Inspiration Can Be Anywhere

I had the most inspiring experience at work the other day.  I was chatting with our Stylist while she worked on her client.  I thought the client was a client that had come to Future Hair Training Centre in the past but didn’t recognize her as a “regular” patron.  After walking away, I could hear her asking the Stylist questions about me, suggesting she knew me.  The Stylist then came to me saying “My client thinks she knows you”.  I approached her.  She was smiling, I knew it was a familiar face when she said “Luc Savard” to me.  I was instantly warmed to my soul. 

Luc was my end all be all Hair God.  He was my Mentor, my Confidant, my Teacher about hair but also fear, Arts, Fashion, you name it.  It is sad that Luc is no longer living today to see what I have achieved, as I know he would be proud.  I often see someone walking by the big windows at work and think it’s him for a moment in time. I have always felt his presence.  When I came to Vancouver he was my first job.  We were the perfect fit.  After I left him to find my own ways we were always in touch.  He was always there for me and me for him.  After going out on my own, I returned to work side by side this time as his partner by sharing the rent.  After that ended for me, not quite exciting enough I was not ready to be tied down quite yet and my desire for traveling while teaching Hairdressing was beginning.  I had no idea that years later, again I would pair with him in his death by starting my school in the space he would leave behind, the same space I started in years before!  I loved starting Future Hair Training Centre there (Broadway at Maple) because I felt his presence gave me strength every day.  That was the location that later had a fire (if you don’t know THAT story read my last blog!!)

The most wonderful thing was how candid the client was.  She straight out said that she was so very happy that it’s me, that I looked so fantastic for my age, and that she was loving the experience she was having in my business; she said that Luc would be so proud.  I was so touched.  It was the impression of me in my youth (the last memory of me she has was in 1989 by the way) that struck me.  She said I was Avant Garde which I thought was kind of cool.  I was very much into music and clubbing and I could see where she would think that because she was on the conservative side.  She had concerns for my well-being as well.  She was lovely, you could see how pleased she was that I had turned out well. 

As I told her about my business and a bit of personal story, I was so proud of how successful she saw me.  I was proud that she was also so proud and then the conversation went back to Luc Savard. I said that he was such a pivotal part of my success.  I said that without hearing his voice still in my head, not always kind as he was a Taurus like myself: swift, direct and honest.  No one is prepared for honesty all the time!!  Not always easy to hear but with Luc I would listen. It was then I realized what defines success for me.  It was then that I thought about what a privilege it is that so many students that we have trained at FHTC have told me that I have been that source for theml

I define success by those I have and will continue to help to achieve their own success.  They say people come into your life for a reason.  I believe that.  Even in passing, Luc inspires me to share with others the passion for Beauty Culture and Education to everyone I can with respect and love for what I do.  When I feel his hand pat me on the back at the end of a hard day I will know it was all worth it if someone out there feels the way I feel about Luc about me!! 


Opportunities don't happen, you create them.

Although Future Hair Training Centre has a huge following and we have successfully trained many many students over the 20+ years, I still get asked about the “story behind The Centre”.  Here it is:

I decided to start a small training centre to educate people in what I love doing and teaching (basically living as most Professional Stylists’ do).  Like most young Entrepreneurs, I had no idea what I was getting myself into.

Firstly, finding the start up money was difficult at best as banks just had no idea the difference between a salon and a school of hairdressing?????  I managed to get my hands on $20K and decided that would be sufficient. Found a lease, started on renovations, signed up my first batch of 8 students for September, very exciting!!  New and beautiful Future Hair Training Centre was in full force.  Eight months into the first ten-month class and we were on our way to becoming accredited with high hopes (what could stop me now???)

Working late, no biggie, smells like,…hummm…maybe a bbq??  Nope, full on fire!!  The guys at the Cigar Co. next door run in to tell me we are on fire!!  Can’t be!!  What??  My Aesthetician was completing a service and I was in my office.  We run out only to see that yes, indeed we are on fire!!

Days of torment and absolute drama over what to do was to come.  According to the reports it was arson (it was clear that it was from the upstairs unit but not hard proof at this early stage).  The landlord had a couple months to decide what to do, the insurance would be void should I get another lease before it was settled, basically this was a disaster.  I was having an anxiety attack every minute on the hour FOR SURE!! 

