Articles > Events > amika’s First-Ever Stylist Retreat Offered Education, Fun & Nostalgia
Last updated: October 25, 2023

amika’s First-Ever Stylist Retreat Offered Education, Fun & Nostalgia

close formula
Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages

camp amika’s Top 5 Most Memorable Moments 

amika hosted their first-ever camp amika earlier this month at Cedar Lakes Estates in Port Jervis, New York against a backdrop of gorgeous fall foliage. The three-day event was packed with mainstage education segments, look and learn breakout sessions and so many fun nostalgic summer camp activities (like fireside chats, s’mores and hiking!).


The education included lessons in styling, cutting, social media, inclusivity and sustainability—and of course all things amika. Hairstylists from the U.S. and Canada attended the event and were the first to soak up all of the below education to use behind the chair.


1. Mainstage Segments Included Demos For Braids, Updos & Textured Hair

The first full day of camp amika kicked off with a mainstage segment lead by the brand’s pro team—Jamie Brice (@thestylist.jamie) offered tips for using hot tools on different curl patterns, Christina Carlsson @christinacarlssoncoif) built an extravagant braided editorial look and Mallory Savery (@styledbymal) styled a stunning bridal updo.


Here is a styling tip from each mainstage artist:

1. For extra-voluminous updos: To create an updo with tons of volume, Christina suggests deconstructing a mesh “hair donut,” place the mesh at the base of the updo, then form the desired look around the mesh to add volume, structure and shape.


Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages


2. For lots of texture: “If the goal is to have texture; work with it, not against it—don’t straighten!” says Jamie in regards to creating a textured look with textured hair. ” Instead, use the natural curls as your canvas and create a variety of curl patterns and dimension using a curling iron.


Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages


3. For long-lasting updos: When it comes to styling updos, Mallory shares her tip for long-lasting hold is to prep the hair with an anti-humidity product like amika’s the shield. “Even if you’re not in a humid climate, use a humidity shield because each person has their own humidity,” she says.


Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages


2. Here Are 3 Tips For Capturing The Best “After” Pics:

As both a session hairstylist photographer, Mallory knows a thing or two about capturing flawless hair content. After her mainstage segment, she brought all campers outside to demonstrate how to capture the best hair “after” pics on models in natural light. See below for three of her most important tips!


  1. Use the photography rule of thirds: For a well-composed shot, Mallory suggests using the rule of thirds which is a composition guideline that places your subject in the left or right third of an image, leaving the other two thirds more open. 
  2. Turn the iPhone “live photos” option on: The “live photo” option on iPhone (“motion photos” on Android) means your phone records what happens 1.5 seconds before and after you take a picture. Mallory advises using this feature as it increases your chances of getting the “perfect” shot of hair—especially as it moves.
  3. Know your lighting options: If you want to capture a silhouette, have the light behind the model. If you want hair color to translate well in photos, have the light in front of the model. 
Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages

3. HairTok 101: Everything Stylists Should Know

amika’s social team held a TikTok course for stylists to learn everything from the basics of the app, to how to prep for content creation as well as tips for recording and editing videos.


Here are three important things to include in your TikToks according to amika:

  • Hook: Begin your video with a hook to grab viewers’ attention within the first few seconds.
  • Line: Encourage viewers to engage with your content by including a call-to-action in your caption or at the end of your video.
  • Sinker: Add relevant text to your video to help identify what your video is about  and who it’s for.


camp amika


4. Look & Learn Courses Covered Dry Cutting, Finger Waves & Curling Coily Hair 

At the end of the first day of camp amika, pro stylists Yene Damtew (@yenedamtew), Sal Salcedo (@salsalhair) and Jes Jewel (@thejesjewel) all took the mainstage to demo three different styles which they went on to teach during look and learn courses the next morning.


Sal shared his takes on dry cutting, Yene offered tips for safely using heat on textured hair and Jes demonstrated how to create finger waves plus the importance of teaching your clients how to style their hair.


Key takeaways from each artist’s session:

  • Dry cutting allows you to get the full scope of the hair: “People don’t wear their hair wet. When their hair is dry, we can see natural texture, density and cowlicks,” says Sal. “If you want to get the most natural result, approach the hair in its most natural state.”


Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages


  • Style the front of the client’s hair first: When thermal styling, Yene suggests starting with the first two (smaller) quadrants of the hair, showing the client/making sure they like it, then work toward the denser back sections. “I don’t want to work through the bulk of the hair then try to change it,” she says.


Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages


  • Add-on styling courses will help your clients & make you extra income: “I’m sure you’ve had clients sit in your chair and say ‘I can never get my hair to look like this.’ Why are we not taking that as an opportunity to teach them?” posed Jes. Adding that she offers add-on styling sessions to teach her clients how to recreate looks.
Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages


5. Follow These Steps To Create A More Inclusive & Sustainable Salon:

amika’s brand ethos is comprised of being as sustainable and inclusive as possible, so it only made sense to hold a fireside chat talking all things sustainability and DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion). After sharing their own sustainability practices (they are a B Corp Certified brand!) and inclusive environment, amika pros offered steps for salons to take to ensure an environment that is both sustainable and inclusive.


  • An inclusive salon starts with inclusive education: Yene lead the inclusivity conversation and shared how knowing how to do all textures makes for a more inclusive salon. Don’t know where to begin? “Start within your own community and learn from texture [experts] how to work with textured hair,” she says.
  • A sustainable salon starts with doing your part: Leading the sustainability conversation was Jamie Richards, Director of Environment Social Governance at amika, who shared how using products from brands that can prove they’re actively trying to reduce carbon emissions, waste and energy is key to a more sustainable salon. 


Photo courtesy of amika, Michael Ostuni, @michaelostuniimages

Learn more about amika’s B Corp Certification here!

More from