While no stylist is ever the same, many of the top colorists, stylists, and hair care specialists in the industry have one thing in common: They began their careers in beauty school. Just like earning a degree at a four-year university, aspiring stylists enroll in beauty school to become masters of all things cut, color, and style. That’s why brands like L'Oréal Professionnel put such emphasis on the importance of educating future artists—so much so that they created the ESI Scholarship. This program awards current and aspiring hairdressers scholarships ranging from $500 to $1000 to help pay for full or part-time cosmetology classes.
Allie Bauer, a cosmetology student at Elevate Salon Institute in Durham, North Carolina, is one of 2019’s three lucky recipients of the $1,000 scholarship. We had the opportunity to chat with the makeup artist turned budding stylist, who shared her background, her inspiration, and her plans for the future.
Bauer always knew she would have a career in the arts. She started as a painter and began her career in beauty as a makeup artist, where her five years of experience led her in so many directions, including portrait, bridal, special effects, and movie makeup. She was frequently asked by clients to provide hair services, which led her to pursue an education at Elevate Salon Institute.
“As a painter and working in the makeup industry, hair didn’t seem to be much of a stretch,” Bauer says. “I went to school thinking I would like hair, but I never would have guessed how much I would fall in love with making people feel beautiful in an entirely different way.
Bauer learned about the L'Oréal Professionnel ESI Scholarship From Rocky Bible, the brand’s director of education development, when he came to Elevate Salon Institute to speak to students about the opportunity.
“The scholarship was awarded based on a decision made by people in leadership for L'Oréal Education...They asked me a series of questions about my goals and difficulties I have overcome and was awarded the scholarship a month later,” Bauer says. “It was an honor to be considered and awarded, especially from someone I really admire in the beauty industry.”
Like so many in the industry, Bauer’s inspiration to turn hair into a career is in her blood. She’s drawn inspiration from her aunt, who's been a working hairdresser for over 20 years. Just like makeup, Bauer says, hair is also a huge part of what makes people feel beautiful.
“Once I started seeing the shift in how someone felt or held themselves when they loved how their hair turned out, it spurred inspiration in me to seek out that look on every client I had in my chair,” Bauer explains. “That's what pushes me to continue through school.”
For Bauer, receiving a scholarship through L’Oreal Professionnel isn’t just a stepping stone, but an honor. She’s inspired by so many L’Oreal Professionnel artists, including Min Kim, Berni Ottjes, Vladimir Gulevich, and Yureesh.
“Each one of these artists are masters of their craft and have backgrounds that started on a difficult path...They don’t settle for average results and have become masters of color and cut,” Bauer says. “They are incredible educators and human beings...I follow their journeys and work on social media, and it is a privilege to do so.”
When asked about her goals post-graduation in July, Bauer’s list is endless. She hopes to work for her mentor Katie Menselle at Culture Hair Studio in Durham, North Carolina, and even participate in New York and Paris fashion week. While Bauer loves her work behind the chair, she’s not looking to give up her first true love in the beauty industry: makeup artistry. In fact, Bauer hopes to eventually expand her business into working behind the scenes on more television shows and movie sets.
“I don’t plan on slowing down, only becoming more ambitious in this amazing industry that’s centered around artistry.”
While Bauer’s journey in hair is just beginning, you’ll definitely want to keep an eye on her for years to come.
For more information about Bauer’s experience, pricing, and more, check out www.alliebauermakeup.com.