Colourists MUST Keep on Training

I have always believed in training staff well and maintaining education throughout an individual’s career. Good groundings in the fundamentals of colour are key for any colourist, this will give them a thorough understanding of what the hair, product or technique can do and why.The end result of these consistent trainings produce colourist who can manipulate and play with colour and truly offer a personalised and professional experience to their clients. Take a look around you the world is full of people who colour their hair, this is indication of how important a part of every salon’s offering a good colourist armed with knowledge is.

It is always hard for colourists to be away from the salon or their clients, so training can be done at event nights or classes working with product companies, mood boards building a collection or deconstructing a collection and making it relevant to your salons market, but it must be done.  I strongly feel that when we stop learning we might as well stop living. These events and classes are an opportunity for colourists to meet new like-minded people, learn new techniques, pick up hints and tips with others who are passionate about colour. I hope that I have inspired a thirst for knowledge in the people I have trained over the years.

I also believe stylists and colourists need to value the importance of listening to the client’, new client’s will tell you about a previous bad experience or something they would like changed from their first appointment, it is not a personal attack on your skills, it is about getting what they want from their colour .By listening and working closely with your client to achieve what they want will allow a colourists work to speak for itself, create client loyalty and help ensure a return client which is better for business and morale!

when I was invited to be a portfolio artist for L’Oreal professional, North America and a guest Artist for Fudge UK -Europe I wanted to make my classes relevant to the hard working hairdresser behind the chair, I love smoke and mirrors as much as anyone but the day to day commercial work of beautiful natural hair colour has always been my thing. I wanted to share and show the things that had worked for me over the years with other colourists, little tips and tricks that had allowed me to work quickly and successfully, that’s why one of my favourite classes was called ‘the daily colourist’ it was about teaching staff to be confident with their colour theory, product and the results that they will get from them. Part of that is how to fit a colour correction or introduce new techniques such as Balayage or Ombre into a busy day and not feel afraid or daunted by the newness of it.

As a trainer & salon manager it has taught me the importance of the business side of colour. This is what made me realize that in a market saturated with regular foil highlights which are perfectly placed and well executed, I needed to bring an additional string to the business to be a success. About 14 years ago i decided I had to offer something different so I started to learn the art of hair-painting (balayage and Ombre). I took regular classes and encouraged my team to attend with me. Each class took us a baby step forward and grew our confidence, by doing it with my colleagues it also meant we could discuss our experiences, share tips between classes. We began by doing a face frame of balayage and once we were confident with this moving onto half and full heads,eventually I was asked to design an introduction to Balayage class. it is really important when learning something new to set yourself up to succeed, trying to push yourself too far too soon only leads to disappointment and feeling discouraged.

My key piece of advice is to establish yourself as an expert in your market, get a conversation going with your audience and clients and keep one step ahead of your competition.

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