Exciting new post on the Respect for Hair blog, a fantastic source of inspiration and sums up where we are in the hairdressing industry! Read my top tips this season...Read More
Ah I love this month. I almost forgot how much I loved it until literally the first of September when I woke up, realised August was done and what was to come.. It actually gave me butterflies! (This September is slightly more special as it marks our 10th, yes TENTH!!!! Birthday!!)Read More
So, it’s been a while since my last blog post..Forgive me but I have been rather pre occupied with well, life actually!! Writing a blog post is not easy and for me. Personally, it only ever works when it flows. Like, when i’ve got something real to say rather than:
.”I did some hair at a wedding and it looked liked this ‘Insert photo’ and I used this product ‘Insert link’ ‘cause it smells lush and does what it says on the tin”Read More
I’m in the middle of writing a blog post about confidence, but I really wanted to share this with you today..
Back in the day every stylist her her brother (literally in my case! ha!) started setting up agencies and teams of stylists, I have mentioned this before and it’s not really copying, just a natural and obvious way of growing your business.
Recently, more stylists are setting up training schools and ‘acadamies', which I’ve gotta say is more surprising; as there is a huge amount of responsibility involved - Just because that’s what you WANT to do, doesn't mean you have the skills to do it. Its not about you. It’s about the student - You can’t simply say you are going to train someone to be a bridal stylist, it’s their dream and ambition to do that, and you can’t play about with dreams, y’know!?
Again, this doesn't bother me. I'm just using it as an example. I’m not the first person to offer training and I won’t be the last, although if I see another training page or website that emulates mine, I *might* lose my cool. (In reality, I’ll probably will just write another reallllly long ass blog post and drink prosecco with my buds!) But the point is, being copied really sucks!
However, I’ve gotta say - after my post back in December - Being copied turned into a massively positive thing for me and has actually made me fall in love with my business all over again. It made me realise I am worth copying! I actually get butterflies in my belly at the thought of work, styling and teaching new stylists (Even after 15 years!!) I get so much joy from my job.. Now, the only problem is I can’t sleep because i’m so damn excited about what we’re abut to do and what IS happening on a daily basis. Argghhhh!!!!!
But…We all have those days when you feel like every else is doing a better job than you. Like they took your idea and made it better and now everyone thinks it’s their idea. Everyone else is breezing through making it look easy or getting all the breaks. Or just when you feel like you’re not getting anywhere and ask yourself why you’re bothering!
I had a time about 3 years ago when I was so exhausted from not ‘working clever’ that I actually considered getting a job in Boots. (no offence to anyone that works in Boots by the way, it's more that I have worked for myself for the last 18 years!! ) I applied for the Bumble and Bumble job. My friends all laughed at me. Then I got turned down -Turns out I was over qualified! Really!? No sh!t!
Obviously, I didn’t want the job anyway, I just wanted a fricking break from working my ass off. I wanted to be normal for a bit. But I can’t..It runs through my veins and no matter how hard my day is, I keep getting back up and carrying on. That sounds like seriously heavy ‘drama’. It’s really not. But if you run your own business, you’ll know what I’m talking about! Just one of ‘Those’ days…. I'm just being honest.
Just after that, I won some silly Instagram competition for Bumble and Bumble for the 'most liked plait' or something. It was just a nonsense thing really, but pretty cool. Then a couple of days later I got a message from B&B saying to was their MOST liked photo EVER. Gotta say, that felt pretty good! *Ego boosted/ Confidence knows no limits* Thank you very much :)
So after crappy things and low points usually come good stuff! I was thinking about this I and I realised how good one positive thing can make you feel and we must harness this good stuff - Let's just take a moment to think how Leonardo DiCaprio must be feeling today. (and how he felt all those times he didn't win!) About effing time mate! But, he kept going didn't he…!? Ay?! - New ‘We must keep doing what we love to get the rewards’ hero? I think so!
So, as It’s the ACTUAL LAST DAY OF FEB!!! Woooop!!! and the sun is shining, I thought i’d share with you my:
‘No Fail’ tip for feeling good fast.
- Get yourself a cuppa (Really, very important part of me feeling happy)
- Brand new gorgeous pad and pen. I prefer pads with any kind of metallic print on the cover (Also helps & only a bit joking!)
