Dominick Serna @domdomhair is a SoCal native and stylist at Chris McMillan The Salon in Beverly Hills. Serna is known for his cool-girl cuts. Women leave his chair with unstructured waves and organic shapes that look perfectly imperfect. He is also a go-to for advice about how to treat thinning hair (1 out of 4 women will experience hair loss at one time or another*) and how to up your social media profile (he has 428k followers on Instagram, as of today). In this short Q and A, we ask him about both, as well as where he derives inspiration:
Modern Salon: It can be a sensitive topic but how do you suggest stylists begin the conversation around thinning hair? What’s a good lead-in or good language to use?
Dominick Serna: It’s good to be straight up and honest from the get-go. Avoid saying 'you’re losing your hair' and focus on using the word 'fuller.' Most importantly, I let them take the lead. If they want to explore treatment, I offer recommendations that I know are going to work (like Rogaine). If they’re not ready to explore treatment (which is okay!) I work with them on specific cuts tailored to create the illusion of fullness.
MS: What are some cutting techniques that can create the illusion of more volume or of fullness? And what cutting techniques or tools should be avoided?
DS: Heavier lines and concave layers create the illusion of more fullness. Avoid using thinning shears.
MS: What are some product-usage tips you would suggest, especially for styling at home?
DS: Don’t wash your hair as much. Keep it simple, less is always more.
MS: Skilled colorists can create the illusion of depth, etc. with careful placement and shading. How do you collaborate with colorists to help your clients with thinning hair?
DS: The keys to working well with a colorist are a good consultation and making sure you and the colorist are on the same page to ensure you don’t cut into the depth they created.
MS: What is most gratifying about helping clients with hair loss or thinning hair concerns?
DS: Seeing my clients’ happiness is always the biggest reward, whether they’re seeing results from effective products and treatments or they’re just happy with a great haircut. I want my clients to feel like they’re in control of their hair’s “destiny” and seeing their happiness when they know they’ve regained control is truly gratifying.
MS: Tips for stylists who are trying to increase their social presence/build their social platforms? What can they do to set themselves apart today, when everyone is trying to “be big” on social media?
DS: Be consistent and post good content. If you want good results, do it like you were going to the gym.
MS: Brand partnership advice for stylists – what is important to consider when deciding to partner with a brand? How to make a partnership beneficial/meaningful for both brand and stylist? Key takeaways based on his experience?
- Be authentic and work with brands you believe in and can stand by. It’s not just about the money.
- Do your research before you work with a brand. What is the company about? Do they represent something you believe in?
- Collaboration is so important. Work together as a team – teamwork makes the dream work.
MS: How often do you clean-up or curate your feed?
DS: I don’t curate my feed, I just post what fits my lifestyle. I never take anything off my Instagram. It’s best to just do your thing on social media.
MS: Whose work on social really inspires you? Who do you follow?
MS: What Apps do you use for creating IG posts?
DS: VSCO and PicFrame
MS: Outside of stylists, what artists/musicians/designers do you follow and whose esthetic do you really love?
@markwahlberg - Inspire to be better!
MS: What do you say to stylists who say they ‘hate’ social media or they ‘don’t’ have the time’ to share and post their work?
DS: You’re blowing it! It’s free marketing.
* Statistic from Rogaine