Reaching a New Level

As I said in the “About Me” box on this website, I like creative people, which is one of the reasons I moved to NY. It’s true that it’s a city full of freaks – of whom I already wrote at Just Like NY – but also a city filled with people who came here with the same purpose I have: to find themselves and to constantly grow.

Is it only in NY that you can spread your wings…? No, but this city certainly helps you to meet people with unconventional views who inspire you to do things you never suspected you were capable of. I’m lucky enough to keep meeting such intriguing characters over here. One of them is Laara, a British hair stylist running a styling workshop, who in the years 1986-1998 had trained with Roger Thompson himself (he was the creative mind behind Vidal Sassoon, and his name is a legend in the hair styling business). Not only did I offer my head to serve as learning material for one of Laara’s students, but I had the pleasure of talking to her of her New York City experience.

Laara has already accomplished much, mostly because – as she herself describes it – her mentor had simply believed in her. She admits there wasn’t anything that would have had given her a better motivation: “If there is someone you admire, and that person tells you you’re good at what you do, you don’t need anything more: you feel like you’re the luckiest person in the world”. Thompson kept mentoring her until his death in 1998. Now, in 2014, Laara says she feels she’s on the roll again, because… she found a new mentor. I admit I was surprised by her statement. I somehow thought that a woman of her position and achievements will assume a typical, comfortable approach: “I know what I need to know and I don’t have to learn anymore” (especially since she’s a mentor herself nowadays!). 

And yet, the opposite is true. She met the British hairstylist Tim Hartley and she’s fascinated with his work, as well as with his fresh approach to fashioning people’s hair. Her eyes were glowing as she told me she dreams of reaching his level of skill by pushing her abilities one level up. Her enthusiasm was contagious. Her approach made me realize that there’s no such thing as “the highest level” since there always be someone who will be better than us and who can be our teacher. What’s crucial is to keep your mind open and understand that the key to success lies in always reaching higher and higher: especially if we’re already the best at the level we’re currently at.

I recommend Laara’s website, as well as advise you to approach her about the free haircut. Laara always looks for new models . Believe me, you will trust her with your life the second you meet her.