- Write down all the positive things that have happened to you in the last week - Now, this may be as simple as an ego boosting comment that you received from a perfect stranger on Instagram
- It may be a text from your husband telling you he’s proud. (that’s one of mine!)
- It may be an email, text, Facebook message, review, order, booking or feedback from a client.
- Write all that shizz down.
- Now go back a month or further if you can..and do the same. Find all those lovely comments you get
- Start going through your Insta feeds and Facebook to see if theres anything you missed.
I started doing this in Jan, so it’s been easier to start from scratch but if you need something now, just look back over recent months.
- Now read it
- Wallow in it.
- Remember how you felt when you got it. Feels good?
Because the day you got that order/feedback/ text or whatever, for that minute or day it felt ACE! You were buzzing and feeling like you could DO THIS!
But then, you hear a negative comment or someone is doing something awesome and you feel like your failing and because we are simple humans and it's in our nature, we hold on to that for far too long, and we think about it and talk about it and let it eat us up. And it’s just one thing, or maybe 2 but it doesn't matter - What maters is all the gorgeous/ happy stuff that makes our heart glow like the Ready Break kid.
We must bottle that good stuff up for when we need it later..
It’s obvious really, but focus on the positive stuff, be kind to yourself. You are awesome!
Thinking about attending one of our courses? We don't just cover hair - I will help you understand your business, and deal with 'those days' too!
I hope you have found this useful, I'd love to know if it helps you a much as it helps me!
Love, peace & positive vibes
I worked with another amazing stylist yesterday. Like so many of my students, she is determined, creative and hardworking. She is also a mum.
She opted for a career change after having babies and has decided that the hair & make up industry works for her. She has been a bridal hair and make up artist for a while now, but like many of us is struggling to grow her business alongside her young children. Her confidence has taken a pounding and she feels that her 'go to' styles are starting to look a little dated. She's got the skills in her locker, she just needs some help getting the door open..
We discussed what she wanted to achieve and I created a bespoke lesson to get here there. I gave her ways to cut her times, simple techniques to update styles, tips on breaking down hair photos so that they can be recreated, the confidence to use them and ultimately to grow her business in the time she has.
More and more women are either starting or growing their businesses as their families grow and their needs change. I started both of mine just before and after I had each child - I want to say something cool and heroic here like; I started my business to show my kids that they can be anything, and what the power of hard work can do. But I didn’t. I just always knew it would be this way - I’ve been bought up as a ‘Y’ generation kid, to believe that I can achieve anything if I work for it. I have that thing in me that wants to be good at what I do, but on my own terms.
Although weirdly, following on from that sentence..My biggest failing is confidence and sadly sometimes a lack of knowledge. I often feel like I don’t know enough about something business related, to know if I’m making the right decision and feel I can’t retain the required information. This can leave me feeling frustrated and like I’m not ‘adulting’ properly **Everyone else seems so ‘on it’ right?
**I have since learned that this is quite normal!
I always knew I wanted to work with hair and to be creative in any way I could. My dad always told me if I was going to be a hairdresser, I must not just work in a salon, I must own it. To DREAM BIG, travel the world, work on a cruise ship ( The height of sophistication in the 80's dad, I’m sure! Erm..No thank you ) 'Anything, just don’t get stuck working for someone else’.. He’ll deny it, if he reads this. But I remember it so clearly!
I also remember my mum once saying ‘’ A ship is safe in the harbour Jo, but that’s not what it was built for’’ Hmm..I wonder where I got my ambition from!?
So many of my peers did what they thought was the right thing, and it was at the time. They did well at school, they went to uni, got great jobs and did what they were meant to do ..They probably laughed at my decision to go to beauty school. (Where ironically, I did drop out!) But I quickly picked up hairdressing and am still loving the industry nearly 20 years later (gulp!)
But when they started their families, priorities changed. Mum’s don’t want to work in the city any more, or travel, never seeing their babies, getting in after 7 and dreading the summer holidays (6 weeks of chilcare!!??) Their life/work balance goes to pot. The pension and benefits promised don’t matter any more. They want to spend time with their families, do something for themselves, they want MORE And why not?
So what do they do?..
For the majority of us there are 3 options here…
1) Carry on and be bloody miserable but probably better off financially (the Great British way)
2) Get a job doing something /anything that works with your childcare but probably won’t give you much job satisfaction or even touch on those talents you have been harbouring
3) Or start your own business.
