Hair Amour By Lesley Barker

Hair Amour By Lesley Barker


Do you love hair? Join the club! I have always been fascinated by the thousands of tiny strands, which emerge spontaneously from just about everyone’s noggin. There is a select breed of people like this, and they are usually called hairdressers. Some prefer “hairstylists” or perhaps even “hair heroes”, but the common factor is -- we all love hair. Let me tell you a bit about the fun I had becoming a hairdresser and what I did once I got there.

Because I always had such a curiosity about hair, I tried to get involved with as many hair-related venues as I could and just tried to soak-up everything like a dry little sponge. From a young age, I had a lot of fun volunteering for theatre productions and other venues doing the hair and wigs. I learned a lot from spending time at Yoka’s Stylists and a wig shop called About Hair. Competing in Vancouver Island University’s 2004 and 2005 Fantasy Hair Competitions were really exciting events --- especially when I took home a 2nd place prize!

At last! I was finally old enough to take the Hairdressing Program at Vancouver Island University. What a great facility, program, and faculty! My experience was great there, from my first snip to my last blow dry. The program is designed to give a budding hairdresser a thorough foundation, and promotes extra-curricular activities, which spawn new ideas that build on original teaching. One of these extra activities was the Allied Beauty Association’s annual hair show in Vancouver --- my first hair show!

At the tail-end of my hairdressing program I had the good fortune to attend another hair show. This time it was the spectacular Salon International in London, England! It was such a fantastic experience. The three-day hair show. and extra seminars just had so much to offer; I was hard at work, soaking-up all I could! I would highly recommend this experience to anyone with even a spark of “hair amour” --- you will be so inspired. A highlight of the trip was going as a hair-model to Vidal Sassoon’s Master Academy. The new cut was just in time for my hairdressing graduation the day after I returned home!

After graduating, and happily coming out with three awards, I promptly dove into the hairdressing workforce. I was fortunate to receive a job offer from the salon where I completed my practicum, and have been merrily working there ever since. Time sure flies when you’re having fun --- it’s already been a year and a half at Maffeo! I learned, and am still learning, a lot from working with other stylists with so much experience: my boss and other co-workers. After working there for several months, I was sent with another stylist to Los Angeles for advanced hair training at the Institute of Courage.  And then I had fun competing in that year’s ABA hair show. in Vancouver. Never stop learning!

[[{"attributes":{},"fields":{}}]]Well, I’m doing my best to take my own advice there, and keep up my training wherever I can. With weekly “training night” at work and an advanced hairdressing course at VIU, I’m sure I will never get bored with hair. I still enjoy volunteering when I can for local theatre productions and such, which also keeps hairdressing fun and exciting. I still have trouble comprehending the fact that I actually get paid to do what I love to do! Well, it’s been fun to look back and remember all the great experiences that I encountered or stumbled-upon along the hairdressing path. Thanks for reliving my hair amour with me!

This is one of my mannequin heads from the L.A. course, cut with the “Sexy Hair” techniques I learned (mine was the only head our teacher took to show to all the other instructors --- I was pretty happy.