Yes, you've read that right.
I have a proper certificate for my makeup artistry from a very well known technical school here in Montreal, Quebec, called Lasalle College.
But for hair though...
Not a surprising terminology nowadays, I find. Many makeup artists, aka influencers, are self-taught makeup artists. And it's totally ok!
You learn the basics and it's all hands-on experience from there anyways. By getting your hands dirty is how you learn.
For hairstyling, I learned it from a very young age...around 10-ish?
We used to live in this Town House complex where many kids living in that same corner would hang around all together and play whatever game that was "happening" that day...soccer-baseball, beads, catch, hide-n-seek. It was such a safe and peaceful place for young children to all hang out and play since there was like this inner court that protected us from strangers or cars. We were protected by the walls of ours Town Houses.
There was this one neighbor, an asian mother with her then 4 or 5 year old girl. This young girl always had such intricate braided hairstyles. So well done and so perfect. I was in such an awe of it every time and, one day, I took the courage to ask her mother to show me how to do it.
Around this time, I had to, and I emphasize the words "HAD TO" learn how to do my owe hair. You see, growing up with 2 bothers, close in age, I was amongst them, rambunctious, rough on the edge, a tom-boy if you will. So my mother, of course, did not feel the need to do little girl's hairstyle or to learn how to do any of them. She sewn dresses for me when I was little and she as so good at that, but extending that talent to my hair was a big fail... a no-no. I get it, sewing and doing hair is not the same thing.
So around that age, I started growing my hair and was interested in getting a ponytail, a braid, a bun...something different to make me feel cute. I've asked her many times to do my hair and, despite her big effort, she was never able to nail it. Always wonky, hair all over the place, uneven pigtails...
I gave up!
I was determined to learn this for myself, by myself!
So this lovely neighbor taught me the basics of braiding, and from there I practiced and practiced.
Since I don't have sisters, I practiced on my friends; on girls I babysat; whoever allowed me to play with their hair. I practiced (and of course on myself too!)
Fast forward to early 2000. I worked at a hair salon in a high end city in Montreal (Westmount). I was there in between film contracts, helping other hairstylists as an assistant. Whenever there was some time, in between clients, I'd ask them to show me how to do blowdries, how to do an updo, how to do waves... Hands-on, I practiced!
I'm a very visual person.
I watched and learnt.
And here we are!
I have become a freelance hair artist, alongside doing makeup as well!
People often ask me, "which one do you do best?"
To be honest... not sure! I think I am good at doing both (might I'd say!)
I love love love doing hair. It's like sculpting. It's molding the hair and making it into something completely different. Elegant. Feminine. Edgy at times. Graceful.
Whenever clients sit on my chair and apologize for their thick long hair... I'm like,
"PLEASE! THANK YOU!"
I get to plaaaaaay!!!!