relaxing space where it’s easier to get in touch with your inner self.
“Every time I’ve done tarot readings everyone is like, ‘Yup! I get it,’” Volk said. “With tarot readings, I’m not reading your future, I’m not mystical. I am a vessel for your higher for your higher self, your higher power, to get you a message. That’s what the cards are. They’re just tools.”
As for reiki, according to Wikipedia, “Reiki is a Japanese form of alternative medicine called energy healing. Reiki practitioners use a technique called palm healing or hands-on healing through which a ‘universal energy’ is said to be transferred through the palms of the practitioner to the patient in order to encourage emotional or physical healing.”
Reiki is not recommended by scientists or doctors to replace treatment for any kind of condition — and is dismissed as pseudoscience by some — but there is evidence that it has had positive effects on the lives of patients. Some well-known U.S. hospitals have even started incorporating it into their services.
According to an April 2020 article in The Atlantic, “Reiki’s growing popularity in the U.S. — and its acceptance at some of the most respected American hospitals — has placed it at the nexus of large, uneasy shifts in American attitudes toward our own health care. Various non-Western practices have become popular complements to conventional medicine in the past few decades, chief among them yoga, meditation, and acupuncture, all of which have been the subject of rigorous scientific studies that have established and explained their effectiveness. Reiki is the latest entrant into the suite of common additional treatments. Its presence is particularly vexing to naysayers because Reiki delivers demonstrable salutary effects without a proven cause.”
Volk is a Level 2 reiki practitioner, meaning she is trained to be able to practice reiki on other people. While she does offer the service as part of her business, the primary person she practices on is her grandpa.
“He’s the go-to,” she said. “He has some heart issues and so every time we do it for him, he feels a lot better afterward. He has more energy.”
Volk says people can have a variety of feelings when they’re in a session. They might feel hot or cold or have tingling sensations.
When she had someone practice reiki on her, she says, “I could feel the power moving between my hands when she was working on me. When you can actually feel it, it’s like, ‘I’m not crazy. I don’t just believe in fairytales. This is a thing.’”
Another recent development for Volk is the creation of the Pocatello Mystic Market. It is a pop-up market that focuses on all things metaphysical.
She, along with another local woman, April Stoor, launched the first market in June, which took place during First Friday Art Walk. There will be another Mystic Market during art walk on Sept. 3 at the downtown pavilion.
“We’ve had great feedback,” Volk said of the Mystic Market. “People are like, ‘Yeah! Pocatello has needed one of these things.’ And I’m like, ‘Sweet! We want to do this all the time.’ It’s crazy how many people are here (in Pocatello) with the same mission as me. They’re coming out of the woodwork.”
In the future, Volk would like to get certified to do birth chart interpretations and to do foot zoning, which she describes as “reiki but for your feet.”
She said, “I just have so many things where it’s like, ‘This can help the world and this can help the world and this can help the world. Let’s just do them all!’
Ultimately, Volk wants to use her passions to help teach people self awareness. She says she’s no master either but she’s pushing herself every day, and she’s had a lot of personal growth in the last decade.
“We have a lot more power than we’ve been taught we have," she said. "There’s a lot of weeds in my yard and when I look up the metaphysical properties and the medicinal properties, there’s this one that will actually drain lymph nodes when you make a tea with it. A lot of the plants that are planted around my house have to do with protection, keeping evil spirits away. We’re just distracted because we’ve got to worry about our 9-to-5 jobs and paying our taxes.”