Tips for Entering the What’s Next Awards

Hello Folks!

I just went through to scope out the competition for the What’s Next Awards, and there are some great entries!  I really was expecting to see more, but I am sure they will start coming in faster as the deadline approaches.  Some of the entries I saw were great, but could’ve benefited by a few small tweaks to the photography, wardrobe, makeup, etc.  Below are some tips to keep in mind when you submit.  I am not a judge so take my words with a grain of salt, but I did win this competition last year and I intend to enter this year.  So why help others?  Because it pushes me to get even better and because I want to be happy for and proud of whoever gets chosen for the finals =)  It is a life changing competition, so style your heart out!

Tips

-Get a professional (or professional quality photographer)!  Having a nice camera is not enough, you need the eye, the lighting skills… you need someone who can effectively showcase your work.

-Get a professional makeup artist.  I do makeup for my own shoots but I don’t recommend this unless you have experience, even if you are quite good at doing your own makeup.  Hygiene, product knowledge and a specific kit designed for print work can make a big difference.  This year the makeup is very simple.  Less heroin/rocker chic and more natural, editorial styles.  There is more of a fashion feel to this collection.

-Get a model that fits your look.  To be in line with this collection, the styles show a little more wardrobe so you want a fashion-worthy model.  You want great bone structure so it doesn’t take away from your style.

-Wardrobe should be SIMPLE and probably black. Jewelry, if involved, should be understated and not distracting.

-This collection isn’t particularly colorful so you don’t need to highlight colors in the photography unless you are featuring creative cellophane placement.

-This collection is also less “busy” than other collections, there are no braids and if there were an unspoken word to define the collection I think it would be “movement.”  Your style shouldn’t be a copy of the styles, but it should look like it would fit in next to the others.

-Have fun.  Be fearless.  =)

And check THIS out for more info!  Pay attention to what you will be judged on and be sure you use Sebastian products in creating your style!

 

Image

Let’s Talk About Attitude and Getting Paid (More)

Hello lovely readers! Today’s post is especially for the hairdressers, but some of this will also be helpful to the makeup artists, estheticians, and even the freelance photographers, models, wardrobe stylists, etc. Particularly those new in the industry.

Let’s talk about money. We all need it to live, and yet, amongst creative people there is a tendency to be ashamed of this fact. Sometimes I see an internal struggle within them, like it is immoral to charge what they feel on another level is the right amount to charge. I don’t claim to not have these feelings. But I recognize them and understand that if I say, “That will be $115 today,” like I am embarrassed, ashamed, or afraid, people will obviously feed off that energy and feel like it is too much. You can’t talk about money with an apologetic tone or else people feel like you might not be worth it. Which is never the feeling you want people to have. If you say, “That will be $150 today,” in a decisive, confident tone, people will generally be fine. Sure, there are some cheap clients out there who always feel like they are getting slighted, but you can’t treat everyone like that, or people who weren’t otherwise cheap and distrustful might start to act that way.

I am not saying overcharge. I am just saying, don’t undercut yourself or the other professionals around you, as that devalues the hard work we put into this industry.

My mother lives in a small coastal town in Oregon and the market for cutting hair is quite different. She pays $15 including tip for her haircut for a very experienced hairdresser with a substantial clientele. There is not reason for her not to raise her haircut from $2 every couple of years. The only reasons I can think of are fear of losing clients or making them upset or being doubtful that it would make a big difference. Who is really going to be that upset over $2? Not many people, and some who grumble will still come back anyway. You might love a small handful, but you would probably still be making more money and working less. Also, people will tip more.

Above all, people want to see confidence in their hairdresser. As I said before, I am still new at all this and this does not come easy, but it has always been important to me to examine the most successful people I meet and see what makes them different.

As beauty professionals we need to have pride for our work and truly believe it is worth what we are asking. If we don’t believe that to be the case, we need to find what is missing and add it into our services. If it means more education, get more education. If it means a more thorough consultation, spend more time! Even go Vidal Sassoon style and take voice lessons if you think that will make a better, more luxurious experience for the client.

Now, my last point is one very important to me! It is related to not speaking with an apologetic tone about money. Don’t talk to clients about your money problems! Never, never, never! On some clients it will make them tip better or feel less bad about paying more, but you never want the client to feel like you are unreliable, like your mind is on other things than their hair, that they are paying because you need it not because the service is worth it. Clients will feel that their hair doesn’t look as good, even if that is not remotely true! They will look for excuses to go to someone else. They will feel like a burden. And most importantly, they will not feel recharged!

People don’t want to give money to someone who needs it. They want to give it to someone who deserves it. They are paying for experiences and for compliments.

The Joys of a Wonderful Team

I had a fabulous photoshoot today with a great team and I just feel like gushing about it a little bit today. With Angie of Sew Addicted and Ty of Fautaugraufy we welcomed a new face to Pittsburgh modeling. Congratulations Aleshia for a great first shoot! It is so much fun to work with such professional, friendly and talented individuals and I have to say, it is quite energizing and it brings out the best in everyone.

Here is one shot from today, enjoy!

20130209-191606.jpg

Sebastian What’s Next Competition

Hello! It has been awhile since my last post, mainly because I have been extremely busy in the salon! But I have a lot to tell you all about the first part of my year so keep your ears perked up.

Most importantly, I am working on becoming a finalist in Sebastian’s What’s Next Competition! It has been causing me a lot of stress because a small part of the final score involves getting votes and the page is coded in such a way that you can’t vote from certain devices, which I know is hurting my ability to get votes. I have this fear welling in me that I just won’t get enough votes and that will be the difference between becoming a finalist or not becoming one.

I know how style judging is subjective to a degree, but I KNOW my look is very different than a lot of the other styles and I KNOW that the look, while very odd in some ways, is not so advante garde that they couldn’t use it alongside their commercial work. I tried to stay true to Sebastian’s aesthetic, the theme “Nightshade Masquerade,” and Sebastian’s current shine kick. I worked with Mark Brosius and model Lexii Nichole for this style and they both did a fabulous job. My work is notably different in both silhouette and detail from that of my competition.

In short, I believe I have what it takes to get into the top four. I really do.

Making the top four would mean that Sebastian would fly me to LA to compete on stage against the other finalists. That in itself would be an incredible achievement and I would get to meet with and get a mentor from the Sebastian style team. If I were to win that, I would get a photoshoot in LA with the style team and win sponsorship to NAHA, which is one of my next goals, and I would be flown to New York Fashion Week to help style there. It would give me a chance to see a whole other side of hair.

Please, friends and followers, please vote for me! To see my look and vote click here.