*Insert panic + career change + creative course + possible lack of confidence & self doubt followed by feelings of freedom and joy*
My point is, I knew from an early age that I wanted to work for me. I just didn’t always know how to do it, but many women make this decision later in life or post bubba. There has been a huge increase in number of mums working on self-employed or freelance basis of nearly 30% in the last 2 years alone. Mums are choosing flexibility over traditional jobs, coz we’re clever like that.
This matters to me, because I see it all the time in so many of my students, many of whom are looking to grow their business as their children grow, but mainly because I have a daughter about to take her GCSE options.. The same little girl that came with me to work, patiently waited as I grew my business and now wants to be a part of it (as well as a surf instructor, photographer and a ton of other cool things)
Obviously, I realise I’m doing the future generation of budding bridal stylists out of a inspiring and creative hair course with me here, but.. I strongly feel that girls of school age should be taught about what happens when they have families – Business studies should be compulsory, or at least explained what the benefits of these tools may mean when they hit their 20’s or 30s and their lives change if they want to start a family.
Aghhh I fear this is coming across a bit ‘Little Women’!! I don’t mean to sound sexist and to be fair; I live in a house where everything is split down the middle and if anything, my husband does more than his fair share when it comes to our children. But that’s our choice and because I am self employed / work addict!
It’s that old proverb of giving a man a fish for tea or giving him a fishing rod and teaching him to find his own food and feed his family forever – Let’s teach our girls to be self-sufficient, confident and clued up enough to create their own jobs that fit in with their families if they want to. They may not? But it’s a nice choice to have, don’t you agree?
And as for choosing beauty industry as a career? Listen up.. When I trained to be a teacher, waaaay after I had set up Lovehair, my tutor was giving examples of ‘student types’ and what makes particular students choose particular courses and he said, and I quote:
‘’…And then you get the hairdressers and beauticians, who do the course because they’re not clever enough to think of anything else. .‘‘
He actually said that. Well, you can imagine how I felt! I almost spat out my double mocha chocca latte. What a Moron! - I probably earned 3 x more than him and worked half the time. Douche! Makes my stomach flip even now, but this is the kind of crap we have to listen to! We can't possibly be clued up if we chose the beauty industry!? Just wow..
If I hadn’t been bought up to think 'I COULD AND I SHOULD' , I can see that comments like that would knock a girls confidence and make them potentially, think again about this as a career. After all, this was a ‘real’ adult speaking!
Being a hair stylist or make up artist isn't a job you choose because you didn't do too well at school..If you are thinking about a career as stylist or your son or daughter is interested, don't dismiss it as fanciful, there are not many jobs that bring equal amounts of joy, freedom, money and creativity.
10 Great reasons to train as a bridal hair stylist
- It's one of the highest paid jobs in the hair industry -You can earn a full time wage in part time hours
- You will be fiished by 3 latest, on a Saturday rather than 6 in a salon!
- It constantly changes and no 2 days are the same
- You can be creative and work with creative/inspiring people every day
- You have the opportunity to travel
- You can work around your children, if you have them and still make it to the school nativity
- Your hair & nails are tax deductible *ahem..* Not a reason to change career but good to know ;)
- The wedding industry is MASSIVE and ain't going anywhere, so the opportunity for growth is limitless
- Trends and styles are constantly changing and so does your work so it's never boring
- The space for personal development, education and growth is endless and perfect for ambitious creatives
Don’t let someone tell you it’s not a career. It’s one of the best careers there are! AND it can be enjoyed alongside your family and life. Erm yeah - #nailedit
I run a range of courses from working with absolute beginners who are looking for a step into the bridal hair industry, to confidence building, skill fillers and creative workshops for all of the people mentioned above and more. You don’t have to be a mum, or even female! Just passionate/creative and willing to learn. So if you need a creative fix, a confidence boost or just to be told you rock, give me a shout. I won’t be a douche I promise!
Peace love and badass babes
We all love a messy up do of late, me more than most!
It's quite an art to achieve 'the perfect messy top knot' for that #Sundaygoals Instagram look, that is so chic. But do you actually want that for your wedding day? I often get asked how someone has created a particular look, (like the styles below) But to be honest, the photo is usually a blogger rather than a bride and they've probably not really thought about it. Just casually thrown it up and secured with a coupe of pins or a band.
