"I started with tie-dying a lot during Covid as a way to be creative but not to do it as a means of making money, JUST to be creative and make something beautiful and relax my mind while doing it."
Ashley is an LA-based freelance hairstylist and co-founder for STRIIIKE, a beauty space that she runs with her two sisters. She has launched a collection of R+Co products and regularly contributes to Garnier.
We're thrilled to share her story and how she's taken strides in pivoting during a global pandemic that has shut her industry down (twice).
The beauty industry has seen a lot of highs and lows since COVID hit, while there has been a huge uptick in beauty sales, salons have also been closed. What does work look like for you each day?
I've been working on clients in-person far less, but have been able to shift to social media to connect with a wider range of people and show more of my technique and ideas for hair. While launching a hair product collection in a pandemic has certainly had its lows (R+CO is mostly sold by salon stylists in salons) I’ve been able to talk more to the consumer one on one and teach the client to learn their own hair and work with that. It's been a great time for me to slow down and put more energy into these products and what I believe they can do for people and share that over a huge audience. I normally would have been far too busy working on clients IRL to be able to be attached to my phone in this way. I know it's temporary, so I'm trying to make the most out of this time.
How has navigating through a crisis helped you prepare your business goals for the coming year?
It’s forced us to put energy into different areas and make the most of the current situation and needs of clients. We (Striiike) have become more of a market place for products and lines we love and that are small and local that we can help out that also helps us out. We have a great community of beauty businesses.
What tangible advice would you give to someone looking to enter into your field?
Hair is something that's ever-changing. So it's important to be good with change and be flexible and creative..
What do you think people can do to band together?
Being a small business we lean on and are supported by other small businesses. It's important to build your community and all help each other out. The more support and community you have the bigger you can become.
We’re more than 5 months into a global crisis, do you have any tips for how to manage your mental health?
Try to find hobbies and things that bring you joy. We (I) have so much extra time, that sometimes it can be uncomfortable. I know that I would run on high at all times before this, so much so that I didn't have time to have certain emotions etc. So it's important to take this time to maybe be a little uncomfortable, sit with it, be easy on yourself and find things that are easy on your mind. I started tie-dying a lot during Covid as a way to be creative but not to do it as a means of making money, JUST to be creative and make something beautiful and relax my mind while doing it.
What inspires your work?
I'm inspired by nature. I love the outdoors and nature. I find the best things/ideas/thoughts come to me when i'm immersed in nature.
What are your silver linings in all of this?
Realizing that we all need to slow the F@$K down!
“ My Superpower: I may not remember your name but I will somehow remember EVERY conversation I have with all my clients. Even years from now!”