Too many of us have lived through the experience of taking our car in for basic work, only to receive massively gendered condescension and a vaguely marked up auto bill. The commonality of this unpleasant experience is exactly why the Girls Auto Clinic exists. Now you can go to an auto clinic and get a blowout and manicure, while women change your oil. Sounds like the best of both worlds, eh?
This unconventional marriage between a spa day and an oil change is a reality at Girls Auto Clinic in Philadelphia, where Patrice Banks decided to be the change(d oil) she wanted to see in the world. After dealing with repeated frustration from mechanics, both overcharging her and failing to answer her earnest questions, Banks took matters into her own hands.
Envisioning a better world, where nails and cars can coexist in harmony, Banks got her diploma in automotive technology, left her job as an engineer, and opened her own female-staffed auto clinic where clients can get spa treatment while they wait.
Besides the obvious allure of getting your hair done during an otherwise frustrating errand, one of Banks’ focuses is maintaining transparency and educating her clients on how their car works.
She hopes that women will leave her shop with a better knowledge of their machine.
In order to recruit female employees, Banks started hosting training workshops aimed at women after finishing her auto training.
She remains committed to staffing her shop with primarily female mechanics because they understand the purpose of the vision.
She playfully calls herself and her staff, SheCanics.
This is a premium example of breaking the glass ceiling, or rather, fixing the glass engine (SORRY).