It's crazy easy but equally crazy hard to get this look right, without looking too sculpted. It may have not been washed for the perfect amount of days, or have been slept on for the right amount of time first. Well done them.
(Stylists - PREP is key! See my earlier post on what products I use to achieve this)
Brides, I know you love it but ask yourself - Do you really want that for your wedding? I am queen of the messy up do, soft, unstructured, sexy hair but after a certain point, even I question this..
So, how to #nailit? Get your 'level of mess' right, show your stylists lots of photos of what you're comfortable with. Her idea of a 'messy up do' may be totally different to yours. Try it, see how you feel. Look at your profile and try with your veil in your wearing one.
Use words like undone, unstructured, soft and loose when describing styles to your stylist but the best thing you can do is show photos. Do you really like that hair style or is it just a really cool chic and a well set up photo?
As I say, I am definitely Pro The Messy Do! Too neat can be a bit 'Miss Marple' so sex it up a bit, but there is a fine line between 'messy hair' and actually just messy hair. Make sure you are on the right side of it...I can help with that!
The only other thing I will say; based on past experience, is that the mums rarely 'LOVE' this look. In your heart of hearts you know they won't really, and that's cool. But don't take it to heart and let it sway you. They LOVE you and will be proud beyond belief and that's what matters!
The photos below are examples of what brides have shown me before..What do you think?
Peace, love and messy hair
So 2016 is looking like the year of the #GIRLGANG..
Woop! Finally we are supporting each other , encouraging each other and helping one another kick ass. And man, does it feel good!? We’ve always done this in a more private, ‘Let’s have a cuppa’ kinda way. But this is different.. Many of us on are running or starting business’ and blogging, using social media to chat to our clients, but also to other small business’s and even our competitors
I always say to my students ; Don’t be afraid of your competition, you have more in common with other stylists trying to do what you’re doing, so embrace it, make friends with them!' I've already had students contact each other through Instagram, who are now working alongside each other in their own girl gang! Boom!
It’s cool to be nice. It’s additive, it feels good and it free’s you up from comparing yourself to others (The danger zone!!) I see it every day and suddenly it feels OK to message that person that you think rocks and letting them know!
It’s Ok to admire another women and talk business or ask for help. She’s no different to you. She is you just a few years down the line. Don’t get me wrong; we‘ve all been shat on by that one stylist or business owner that has gone a bit further than ‘admiring’ your work, if you get my drift? But don’t write off a whole tribe because one member has let you down.
There’s been a lot of talk of tribes in my house since my last post. But last week I held a workshop for ‘Instagram worthy braids’ and it went up a notch..
We plaited and chatted all day, and yes I taught them how to braid some funky ass braids. I gave a few business tips and we laughed about shared experiences but more than that - We were 4 women, from totally different back grounds, with similar creative minds, skills and ambition. The energy in the room was another level, bouncing ideas off each other and feeling excited about our jobs again. (I am already mega excited about mine, obviously! But we all need a boost )
I feel like the Lovehair Tribe was born right there, in my kitchen, among the dolly heads and cut flowers.
I'd like to grow this and extend an invite to any stylists that has attended any Lovehair course over the years!
The plan is, that I would like you to think of a ‘hair' or business goal that you would like to reach by the end of the year and we’re gonna collectively help you get there! (Or not, you can just come for the banter and to maybe make some new friends!) You never know what opportunities may arise from meeting new people in your industry.
This isn't a FHBF, that's been done and its very good! (I thoroughly recommend!) This is just a group of like minded, creative people chatting about hair/make up and learning from each other. Remember - I have already met all of you so know you will get along!
You are all welcome and I promise I won’t make you stand up and say who you are and where you’re from! I will however, make you take a #squadgoals selfie!
I’m thinking Spring is a good time.. It will be held in Reigate, Surrey, but the venue will depend on numbers, so let me know if you fancy it and I will send you more details soon
Monday 7th March @ 7pm in Reigate.
Don’t take your girl gang for granted, we are the babes that want to see you do well and will offer you a perfectly manicured hand to give you a lift up!
