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Last updated: April 16, 2019

So You Want to Be An On-Stage Educator? Read This…

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A How-To Guide to Becoming a Brand Educator

Is your 2019 goal to become an on-stage educator? We hear you—inspiring other hairdressers to take their careers to new heights is incredibly motivating! So where do you get started? We’ve got the scoop from the L’ANZA Healing Haircare Artistic Design Team. Keep reading for their tips on how to become a brand educator.


The L’ANZA team took over the BTC House in West Hollywood for its Artistic Design Team auditions, where current L’ANZA educators worked in teams to showcase not only their styling skills, but also their time management, presentation abilities and ability to organize and complete a photo shoot. Mentoring throughout the process were L’ANZA Global Creative Director Matt Swinney (@matt.swinney) and Artistic Directors Ammon Carver (@ammoncarver), Leah Freeman (leahfreeman1) as well as Artistic Design Team Member Mark Dolan (@markdolan2). The Artistic Design Team is L’ANZA’s highest educator level (outside of achieving Artistic Director titles), meaning these team members take the world’s biggest stages (like at The BTC Show!).


judges, auditions, hairdressers, stylists
Audition Mentors: Matt Swinney, Leah Freeman, Mark Dolan and Ammon Carver.


While the educators were hard at work, we spoke with the mentors to find out what they are looking for from these candidates and why the progression from educator to brand ambassador is an important step.

See Mark and four more cutting experts (plus balayage, texture experts and celeb styling!) in Dallas May 20! Tap HERE to grab those tickets ASAP before they sell out! 


How Do You Become an Educator For a Brand?

Becoming an educator for a brand can begin to elevate your career from behind the chair and allows you to gain education training on a smaller scale to prepare you for one day educating from a main stage. Building confidence and skill is a viable asset into becoming an educator and mentor. Not to mention the perks:

  • You’ll learn about trends and products before anyone else gives you an advantage behind the chair with your clients.
  • You’ll be an expert in your salon, so you can help your salon team grow and grow your confidence with explaining and teaching in a hands-on environment.


So how to do it? There are two ways to go about becoming a brand educator:

  1. Take the initiative with a brand that you really enjoy. Contact the brand’s head of education and gather any and all information you can to be a part of the education team.
  2. Really perfect your knowledge and skill with a brand and their products. Work up enough of a platform that the brand personally asks you to become an educator for them.


hairstyling, judging, competition, auditions, educator
Mentor Leah Freeman critiquing Tashya Garoutte during the Facebook Live.


Why would an educator want to become a brand ambassador?

“It’s a growth pattern,” Ammon explains. “They learn the skills that they need and are then able to pass them on to other educators.”


Participating in the process is important to gain leadership skills. “When you begin as an educator, or a level one, you start to learn the process of what it takes to lead a team,” Matt explained. “You can’t lead a team if you’ve never be a part of a team.”


hairstyling, mentor, education, auditions
Artistic Team Member Mark Dolan giving Sally Lemmo direction during prep.


As the only Artistic Design Team member so far, Mark gave a unique guidance to the educators auditioning. L’ANZA education works on a level system, so going through the process of each level is important, Mark explains. “Working through all the levels gave me time to grow as an artist. Now being an Artistic Design Team member, I get to have more responsibility and ownership of my work and pass that along to other educators and I’m proud of that.” 


Not only is this the next step for educators, but Leah also emphasized that the L’ANZA Artistic Design Team is also about opportunity and purpose. “L’ANZA is always looking for the next person. Who else can we grow? We else can we put in the next seat?”


photoshoot, audition, hairstyling
Matt Swinney assists Tashya Garoutte during the photoshoot portion of the audition.


What are some of the responsibilities of an Artistic Design Team Member?

“It’s all about creating a strong core team of stylists that can handle working shows and events,” Leah began. Artistic Design Team membersmust be able to do the following:


  • Organize a show from start to finish. Create a vision on what you want to address, teach and demonstrate and have a plan of attack to execute.
  • Create a script for the AV crew, including necessary slides, lighting cues, stage setup, etc.
  • Manage a model room, including working with makeup and wardrobe, managing time to complete all models and overseeing other educators.
  • Organize a photo shoot, including creating mood boards, planning the day’s schedule and working with photographers, makeup and wardrobe.
  • Assist the Artistic Directors by acting as a soundboard for them to run ideas by and being confident in giving your assertions.


Ammon carver, auditions, hairstyling, facebook live
Christina Carter hears Ammon Carver’s critiques during the Facebook Live.


“We rely heavily on our Artistic Design Team members,” Ammon stressed. “Since we are being pulled in a lot of different directions, our ADT members become the nuts and bolts behind the scenes that put a show together.”



Want valuable feedback on stage presentations, editorial styling and being an educator? Click here to watch the auditions on Facebook Live!

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