Meanwhile, many lovely people were offering their support and help as it was all over the news.  One of which was the West End Community Centre downtown where I had done volunteer work in the past (See, it does help to help, it does help to be good and do good, I am living proof J ).  I took them up on their offer to use their Youth Centre because if the student is out of the classroom for any reason they must be dismissed after two weeks.  This was not/is not my rule, it is simply compliance with the rules of British Columbia and being Accredited! Remember that these students were two months from graduating and beginning their careers in this industry!!

Within the two-week period my friends, family, boyfriend at the time and lawyer said to pack it in and try another time…. go back to work as a Stylist.  Not meant to be etc. etc.  I had many job opportunities come my way but there was no way I was giving up on this dream.  It just felt like I should be educating people how to do hair and I was not giving up even though I had no money, no location, and at this point no insurance either!!  No problem, found a salon that had closed in a neighborhood that was on the quiet side but would do.

Let’s fast forward 24 (yes, 24) years.  Future Hair Training Centre is still in the neighborhood I moved it to after the fire, except that it is now one of if not the busiest corridor in North America thanks to the Canada Line, the 2010 Olympics and Vancouver’s growing spurt that I am proud to have been a part of.  It was not easy.  Every day I worked and worked hard.  The space I moved into had sinks and a lot of ruminants of a previous salon behind which I took great advantage of.  Although my original $20K was spent on pretty things, I left this location on the “raw” side and prettied it up along the way.  I have no idea why the landlord gave it to me without looking into my status at the time.  I had the survivor instinct in me and was literally unstoppable.  I convinced everyone around me that everything was just fine until it actually was.

I never gave up.  I never could.  Since then FHTC has moved a third time, as the building that I found refuge in after 10 years was demolished.  We moved from Cambie on Broadway to Broadway at Cambie.  It is lovely.  Busy, modern and we are smack in the middle of it all.  I never saw myself on the Broadway corridor, I also did not see the Olympics coming and giving us the Canada Line to our front door. 

Since opening, FHTC has become Fully Registered, Fully Accredited and successful for almost 25 years.  This year we added Microblading Classes which is a totally new venture as well.  In fact, as I write this out, I am reminded of the importance to change your mindset, change your goals and aspire to always take what is given to you not as negative or a slap in the face but as a positive and a push in the right direction if it’s what you choose…………….it is only YOU who can choose.  Do what I did and choose to fight tooth and nail for your dream, for your story, for your legacy and be stronger than your fear!

At this time the Centre employs a handful of instructors and support staff plus myself.  I have managed over all these years to build a Beauty Culture Centre which is full of love and support of everyone who is here, whether it is student, client or staff.  Every day we see the result in persevering and also we teach so much more than hair, we teach Life Skills, the importance of maintaining your integrity, and fulfilling your dreams knowing that they will change; uproot you and drive you a little mad at times JThat’s the fun part tee hee.  We never know what’s coming down the line, the world is changing and so are we as humans, it’s the one thing we can count on CHANGE!  It’s not something we can stop doing.  I always remember an instructor I worked with telling me once that I was like a teabag.  You would never know how strong I am until I am in hot water!!  It’s true.  This year will be full of change for myself and for Future Hair Training Centre……I hope the changes are met with positivity and acceptance by all but if it’s not, that’s ok. too.  Stay tuned!!
Xox, Cynthia Skabar/ Future Hair Training Centre, Vancouver BC.



Maybe you have heard about the magnetic eyelashes?  Or maybe you haven’t been on Facebook for a while because it seems to be popping up constantly!!  Of course I had to try it out.  As the one that feels the need to keep going back for eyelash extensions whenever I am going on holidays then having regret for six months as they grow back at a snail’s pace! 

When I began obsessing over my lashes looking as amazing as they looked on Facebook with the magnetic lashes I couldn’t wait to order them.  I was thinking I would be wearing them every day for the rest of my life. Never again would I succumb to the urge to get again!!   YES!!!

Ok.. maybe I got a little carried away!  By the time they arrived I had watched several YouTube video applications and some made it look so easy some made themselves look so silly trying to put them on that I wondered if it was for show.  The first time I put them on it was relatively easy.  I flaunted around, posted a photo on all our Social Media and thought I found the ticket to success!!  Until the next morning when I couldn’t get them on to save my life!!  Ugh, three days later is this morning…..I spent about half hour trying with no success until “BAM” thought I got it, wore them for a couple hours and here I am writing this withOUT my magnetic lashes on because all I could see was them.  I had these thoughts of looking up from the desk to help a client and having them half on half off or worse lol.

