salon secrets

Signature Style: How To Choose One & What Mistakes To Avoid

October 17th 2017

A client steps into your salon. Whether it’s their first visit or they’re one of your regulars, they’ve probably got a specific reason for being there: they want a hairstyle or hair color that they’ve seen on your Instagram. They’re looking to get your signature touch. FAB talked to three experts about their signature looks: Frédéric Mennetrier, the creator of Paris’s Atelier Blanc salon, Jenny Pelter, the technical director of the successful Westrow salon chain in the UK, and Yasmin Dastmalchi, the marketing VP for American brand Baxter of California.

Stand Out From The Crowd

Frédéric Mennetrier is a color expert who specializes in light. He chose his own signature style after many years spent working in the fashion industry. He explained to FAB that he “created the Atelier Blanc to be able to offer every woman the same attention and quality that models are treated to on the catwalk or on a photoshoot. I also chose to focus on working on the ways hair color interacts with light, just like we do in the studio”. In his opinion, the most important thing for a stylist is to make yourself stand out from other professionals. “If we all do the same thing, why would anybody chose to come to my salon over anybody else’s? You’ve got to make what you do different as well as offering lots of different options. That can be anything from the styles you do, the colors you’re an expert in or the way you work and interact with your clients.

Yasmin Dastmalchi from Baxter of California advised FAB that if you offer pompadour hairstyles, it’s important to give your work a few unique touches to differentiate it from all the pompadour styles you can find on Instagram. That way, when any future clients look at your account, they’ll see you’ve got your own signature style. It can be a little detail in the style itself, or even just in the way you take your photos!”

Most of all, before you choose your own signature style, it’s important to take a look at what the competition is doing.

How Should You Choose Your Signature Touch?

Yasmin told FAB that a signature style needs to be up to date. Don’t forget that your style can and should evolve with time, so don’t chose one definitive style and stick to it. You’ve got to remain current and to help you do that, a good idea is to consult fashion magazines and check out what’s going on at Fashion Weeks all over the world”. Jenny Pelter, from British salon chain Westrow, currently has a signature style based on long, relaxed curls that look natural, sexy, chic and, most importantly, effortless”. In her opinion, it’s important for a stylist to be able to “show off their innate sense of style, as well as to understand exactly what their client is looking for. That way you can vary your signature styles to each client so that their new looks take into account their personality too”. For Frédéric, an artist who keeps his focus on the latest Parisian trends and natural looks, developing a signature style is first and foremost about getting to know your clientele. Using his own salon as his example, he told FAB that our image is the Parisian woman, even though about half of our clients aren’t actually from Paris. To develop this aesthetic, we also developed our own way of working, which has become part of the Atelier Blanc’s DNA”.  

What Common Mistakes Do You Need To Avoid?

Although choosing a unique style or color can be a great way of showing off your talent, there are a few pitfalls you need to avoid. “Choosing blue hair as your signature style can be a good way of creating buzz, but how long will it last? From what we’ve seen it won’t be long, especially if you look at how many different new trends come out every month,” Frédéric told FAB.

When you choose your signature style, it’s probably best to avoid styles and colors that are too eccentric. The creator behind the Atelier Blanc insists upon the fact that any woman who comes into your salon is a client, she’s not a blank canvas you can go wild with. There’s a huge creative part to what we do of course, which helps me decide what to suggest to each individual client, but you should never forget that we’re also business people creating styles our clients will live with everyday”.  

Yasmin agrees that you should avoid always focusing on your signature style at all costs. She recommends “making sure that your signature style actually reflects what your client wants, perhaps by varying it based on their face shape”.  

So, on top of being a great way to express your creativity, a signature style is also a fabulous marketing tool that can help you grow your client base and brighten your salon’s future.