• Yup, You Can Use Wine in Your Bath!

    There are a multitude of natural ingredients that are supposed to work wonders on your skin and hair—like lemon juice as an acne fighter and beer as a shine treatment for your hair. So, we weren’t floored when we heard that a spa in Los Angeles was incorporating wine into their luxe treatments.

    But…we were intrigued considering the most we have ever included into our at-home spa routine is by drinking a big ol’ glass of cabernet during a bath. Using wine as a topical treatment could be effective in halting the aging process: Red wine contains the anti-aging ingredient resveratrol, a property now used in many high-end face creams. In one study, resveratrol proved to be more efficient at reducing the damaging effects of free radicals than Vitamins E and C. So, in the spirit of seeing how effective red wine might be for keeping that youthful glow, we tested out two DIY spa treatments created by Estancia Wines that are based on the ones the company developed with Hotel Bel-Air. Here’s what we thought about each one, plus how to recreate them at home.

    Wine Bath & Body Scrub


    10 tablespoons of raw sugar

    10 tablespoons of brown sugar

    6-8 tablespoons of raw organic honey

    4 tablespoons of red wine

    Instructions: Mix all ingredients together and scrub it immediately all over your body during a bath or shower. Finish with a body cream to seal in moisture.

    The Verdict: This scrub smells amazing and it made my skin tingle a bit, but in a good way. (That’s how you know it’s working, right?!) My legs felt really smooth after using this concoction, but I’m not sure they were smoother than after using any other scrub.

    Wine Facial Mask


    1 egg white

    3 tablespoons of red wine

    1 tablespoon of organic raw honey

    Instructions: Gently mix the egg white, red wine, and honey to a smooth consistency. Spread the paste evenly on to your clean face and neck, avoiding the eye area. Relax and leave the mask on for 10-15 minutes. Rinse off with lukewarm water and end with a splash of cold water. Pat your skin dry with a clean towel. Finally apply a moisturizer for added tightening, and to seal in all of that moisture.

    The Verdict: At first, the mask was very liquid-y, so I suggest lying down for a couple minutes after you massage it on to let it really stick onto your face (especially if you’re not in the bath and plan to be up and about while you wait the allotted time). After washing it off, my skin definitely felt tighter and a lot smoother—and not at all irritated, which, for my sensitive skin was a surprise. I’d try this again as part of my at-home spa routine for sure.

  • Top Five Tips to Build Your Guy Client Conversation Skills

    My latest haircut is a masterpiece. It would look this good if I cut it myself if I do say so.

    The overall experience was positive. The haircutter did everything right as it relates to client conversation. They also did everything wrong as it relates to client conversations.

    My visit began with a warm and friendly greeting. The consultation brought forth the specifics of my desired look. I departed on a high note, too. Take home hair care product was suggested and offered. I was instructed as to how to book my next appointment and I was thanked sincerely. The beginning and the ending were solid. The middle was where things went awry.

    By the end of the experience I described above I knew way too much about this haircutter. The lists of categories covered in the chair side monologue included, but were not limited to their personal life, their life partner, their finances, their health issues, their housing situation, their mortgage, and their family. I know about the part time job, the prior cities of residence, and their taste in music, clothing and food. The list goes on. Notice, too I did not describe the interaction as a conversation. It was a monologue. I did a lot of listening. Fortunately when I take my glasses off I do not hear so well. I might have heard a lot more.

    Client conversation is a skill. It is a skill we must work hard to learn. It is a skill we must practice and hone. Below I offer up my top five tips for building your guy client conversations skills so as to build business, not drive it away.

    1. Read the newspaper. Yes. I know you get your news on the Internet. Read the paper, too. Specifically, read the local paper that comes out once each week. Taking the few minutes needed to scan through the paper will have you up to date on the general idea of what all is going on in your town. The big local daily and the web will fill you in on the whole wide world. Conversations happen. You need not be an expert, but you should know about what the school board is fighting about even if you do not have kids in the district. Being up on local current events will allow you to comfortably join in on conversations or sit quietly and gain thoughts and ideas from different people and perspectives.

    2. Watch Sportscenter – Fifteen minutes of Sportscenter will not make you a superfan. It will make you capable of engaging with guys in a comfortable way. I am not a basketball fan, but I am roughly aware of what is generally going on in the world of basketball. I can say the same thing about hockey, football, soccer, and NASCAR. I am a big baseball fan and have more than a rough idea about that. My point here is not to try to be an expert, just be aware. You should know when a major golf tournament is in progress. You should know what part of the world important tennis is taking place. Like it or not, guys dig sports (girls do, too) and sports conversations happen in the haircutting chair. Be able to at least know what the conversation is about. You need to know what game Lebron plays. You do not need to know his career stats. You need to know what happens at Churchill Downs, Martinsville and Augusta.

