Archive for the ‘Business Basics’ Category

Education Key to Building Curly Clientele

by Michelle Breyer on Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

For Paul Mitchell’s master associate, artistic director and stylist Stephanie Kocielski, a little education can go a long way toward helping a curly client learn to love their curls.

And clients who love their curls, love their stylist.

“Some people with curly hair hate their hair,” Kocielski says. “They think it’s the worst hair in the world. When you don’t know how to deal with what you have, it’s an issue. It’s our job as hairdressers to help them fall in love with what God gave them.”

This fall, Paul Mitchell launched “The Truth About Curls” campaign to “inspire people to embrace their natural texture and to inspire conversations about what life with curls is really like. The campaign is in conjunction with the launch of the Paul Mitchell Curls collection — products designed to be used the way curlies actually use products.

With the launch of the line, which adds to the tools available to stylists to help their curly clients, there is a great opportunity to teach their clients about how to work with their natural texture.

“Educating your ‘curly’ is a great opportunity for both you and your guest,” says Robert Cromeans, global artistic director for Paul Mitchell. “Education can help create trust between the stylist and the client. Never take for granted that your guest already knows how to take care of their curly hair.”

And the benefits go far beyond the chair, helping bring in new clients,” Cromeans says. When you show your client how to style their own hair so that they can duplicate the curly look by themselves, “they are a walking billboard for you.”

“Curly haired people are naturally drawn to other curly-haired people and when they see great curly hair that is colored beautifully, cut to perfection and styled well, they want to know who the hairdresser is,” he says.

1. Get to Know Your Client

Education starts when the client first sits in your chair. You need to get to know them, asking them questions that aren’t necessarily related to their hair.

“It’s like speed dating,” says Kocielski. “When you get them into the chair, you need to understand who they are and what image they want.”

This helps you understand their lifestyle, their frustrations with their hair and can set the expectations of the cut and styling regimen you create for them.

2. Teach Your Client How to Cleanse and Detangle Their Curls

Then it’s time to cleanse their hair. She recommends the new Paul Mitchell Curl Spring Loaded Zero-Sulfate shampoo.

“Teach them how to tame the lion in one step,” she says of the shampoo, which also works as a detangler, softening their tendrils.

Make sure they’re using enough water pressure to get through the hair onto the scalp. After applying the shampoo, make sure they’re using enough pressure to thoroughly cleanse the scalp. Comb it through the hair with a wide-toothed comb.

“That’s where the magic comes,” she says. “By lightly combing it through, it enables you to detangle the hair.”

She stressed the importance of rinsing before cleansing, especially if the curls are dense. She shows her clients how to squeegee the water through their hair after rinsing.

3. Show the Client How to Apply Products

While the hair is wet, she applies the styling product. She stresses applying the product to wet hair because the curls are perfectly defined when the hair is wet. She pumps out some Paul Mitchell Full Circle Leave-in Treatment, emulsifying it between her hands and applies it to the edges first and then working it through. By showing them how to apply it, they can feel what’s enough and then can do it themselves at home.

Depending on the texture of the hair, she’ll apply either the Twirl Around Crunch-Free Definer or the Ultimate Wave Beachy Texture Cream-Gel. She starts at the bottom of their hair and works her way to the top, taking horizontal sections and placing it in the hair. To define the curls, she’ll show them how to take a section of hair and twirl it with product. Twist and twirl to the bottom of the strand and then move to the next section. Continue over the entire head.

“It’s a very repetitive motion, so guests get good at it quickly and it has a great end result,” Cromeans says.

“At my salon, the clients ask about the technique by name: ‘The Snake.’”

If the client wants a natural curly look, she’ll show them how to use a diffuser. If they want a more defined, consistent curl, she might use a curling iron on certain pieces.

“I ask them ‘What is the overall outcome you want to see.’” she says.

In addition to building business for the stylist, it also is very rewarding to know that you’re truly helping your clients feel better about themselves.

“You can help them conquer the world,” Kocielski says says. “It’s the best feeling. We can help spread empowerment.”