Peace, love and tribal gatherings
I have found that over the years I seem to have attracted the kind of brides that like my style and luckily, who’s style I like .. Or you could say ‘My VIBE attracted my TRIBE’ (Cannot take any credit for that – Totally stolen from IG!)
When you have a trial, you are not only working out what your hair can do, but working out if you are a ‘fit’ with your stylist. Is it all a bit complicated and long winded or does she ‘get’ you!? Do you ‘get’ them? Trust them?, Like their style?. .So hard to say over email or social media so I thought I’d make this easier by letting you know more about ‘my style’ to help you make a more informed decision.
I didn’t have a hair trial, I remember meeting my stylist for the first time on my wedding day and I knew she wasn’t right for me. Her hair, the way she spoke to me, her kit. (It’s OK to judge in this instance) I knew she would spend an hour doing it and I would spend an hour freaking out and redoing it. Ain’t nobody got time for that! I politely declined.
But luckily for me, I can do my own hair.. How about you?
You may have read some of my earlier posts, and may have already made up a picture of me, but as with many things, I often find that what you see online isn’t always what you get. Quite frankly, it depends what kind of week I am having!
So here’s a bit more about me, my style and how I would work with you if you were my bride:
- I am a stickler for professionalism – Can’t bear bad manners and unprofessional ‘professionals’!!
- I love a bit of virtual hand holding, I 100% feel that part of my role in your wedding is to ensure that you feel completely relaxed, confident and excited about our ‘beauty’ journey together , BUT I am not slushy, patronising, sweet or ‘biggest day of your life’ cute.
- It’s going to be one hell of a party, you are going to look AMAZING, FEEL amazing, marry your best friend and be surrounded by your bests but I probably won’t constantly refer to you wedding as ‘The biggest day of your life’. Wait ‘til you have kids! - I will most probably cry with happiness for you though and I usually do.
- I am very calm. I am aware of the feel for the day. I like a laugh but I also know when to shhhhhh…
- I actually love a diva bride, In fact I actively encourage it. It’s your wedding day – Go for it! Of course you must get what you want and I will do my absolute best to ensure that you #NAILIT!! I wouldn’t be doing my job properly if you didn’t. BUT pleeeease be realistic and please don’t be rude. (Remember the things I can’t bear!?) Nothing beautiful about rude.
- I would love to be able to help you at every step but sometimes I can't. My job takes up a lot of time, and not just in the summer. It’s normal for me to work on 3 or 4 weddings a week and they take me all over the country and abroad.
- I want all you lovely brides to feel cherished and looked after (because you are!) So I will always spend time responding to emails as soon as humanly possible and chatting through any questions as well as meeting you at your trial – BUT if you feel you may need more phone calls, emails and trials than this, it may be that you need someone who is less busy and can offer you more time. I don’t want you to feel unloved!
- Don’t get me wrong – It’s important. YOU are important, but that’s a pretty BIG Bride : Jo RATIO!!
- I will give you 110% at your trial. I am all yours. There is no rush or pressure, I genuinely want you to be happy with your hair & make up and will do all I can to make it so!
- It’s tricky for me to do trials on the weekends as I am fully booked with weddings. If it has to be a weekend, you may need to find someone who is less busy and can offer you that. Sorry!
- I will always encourage you to choose sexy over cute. To do what makes your heart sing, not what you know your Nan will be more comfortable with (Although, gotta say Respect to the Nans. I LOVE the Nans!!!)
- We’re not talking ‘whacky’ here, just you. The individual you that he/she chose to marry. Why choose pretty when you can choose BEAUTIFUL and STUNNING. Pretty is for bridesmaids, go for cool, chic and damn right awesome, just like you.
- I feel -It’s not just a ‘hair up’ or a ‘make up’. It’s your wedding day. It’s a big deal..You have a long time to look at these photos, we want to make this guy’s heart skip when he sees you and for you to feel like your ‘Best’ you - Confident, happy and beautiful .
- I promise I will tell you when ‘it’s not working and we need to try something else’.
- I promise I will never be offended when you say that to me..
- I like pretty but I love quirky/ cool stuff, maybe not in a cool Shoreditch kinda way..In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever actually been to Shoreditch!? So I’m obviously not that cool! I’m more of an outdoorsy beach lover.
