How to Become a Hair Boss


The best thing about working in the beauty industry is that none of us are here by accident. We all followed our passion and, regardless of our own individual interests or skill sets, our paths have all lead us here, and that alone is pretty rad.

So, we know that we all have this innate desire to be the best in the business, which is why we show up each and every day with such great enthusiasm for our work, but what does it take to become a true Hair Bossin the beauty industry today?

Industry expert and the original Hair Boss herself, Jamie Wiley, is here to walk us through exactly what it takes to reach that next level. Jamie works behind the chair in between her appointments as a session stylist. She has a degree in technical communications as well as an associate’s degree in the science of cosmetology and she’s the author of the book, Hair Boss, a hairstylist’s guide to owning their career. 

Before finding her stride in the beauty industry, Jamie served five years in the United States Army, which taught her everything from discipline, to loyalty, to selfless service—qualities that have taken her far in her life, both in the beauty industry and beyond. Jamie offers her best advice for hairstylists who are totally committed to owning their career and taking it to the next level.


Learning the Business of Hair

Ask yourself one question, “What is it that I want out of my career?”

For all of us in the beauty industry, our answers go far beyond financial stability, we want to be successful, we want to build relationships, we want to grow and prosper in the art of pampering our people. We all have aspirations, but we also all take time to get there. 

Jamie knows firsthand that if you want to make the most out of your career, you have to be the one to take the reins and steer yourself in the direction that you want to go, nobody else can do it for you. Oftentimes, we leave cosmetology school with vast knowledge on how to cut, color and style, but with little to no knowledge on how to actually build our business or direct our brand. 

Jamie says that the key to becoming a Hair Boss is to learn the business of hair. If you want to catapult yourself into your dream career, it’s imperative that you dig deep and find the drive to push yourself beyond your boundaries when it comes to learning how to do business—so, let’s get started. 


Building Your Clientele From the Ground Up

Jamie is an army wife, and with her family’s constant relocation she has become all too familiar with the daunting task that is building your clientele from scratch.

Jamie believes the secret to building a solid book when you’re just starting out is really in your communication. First, you have to find clients to market yourself to. You have to put yourself out there, whether that be on social media, over an email marketing campaign or live and in person at events where potential clients might be lingering.  

The most effective way to gain a solid clientele is to simply be true to yourself. If you brand yourself authentically and are honest about your skill set and your passions, you’re going to attract your ideal clients and your book will quickly begin to fill itself. 


Offering Solutions Not Making Sales

Let’s be clear about something—when we’re talking about recommending retail, we’re not focused on making the sale. Our goal is to provide a solid, long-term solution to our client’s haircare needs.

Jamie is incredibly passionate about pushing stylists beyond their fear of making sales. She encourages everyone in the beauty industry to remember one thing—that we are in the customer service business. Recommending retail isn’t about sales, but instead, it’s about creating satisfied customers by providing them with the products and tools needed to recreate their looks at home. 

In her book, Hair Boss, Jamie offers word for word scripts for selling products so that you can feel confident in making that sale, and she does so in a way that prompts your clients to understand the true intentions behind each product recommendation. 


Uncovering Your Full Potential

Not only is it important to understand your worth when it comes to building confidence in your career, but it’s a crucial piece in setting your prices. 

You have to attack your career with confidence and live out your passions intentionally each and every day. You deserve to be where you are, you have earned each step, and your prices should reflect your journey. 

Whether you’re closing in on your greatest achievement or you’re just setting sail, Jamie offers step-by-step advice for how to reach your biggest business goals. If you want to learn more about Jamie’s personal journey through the industry, listen to the podcast that inspired this blog, episode 155, and be sure to check out her book, Hair Boss, for all of her insider tips for truly owning your career.

Emily Kelly