10 Things Your Clients Never Want to Hear

by Modern Salon on Saturday, September 1st, 2012

When your new client is a curly, peek behind her back. Are her fingers crossed? That’s because she’s hoping and wishing for a stylist who “gets” her. Be that stylist! To encourage that new client to become your permanent client, let her know that you love all hair textures and can offer her many options. Stay positive! You can be sure she’s already heard all of the negative comments:

1. “It’s so curly! Can I fix it for you?”
2. “I bet you wish you had straight hair.”
3. “This is going to take forever .”
4. “Your hair must be a nightmare for you to deal with on a daily basis.”
5. “Do you want me to use the thinning shears or the razor?”
6. “What race are you?”
7. “I had no idea your hair would shrink like that!”
8. “This is the only hair cut you can wear, because your hair is curly.”
9. “We don’t do ethnic hair.”
10. “Uh-oh!”

Maximizing Your Salon Business with Social Media

by Cassadie on Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

One of the hottest sessions at this year’s annual Paul Mitchell Gathering was not about how to achieve an avant-garde style or speed cutting. This time, it was a lesson in social media for salons. Lead by Johnny Royal of inDELIBLE, the social media company that powered the 2008 Obama + Shepard Fairey viral campaign and the soon-to-be-launched Paul Mitchell Truth About Curls Campaign, salon owners and stylists learned the ins-and-outs of social media and how a prominent social presence can increase business. Here are some tips from the session:

• 94% of businesses have some sort of social media presence. Social media is now a key part of any marketing strategy so make sure you have a presence!

• Facebook is a great way to promote your salon and leverage the social networks of your clients. For as little as $10 a day, you can also distribute Facebook ads.

• If your following is less than 10,000, make sure to manually post to Facebook and Twitter, rather than using an automatic service like Hootsuite. This will ensure that Facebook’s algorithms don’t skip over your posts and keep them fresh in the feed.

• Use Pinterest to humanize your business and show clients your aesthetics and unique brand personality.

Win Big with Matrix Curly Girl Blow-Out Challenge

by Alicia Ward on Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Lady with curly hair style

Matrix Curly Girl is challenging six salons to throw down their best blow-out techniques to see whose smooth style reigns supreme. Cast your vote by June 30th for the salon you think will give our Curly Girl the best & longest lasting blow-out. If your salon wins, you will be entered to win one of 50 gift baskets filled with the products the winning salon used on our Curly Girl (a $100 value)!

Enter on Facebook.

Check out the full details:

Our Matrix Curly Girl is challenging six area salons to throw down their best blow-out techniques and see whose smooth styling reigns supreme! Six salons, six weeks, ONE WINNER!

What do you win?

Bragging rights as the MATRIX CURLY GIRL BLOW-OUT CHALLENGE WINNER! (plus some great online advertising and exposure)

A trip for your WHOLE SALON to New York City for dinner and drinks with your Matrix Family!

What do you have to do?

Our Curly Girl will book an appointment at your salon for a wash and blow-out.

During the appointment we will be taking video:

You must tell us a little bit about your salon and why you love Matrix.

During the blow-out, share your secret style technique that will make YOUR blow-out the best.

You must tell us what Matrix products you used to wash & style PLUS what special instructions and products our Curly Girl must use to keep up her new smooth style (must include NEW Design Pulse Clean Remix Dry Shampoo).

Then what happens?

Our Curly Girl MUST follow your post-style instructions TO THE LETTER and try to last as long as she can without washing her hair!

Your Matrix Family will be watching closely to make sure she follows ALL the rules and will take a photo each day after to see how she’s doing!

After all six appointments, a winner will be chosen based on whose blow-out lasted the LONGEST and still looked good!

How will I know if my salon won?

In early June, we will launch the Blow-Out Challenge on Facebook!

All six salon videos will be posted online and we will ask our fans to vote for the salon THEY think should win the contest. We will advertise on consumer websites PLUS you will get free goodies to pass out to your clients to encourage them to vote for you online!

After the votes are in, we’ll upload the “after” photos one day at a time and then announce the winning salon. The fans who voted for the winning salon will get free samples of the products the salon used to give our Curly Girl the Best Blow-out!


The curly girl:

MUST follow the salon’s instructions exactly to make her style last as long as possible!

Can NOT seek professional help in maintaining her style.

MUST wear a full-coverage plastic shower cap when bathing during the life of the style.

MUST wear a plastic rain hoodie in the event of weather.