    By Ivan Zoot | Source: ModernSalon.com

  • Cold Weather Skin Mistakes that are Ruining your Complexion

    Once the indoor heat kicks in, it’s all downhill for skin. Between dry indoor air and snowy, windy weather, your complexion can take a beating this time of year. But there are steps you can take to head off winter dryness before it makes you want to cover up your face with a scarf. Start by nixing these bad habits ASAP.

    Not protecting your skin before heading outdoors.
    We don’t just mean SPF (though of course you already know that sunscreen is just as important in the chillier months as it is at the beach). Your skin also needs a protective layer to help keep its moisture barrier intact. Step out with a naked face and the wind and cold can create tiny cracks in your skin’s surface, leading to redness, dry skin and damage. Slather a lotion with SPF on any exposed areas before venturing out into the cold.

    2. Not using a humidifier.
    A humidifier is our number one trick to preserving skin’s glow all winter. Not only does adding humidity to dry indoor air help you breathe better, it helps your skin lose less moisture. If you don’t own a humidifier, a bowl of water placed on top of a radiator will also work (it adds moisture to the air as the water evaporates).

    3. Washing with hot water.
    Whether you’re showering in it, splashing it on your face, or rinsing your hands with it, hot water strips your skin of its natural oils and leaves it parched. Rinse with warm or cool water instead.

    4. Peeling flaky skin.
    Don’t do this! Peeling off your skin can lead to infection and scarring, and can actually make uneven texture worse. Instead, use an exfoliating product that combines a chemical exfoliant (i.e. an acid or enzyme) with a gentle mechanical exfoliant (A.K.A. scrubbing beads) to slough off dead skin.

    5. Using mineral oil-based moisturizers.
    Lip balms that are made with mineral oil or petrolatum don’t get absorbed; instead they create an occlusive barrier on skin’s surface. This helps trap moisture in, but doesn’t hydrate skin that’s already parched. Instead, try a product with hyaluronic acid, ceramides or even an oil — all of which penetrate skin to moisturize beyond the surface.

    6. Using heavy face creams.
    Okay, using a heavy cream isn’t bad per se, but it’s not the most efficient way to combat dry skin. Instead of relying on a single rich product, layer a lightweight moisturizing serum under your face cream first to better hydrate skin and lock in moisture. Think of it like long johns for your face.

  • Want to Stand Out Like a SUPER STAR?

    Practice the Defining Difference of What Truly Matters…
    Work on your Soft Skills!

    To be successful you must first understand what the beauty business is really about besides the artistry, it is really about the PEOPLE. Making the people look and feel magnificent and creating the connection that offers the people that you meet the chance to feel good about who they are when they are with you. Learn to work from your heart and get on a journey of self development and continual education. This will bring you the ultimate experience of success. Make the commitment to build your life with positive new habits that shape your mind to excellence everyday and always believe in the beauty of your career and the power you have to transform lives.

    According to industry experts, however, your formal educational foundation only contributes 15% of your success. The other 85% comes from understanding and applying Soft Skills.

    What are Soft Skills? And Why do you need them?

    As much as you need technical skills you need to incorporate the benefits of Soft Skills as you continuously develop your career. “Soft skills” is a term relating to a collection of personal, positive attributes and competencies that enhance your relationships, job performance, and value to the market.

    Most people know what soft skills are but too reluctant to practice them with consistency to get the full concept of how valuable they are to the success of their life. It is a sad thought that only 1% of people will take the time to learn how to achieve success and will strive to be the best at their craft. Only 3% of people are even intentional about growing and developing their personal skills. Most people would rather complain about what they don’t have than put forth the extra effort it takes to make what they do want happen.

    Some examples of Soft Skills include:

    Effective Communication

    Business and Retailing Basics

    Problem Solving

    Conflict Resolution

    A Commitment to Integrity

    Goal Setting

    Personal Development

    Challenging Yourself

    Staying Open to Change

    Delivering “Super Service”

    Accepting Responsibility and Criticism

    Time Management and Developing Good Habits!

    Learning hard skills (technical) will help get the interview but you will need the Soft Skills to get and keep the job. Today’s salons require much more from their staff, they are looking for the candidate who possesses the qualities that will be long lasting and adaptable to their culture. Yes beauty professionals have to be great at their craft. But what are even more important are the social skills of our business that create the foundation of our industry.

    Remember: Our business is about developing relationships with PEOPLE !

    Source: Kathy Jager-educational solutions

  • What Matters Most?

    What Matters Most for a Successful Business?

    A.) Product

    B.) Service

    C.) Location

    D.) Marketing

    While all of these contribute to the success of your business, only one factor matters most…


    Marketing yourself and your services is what makes the competitive difference. It is often assumed that the highest quality and/or best product wins, but this is NOT true in our Industry. Our business depends on the relationships we build along the way. The people are our link to our Success!

