Our History

The definition of a Femme Fatale is “An alluring, irresistible woman; a siren.”

To us, a true Femme Fatale is a woman who knows her self worth, who is empowered and self confident with her body and mind. She knows what she wants in life and goes out and gets it!

We know from experience that most of us don’t start out that way, it takes work to become the woman we really want to be. Each one of us at Femme Fatale started out the same. We might all have different back stories but we all have one thing in common; We all wanted personal empowerment and to love ourselves. We took the reigns of our lives and achieved it. It is now our turn to pay it forward and help you attain empowerment and love … to help you become your own Femme Fatale.

At the age of 26, founder Jacqueline Allen had spent years in corporate America and found herself gaining weight and losing self confidence by the day. Determined to do something about it she left her corporate position and traveled all around becoming certified in personal training and pole fitness, she took the time to create a quality program and business model that would allow women to try new forms of fitness while being in an empowering and supportive environment.

Soon after opening, Femme Fatale was featured as a front page story and she received over 400 emails in one day from women searching for something just like this! Femme Fatale Fitness grew into a much larger space and opened to the public May 27th 2009. Word spread like wildfire and Jacqueline went from training a handful weekly to hundreds a week!

From there, Jacqueline likes to describe the journey similar to that of Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz. At each stop a new and important person would join Jacqueline, adding a special talent to the team.
We believe the whole is greater than its parts. Each of us started working toward the greater goal of empowering women and bringing out their inner Femme Fatale.  Through her journey, Ms. Allen met burlesque performer, Cassandra Guard. Ms. Guard brought additional spark to the Femme Fatale team, and eventually, took over Femme Fatale Fitness.

After assuming ownership, Femme Fatale became well-known in the Dayton area. The studio is now in it’s 4th location due to new classes being offered regularly to accommodate the growing interest of the powerful women of Dayton.

In 2016, Cassandra was selected to give a Tedx Talk to share her secret to allowing women to be their true selves through burlesque. Watch the Talk here. Later that year, Femme Fatale Fitness was named Best of Dayton’s Number One Place to Get Your Adrenaline Pumping; a title they held consecutively for three years (2016, 2017, 2018). In 2017 and 2018, Femme Fatale Fitness was named Dayton’s Best Gym.

In 2020, COVID-19 hit and caused Femme Fatale to adjust it’s processes. This chapter of Femme Fatale now includes online classes and memberships that give members more freedom.  At this time, Cassandra decided to pursue other opportunities in her career and chose to pass the studio on to new owners. She hand-picked these new owners to ensure that the Femme Fatale legacy would continue to grow. 

In October of 2020, Claudia Scurlock-Ford, DesJaVae Conway, Kara Schmidt, and Stephanie VanHouten took ownership of Femme Fatale Fitness and rebranded as Femme Fatale Dayton.

Today, Femme Fatale Fitness continues to expand it’s horizons as staff and students perform all over the city. 2018 celebrated TEN YEARS of business!  There is no limit to what a Femme Fatale can do and achieve.