The Salon:

Can only use Matrix products in the care, style and follow-up regimen! Each salon MUST share the style secret that sets their blow-out apart.

The best blow-out can only be achieved through traditional tools and styling products — no Keratin or chemical straightening allowed!

Each salon must be have a Matrix Facebook tab and be in our salon locator. Each salon must sign the contest waiver.

Ready To Take The Blow-Out Challenge? Enter now!

Reach Out to Curly Clients at “Texture on the Runway”

by CurlStylist on Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

Ever find it hard to follow a Twitter conversation, or wonder how many textured-hair women are talking about curly or natural hair? (Hint: it’s more than 14,000 a week!) Join the Texture Revolution and connect with the textured community at

TextureMedia is bringing “Texture on the Runway,” an industry-exclusive textured hair as fashion show ONLINE! With the help of Mass Relevance, an engagement and curation platform, you can reach out to clients with wavy, curly and kinky hair, answer their questions and get the inside scoop on their wants and needs by tweeting with hashtag #texturerunway.

Post photos, watch interviews and read content LIVE from the event while sharing textured hair advice, tips & tricks with the community.

Get in on the action of a movement created and run by a community and hear what textured women have to say! Join and other texture influencers in changing the conversation and empowering the texture community, and by extension, the textured sylist!

Visit on February 11 to participate in this revolutionary, invite-only, New York event celebrating the ultimate fashion accessory and statement – beautiful hair. Your tweet could even be streamed live on stage at the event! Influential leading hair care brands sponsoring the event include Arrojo, Matrix, Curls Unleashed by Organic Root Stimulator, Hair Rules, CURLS, Minardi Luxury Color Care, Modern Salon and CosmoProf, operation of Beauty System Group LLC!

Salon Marketing with Schedulicity

by CurlStylist on Thursday, November 17th, 2011

There are hair stylists, and there are hair stylists. Tiffany Taylor specializes in management of the sort of hair that can ruin the effect of wearing a skimpy bathing suit, not to mention the effect of removing one. In industry lingo, Ms. Taylor is an “esthetician,” running her own two-person “waxing studio,” called ME Beauty, in Rochester, Mich.

Ms. Taylor once worked in her grandmother’s hair salon and went on to work as a freelance esthetician out of other salons and at clients’ homes. This year, Ms. Taylor opened her own place, hired an employee and set out to build her customer base. Word of mouth was all it took in her grandmother’s day, but Ms. Taylor wanted to take a more modern salon marketing approach by connecting with potential customers through Twitter, Facebook and e-mail, and by running Groupon promotions.

But Ms. Taylor ran into some hitches. She was having trouble converting customer interest into actual appointments. She gave out the studio’s phone number, but she and her employee weren’t always free to handle calls, and using an outside reception service was expensive. She tried some online scheduling services, but customers found them too much trouble to use. Meanwhile, Ms. Taylor’s social media marketing left her baffled about which efforts on which networks were yielding the best returns. And finally, she worried that Groupon promotions would result in a flurry of heavily discounted appointments all in the same week, wreaking havoc with cash flow. “I went to a marketing seminar where they said Groupon will crush your business by inundating you with customers who aren’t paying much,” said Ms. Taylor. “I was afraid of it.”

The concerns about scheduling, social networks and Groupon left Ms. Taylor thinking she had three separate salon marketing problems, but that was before she sent out a tweet asking if anyone knew of a good online scheduling solution. She got a tweet back from a manager at a company called Schedulicity suggesting that its service could help — and in more ways than one. Schedulicity’s specialty, as it turns out, is integrating online scheduling with social-network promotional campaigns. Appointy and Genbook are two similar services, offering roughly comparable features at roughly comparable prices.

For just $19 a month, Ms. Taylor runs all her campaigns with Schedulicity, allowing her to send out e-mail blasts, Facebook posts and tweets for each new promotion. The e-mail blasts can be limited to a specific subset of clients, which she defines by adding tags to her clients’ contact data. Hence, for example, a “teacher appreciation month” e-mail blast, offering a discount on a waxing and a free apple-scented candle.

