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Laura Polko On Being An In-Demand Celeb Stylist & 2021’s Hair Trends You Should Know
Your Gen Z clients’ mood boards probably look A LOT like this: The Hadid sisters, Emma Chamberlain, Dixie and Charli D’Amelio and “Outer Banks” star Madelyn Cline. For celebrity stylist Laura Polko (@laurapolko), that A-List happens to be her clientele.
The Aquage ambassador shared her best advice for becoming a successful stylist, working with the internet’s favorite celebs, the trends clients will be requesting and MORE at Aquage and RUSK’s Reset event in San Antonio, Texas. Read it all below!
Learn the trends on your client’s request list
Your next client just walked in requesting their fave celeb hairstyle—are you ready to deliver? Laura demoed her techniques for creating a Y2K topknot and soft waves. We’re sharing her pro tips for both looks below!
Get The Look: Sleek + Spiky Topknot
Pro Styling Tips
- The sleek foundation:
- Leave 1.5 to 2 inches out around the hairline. Pull this section into the base ponytail last.
- Sleek factor: Apply Aquage Transforming Paste in your hand and layer with Aquage Finishing Spray on top for extra hold!
- Seal in the front section with Finishing Spray. Typically, you would mist further away from the head to avoid hard marks. For this look, Laura actually moves the can closer to the hair for sleekness that hugs the head shape.
- The spiky topknot:
- Wrap the hair loosely into a bun, so the ends are sticking out.
- Secure the bun and brush out the spiky ends exactly where you want them. Apply Finishing Spray and run through the hair with a flat iron to lock in place.
Get The Look: Romantic Waves + Side Part
Pro Styling Tips
- Fine hair is ideal for this style and will result in a fluffier, lighter finish.
- Determine the parting: Look for where the client has natural lift.
- Laura creates an airy foundation with Aquage Uplifting Foam.
- Do NOT alternate wave direction. Instead, wave away from the face on each side to work with the hair’s natural fall.
- Mold the waves and control flyaways around the face-frame with Aquage Detailing Crème.
- Laura adds texture to the waves with Transforming Paste and Aquage CBD Pomade for extra texturizing with a matte finish.
Want to become a celeb stylist? Read this advice!
Personalize every look with tailored details.
Your client may think they like their hair slicked back, but they actually don’t, says Laura. This is where detail comes into play. “Even if it is the little nuances like a baby part versus all the way back, or straight down and low—you really need to pay attention to face shape, what [the] makeup is doing and what your overall vibe is,” Laura shared. Plus, take into account the client’s comfortability.
Remember: The end goal with every client is that they feel confident.
What Laura discovered working with celebrity MUA Patrick Ta.
For celebrity stylists, collaboration is the norm and every artist has a part to play. In her experience working with @patrickta, Laura has learned the importance of cohesiveness—every element needs to work together. The shape of the hair needs to match the face shape and eye shape to achieve a desired finished look.
For example: If the eye makeup is going up, you must avoid a hairstyle that will pull the eye shape down. Instead, match the hair direction to the makeup direction to create the coveted *snatched* shape clients love.
Stay true to yourself and only promise what you can deliver.
“Anybody that does hair [or] makeup, people are paying for your skill but they’re also paying for you,” says Laura. “They like you. That interpersonal part of it is so important. You always want to look your best, so you want to hire people that will help you and you know will deliver results. Also, [people that] feel confident that they’re going to make you feel good. I’m not going to do things that I don’t feel like I can deliver.”
Remember: You don’t need to be an expert at EVERYTHING. Play to your strengths and know your weaknesses.
Understand the components of what you’re walking into.
“Is your client calling the shots, are you calling the shots [or] a stylist? However that looks, it’s good to know what you’re walking into and have all the confidence you need and be 100 percent yourself,” stresses Laura. “Don’t go along and say ‘I got it’ if you don’t feel good, because it’s going to reflect,” she added. “Everything that comes in your mind is coming out of your hands onto someone’s head.”
Find the balance between your inspiration and your client’s needs.
“All my inspiration comes from the overall vibe,” says Laura. “I love girls to look cool and to look sexy and to feel really confident. At the end of the day, my clients are leaving, getting in a car by themselves and they have to get on a carpet by themselves. You’re just the pep rally getting [them] going.”
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