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Brent Hardgrave's Extensions Biz

Dana Nasatir | August 19, 2016 | 10:02 AM
Brent Hardgrave, International artisan, Keune Haircosmetics, Educational and artistry ambassador, Aqua Hair Extensions | Owner, My Beauty Butler

To meet Brent and learn more about the HAIR+ category, join us at the HAIR+ Summit, Oct. 16-17 in Atlanta. Details and registration here: hairplussummit.com.

Atlanta-based stylist Brent Hardgrave looks at this market as untapped. When he is not traveling as an educational and artistry ambassador for Aqua Hair Extensions, Hardgrave runs his concierge hair service, My Beauty Butler, and works out of Atlanta’s Jamison Shaw Hairdressers once a week.

Between My Beauty Butler and his weekly stint at Jamison Shaw, Hardgrave spends more than half his time on extension work, the bulk of that being filler work.

“Women want a thicker ponytail for much the same reason as women put filler in their cheeks—they lose volume and density,” he says.

Hardgrave has found this segment to be emotionally fulfilling.

“If you can restore a client’s hair and give them back themselves, that’s huge,” he says. “The happy tears are crazy.”

Although initial profit doesn’t come from putting extensions in, the re-tape is pure profit, according to Hardgrave.

After the initial service, a client should pre-book their maintenance appointment for 8-12 weeks, depending on how fast their hair grows. At $30 per panel to remove and re-tape extensions, a client with 20 panels of hair is looking at $600 for the hour-long service. Working six hours a week at Jamison Shaw, he grossed $60,000 in services last year.

“My clients’ beauty budget is none of my business,” Hardgrave says. “My job is to give them options.”

When clients are unsure about extensions, Hardgrave will apply one panel to each side of the head to create a stronger hairline in front.

“Giving clients a taste is a good way to get them comfortable with extensions,” he says.

If clients want to experiment with less conservative color, he offers extensions as a temporary, easier-to-maintain solution.

For stylists interested in learning more about hair extensions, “Shadow, shadow, shadow,” Hardgrave says. “Find the superstar in your town, and ask to shadow them. It’s all about mentorship.”

He also recommends going to every class available and attending the same class more than once.

“You’re always going to pick up something more,” he says. “Anytime you have the chance, continue to educate yourself. That’s what makes a successful stylist.”

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