Every e-mail note, post or tweet goes out with a Schedulicity appointment-making URL that’s unique to each medium and each promotion. That allows Ms. Taylor to call up a report detailing which service brought in which appointments — so far, Facebook is beating out Twitter and e-mail. About a third of her appointments are still coming in by phone, and she enters those into Schedulicity manually, but she has cut down on them by putting up a mobile Web site that does a better job of funneling cellphone customers to Schedulicity.

As for Groupon, Schedulicity offered Ms. Taylor a way to lower her risk of using the promotion, which brings in customers by offering a steep discount. She can specify the maximum number of Groupon customers who can book appointments on any given day — Ms. Taylor limits it to five — and since Groupon customers get a specific Schedulicity URL for booking, Schedulicity can direct all customers beyond that maximum to try a different day. “That means I can still have room every day to see clients who pay full price,” she said. She has sold 110 Groupon deals so far, offering a two-for-the-price-of-one bikini waxing.

Ms. Taylor reports that her bookings have nearly quadrupled in the several months she has been using Schedulicity, to an average of more than 30 a week. That has left her with just one more salon marketing problem: last-minute cancellations that result in open, hard-to-fill slots, waxing not being much of a walk-in business. But Schedulicity ended up providing a solution here, too, through a “pop-up offer” that lets Ms. Taylor send a discount deal over all of her marketing channels the minute someone cancels.

“I usually offer a ‘female Brazilian’ for $68,” she said. That’s 15 percent off a very thorough waxing. And yes, “male Brazilians” are popular, too. If you want to learn more about all this — perhaps a bit more than you’ll wish you had — you can visit Ms. Taylor’s candid FAQ page.

Schedulicity even helps her fine-tune her appointment schedule on the fly. The service sends her a text message and e-mail listing the details of the next appointment, and if she is finishing with her current customer ahead of time, she can just click on the next customer’s phone number and try to get him or her to come in early, so she has no down time. If she’s running late, she can call customers to alert them that they can take their time getting there.

And as a small bonus, Schedulicity provides Ms. Taylor with a little nighttime music. It turns out some people make the decision in the wee hours of the morning to book a waxing, and so Ms. Taylor’s cellphone often buzzes in the middle of the night with notification of a new appointment — something that doesn’t bother Ms. Taylor at all:

“I hear that and think, ‘Ha! It’s going to be another busy day.’”

ISSE Long Beach 2012 to Host New Hair Competitions & Tryouts

by CurlStylist on Thursday, November 17th, 2011

The 2012 International Salon & Spa Expo Long Beach (ISSE Long Beach) show has added all new hair competitions to complement its already prestigious nail competitions and further enhance the overall attendee experience.

Sponsored by Sally Beauty Supply and Pivot Point, the hair competitions are open to students and licensed cosmetology professionals. The ISSE Long Beach hair competitions offer a variety of categories to enter and will include an array of cash and prizes for winners.

For licensed cosmetology professionals (seniors), the hair competitions will also serve as tryouts to be a part of Team USA for the 2012 OMC HairWorld competition in Milan, Italy. Largely considered the Olympics of the international professional hair community, being a part of Team USA is a highly coveted honor.

Students – (Juniors) / Sunday, January 29, 2012

Entrants must be currently enrolled and not hold a cosmetology license at time of competition. All competitions are performed on mannequins. Categories include:

  • Ladies Trend Cut, Color & Style – Perform a cut, style, and color representing current mainstream consumer fashion trends oriented to the younger consumer.
  • Long Bridal Hair – Create a fashionable long-hair bridal look that represents a consumer bridal focused look appropriate for a fashionable wedding.
  • Fantasy Inspired by Nature - Competitors choice of one male/female mannequin representing the competitor’s vision for a nature-inspired, fantasy-themed hairstyle.

Licensed Professionals – (Seniors) / Monday, January 30, 2012

Open to all licensed professionals who are not currently enrolled in cosmetology school, top scorers will be invited to join Team USA for the 2012 OMC HairWorld competition. To be considered for Team USA, entrants must participate in either BOTH of the Fashion or BOTH of the Technical competitions. All competitions are performed on mannequins. Categories include:

  • Technical: Creative - Competitors will perform a Creative Hairstyle showing their creative skills on wet hair.
  • Technical: Hair by Night – Competitors will create a technical evening-appropriate hairstyle.
  • Fashion on Long Hair: Day Style - Competitors will create a fashionable hairstyle on long hair suitable for day wear.
  • Fashion on Long Hair: Evening Style - Competitors will create a fashionable evening hairstyle on long hair with a total look in mind.