I am not suggesting you NOT get them or try them because I really do like them. I would recommend every fashionista have a set on hand!!  I am just saying that they are not going to be my daily routine even if I do get used to putting them on.  I will wear them as much as I can and know that the ones from    One Two Lash (Instagram handle: @onetwolash are well made and great quality.  Sure to last me a long time.    They will be fun from time to time but I am pretty sure I will be trying to get eyelash extension appointments before my next tropical vacation again!!! 

Microblading, the newest beauty trend.

Microblading: Everyone is teaching it, everyone is doing it, and everyone is getting it done!!

     For those of you who didn't know, Future Hair Training Centre has been hosting microblading classes! When it comes to bringing in an Instructor into my Centre, I am very picky about their experience, skill, and qualifications. After all, this is altering a persons physical appearance! When is comes to qualifications this may include hours spent on clients, classes or courses taken to master this new in demand craft, along with safety and sterilization. All participants in our classes know the ins and outs of being fully aware of infection control, the use of sterile needles, the practice of discarding all used materials, etc.

     I am not writing this as a testimonial as to why you should come to my Training Centre to learn this skill, I am writing this to offer a few words of advice so everyone interesting in learning has some educated questions to ask. I, as the owner of a school with 25 years of education experience; have done my homework and in doing so I have been surprised at some of the answers received from some of the businesses selling classes. Something I noticed is that there are all these people advertising that one will take a class by a Certified Instructor and the participant will learn in as few as two, three, or five days the art of Microblading. Which will allow them to charge $400.00-$600.00 per service, become certified, and open a business where they will be Instafamous in the industry.

      Microblading is an art form and something that can not be perfected over night, it takes years of skill and practice. How is it possible for anyone to take three to five days and become an expert? Even in hair dressing (which is not opening peoples skin, let alone working on their face) are hundreds of hours required to learn the craft at a BASE LEVEL. When I called one of the businesses advertising microblading to ask about the classes that they are offering all over the place, I asked 'who the instructors are certified by?' (common question I myself receive about our instructor) they seemed very confused. When I stated it was clearly written on the e-mail they had sent me, they responded with the company certified itself?? UMMMM, there I basically NO licensing in British Columbia. Along with Hair, Skin, and Nails, there is no association! Therefore, no licensing required. I find it concerning that all the businesses/instructors teaching Microblading say they are "Certified" yet when I ask by whom, they become confused?? I have come up with a few questions one should ask when doing their due diligence. This is after all changing someone's appearance permanently.

1) Who is the teacher and what are their qualifications? If they are Certified, by whom?
2) Where does the training take place? Is both theory and practical in the same location?
3) Is the instructor Blood Borne Pathogern trained? If so, by whom
4) How many years has the instructor been in business?
5) Where did the instructor train?
6) What Kit supplies do you receiver with the class?
7) Can you prove the certification of the instructor? As many people are counterfeiting others credentials and work.
8) Do the products come from China? There is no safety standards or regulations in this country?
9) Is there support after the class?


What happens when we stand up to our bullies.


   I have been thinking a lot about bullying lately.  When I was a young girl I was bullied in grade 4 badly by a girl much bigger in size than me.  I began to get nervous about going to school.  The more this bully bothered me at the bus stop to and from school the more I dreaded going to school.  I am already terribly shy (yes I am) so this could have really had impact on my personality. Let me just say, I am lucky to be the last of seven children!!  When my brother noticed and asked me what was up I told him about my bully.  His response was so simple it may have been the first time I experienced the whole men are from Mars women from Venus analogy.  He said to take care of it the way I would if it was my sister bothering me. 

