US

A career in hair styling

US
By Tooba Ghani
Fri, 06, 19

Us spoke to Zayn Uppal, a professional makeup artist and hairstylist, about what her job and the beauty industry is really like.....

CAREER COUNSELLING

Working in the fashion industry is not as glamorous as it looks, but for those who opt for it with all their heart and soul, it’s definitely a rewarding career.

Us spoke to Zayn Uppal, a professional makeup artist and hairstylist, about what her job and the beauty industry is really like.

Zayn Uppal studied marketing and worked as a brand manager for six years before entering the field of cosmetology. She learned hairdressing from Lebanon and now runs her own salon, Zayn Uppal’s Spa & Makeup Lounge, in Karachi.

Scope of hairstyling in Pakistan

“Well, the next era is all about hair. Recently, hairstyling has emerged as an exciting art form; middle eastern countries are ahead of the game and you will see that in the near future, professional hairstyling will a major part of salons in Pakistan. Today, we see that consumers and stylists show great interest in perfecting hair, and hairdressing.

“Generally people think a hairstylist cuts and makes pretty hair-dos, but they do more than that. They can change the way you look. They also make recommendations for hair care products to their clients, and help clients maintain healthy hair.”

Best places to learn hairstyling

“I would highly recommend going to Middle Eastern countries, especially Lebanon, to learn hairstyling.

“My most memorable moment is when I went to take an advance hairstyling course in Lebanon. There, I got to learn entirely new techniques and theories.”

Skills salons look for in a prospective candidate

“A hair stylist should know how to handle complex hair equipments, especially heating tools; if you don’t have a grip on the tools or can’t use the functions properly, you can damage or even burn the hair.

“Also, a hair stylist is judged on the basis of his/her creativity. Hair styling is not just about copying or recreating hairstyles correctly, but it’s also about giving a client something that enhances their look in a unique way.

“Clients can be quite challenging sometimes. They come up with pictures of hairdos and cuts and ask us to recreate the same thing without even thinking if those hairdos and cuts would suit them. One may also have to convince clients to prioritize quality over money. Good results require efforts and resources.”

The impact of social media on the beauty industry

“Digital platforms have changed consumer behaviour. In cosmetics, the shift is profound and provides lessons for everyone. Social media does more than channelling trends, it also creates them, and is now driving the creation of new techniques. Brands that have been able to react quickly have been able to unlock whole new revenue streams. Beauty industry will continue to grow.”

Describe a difficult experience you had with a client or co-worker and how you handled it

“Co-workers can be irritating! I get to know about their personality and work ethics over the period of time. Until you experience it yourself, you’ll not be able to handle it.

“Once I fired one of my staff members and I still mention that incident to my team so that everyone understands their job and doesn’t repeat other people’s mistakes.”

Advice for people who want to get into the beauty industry

“For me, the beauty industry always seemed daunting. I entered the industry very confidently as I knew that this is the place for me, but it also seemed impossible to find work that could sustain me over time. The best thing I ever did was work part-time in the industry, like collaborating with others. I also didn’t shy away from working for free.

“Find a makeup artist or a hairstylist and ask if you can assist them for free. Everyone needs help in some way, and they’ll remember the work you did when they are in a position to hire someone.

“A lot of young women who are looking to get into this industry should think smart and find a way to stand out from the rest.

“Until you experience it yourself, you’ll not be able to handle it. Enter the market with confidence, and you will do great. Once I fired one of my staff members and I still mention that incident to my team so that everyone understands their job and doesn’t repeat other people’s mistakes.”

- Tooba Ghani

Hair care tips

  • A lot of great products are being used around the world; in Pakistan, we get hold of some of the imported brands available among which CHI is the one I highly recommend.
  • Trending hairstyles and cuts: These days, long bob with straight hair is quite in. Along with this, middle-eastern inspired looks are also popular.
  • Difference between extenso, keratin and rebonding: Rebonding means breaking the actual bonds of hair to change their structure. Rebonding creams are applied first to break the bonds; later, straightening is done to achieve desired structure (sleek and straight). In the end, a fixer is applied to retain the sleekness. Remember new hair’s structure is not affected by it, only existing hair will become straight.

Extenso treatment is same as rebonding but it gives 20 percent volume along with sleek hair. It would make your hair dead straight for a week but in the next week you will notice volume. It gives more of a natural look. It won’t add shine. It harms your hair less than rebonding and it stays for three months.

Keratin is the structural element that makes the outer part of human skin. Keratin treatment also straightens hair and gives them volume, too. It is good for hair, adds shine and texture to hair as proteins are used in it to make hair straight so it doesn’t harm your hair. It suits thin fine hair or less voluminous hair.

It is a service/experience based scenario. The results can highly differ as well. Everyone uses their own preferred products which give different results.

Generally for any treatment, the first treatment gives you the best results, definitely. Multiple rebonding and extenso can me damaging. On the other hand, keratin doesn’t damage hair.