Prizes & Rules

Entry prices vary by level and range from $99 to $129 if registered by January 6, 2012, and $129 to $149 from January 7 to 22, 2012.

ISSE Long Beach is open to licensed salon/spa professionals, cosmetology students and instructors only. To maintain a professional atmosphere, attendees must present proof of license and a valid photo ID. Follow the link for more information on ISSE Long Beach along with official entry details for the hair and nail competitions.

Professional Beauty Association & Milady Expand BeautyU

by CurlStylist on Monday, November 14th, 2011

To continue expanding its array of educational opportunities for its membership and the industry, the Professional Beauty Association (PBA) is proud to announce a strategic partnership with Milady, a provider of leading beauty and wellness solutions to help support beauty professionals in personal career development and overall business success for more than 80 years.

This partnership will enhance PBA’s online and on-demand education program, BeautyU, which is targeted to manufacturers, distributors, salon/spa owners and licensed professionals. By working with Milady, PBA will be able to expand the amount and array of top-notch education on topics, including marketing, finance, operations, leadership, safety guidelines, new style techniques, human resources and more. The menu of offerings will include online classes, live and archived webinars, CDs/DVDs and books.

In addition, by partnering with Milady, PBA will also be able to expand its on-site classes and training sessions at PBA’s family of events, including the International Salon and Spa Expos (ISSE) in Long Beach and the Chicago area along with PBA Beauty Week in Las Vegas.

“PBA is continually working to ensure that our members and the industry have access to first-rate and relevant education that helps drive personal and business success.” states Jessi Marshall, PBA’s Director of Industry Programs & Education. ”With the Milady educational partnership, we firmly believe we have the most comprehensive educational offerings available for the beauty industry.”

The offerings provided by BeautyU in partnership with Milady are available for PBA members and non-members; although PBA members receive a substantial discount.

Wondering what courses you can take? Access PBA’s educational offerings.

Wella Professionals Reveal Top 2012 Hair Trends

by CurlStylist on Thursday, November 3rd, 2011


WOODLAND HILLS, Calif. — Every year, Wella Professionals‘ renowned Global Creative Directors, Eugene Souleiman (Care & Styling) and Josh Wood (Color), collaborate to identify four emerging hair trends using comprehensive research from fifteen of the leading independent trend forecasting experts and agencies around the world. Wella Professionals adapts the four key looks to distill the trends for the year ahead.

The 2012 trends – Grace, Blaze, Celeste and Roxy – are exemplary of female personalities that influence every facet of fashion and beauty. The 2012 portfolio of looks was revealed in New York City to an audience of over 2,000 international top stylists and influencers from Asia, Europe, Russia and North America.

Wella’s creative forces have already tapped these trends for style inspiration behind the scenes at the Spring 2012 fashion shows. We expect to see more styles inspired by Wella’s trends in the year to come!

Here’s what the Global Creative Directors and Wella Professionals’ Celebrity Stylist, Andy LeCompte and Colorist Aura Friedman predict will be the next big trends from the red carpets to the runways, and on real women.

Grace: The Modern Muse

Grace is the leading lady, poised and perpetually glamorous without even trying. The main inspiration for Grace is nature, although there is nothing natural about this look. Celebrity Stylist Andy LeCompte foresees this look’s effortless elegance will translate into an exceptionally premium finish with shine and fluid texture to the hair.

He says, “Grace’s luxurious look is the perfect statement for the red carpet. We’ll see celebrities with more pristine, polished styles and glamorous, bouncy blowouts.”

The voluminous look Eugene Souleiman created for DKNY at the Spring 2012 runway show perfectly illustrates the simple, flowing style Grace embodies. The color palette is soft and light, with a warm glow to emphasize healthy, shiny hair.

Blaze: The Femme Fatale

This trend focuses on stealing the spotlight and overt sensuality. High gloss hair gets even more dramatic with Blaze’s statement styles and Latin flair.

Passionate colors like black, grey and fuchsia will come to life in dark, shiny tones so strong they command attention. Graphic styles and daring shapes heighten the drama for this look.