- My style? I love pretty dresses but with my Chloe boots or much loved trainers instead of heels. I wear sequins A LOT but with busted jeans or grey marl rather than dresses. And I LOVE heels, but with worn vintage denim or a jumpsuit rather than skirts. Know what I mean?Sometimes I curl, plait and coiffure my hair. Some days it’s lucky if it sees a brush!
- I LOVE boho…I’m not quite long skirts and floral patterns. More of a Sienna Miller/Fearn Cotton urban boho. I love a plaity look and an unstructured do, but I also appreciate the more chic, sophisticated looks and any kinda waves.
- I love pushing boundries and I love keeping things simple too
So, what particular hair or make up style brings joy to my heart? The one that really works for my bride! We’ll know we’ve found it when you are beaming from ear to ear and suddenly can’t wait to get hitched!
That’s the money shot! That’s when it gets EXCITING!!!!
And I genuinely get super excited…’cause I know what’s coming and I can't wait either!
So. What d’ya think? Are we a good fit!? I really hope I haven’t put you off!
Peace love and cool brides
PS: Want to see some of my more individual work? I’ve started hashtagging them #LOVEHAIRBRIDESCHOOSECOOL (What else!?) check it out on Instagram :)
Time for my last post of 2015!! Wow! What a year! So many people have been telling me that 2015 has been 'their year', I LOVE hearing this! Lots of my friends (and students) run their own businesses and it seems that this last year has been the one that has pushed them forward (pushed them hard!) and brought them success. Lovehair (et moi!) has grown massively this year and bought me so much joy and success that I really can't ignore it as a 'game changer'.for me. I will learn from mistakes and take so much from the amazing opportunities I've had. Maybe it's in our stars, maybe it's finally the end of the recession or maybe, just maybe.. it's that working your butt off, staying genuine and allowing yourself to grow with confidence pays off!! I am drawn to the latter.
My words of wisdom? Grow your mind, your confidence, your skills, your TRIBE, your business... ' If you build it , they will come' ' Feel the force' Yes, yes.. I have watched a fair bit of TV over the Christmas holidays... But I believe it!!! These things don't happen by chance, but I promise you, if you do a job you love, not necessarily hair. Any kind of job that you love, you can make it into a success. YOU have the potential to be a success if you want to be. Haven't found your 'thang' yet? Take some courses (ahem..) Learn a new skill (I'm currently learning to longboard!) get off Facebook, look for positives and be brave. I dare ya!
Ok to finish and without sounding too naff, (Like I haven't already done that!) I just wanted to say THANK YOU!!!! To all my brides and students that I have been lucky enough to work with this year. I've had so much fun! 2016 is already 50% booked and loooaaddss of them are recommendations from past brides. That brings so much JOY to my heart!!
I am also overwhelmed with happiness and pride for my students! I've been getting texts, letters and emails telling me of their adventures and how much my course has helped them. So high fives gang!!!
So, more of the same in 2016 please!! It's already looking like a cracker. We are taking our little guys on an adventure to Thailand this year/next year? 2016 anyway, so any tips would be greatly appreciated ;)(Intrepid Explorers, we are not!!! eeek! ) A little good health would be great and perhaps some sunshine if you're asking?
But, I am sooooo excited for you! All those just about to start my course, or those that took one last year and are starting your businesses. I wish you all the luck in the world. Not that you need it! Stay in touch, don't forget the basics, DREAM BIG and remember: It's nice to be nice.
Peace, Love & Always Awesome Hair
Thanks to my lovely friend Jo Hughes for the photos www.captivephotgraphy.co.uk and to Lovehair's very own 'A team' stylist Amanda xxx
Model Lauren Morris
In October I had the pleasure of styling the hair & make up for Kat (Red Carpet stylie!) As well as the hair for her bridesmaids at Millbridge Court in Surrey.
For Kat's eye make up I used a Laura Mercier Caviar stick, they give such a delicious glowy finish that lasts all day and doesn't drop, even when pumping up the Shmokey eye! (TIP: Easy to apply, loads of rich colours and great for the festive season too!) Check out my Instagram page for the 'behind the scenes shots'. If you're thinking about getting married in Surrey. Visit this venue - It's been designed with brides in mind and they have thought of literally EVERYTHING! Photos by the wonder that is www.sarahleggephotography.co.uk