Life of a Stylist: Jenn Linton on Juggling Salon Life with Fashion Week
The Life of Stylist series interviews individuals from the professional hairdressing industry who have a variety of different roles. In this episode, HJ speaks to Jenn Linton who is co-managing director of Linton & Mac in Aberdeen and she reveals how to juggle running a salon with working backstage at fashion week.
How did Jenn Linton become a hairdresser?
I drove past a salon every day when I was going to school and always said to my mum that I wanted to work there. When I was 15 I decided to ask the salon for a job and they gave it to me. I started my training there and completed it at Migele Experience. In 2010 I moved to Aberdeen and got a job at Ishoka. I was there for three and a half years and learned so much with them. I always knew I wanted to have my own salon and had loads of ideas. I worked my socks off for two years as a self-employed hairdresser to save and learn more on how to run accounts and stock. This gave me the confidence to open Linton & Mac when I was 25. It’s been a crazy four and a half years and I’ve been lucky enough to enter competitions, awards, assist at fashion week and do photoshoots with some of the biggest names in the industry.
What is Jenn Linton’s present role?
I am the salon owner of Linton & Mac. I currently do three days of clients in the salon in Aberdeen and I use my other time to grow the business. I am hands-on in accounts, marketing, training and managing, so this does take a lot of my time. I’ve also been part of Richard Phillipart’s art team for eight months working on shoots and assisting him at fashion week.
What are the pros and cons of your role?
I love the diversity of my job. I also love travelling and meeting new people. However it can be challenging managing my time in and out of the salon.
What are your tips for building a name in the industry?
From a marketing perspective it’s crucial to know your brand goals and share them with others. Don’t waste energy trying to be good at everything and focus on what you are good at – make that your goal. Decide what clients you want to attract and make sure you target them. Use social media for free marketing and use it to network with clients and others within the industry. It’s also really important to build relationships with the local press.
What challenges have you faced in your career so far?
My biggest challenge to date has to be being a salon owner. Having employees is like having a lot of children that depend on you. Learning how to people manage and get the best out of everyone and learning that not everyone thinks the same as you has also been a challenge.
What are your tips for someone who wants a career like yours?
My biggest tip is one that I’m still trying to teach myself – you need to find a balance in everything. Say yes to as many opportunities as you can but don’t burn yourself out in the process. It’s not worth it and it’s only you that will lose out in the end. Always be polite and nice to people even when you don’t always get it in return and put love and energy into the roles that make you happy.
What is your styling philosophy?
I love undone messy hairstyling and classic ponytails, which I hold in place with the L’Oréal Professionnel Tecni.Art Constructor. For colour, I like a root tap/smudge so it doesn’t look too fresh. My signature colour has to be a lived-in blonde. I like to do a mixture of highlights and free hand work to brighten the hair and I use the Linton & Mac method tone technique. We use a minimum of three toners to deepen out the root and then blend the other two colours to give dimension and sparkle to the rest.
What Instagram accounts do you follow?
I am massively into food and wellbeing so my favourite account has to be Jasmine Hemsley. She is a former model turned cook and author. I love to look at her recipes but I also love her style for fashion and interiors so I get loads of inspiration from her.
What’s next for you in your career?
I have so many ideas that I never know what will come next, to be honest. I try not to have a structured plan in case something comes up or gets in the way so I enjoy the ride. I would like to focus on education and developing our brand in new ways.