How We Got Started
My name is Matt Brown, from Birmingham, England.
I have now been working in the hair-dressing trade for about 13 years ( and absolutely love it ). After leaving school with average pass grades, yet at, that time still not knowing what career path to take, I found myself taking any temporary work I could, to pay my rent and the accompanying usual bills. Eventually, I secured regular work with a local roofing and building contractor. The pay was fairly good, the work was hard and sometime the weather showed no mercy. I stuck this out for about five years, until, one cold and frosty morning, I recall myself jumping out of the old van, saying “ this just is not for me anymore ” I should very well imagine that most builders say the same on those type of mornings, but, for me I knew, that my head and heart meant it. I needed a change of career, so I quit.
Being of creative mind and passion, I began searching for a career path to use this in. It was purely by chance, that after a couple of weeks of quitting my job, one day while out shopping with my friend, I saw an advertisement in my local small, hair salon window, for an apprentice hairstylist. I have to admit, we hung about outside for a good hour, but, i can recall within that time, I found myself, occasionally staring through the window admiring the skill the stylists used to cut and transform hair, ( plus the fact they were doing it in the warm ). I eventually went in and applied for the position. The interview was very informal ,to say the least. After about two hours of a laughing and joking interview by the managers they felt that I had the right passion for what they were looking for and would like me to start work the next day. ( I’m still convinced, that they would have had me sweeping-up, cleaning and making tea that day, without pay ). I remember walking home in the rain that day thinking I had never given hairdressing a second thought as a career move.
Started work following day and quickly got promoted to the usual position as head of my department of broom sweeping, along with being the Chief tea / coffee maker, a position which I have held before and have been no stranger to in the passed.
Obviously, as part of the terms of my 2 year apprenticeship contract, I had to attend a day release course to collage, where I was one of two lads amongst 27 student girls ( very happy days ) yet, even with this type of young mans distraction, I was determined not to let anything stand in my way of learning and striving to become one of the best in this trade. About four month after starting my apprenticeship I felt comfortable and excited by what i was doing, I new that I had found my vocation in life. It was about then that I paid and put myself through an additional 12 week ( 1 to 1 ) cutting and colouring course on every Monday.
8 months into my apprenticeship, I was scouted by a top leading chain of salons and got invited to attend a 2 day hair dressing show-case at the Birmingham National Exhibition Centre's “ Clothes Show” where I worked on stage demonstrating styling technics, cutting and promoting hair products. Such was my growing skill and confidents at this early stage of my career, I was working along side hair stylists with 10 to 15 years experience under their belt and was able to gain off their experience. At the end of the show I was asked if i would like to attend again next year, which I happily accepted.
After completing the 12 week (1 to 1 course ) and with the approval of my manager, I approached a couple of leading salon chains and volunteered my services for free, for a few hours on their Monday evenings training sessions, which to my amazement they agreed to. For the next six months, I carried on working at every Monday evenings training sessions, constantly observing different styling technics from a wide selection of hair stylists. Towards the end of this period I was developing my own unique style of cutting and had a steady stream of models at the ready. I must confess, at one point even my parents pet dog “ Meg” was looking like a good contender for the “ Matt Brown styley cut.
So, within 18 months of starting my apprenticeship, I had built up quite a good reputation in the salon and it’s surrounding sister salons where by then I was acting stylist with my own clients.
After passing and finishing my apprenticeship training, I quickly moved up through the ranks, from stylist, to top stylist, to shop manager. Within this time I have had the privilege of being able to work and create hair styles for A-list celebs in the modeling and music industry along with styling sessions in videos and film shoots.
Now, after 10 good years of working for someone else, taking the big jump and opening my own salon seemed to me to be the right and natural thing to do. So I did.
In opened my hair salon in 2011.
And i remember saying when i first started in 10 years i want my own salon and guess what i was right.Within the last few years i have used many hairstyling products which were great but always thought i could tweak them and make them more customized to mine and my clients needs. So i decided to design my own brand called B-LINE which of cause is now available to purchase. Now so in a nut shell thats what I've been doing for the last 14 years.
So the advice i would give to hairdressers just starting out is learn with the best even if you have to travel a long way or if the pay is not that good to start of with ,or the digs closer to there aint all that. Look at the bigger picture the training is essential put it this way is you play footie with Lionel Messi every day and you have the enthusiasm, energy and drive, the chances are looking good for you it’s the same in hairdressing. matt xxx
PS.. Big up to my biggest number 1 fan Lilly