    Of course I got off the next day and beat up my bully!!!!  I am NOT condoning violence AT ALL but it worked.  I felt on top of the world when I went running home, leaving her glasses flying in the wind behind her…. OK, maybe that was added drama to read but I did really let her have it!!  After the adrenaline wore off I went home and hid in my room wondering if I was going to get in trouble for standing up to my bully. I actually heard my Mother when the young girls' Mother came to the door.  “My Cindy?”  Um, “No, not my Cindy, have you seen the size of her?”.  She didn’t think it was even possible.  I waited for my Father to come home and fessed up.  “Yes, I did beat up the girl from down the street”.  I hate to admit it but I think my Father was proud of me.  Again, not condoning violence but I was pretty small, took a long time to get my growing spurt so in retrospect I think he was just happy I could take care of myself after I spoke of the bullying I had endured.

    Here it is, over thirty years later.  I have expressed many times how happy I am that I did not grow up with the internet, particularly Social Media as I don’t know if my skin was thick enough to handle the likes, the no likes, the comments, the no comments etc. and so forth.  UNTIL everyone becomes a reviewer of everyone and every business.  What does this have to do with bullying??  Well, here’s an example of my most recent case (although by the time this is posted there may be a whole new slew of stories)…

    I answer the phone at work one day last week.  It was Jeannie Rush on the line asking the cost of a haircut.  I asked her how long her hair was as she had NEVER been to my business before.  She was clearly annoyed at the questioning, replying with a “Why? I don’t want a perm!!!”  I said that we would never book a perm unless asked.  She then got angry when I said our students haircut on hair below the shoulders costs $20 including the shampoo, conditioning, and styling.  She basically lost her shit on me.  I suggested she go elsewhere if the cost wasn't in her budget.  She said it’s too expensive for a student’s service, she became hostile before I suggested that if she’s looking for a “cheap” service to go to one of the franchises that will trim dry for a low cost.  This seemed to upset her more and she said “No, I will review your business instead”. 

    In comes the reviews!!  Remember, this person (Jeannie Rush) has NEVER even stepped foot in my business.  I made her mad with a reasonably quoted price on a hair cut and she reviewed pure garbage lies.  She stated that she came for a perm and her hair fell out????  I tried to contact Google and flag it, she also Yelped that she had a bad hair service with my salon.  Interesting that even when I found her on Twitter (@babybunniebaby) and tweeted to Google about how much I hope they will see that it is totally FAKE review but with no response from Google, she tweeted back that my school sucks and to go to VCC for hair services!!!  She has NEVER stepped into my business.  In fact, she wanted to but was too cheap!!!  She blocked me on Twitter.  I have been told I am relentless at times on the obsessive.  I had to find her on Facebook under hername and also to make 100% that it was in fact the person I spoke with on the phone as I would NEVER shame someone without knowing I am shaming the right one!!

  Oh, and her hair by the way was all there!!  She said in her “review” that it fell out after a perm we did.  Should one not have to provide proof of such an accusation before Google and Yelp post them??  Bullying is not just for kids that are in school.  Bullying is for anyone who, like Jeannie Rush, have a chip on their shoulder that bares a lot of split ends that she thinks she’s entitled to having cut for a very cheap cost to her or she will come after you on Social Media and any Review Site that will allow her to!!!  When children bully it’s bad, when adults bully it’s cowardly!  DON’T BE A BULLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Everyone deserves a glass slipper.

     The first time I ever blogged was my first experience with the Cinderella Project which was many years ago.  In fact it was so long ago that I used my MySpace to post, like I said a very long time ago!!  I went as a guest and was blown away by the amount of young pre-grads that needed help to celebrate such a joyous occasion.  In case your not familiar with the Cinderella Project please check out 

     Over the years I have taken on this project with great effort as I believe that everyone deserves an education and every graduate should be celebrated.  It is so crazy to me that graduating from High School now means that one must spend thousands of dollars on dresses, shoes, handbags,  hair, make-up , eyelash extensions, limousines, hotel rooms and countless/copious amounts of “luxuries” associated with High School Graduation expectations.  It’s no wonder some of the less fortunate teenagers including ones from low income families, refugees, new immigrants etc. simply cannot afford these luxuries. 

     In a time when some youth may be riddled with anxieties about how they will possibly be able to “keep up” it’s easy to suggest they don’t bother, that they just do what they can do, wear what they can afford, and be happy or even don’t go at all.  It’s only February after all, it may even seem a bit early to be bothering with the High School Graduation drama. It’s not! It’s not silly that teens want to be like other teens.  It’s unfortunate that most teens want to be accepted by or most liked are the same teens that may or may not contribute to Society later the way they contribute to High School today but for this time period they are the ones looked up to for “what’s what”.  It is not easy to be a High School-er today!!! 

