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Stylist Spotlight

2018 MODERN SALON 100: Alicia McLaughlin @thehairstylish

by Jamie Newman | August 1, 2018
<strong>Alicia “Lish Mac” McLaughlin</strong> (@thehairstylish) sprinkles her bubbly personality on her page of vibrant color creations.
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Alicia “Lish Mac” McLaughlin (@thehairstylish) sprinkles her bubbly personality on her page of vibrant color creations.
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<strong>Alicia “Lish Mac” McLaughlin</strong> (@thehairstylish) sprinkles her bubbly personality on her page of vibrant color creations.
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Alicia “Lish Mac” McLaughlin (@thehairstylish) sprinkles her bubbly personality on her page of vibrant color creations.
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Alicia “Lish Mac” McLaughlin (@thehairstylish) sprinkles her bubbly personality on her page of vibrant color creations. We love how she posts various angles and styles of each look to show off their versatility. Read more about McLaughlin here. 

Salon: Calista Salon, West Chester, PA

Specialty: Fashion color, braiding and blonding

Followers: 16.7K

Most viral post: Recently I posted a random throwback from September 2016. I had just done my friend Laura’s hair and I wanted to go back in time with the looks we have created over the years—this one reminded me of cotton candy. I posted it at a random time on a random day and it blew up. I feel like the posts you don’t overthink end up doing the best and the ones you think long and hard on fail.

Favorite apps: Phonto is my favorite watermark app. it makes it easy to show your handle without it overtaking the photo. I like to use it for flyers also; Facetune because I can fix the background and enhance my models’ facial features; no one wants a blemish on their face spread across the internet; and Splice for videos; it is really user-friendly.

Favorite hashtags: #westchesterpahair #unicorntribe #lishmagic

I follow: @Alix_Maya @bottle_blonde76 @pulpriothair @rebeccataylor @ameliahairmakeup @roxiejanehunt

Pro tips: It’s not only about the quality of the work, but your photo skills have to be ON POINT if you want your post to go anywhere. Lighting is definitely important. If you’re taking pictures inside you want to have a whole set-up. Invest in some soft boxes. Amazon has a wide selection for a decent price tag. I have soft boxes and a ring light; I tend to use both if I’m doing indoor photos. Also a nice background. I have a pop up one that I like to use. I also really live by the 30-hashtag rule. You have to put yourself out there with your posts, and hashtags are the way to target whomever you want to. I tend to put only my key hashtags in my caption (about 4-5) and then post the rest in the first comment. That way the caption looks nice and clean. Speaking of captions, I like to give each one a title in caps before diving in and explains my process. It draws attention to it and entices followers to read the rest to see where I got to that specific title in mind. Asking questions in your caption for your followers is a great idea because it makes them engage. 

Hidden beauty talent: I am pretty damn good at hair cutting. I never post too many of my cuts because they don’t get good traction, but I might start because cutting is just as important to me as coloring. Precision a-line bobs are my favorite!

Hidden talent: I’m a Halloween costume extraordinaire! I get a special kind of feeling when my kids are walking around on my favorite holiday, getting compliments on their handmade costumes by their mommy. I’m a good mom. That’s my hidden talent..

How social media changed my life: So many ways. Work used to be work before social media came into play. I just was doing the complacent daily struggle. Social media opened my eyes to what could be. I got extremely motivated to be a better by following the originals, @rebeccataylor and @guy_tang. They taught me all about fashion color and blonding, just by watching their YouTube and Instagram. They made me believe that hair was another medium for my art. I also love social media because of the social aspect. I am a social butterfly, and Instagram is like a huge playground. It’s a glorious thing to make friends with people around the world. Even if we never meet, we’re still friends looking out for each other and motivating each other every day. It’s a beautiful thing.

The first time I was featured on MODERN’s Insta: May 2015 you featured a before-and-after blonde that I did. Looking back now, it’s so funny to see how photos on Instagram have changed. This one is raw and a little grainy, but you saw the struggle of going from dried out canary yellow, to platinum. You saw beyond the photo and straight to the hard work. I was so EXCITED when I got a message from Maggie to send her all the formulas and info. It was what really lit the fire in me to push further into the social media scene. It made me feel like I could make my mark in this crazy hair world. So thank you!

See the full 2018 MODERN SALON 100 here!

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