Stephanie Bloom, a Platinum.KEY educator for KEVIN.MURPHY, is Premier Beauty’s July Educator of the Month.
Stephanie Bloom is a Platinum.KEY educator for KEVIN.MURPHY
…and she’s pretty excellent. Her dedication to teaching and learning is why Stephanie is Premier Beauty’s July Educator of the Month.
Fun facts about Stephanie: She shaved her head more than a year ago for St. Baldrick’s
and decided to keep it, plus she has a KEVIN.MURPHY tattoo. We could go on…and we will.
How long have you been educating?
Since 2011. I fell in love with the KEVIN.MURPHY product line. First, I was Gold.KEY, then certified for Platinum.KEY in November 2013. It all blends together at some point!
Why did you become an educator?
When I was in beauty school, I knew I wanted to do something in education because I was always passionate about sharing what excited me about hair.
KEVIN.MURPHY is so passionate about educating. In any KEVIN.MURPHY salon, you’re going to find an environment where people are really passionate about education.
What inspired you to get a KEVIN.MURPHY tattoo?
I got it because I love getting art on my body that represents parts of who I am. Since the hair industry is so important to me and KEVIN.MURPHY plays such a big role in that, it seemed to make perfect sense. I also think the packaging is the most beautiful and interesting design I have ever seen for beauty products.
How has becoming an educator influenced your life in the salon?
When you have to write something down in order to teach it, you always have to take a look at how and why you’re doing it. You have to be more mindful about your own work.
With KEVIN.MURPHY, the styles and looks they present us are really challenging. When I go to training, I’m really forced out of my comfort zone. Being forced to do something that isn’t my day-to-day norm makes me a better stylist.
What has educating taught you?
Patience, because people learn at different paces. It’s also taught me how to be a better learner when I’m being trained. It’s made me more mindful.
I’ve also learned that feedback is important. Sometimes people get the glazed-over look on their face and I’m looking around the room like, “Is this resonating for anyone? I need feedback! What’s happening in your head?”
Any tips for educators?
Ask open-ended questions and give other people permission to throw out answers. I always tell people, “You’re not wrong!” I think stylists can be pretty hard on themselves. It’s not so serious that you can’t take a shot at the answer, even if it’s not 100% perfect.
Most memorable moment you’ve had as an educator?
There are a bunch! This one’s nothing in particular, but I love the moment when someone gets really excited because they get it. That’s what keeps me coming back.
Advice for stylists who want to become educators?
Educating itself is not hard work, but everything that goes along with—planning, logistics, time, travel, training—is the complicated stuff. Making it all happen behind the scenes is a lot of work. It’s rewarding and it’s worthwhile but be prepared with the work that comes along with educating. Get some experience coordinating an in-salon class or a show before you decide to jump into education.
Be ready to jump in and do work where you might not get credit. It’s a “bigger cause” sort of thing.
I asked a woman I saw assisting Kevin Murphy in New York how she got to that point. She told me to “pay attention.” It’s stuck with me ever since. Be willing to do whatever you have to do.
What is your favorite product to use on clients and yourself?
FREE.HOLD because of the versatility. I love that it can create pliable structure, which seems impossible. You shouldn’t be able to move it but you can.
I also have a shaved head, so I don’t really use product on myself! When I did have hair, though, I used SMOOTH.AGAIN because my hair is curly and coarse, so it’s frizzy. This blow-dry cream fights frizziness and gives a silky seal and shine to the hair, making it tamed but touchable.
What’s your favorite trend happening now?
I still love braids. I am a huge fan of everything to do with braiding.
Where do you look for inspiration for dressing hair other than Kevin Murphy?
Street style is my main hair inspiration. People I see day-to-day in the city, in different neighborhoods, give me my biggest inspiration.
Stephanie, also a stylist at Boutique Noir, will start training in January as a Cutting.KEY for KEVIN.MURPHY. For more Premier Beauty stories, read our blog
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