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Solo Artist

Changing Stages

Victoria Wurdinger | February 26, 2015 | 11:38 AM

Jeneva Hamer left a high profile career as a platform educator, shifting her passion “to perform” into diligently maintaining her personal salon suite business. Here, her own, first-person account and Solo Artist profile.

Solo Artist Snapshot

Jeneva Hamer:  hairdresser and independent suite owner

Jeneva Suite @ Studio Salons: Las Vegas, Nevada

Licensed:  1997

Going solo:  I became “my own boss" in 2010; it was a tremendous leap of faith after working under some big names.

Going solo:  I became “my own boss" in 2010; it was a tremendous leap of faith after working under some big names.

My space: I lease a suite and instead of keys, we use coded doors, and have keys to the building entrance.

Making it my own: The studios come standard with wall sinks and big, bulky stations. I had mine taken out and added my own stand-behind bowl. I use a white chair. (I have to bleach color off all the time) I love it though. I have a pink tool box and a color holder designed by a friend of mine to hold open tubes and one of my designer girlfriends made me a Roman shade. My old scissors are decorated and framed on my wall. My studio is on the second floor, overlooking the Las Vegas strip.

Pricing and services: I charge $75 for hair cuts (low compared to what I charged at the salon on the strip). I want my clients to be able to afford me regularly. I always style afterward. I have a hard time watching people leave undone.

Products and tools: I prefer Hikari scissors. I like itty bitty 5-inch models. I have small hands. I love the old-school word scissors instead of shears, too.

I come from a Paul Mitchell background, so my favorite tools are actually quite basic. My number one is a chopstick. Can't imagine life without them. I ALWAYS use 413 brushes. Spring time is a great time to purchase them in bright fun colors. I always ask my rep what is new, fun, and bright. I also use florescent colored combs. My hot tools and dryer are Neuro Paul Mitchell.

My go to styling products are predominantly Paul Mitchell but I have to be honest and say I have completely fallen in love with most of the AG line. It's an upscale, swanky line that involves prepping the hair in the same way you prep the face for makeup.

New faves: My newest product(s) that I love are Milkshake leave-in conditioner and AG BB cream, a fantastic primer. Also, Paul Mitchell Dry Wash is a lifesaver to us work-out fanatics.

My schedule: I work anywhere from 4-6 days a week. I take every other weekend off with my daughters. Most of my work days start at 10:30 a.m. and go until about 7:30-8.

Biz strategies: I find the best way to build and retain my business is to pre-book and to send a confirmation text the day before. I find if you take care of your clients, stay consistent in your prices (without tacking on unexpected costs), and most important, keep current with upcoming trends, your clients. 

Challenges: The biggest challenge I face as a business person is staying diligent. To be a solo stylist you have to be extremely responsible. I never miss a day. I do a color product order every week. I track every box of color I open. I mop every day. I like things tidy. In a small space, things can go awry quickly. My motto is: “Sign of a pro, clean as you go!"

Why a Solo Artist? Solo works for me because I am a seasoned stylist and privileged to have an extremely good client base. Being on my own allows me the privacy of spending time alone with my guest, but I also have the option to explore what other professionals are using and doing at studios around me. I never mind sharing creative knowledge or a tube of color with a neighbor.

I found that being in a salon atmosphere with a regular schedule was no longer for me and I didn't want to ask for a special schedule or for time off. I felt that would not be a good example to set for the other, young professionals in the salon.

I had done years of educating and platform work, and while that was amazing, I realized being behind the chair is the best for me.

Advice: No matter what salon environment you work in, remember to plant your garden by sponging up as much education as possible. Our business is constantly evolving so it is important to stay current. Also, know that there is enough room for all of us!  Success stories warm my heart. I am happy to share ALL of my secrets.

Follow me: On instagram @jenevadiva7

I love it when my guests choose violet reds. #vrfan #paintedhair #balayage #goldtonescanbebeautiful

A photo posted by Jeneva Hamer (@jenevadiva7) on

 

I've been bonkers for bobs my entire life. This is one of my many favz I cut last week. #bobhaircut #haircut #ilovemyjob #bobsfordays

A photo posted by Jeneva Hamer (@jenevadiva7) on

 

Thank you @jenstyling for letting me get dippy with those ends. #alwaysfunandbubblegum #hairart #dippedends

A photo posted by Jeneva Hamer (@jenevadiva7) on

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