    Timeless Promoting


    Network! Network! Network! That is all you hear and it is what our business thrives on. Meeting people and building relationships will help you grow personally as well as professionally. The world is on a networking craze from online to social media, to industry associations, and networking clubs of all types. But the best way for you to network is right in your salon. The clients that you see every day are your links to your future.

    Our business is filled with opportunities to connect with people who can help us achieve our goals, and at the same time, we can help them to reach theirs. This industry sets the stage for personal one-on-one contact that allows all types of business transactions to occur. It is all about the “web,” the networking web that you have already started with your existing clients. Networking is the most effective strategy for one-on-one contact that connects you to other people. You actually network all day long, you just haven’t put it to use yet. Networking provides you with the personal touch you need to create those relationships that are the fundamentals of being a smart business owner, no matter how big or small your establishment.

    Source: Kathy Jager-educational solutions

  • It is Time to THINK like an ENTREPRENEUR!

    Independent Salon Professionals are a growing community to our industry.

    According to the NACCAS Report out of 1.7 million beauty professionals 44-47% are SELF-EMPLOYED! Not only did we choose a career that is flexible, rewarding, and full of magical moments, but this industry also provided for us the option to start our own business and be part of the greatest age of ENTREPRENEURSHIP!

    It is TIME to OPEN OUR EYES!

    IT IS TIME… Independent Salon Professionals GET Support to maintain a professional image while operating as a sole entity! The day-to-day challenges of trying to juggle multiple projects, conflicting priorities and limited resources to try and uphold a business can be overwhelming. We need to stick together and search for resources to help us be the best at our craft.

    IT IS TIME…This segment of our industry uses their voices to get the tools and information they need to run their little but might businesses more effectively. Start to share with your associations, state boards, and distributors exactly what education you want and need to keep you motivated and inspired as a businessperson as well as a creative cosmetologist.

    IT IS TIME… Independent salons and beauty professionals get recognized for being a BEAUTY PROFESSIONAL! Stop hiding the fact that you are an independent and work your business professionally and you will get the respect of being an independent entrepreneur.

    IT IS TIME… We step it up and inspire each other, educate one another and improve our professional state of mind so that we can be PROUD to have chosen to be an INDEPENDENT ENTREPRENEUR!

    It’s time to think, act, and perform like an entrepreneur!

    Source: Kathy Jager-educational solutions

  • 5 Quick Tips for Handling Client Complaints

    Complaints make room for growth!

    With 20% of clients leaving your salon yearly you need to know how to turn a negative experience into a positive one! Knowing when clients are dissatisfied and doing something about it before they tell all their friends is a great way to customer satisfaction.

    Complaints are a gift if you are willing to resolve the situation to enhance the client’s dissatisfaction. Remember most clients don’t complain to you, they will walk away, never to return but tell everyone they know their personal experience with you.

    Here are a few tips to redeem their trust

    • Acknowledge their Disappointment- You need to be able to read the clients face and body language when you sense disappointment. Ask them how they feel about their new look or service and offer them the chance to express the truth.
    • Repeat what they said- to ensure they know you heard them, repeat their complaint and share some new insight or suggestions to help fix the situation.
    • Show Appreciation- Acknowledge that you value them as a loyal client. Say you’re sorry they are disappointed and create that safety net to get them to respond with the second opportunity to let you redo the service to give them what they want.
    • Keep Your Promise- To fulfill their needs whether it has to be something they need to come back for, honoring a gift receipt, or promising not to repeat the mistake.
    • Create Open Communication- Be a conscious listener… Hear what they are saying and ask a lot of probing questions to create an environment of faith and trust of being their personal stylist.
    • Remember: Complaints make room for growth personally as well as professionally, just take the critique and learn from it.

    Source: Kathy Jager-educational solutions

  • 4 Tips for a Clean and Healthy Workspace

    How to keep your workplace healthy and clean.

    Germs are everywhere this time of year, so it’s extra important to make sure your work area is safe and sanitary for you and your clients. Much research has shown that clients are turned off by a dirty salon or spa. According to spastandard.com , there are four measures you can take to upgrade the cleanliness of your salon and spa space:

    • Inspect retail testers and displays. Frequently take a look at the pumps on face and body products, and dust off your retail candles. Replace testers often, as well as items that look dingy beyond fixing. Every two weeks, remove all items from shelves in order to clean the shelves and dust off the products or establish a rotation schedule so that every shelf or area gets addressed.
    • Tidy up the common areas. Your waiting, changing and relaxation areas should sparkle. Every pillow and magazine should be in place and all trash put into receptacles.
    • Go through as a guest. Make it a daily practice to take the guest’s walk through the salon or spa to really see what your clients are seeing. Start outside, picking up any trash near the entrance and cleaning off fingerprints from the door and windows. Inside, notice dead light bulbs, drippy benches, empty toilet paper dispensers, dust bunnies in the corners, hair in the steam room—anything that detracts from the services you’re providing. Get the view upward from a shampoo chair, downward from a massage table and at eye level everywhere.
    • Clean after every client. Your styling station or treatment room speaks volumes about who you are as a professional. Any sign of the previous client, from hair and makeup to greasy footprints and extractions, can cost you repeat business. Empty trash bins, too. Every guest should feel like your first guest of the day.