    In steps, the lovely Cindy Given and Heather Mackenzie with their wonderful Cinderella Project team, have made this an experience that these graduates will never forget.  When they say “It takes an village to raise a child” these women get it!!!!  The first year I volunteered at The Cinderella Project I was so impressed by the amount of volunteers and High School students, but also by how organized these ladies are.  Over the years it has gotten bigger, adding Cinderella's to the mix and utilizing a larger space in the Pinnacle Hotel Harbourfront. There are many categories to this day and each one has a team of committed volunteers to make it run as smoothly as possible.  This is how it works:

     A student gets assigned to a “Godmother” or “Godfather” (Godmother to the girls, Godfather to the boys).  That volunteer will meet the student at the Pinnacle Hotel for the first time.  It can be intimidating for a young person to walk off the elevator and see a big set up with beautiful carousals, photo booth, a DJ. playing all the top 40 music from the 80's, 90's and most recent selections.  The volunteer walks the student to the dressing area first, finding them the perfect outfit.  The amounts of dresses and suits are amazing and endless.  One thing I noticed is how much more the girls have for choice.....perhaps we need a couple more sponsors for tuxes and suits (would be nice).  Once they pick their outfit, they get shoes, ties, fedora and/or other hats to choose from, sunglasses, handbags, jewellery including: earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. Also, hair accessories such as tiara's, barrettes etc. etc. Once the outfits and accessories are compiled, the student comes over to our section for hair and make-up.  Finishing at the Artona Group Portrait studio,  where they get a portrait of themselves all “dolled up”. 

    The day includes food as well.  The near graduatesfeast on all the pizza, pop, chips, cookies etc. that they can.  By the end of the day it’s like a little circus in the Ballroom.  So exciting and so fun.  The youth get to keep the supplies!  Yup, the dress, the shoes, the jewellery, suits and so on. They take it home with them and it reminds them that there is hope.  It reminds them that someone cares enough to ensure they will get to go to graduation in style.  Sure there are bigger things to think about: What will I do with my life after graduation?  What will I be? Will I do Post Secondary Education?  Work? Not work? Be a Kardashian (wait, is that an option???).  But courage is not easy to come by.  It comes with being comfortable, which comes with feeling loved, feeling worthy of love and feeling supported.  To see some of the parents, the school counsellors, the volunteers, Cindy and Heather; every year giving all of the above is the best feeling anyone could have.  It is a reminder that it is in all of us to give to the next generation whatever we can to teach them to be self sufficient and show them that after High School is over they get to be whomever, whatever they would like as long as they work hard, have ambition and stay on track. This world is out there for them to conquer.

     My team of dedicated Students as well as Instructors/Stylists’ and friends that volunteered with me to do hair year after year all say the same thing.  It’s so rewarding to be a part of this beautiful day.  I will never stop volunteering for this event.  I hope that everyone who helps me with the hair feels the same, the more the merrier.  I couldn’t be more proud of my team of hardworking Angels.  I am still in awe of it all!!!!  If you are looking for something to volunteer annually for or want to try it out and see if it works for you please do.  It really does take a village.  We must not forget about the young adults, especially those in need. These days it’s more important than ever to be the change you want to see in the world.  Reach out, don’t be afraid of today's youth, be courageous enough to lead by example.  You can make a difference by doing so.  Everyone wants to have the courage to do what they dream of.  Wouldn’t it be nice to think that you may be their inspiration???


                  Now that we are teaching Microblading (YAY!!!) I can’t help but to notice eyebrows; colours, shapes, sizes etc.  During our one week class I find myself constantly dreaming about eyebrows!!!!  

                While our coveted Laila was working on the Microblading Class, she noticed the trend of BIG bold fierce eyebrows, even masculine.  She told me I should write about it and I love to do what I am told, so here goes our theory on what’s happening and why:

Let’s face it, you can pretty much tell someone’s age based on their eyebrows if they are a woman. Most of the 70’s were skinny, 80’s were pretty big, somewhat like now…..but there’s something different about RIGHT NOW!!  I see BIG, I mean really BIG LOL.  It’s like everything going on in the world is really BIG!  It basically is; just think about who is leading a pretty BIG country right now.  It may be related.  Think about how BIG of a deal it is to have equality amongst both sexes.  I am sure everyone saw the photo of the Grandma on Facebook that was at a Woman’s March whose T-Shirt said something a long the lines of “I can’t believe I am doing this again!”  I am paraphrasing but it’s close and it’s so true!  Women are standing up loud and proud and their eyebrows are too.  I am here to support that.  I love the full eyebrow.  I wonder though, if the next decade will judge based on big eyebrows will theirs be small?  If so, will that mean that there will be peace and harmony and we (Canada) will be following suit to an existence like the Netherlands where we all have skinny eyebrows and peaceful lives.  We all hope so! xox

“I find nothing frames a face so beautifully, or gives an instantaneous lift quite like perfectly shaped eyebrows”

Street Thug Barbers

In a city like Vancouver we work hard play hard.  When Sunday rolls around it’s nice if the biggest decision to be made is whether to take a yoga or a spin class or have a lingering brunch…

 There is an entire world we may never have the chance to see in our own city.  We have all read about the Downtown Eastside or seen it in the news.  It is somewhat famous in it’s own right.

Last Sunday I spent a few hours with the Street Thug Barbers.  I pulled up to Oppenheim Park and pulled out my bag with all the supplies necessary for volunteering to do some haircuts with the boys.  Little did I know what a treat I was actually in for.  I lost count of how many haircuts I did.  Everyone was friendly and so respectful.  The best thing was that Cameron, Ross and Josh knew almost everyone in the park by name.


They gave out cigarettes, casually and openly talked about getting jobs and asking about what they could do to help to get people off the streets and into accommodations.  I am pretty sure they would give the shirts off their own backs if someone had asked.  The sense of community was heart warming.  Honestly and without any ego at all, the three Street thug barbers have captured the hearts of a community of people who some have forgotten or do not even notice!!!  We all have something to learn from these guys.  I am so proud to have them amongst our own community of Hairdressing in Vancouver.  I will be joining them again, as will my colleagues and students!!  Kudos to the Street Thug Barbers.  You guys really know how to live life and share your spirit.  Keep up the good work!!!!



INSTAGRAM: streetthugbarbers







First week of Spring 2016

Who doesn’t love Spring??  It has always been like a rebirth to me and I am sure it has much meaning for others too, it’s obvious as people are walking around smiling and will more than likely say “hello” if they are not totally absorbed with their cellphones.

Spending time outside in the natural elements becomes a magnetic force as the days stay lighter longer.  Waking up in the light encourages morning activities as well.  It’s an all over lovely time of the year!!!

That said……on my morning (which is at 5:00 a.m. by the way) I had an interesting encounter that I feel compelled to share!! These days it’s rare enough that someone stops and chats especially on such an early morning walk.  I felt that it was special.

A gentleman was chatting with me about something called Naikan Therapy. This is a method of Self-reflection.  It is based on three questions:

  1.  What I have received from others today?

  2. What have I given to others today?

  3. What troubles and difficulties have I caused others today?


In theory today I had my students write the three questions on three separate pieces of paper.  We are all participating in an assignment where we will document some day to day encounters for the next week and review them as a group.  I believe that in time, there will be more and more writing about #2.  I believe that if everyone paid attention to these three questions we would notice more and more that it’s the small things we relish in… like the experience I had this morning that make a difference.  The more we focus our intentions on giving and about what troubles and difficulties we cause others the less self absorbed we will all be/live.


Naikan literally means “Seeing oneself with the mind’s eye”

The next time I see this man on my morning walk I will tell him how much he inspired me.  If someone has inspired you lately, let them know too!!



Home for a couple weeks now it’s a great time to reflect on the DE Experience.  Yes, for sure I will go again and I would definitely recommend it to any Stylist.  It was put together so well.  Going with Laila was already going to be positive at the least of expectation.  With two recent graduates of FHTC joining us***another leaving Vancouver to the Iberostar Hotel in Punta Mita Mexico ( ) it set the pace.  Imagine otherwise when I don’t know, maybe like 600 Hairstylists’ are at a stunning resort where it is all inclusive….yes, it’s basically whatever comes into your head!! Service was impeccable, everyone was so pleased. 


There were cocktail parties, 80’s theme party which had a live band that was very theatrical, as well as a wonderful display of creativity by Drea Lecher and Ben Mollin of the ISO team ( ) all within the first half of the week.  Meeting people that are most like minded.  All into education and vacationing (well, everyone is into vacationing) but again, it is a resort full of Stylists’.  So many lovely looking people running, stumbling, dancing, swimming, eating and drinking around.  Every morning was a class from ten to twelve thirty.  Perfect.  So much motivation taking place in a lovely large theater.  How can one not be inspired by the likes of Vivienne Mackinder and Trevor Sorbie??? ( )  These two are iconic in their own rights.  They focus on working hard and as the ISO fellow said “SHOW UP”.  They were so open about their personal selves.  Really so straight forward and honest and sincere.  Trevor Sorbie motivated me to get a little list of students that want to pop over to the Cancer Agency and work on their wigs regularly until we have a rotation going where every wig is ready at all times and someone is there to help patients. I was so moved to find out the amount of volunteer and selfless work this man does!!!  Truly a gentleman too.  He spoke of his wife and his sister with such honesty…not a dry eye when he was interviewed by Vivienne Mackinder( ) .   When Laila and I met Vivienne MacKinder we almost passed out.  I promised myself I would try to reach out and connect with people so it made sense at the time to approach her one evening and so glad I did.  She was so nice and welcoming.  We were star struck!   The night we saw and listened so intently to her talk was the best.  Laila our graduate Donna and I sat outside in front of the ocean and talked about hair and fashion and dreams for hours.  It was so lovely.  At this point I think Laila and I laughed and cried about two hundred times we were so excited and inspired.  I am always surprised at the moments that become those pivotal happy moments in your mind ...your go to’s for favorite moments.

What is a week of education without a little Neil Ducoff (Founder of Strategies) ) to remind us that good is not good enough.  I listened to his theory on a concept he refers to as Happiness also he has a level system 1-10 that really resonated with me and the way I like to do business….again, I was so inspired that at the end of his seminar I had to approach him and let him know that I was so moved by his No Compromise mentality!  He inspired us to the point where we immediately begin to implement what we learned.  Of course, some things we all know but need a little friendly reminder.  As a speaker, Neil Ducoff ( ) has a way of making accounting look almost fun..

The Iso team Drea Lecher and Ben Mollin ( ) really SHOWED UP!  First of all, they looked so good.  Drea Lecher could be a super model and Ben Mollin was very cool in a very cool kinda way.  We basically want to perm hair again, only we would never refer to a perm as a perm again or people may not get them.  That was a great tip.  Don’t refer to your perm as a perm, rather as the technique.  Brilliant.  Loved perming the hair that is sticking out of a large roller, securing the root to midshaft from the process…..tons of cool tricks.  I did not expect to be excited about perming (yay). 

Wrapping up the week with a white party was fitting.  Everyone had bonded to some degree, made friends, become fans of Joico even more.  The models the Joico team did were amazing.  Knowing Sherry and Jen made me even more proud to see the models look so incredible. 


All the grey and blues and metallic colors.  I remember bumping into Sherry and thinking how the hell can she be wearing a perfect crispy white top and not have a wrinkle or any color anywhere!!!!  Damn!  These girls worked it like consummate pros.  The Joico team is an inspiration in itself.  It was only right that they did the finale of all finale!!  Beauty meets avante garde. Color extraordinaire Sue Pemberton. ( ) So straight to the point and honest.    And the fellow that works so well next to her,  the aloof and ever so professional and composed Martin Hillier. ( ) So excited to recommend students try to assist or work at the Lounge in Vancouver because to work under him would surely inspire anyone. 

After all of that excitement 24/7 it can be a little shocking coming home and not having a buffet at your disposal, room service etc. etc.  The fond memories, chats, walks, drinks and endlessly making new friends is something that will last.  The key is to keep in touch with the people you meet especially at like minded events.  Something Vivienne MacKinder reminds me of is that people must bring and keep other people up.  Part of that is keeping each other inspired.  We have focused on Inspiration and what inspires us in theory for the past two weeks.  Best way to stay passionate about what you do is by remaining current and continuing your education!  If your not inspired go hang out somewhere that you will be inspired.  A love of mine once told me: You cannot fix a flower if it’s not blooming, you have to change it’s environment