I’m Justin Mackland, an apprentice stylist from Ishoka hair and beauty in Aberdeen. Although being fairly new to the industry, 2019 saw me successfully become a Digital Ambassador, representing the UK in Schwarzkopf Professionals #SKPCOLLECTIVE Team. Today, I’m absolutely honoured to be able to share my experience with you all on How To Cut it.
What is the #SKPCOLLECTIVE?
The #SKPCOLLECTIVE is an elite group of 12 digitally active Schwarzkopf Professional hairdressers from all over the UK and Ireland. This is an opportunity for hairdressers to take back control of the online space, which is so dominated by the current generation of beauty, fashion, lifestyle, bloggers and influencers. Instead of putting our products into the hands of these individuals, they are given to hairdressers to use and showcase online. This helps generate meaningful engagement for the hairdresser, their salons and Schwarzkopf Professional. But it’s not just about product. It’s about opening doors to opportunities where the hairdresser can find inspiration. The content we publish online is new and fresh and shows viewers that the hairdresser are involved in both salon-life and the wider world of hairdressing. The more varied the content we have on our social channel, the more interesting it will be to watch – thereby drawing attention from genuine and interested potential clients.
Why #SKPCOLLECTIVE ?
Ishoka is a Schwarzkopf Professional salon, so as I was introduced to the hairdressing industry I was also learning about this fantastic brand from the get go. From the training, to the products, to the people working for the brand, I had dreams of becoming part of the ‘SKP Family’. Growing up as a teenager, social media was always part of my world, so I have always been very familiar with using it daily. As I went through my training I thought I would start documenting my progress on an Instagram page to share my experiences with similar individuals. I wanted to be a voice, not an echo! Inspire other people to work hard and chase their dreams. Starting hairdressing at the age of 25 was not going to be easy, but this platform I had built with myself helped encourage my “now or never” attitude. I discovered the #SKPCOLLECTIVE through one of the original members Austen Thomson, who later invited me down to Edinburgh to assist him with a video for his YouTube channel. It was then I realised this is where I want to take my hairdressing and I’m forever grateful to him encouraging me to audition for the 2019/20 team.
Opportunities and Events…
The #SKPCOLLECTIVE 2019/20 team launched in June 2019 mixed with some of the original members from 2018 and us newbies! At the launch we received workshops on how to present yourself on camera and each member was gifted with a Schwarzkopf Professional Kit bag, including a selfie tripod, a portable charger and my favourite Schwarzkopf Pro over sized hoody. Nice! From then on we’ve become constantly updated with job offers such as fashion events and shoots that we can attend and style hair for to really showcase our skills as hairdressers. We were all invited along to judge the “Trend Image of the Year” category at the first round judging stage of the British Hairdressing Awards 2019 (which also included us all getting invited to attend the big night in November 2019). We attended Salon International 2019 in London, along with doing a variety of things such as the @schwarzkopfprouk Instagram Takeover, presenting our work on the Schwarzkopf Professional stand, styling models for industry legends like Jack Howard, and assisting the incredible Lesley Jennison and Tyler Johnston with their Salon Live show! If that wasn’t enough fun and inspiring opportunities for me, I was recently invited down to style hair for the fashion brand Forever Unique’s exclusive SS2020 launch party, alongside working with one of my biggest inspirations, Rick Roberts. Other highlights have include me judging the 2020 Coiffure Awards (Dutch Hairdressing Awards) and more locally in Aberdeen, I’ve got to style hair for fashion shows and host the social takeover for the Aberdeen Hair and Beauty Awards!
Hairdressing has changed my life in many ways. Becoming a Digital Ambassador for Schwarzkopf Professional has undoubtedly opened up so many career doors that would never have been possible. If you work in a UK or Ireland Schwarzkopf Professional salon, love your job and love digital, then I urge you to keep an eye out for auditions being held for the 2020/21 team. My confidence has grown so much and I can honestly say I’m so proud to represent this brand. There are also #SKPCOLLECTIVE teams for Germany, Austria, Switzerland and a version similar in Italy for any European readers.
I’d like to thank Phillip Bell, Malcolm MacNeil and Kathryn Longmuir at Ishoka for their continued support and always believing in me. I can’t wait to continue to making you all proud. Big love to Schwarzkopf Professional also for everything they have done for me!
2020 is a big year for me, so be sure to follow my journey.
All my love
Special thanks to today’s author Justin Mackland.