    Your guests will appreciate this, but so will your family. Keeping your space clean for your clients helps you, too, guard against breathing in dust and bringing home germs.

    Source: Modern Salon

  • The Top 5 Reasons to Become a Cosmetologist

    Choosing a career field is pretty serious stuff and it’s natural to occasionally need a reminder of why a particular path was chosen in the first place… unless it was a path of m&m’s in which case logical reasoning would be appropriately ignored. Speaking of logic, we have taken it upon ourselves to compile a list of perfectly reasonable, or, reasons to become a cosmetologist. That being said, there’s obviously more than just analytics behind why you chose to embark on this journey (it was in the stars!). Sometimes the facts are just the type of reassurance one might need to keep on keepin’ on.

    #1 Hot Job Market (also the ranking of our cosmetology exam review)

    Paris Hilton’s words of wisdom, “that’s so hot” might not be trending as much currently as they did in the beginning of this millennium. They do, however, correctly summarize the state of the job market for careers in cosmetology. Another related expression might be, “that’s nuclear baby!” considering this job market would take millions of years to cool off.

    #2 Relatively Easy Entry into the Cosmetology Career Field

    Acquiring a license in cosmetology and beginning work in the beauty industry typically takes less time than, oh say, becoming an astronaut (that may be a little far fetched, but the point still stands). As mentioned above, the job market for careers in cosmetology is a pretty bubbly brew of opportunity, making it more likely for you to get a taste of the goods. You could call it a soup kitchen of good career prospect… or you could just call it what it is. Your choice.

    #3 Fun and Exciting Work

    To even be on this page in the first place, and more importantly, to have chosen to follow a cosmetology career path, proves that you have a high interest in the line of work. Many people feel that the most important aspect in choosing a career is in financial reasoning, but we find that what holds utmost importance is your happiness. Being a cosmetologist might not come with six-figure income, but it is rewarding to look forward to doing something you love and making a living doing it.

    #4 Job Flexibility

    To extend upon what was already mentioned above in reference to the entrance into the beauty industry, there is an enormous array of possibilities that being a cosmetologist entails, including hair, skin, and nail care, etc. This further broadens the job market, allowing you to more easily qualify for a particular niche. The possibility that freelance cosmetology work may be ideal for those with less time on their hands.

    #5 Being Your Own Boss

    Receiving your license in cosmetology means more than just the ability to experiment with beauty with your client’s full trust (the power of a piece of paper, right?); it means being able to manage your own hours and clientèle. You can do what you want when you want, whether that be work Monday’s through Friday’s only, service a maximum of 5 clients a day, or precede with your plans of world domination.

    Source: Salon Prep Blog

  • Are You a Cosmetology Therapist?

    Now that you have passed your cosmetology exam and become a cosmetology professional, do you sometimes feel like a therapist to some of your clients? If you are doing a great job, you probably do. You have become a trusted confidant to your clients.

    But this can be a slippery slope if not handled with extreme professionalism and there was little in your cosmetology exam to refer to. Letting your clients talk and express their feelings can be very cathartic for them. They enjoy the experience of getting their hair done or getting a relaxing facial while also unloading emotional baggage on their favorite cosmetology professional.

    Here are some tips to handle being your clients’ “Cosmetology Therapist”:

    • Make sure you do not internalize the emotions they are expressing. This can cause you to become anxious, sad, or tense which might make your next client’s experience less than perfect.
    • Avoid giving too much or specific advice. You are not a licensed therapist. Mostly, you are there to listen. And above all, you are there to perform the tasks of hair cutting, skin care, or nail care.
    • Recognize a real problem. Be aware of clients who express deep sadness or warning signs of depressions. These clients should be recommended to a doctor.
    • Do not pass along gossip. When Client One leaves, her stories do, too. Client Two should never hear about anything do to with Client One and vice versa. Spreading gossip is a real danger to your business and to people’s feelings.
    • Don’t be afraid to change the subject or steer your client into another conversation if the topic is getting too personal.
    • Avoid sharing too much personal information about yourself. Again, the focus should be on the client and their experience.

    Your client’s experience depends greatly on the way you interact with them. Without a doubt repeat clients are created by positive interactions. Sharing stories and having clients confide in you is a part of your job, just like hair cutting, and often demonstrates your skill and experience as a professional cosmetologist. Just be sure to keep things professional and you will always have success.

    Source: Salon Prep Blog