When adapting the Blaze trend into a hair look, Eugene Souleiman reveals, “I wanted the style to feel like a ’30s felt cloche hat or be reminiscent of a burlesque dancer from the ’20s. The whole trend is about the girl feeling like an entertainer.”

This concept is conveyed with sharper and sculpted styles, much like the look Eugene created on the runway for the Antonio Marras Spring 2012 show.

Celeste: The Free Spirit

Celeste is an ethereal, otherworldly persona of pure perfection that cannot be pinned down, which lends to the futuristic trend she represents. Style and color harmoniously illustrate a clear style and translucent and jewel-toned palette. Shine is very important as it creates the glistening, futuristic sense of Celeste. The style appears simplistic and sleeked to perfection.

Colorist Aura Friedman drew upon this trend when creating rose gold and peach-hued hairpieces for Peter Som’s Spring ‘12 show.

“This look is universally flattering and very wearable for the everyday girl,” says Aura. “Women on the streets are sporting a few subtle tones in their hair for a modern, sophisticated take as the pastel trend has evolved.”

Roxy: The Scene Stealer

Roxy is the natural center of attention as the life of every party and is reminiscent of the ’70s club culture. For hair, this is manifested into a bold and attention grabbing style that does not shy away from size, shape and texture. Eugene styled deconstructed buns at Missoni’s Spring ‘12 show, alluding to this raw, textured look. Color also plays an integral role with a cool red palette, deep enough to make a statement but with an edge of sophistication.

Josh Wood says, “There is a real shift to a cool red tone, rather than warm in this trend. There are also bursts of violet coming through to give depth.”

Wella Professionals has provided the stage for the most creative hairdressers around the world to perform with the brand’s International Trend Vision Competition. Trend Vision offers a unique way to inspire hairdressers and women to evolve with these looks and experiment with the latest in cutting-edge hair fashion.


Losing a Salon Client to a Co-worker

by CurlStylist on Friday, October 21st, 2011

Every hair dresser probably knows how awful it feels to lose their client to a co-worker. The agony in wondering what you did wrong can greatly affect your self-confidence, and you may even start to doubt yourself when styling a loyal client’s hair who has no intention of leaving you for someone else in your salon.

“What is she doing that I didn’t do?” is a question you may be asking yourself. But don’t worry, this situation does happen, and even though it may seem like an embarrassment to you, you can learn from the situation and turn it into a good experience.

Find Out Why

First off, you want to know what happened, right? Why did she choose my co-worker over me? There may be a few different answers to that question. You can start off by talking to your co-worker to discover why she chose to go to her instead of you. Does your co-worker style hair differently? Maybe her cuts are more modern. Maybe she specializes in curly or wavy hair. Maybe she can straighten out curly hair with an excellent blowout.

Any of these differences may be very important to your client’s needs. Every staff member is valuable to the salon for their different talents, and that’s a good thing! You want the salon you work for to be diverse to accommodate the needs of each individual.

If your client chooses another stylist at your salon because of her specific needs, something you may not specialize in, don’t fret. You have your own talents. Use them, market them and always make sure each client has a great experience, even if that means sending them off to a stylist that is better suited for them.

Be Professional

Addressing the client herself is not a good idea in this particular situation. She is still a loyal customer of the salon and that is important. Your number one priority as an employee is to make sure your salon doesn’t lose business. If you address the client personally, she may feel embarrassed and stop going to the salon altogether. Trust me, you do not want this to happen.

This will only cause problems with you and your boss and with your co-worker, and no one likes to work in a hostile environment. Tension between co-workers affects everyone in the salon, from clients to the staff, and that’s bad for business.

When addressing you co-worker about the situation, be sure to do so in a private setting, keep calm and be professional. Have an open mind. After all, it may not even be your fault. If you co-worker is professional, she will never make you feel bad about the situation.

Shrug it off

Don’t worry so much! Everybody is different, and different people like different things. Maybe you can learn something from this. If a co-worker has a great technique for curly hair, you can always ask her for pointers. Don’t ever think you already know everything; none of us do! All of us could use a little room for improvement.

Losing a client to a co-worker isn’t a big deal if it only happens once or twice. It’s when it keeps happening to you that there is a major problem. If that’s the case, do what you have to do to fix the problem, and fix it fast, because ultimately you are the one who will lose.

Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS)