Hair Stylist Interview: Danica Arielle Davis Of Costa Mesa, CA
Q: Tell a little about yourself personally and if you attended school or you are self taught hairstylist?
A: 19 clumsy and shy, that’s the story of my life. Ive been farting around with my own hair as well as friends and family years before i decided to go to cosmetology school, why anyone trusted me is a mystery to me but it always seemed to come out alright.
I attended James Albert School of Cosmetology in Costa Mesa, CA. The location I was at before it moved was a little crappy hole in the wall, but it was my crappy hole in the wall school. I wouldn’t have traded it for the world or the thousands of dollars to go to Paul Mitchell.
Q: Do you think going to school for hairstyling is important to excel in the business later on?
A: In all honesty, cosmetology school is just to pass your state board which is very important but it doesn’t teach you all of the salon techniques you’ll learn while assisting.
Another thing that it does get you familiar with is all the nut jobs you re going to have to deal with, and trust me you will deal with the most nut jobs in cosmetology school. They always like cheap things yet want to get more than what they pay for, its a good lesson for the salon world.
Q: Did you always long to be an artist, or did you stumble upon your talent by chance? Who or what inspired you to become a hair stylist?
A: I’ve always been that artsy fartsy type and doing hair is the only thing Ive ever seemed to be good at. It seemed like a win-win situation to me, and why not make money while I’m doing what I’m good at? not to mention making people look and feel better than before they sat down in my chair.
Q: What is your favorite or most exciting aspect about your job?
A: I am infatuated with the feeling of creating. I also just love showing clients their hair through my eyes if they re brave enough to let me. Another thing i love to do is experiment, i often find myself in the back room in the salon getting hair from the trash can and trying out different color formulas that i haven’t tried yet. It makes me feel like a mad scientist.
Q: What surprises you most about working as a hair stylist?
A: How much your clients appreciate their hairstylists. When Ive received gifts from clients i thought to myself “wow,they really love what i do and appreciate my work,this is rad.”
Q: Describe your “Classic Approach to Beauty.” how do you define beauty?
A: I don’t know if others agree but to me beauty is taking something ugly, strange, maybe even questionable, and making it your own and making it “work.” For example, a girl friend of mine shaved her head once, it was one of the most beautiful things Ive ever seen. She had never looked more fierce.
Q: What individual products and brands you’re “addicted” to at the moment and you use on a daily basis?
A: Sudzz FX has been my favorite line lately, all of their products i have used has done better than i expected. Usually i tend to pick and choose different products from different lines but i love everything in their line. not to mention their prices are fair.
Q: What are some of the most basic but effective hair care tips that you have, that are really important?
A: Use a heat protection product on your hair if you plan on using a flat iron, curling iron, or blow drying. When you don’t see steam coming off your hair that means its burning your hair and not the moisture. if you get a product to protect your hair against heat you need something with a water base to it so that it evaporates and doesn’t get fried into your hair.
Q: What is the biggest hair care dont’s?
A: DON’T DO YOUR OWN HAIR. Not everyone is a hairdresser and has a natural talent with hair, i mean I’ll gladly take your money and fix it but its so unnecessary.
Q: Have you had an extreme, crazy or bad experience with a hair care product? If so, what happened?
A: So far so good, lucky for me i think about things before i do them.
Q: What do you find to be the most common mistakes women make with hair color?
A: Once again, most people should NOT do their own hair, specially color. They see the color on the box that they want and don’t realize that person on the box probably has completely different hair. often times women make their hair too ashy or too brassy.
Q: What’s the worst thing a woman can do to her hair?
A: Putting a chemical relaxer or a perm on bleached/lightened hair. Its just a disaster.
Q: What’s the one haircare tool you simply can’t live without?
A: This is my flat iron. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My flat iron is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. My flat iron, without me, is useless. Without my flat iron, I am useless.
Q: What do you think are best/worst trends in the hair industry right now?
A: I absolutely hate middle parts. i don’t know why i just get infuriated with them. unless you have a perfectly symmetrical face do not wear a middle part, it doesn’t look good.
Q: Do average girls needs to splurge on high-priced hair care products, or are drugstore items are just as satisfactory?
A: Professional hair care products make such a huge difference and I’m not just saying that because i like people buying products from my salon. Ive run out of my good shampoo before and had to use this back up cheap shampoo and it dried my hair and scalp out after using it twice. you get what you pay for.
Q: Do you have any general tips/tricks for extending color between visits?
A: Using a good shampoo will help a lot, specially a sulfate free one. also if you don’t have naturally greasy hair try not to wash it every day,natural oils are good for it anyways.
Q: Can anyone go red or do you feel that color works best with certain skin tones/hair types?
A: Not everyone can go red, its definitely something you have to have the right look and skin tone for. there is a reason your natural red heads look different from everyone else.
Q: Do you feel anyone can go blond or should the look be reserved for certain skin tones/hair types?
A: For all colors your skin tone plays a big part, not everyone can pull it off. sometimes the haircut you have can also make a big difference on making the color look good or not.
Q: Which hairstyles do you tend to do the most often? Which hairstyles are the most popular?
A: I have actually been doing a lot of rat tails on guys lately, i guess its just another trend no one can explain.
Q: What do your clients think of you? What are some individual testimonials?
A: I’m a little on the shy side which is definitely hard in this industry, but most of the time clients tell me how gentle and observant i am.
Q: Would you share some of your future goals, your life motto, any words of wisdom that get you by in life and professional career?
A: As long as I’m making a living doing hair then I’m happy, but who knows that could all change some day. i don’t know if id ever want to own a salon, i couldn’t deal with whiny hairdressers every day.
When i went to the ISSE show in long beach this hot shot guy from BaByliss PRO had told me “its not what you know sometimes, its who you know” while he was shoving a free flat iron and clippers in my bag for free because my coworker i was with was well connected. Its not a really touching or wise motto but unfortunately its true sometimes for this business.
Q: What tips and advice do you have for aspiring hair stylists just starting out?
A: Hairdressing is not an easy way out if you just don’t want to go to college and want to make money. Most of your classmates from cosmetology wont graduate or wont pass their test, or they just wont do anything with their license. Only do this if you are passionate about doing hair or you re going to be miserable because its a lot of hard work.
Connect with Danica via her MySpace profile.