Education was the name of the game at the International Salon and Spa Expo (ISSE) Midwest this weekend-from the classroom to the infamous Legends and Icons Gala, educators were either teaching or being recognized all over the place!

John Simpson had a class yesterday that focused on the details of design, while also offering a number of color pattern examples that students could try on their own clients. Simpson talked about harmony (keeping colors and levels familiar), alteration (taking two or more colors in consecutive slicing-creating variation and interest), creating contrast/dimension and finding inspiration in objects. "Everyone's hair has different movement and personality," says Simpson. " Take a look at the structure of a headlight, a pyramid or a spiral staircase and think to yourself, ‘how can I translate that into hair?'"

ISSE Midwest at a Glimpse
 John Simpson teaching his class on color design.
ISSE Midwest at a Glimpse  
 John Simpson models

"Whenever you are trying to flip a red, many people try to decolorize the hair and as you do this it keeps compromising the integrity. Eventually, you end up with pink and then what do you do? Take pistachio green and neutralize the situation, THEN decolorize it. This way you will have a neutral base and then you can flip the canvas."

"Clients think if you do a ton of foils then they are getting their money's worth-but what matters more is if their hair is hot or not. Sometimes the most simplistic placement can be your strongest result."

"Remember life is not a dress rehearsal. Live it. Love it. Create it."

 After Simpson, Suze Orman took the stage in the International Talent Theater and boy was the audience PACKED! Orman was inspirational to watch, and she lent a lot of valuable personal and financial advice to audience members.


"If you are better than everybody else then you are valuable, invaluable-you're the cream of the crop. Use that to your advantage."

"Some stylists are afraid to charge what they are worth. Think this-the more you charge the more valuable clients will think you are and if you really are as good as the price, people will be willing to pay for it."

"Are you undervaluing who you are? What you can do? If people value you and you make them look good and feel good, they will keep coming back."

"The less money you claim you make, the more that's going to affect your retirement. Do you report the income on your tips? If you said no, you will get less social security later in life. You should also not retire until 67 or 70. Why? You will get 40 percent more money in retirement if you retire at 67 than 62. You will get 60 percent more if you wait until 70…"

"If you are going to raise prices, do it in small increments and if you are afraid this is going to disturb your customers, compromise with them."

"If you are thinking about opening a business right now I would think very hard about it-personally, I wouldn't do it right now." (Suze predicts the economy will get better in 2015.)

"The government, your mortgage brokers, your bankers are not going to save you…only YOU are going to save yourself."

Between education events I got a chance to stop by the Hello Gorgeous mobile DaySpa. This wonderful RV provides complimentary, professional makeovers and cosmetic education to all women battling all cancers. They create an experience for these women by pampering them with services like manicures, pedicures, facials and seated massage, plus instruction in new make-up application and hair care (or hair substitution) methods. For more information visit

ISSE Midwest at a Glimpse

I also sat in on one of Beth Minardi's classes and I also visited the International Fashion Theater to watch RUSK. Stay tuned for more coverage tomorrow (where there will be a blog that will give you the inside information on color formulas and cutting techniques for different models at these events.)

The night ended with the 2011 International Legends & Icons Charity Gala which marks PBA/NCA's fifth tribute to iconic individuals who have made a mark on the direction of our industry and the lives of salon professionals. This year featured LEGEND Yosh Toya and ICON Beth Minardi. These established educators, were awarded because of the influence and inspiration they have left on others in the beauty industry

 Yosh accepts his Legend award.
 ISSE Midwest at a Glimpse 

                                   Beth accepts her Icon award.

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