Here’s something you might not know about me; I’m a university dropout. That’s right, after one term in higher education, I threw in the towel to become a Hairdresser. Was it too difficult? No. Could I have stuck it out? Yes. Did I want to? Absolutely not. The truth is, university held me back. I wanted to be in the world of work, I wanted to be my own boss and sticking around at uni wasn’t going to help me with that.
To that end, I trained on the job and was working for myself in a short space of time. I built up a business that would see me earn as much, sometimes more, than my then teacher of a husband. I genuinely loved what I did. Working with young and old clients, in care homes and in a freelance fashion. I couldn’t have been more accomplished. I did really well, even if I do say so myself.
Even though there are so many positives that came from the decision I made to leave university, I still feel inadequate when I tell people that I’m a hairdresser. So much so, that I often avoid telling people I used to cut hair for a living. You’d think I’d be used to the pitying looks of strangers when they realise I ‘didn’t have the brains‘ to get a job that packed more punch. It still hurts though. I still feel a pang each time another person fails to see past the ‘thick‘ label that comes with the title of Hairdresser.
I’m not uneducated –
The fact is that I’m not uneducated. I have more qualifications than you can shake a stick at. I can smell an opportunity a mile off and I’m not afraid to learn. Yes I like the simple things in life and yes I can talk the hind legs off of a donkey, but I have substance. I hate the way hairdressers are perceived to be uneducated. If you asked another professional to give you the right mix for a 5.0 on grey roots, do you think they’d be able to give it to you? No! That’s because this has to be learned and it takes brains to understand the rules of hairdressing and to put them into practice.
The money is rubbish –
Here’s the rule of thumb. If you’re a hairdresser working for someone else; get out, quick. If you’re going it alone, you’ve cracked it. There’s money to be made for the self-employed, you just have to go out and get it.
There’s always room to grow –
Another common misconception about Hairdressing is that it’s a ‘dead end‘ job. There’s no progression involved and you’ll be stuck behind a chair for the rest of your life. Firstly. there’s money to be made from being stood behind a chair. There are countless areas within which you can expand; your own salon, specialist treatments, beauty – among so many more. Being your own boss means that you’re in charge of your future. The amount of times I’ve been dismissed when I’ve admitted to being a hairdresser is more than I care to remember. I don’t fit the stereotype though and I’d hazard a guess that the majority of Stylists don’t fit the ‘ditsy mould’ either.